Splatoon 2 Play Modes Breakdown

by Perry Burkum and David Lloyd - August 8, 2017, 12:37 pm PDT
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We've broken down the rules of each mode to create a simple guide.

The crazy success of the original Splatoon on Wii U came as a surprise to most people, and now the highly awaited sequel is sitting pretty on Nintendo's new and shiny console. Many Switch owners have already been busy inkin' turf, owning zones and making it rain for hours upon hours.

But there's something odd about the online aspect of Splatoon 2. Being a 4 person squad-based shooter, it is obviously a very multiplayer-heavy experience. Joining up with your buddies to face the opposing bad guys is what it's all about, but unfortunately the online options are convoluted and in some cases just plain weird.

Every different mode has different rules for how you can team up with friends or random online players, choose weapons in-between matches, or even when they are available to play.

But why is this the case? Some think it helps with the matchmaking process, but there is no concrete answer from Nintendo yet. Of course there is the chance that Nintendo could patch in different setups and rules, but for now Splatoon 2's online friends and weapons rules continue to be confusing.

So what are the rules for each mode, exactly?

We here at NWR want to help you sort it out. For each online mode we have posed 4 questions to help understand it better. The questions are:


1. Can you choose your weapon in-between rounds without backing out of online?
2. Can you play with friends?
3. Can you play with random online players?
4. Is this mode available all of the time?

Associate Editors David Lloyd and Perry Burkum have created a nifty little graph to answer these questions for each mode of play. As you can see, the different rules seem quite bizarre. (And let's not even mention the Voice Chat of the Nintendo Online app...) So what do you think of how Nintendo handled Splatoon 2's online structure? Let us know in the comments below!

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