As evident in last weekend’s Splatfest, things are heating up for another splat-tastic season of Ink Battles. Splatoon 2 builds on the success of its predecessor, serving up the same addictive online gameplay, where spreading ink is often more important than splatting your opponents. But the game offers a variety of new features too including a challenging single-player campaign and Salmon Run, a horde-like cooperative mode. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of Splatoon 2’s new features and modes.
Ammo Knights Ehancifier
During the single player campaign, all upgrades are handled through Sheldon’s Ammo Knights Enhancifier, located in Tentakeel Outpost. Initially you come equipped with a Hero Shot, Ink Tank, and Splat Bombs—the Hero Shot and Ink Tank can be upgraded to enhance their performance. Weapons received from Sheldon can also be upgraded. Before entering a new lair, review how many Power Eggs and Sardinium you’ve collected and consider purchasing some upgrades. There’s no other use for Power Eggs and Sardinium found in Octo Canyon, so you might as well spend them. Upgrading the Ink Tank increases its capacity. This is a worthwhile upgrade, so don’t hesitate to fork over the Power Eggs and Sardinium. The greater the tank’s ink capacity, the longer you can use your weapons without running dry. Also, before entering the final Boss Kettle, it’s highly recommended that you fully upgrade the Hero Shot to improve its rate of fire—this makes the final boss battle so much easier.
Salmon Run: Spawning Grounds
Salmon Run is a new co-operative mode that serves up an outstanding challenge to teams of two to four players. Can you defeat three Salmonid waves and collect their Golden Eggs? It’s harder than you might think! Salmon Run takes place at the Spawning Grounds, the first map available at launch. This assemblage of concrete and metal grates is surrounded on all sides by hazardous water. At high tide, there’s not even any beach to walk on. Familiarize yourself with the map as soon as you reach the island. Focus on inking the vertical surfaces and solid paths that surround the center of the map so as to give yourself plenty of escape routes. Remember, you’re not inking for turf. You’re inking for safety! Try to maintain a continuous path of ink leading to the egg basket at all times. Not only does this help your team deliver Golden Eggs faster, but it also makes for a reliable resupplying path. Maintain an elevated position during normal and high tides to force the Salmonids to funnel along narrow paths as they try to reach you. Leap down and circle around behind them using pre-inked walls to swim up.
Crusty Sean’s Food and Drinks
Not long ago, Crusty Sean closed up shop at Shrimp Kicks to follow his true passion—crafting delicious fried food and refreshing drinks. Working out of a food truck parked in the Square, Crusty Sean has a full menu of items, each providing a unique bonus in Ink Battles. Food items provide a bonus boost in gold or experience, while drinks increase your chances of getting specific sub abilities when leveling up gear. All drinks also increase gear XP. You can’t simply buy these items with gold. You need tickets retrieved from Octo Canyon, obtained by playing matches in the Shoal, or received from Grizzco Industries in Salmon Run. Once you have a ticket, redeem it at Crusty Sean’s food truck for a specific item on the menu. Bonuses gained from food and drinks last for 20 matches. These bonuses can’t be stacked—consuming a new food or drink overrides the active bonus.
Murch: Gear Customization
Once you acquire some Super Sea Snails, take them to Murch, near Deca Tower’s entrance. Just like Spyke, Murch can order and customize gear. If you’re not satisfied with a gear item’s randomized sub abilities, you can pay Murch to reroll them. Or Murch can wipe the sub abilities completely, returning the remnants as ability chunks. Ability chunks can be collected and eventually installed into pieces of gear, allowing for even greater customization. It takes 10 ability chunks of the same type to apply the corresponding ability to a piece of gear. For example, if you have 10 Swim Speed Up ability chunks, you can add Swim Speed Up to a piece of gear. However, the price increases when applying the same ability to one piece of gear. So if an item already has Swim Speed Up, it takes 20 Swim Speed Up ability chunks to apply the second ability. Or 30 Swim Speed Up chunks if there are already two Swim Speed Up abilities applied to a piece of gear.
Three new amiibo have been created to coincide with the release of Splatoon 2: a new Inkling Girl, a new Inkling Boy, and a new Inkling Squid. Interact with the empty amiibo box in the Plaza. Here you’re prompted to place one of the Splatoon amiibo figures on the controller—the corresponding amiibo appears within the box on-screen. Each Splatoon amiibo unlocks exclusive gear; even the previously released Splatoon amiibo (including Callie and Marie) can unlock new items for a total of eight exclusive gear sets. Plus, you can save Ink Battle loadouts to an amiibo for easy setup before a match.