Splatoon has launched, giving players a chance to try Nintendo's wacky, colorful crack at the multiplayer shooter. How are you going to get the paint-soaked edge on your Inkling competition? Check out Shacknews' tips to get you started on the right track.
Don't Worry about Kills - As you might imagine from a Nintendo game, getting kills on your opponent's team really isn't the goal in Splatoon. Your job is to ink up as much ground as you can cover. Splatting the competition is helpful, as it removes an obstacle to your own ink coverage and prevents them from covering areas with their own, but always keep in mind that it's not the goal. That means sometimes it's better to run or lay low, giving you more opportunity to paint the town red instead of going head-to-head.
Prioritize Contested Areas - Since the goal is to have the most area covered with ink, you should always go after contested areas first. If a part of the map is swimming in the other team's ink, try to take some of that area back. Areas that haven't been inked at all add to your total, naturally, but inking over the other team's area gives you points while taking away theirs.
Don't Wail for Walls - Satisfying as it may be to paint a wall, they don't count towards your points total. The only reason to splash a wall is to give you quick transport by swimming up its side. That can be incredibly helpful, but don't focus too much on covering every square inch.
Paint Yourself Into a Corner - One of the most unique aspects of Splatoon is your ability to swim in your team's ink, effectively acting as instant camoflauge to set up for ambushes or to sneak around your opponents. If you're pressing into a new area, or one that is primarily covered in your opponent's ink, take a moment to splash an alternate escape path. If you come face-to-face with a member of the other team, you can make a quick getaway or hide in a small puddle while you wait to strike.
Use the Squid Jump - Instead of always hoofing it on-foot to the big battle areas, Splatoon lets you jump straight to a teammate by tapping their icon on the GamePad screen. This is a great way to get back into the action quickly, and you can even fire your weapon a little on the way down. Just be careful not to jump into a hotzone, because the other team will be warned of your impending landing.
Keep an Eye on Your Base - The drawback of the jump is that it will often transport you to the middle of the map. Smart Inklings will sneak around the chaos and paint your side, grabbing some land and pestering you at your spawn point to boot. Whenever you die, take a quick glance at the GamePad to see if any paint paths are inching towards your spawn point. If so, you might want to stick close to home and keep them from hitting you where it hurts.
Swim Strategically - Swimming around the battlefield is quick and sneaky, but unless you have some special skills equipped, your opponents can see some telltale signs. Sometimes it's better to stay still under the ink, and pop out for an ambush. It does make you more vulnerable to some attacks, especially Rollers, but it pays off if you're judicious with it.
Use Recon - It's tucked away in the main multiplayer menu where most players will skip straight into the action, but you can always press Y to go into Recon mode. This gives you a quick opportunity to check out a map with no opponents, so you can learn all of its little nooks, crannies, and shortcuts. The slight time investment can give you a big advantage over more impatient Inklings.
Help Cap'n Cuddlefish - Tucked away in a corner of the main hub is Cap'n Cuddlefish, an NPC who introduces you to the single-player proceedings. Completing various pieces of the single-player campaign will unlock special gear for multiplayer, and besides that, it can help hone your splatting skills.