Splatoon 2 was one of the games that Nintendo revealed during its January Nintendo Switch Presentation, unveiling a trailer and giving some fans and press the chance to try the game out.
The sequel to the popular Wii U multiplayer shooter is out now, and it's one of our favourite Switch games and we've given it a glowing review. Here's everything we know so far about the game, including its release date, price, and gameplay features.
Fans will be pleased to know that a free update coming today (23 August) will include a new Salmon Run stage called Lost Outpost, while a new Manta Maria map is being added this Friday evening and will be available in Turf Wars and Ranked Battles. On 1 September, a new Bubble Blower weapon will arrive with the next free DLC weapon, the Forge Splattershot Pro.
When is the Splatoon 2 release date?
Splatoon 2 came out on Switch on 21 July.
How much will Splatoon 2 cost in the UK?
Splatoon 2 UK price: £49.99/$59.99
Anyone who's played the first Splatoon should find the sequel very familiar. For the uninitiated, it's an online multiplayer arena shooter, but instead of shooting bullets, you shoot coloured ink.
You use this to both attack enemies and cover the walls and floor, giving you space to swim through as a squid (you're an 'inkling', and can transform into a squid at will), and the winning team is the one that covers the most of the map.
Beyond the main Turf War game mode, there are three rotating Ranked Battle modes: Splat Zones, where teams battle for control points; Tower Control, which features a tower that teams have to move towards their opponents' base; and Rainmaker, which is essentially capture the flag.
As with the first game there's a single-player campaign called Hero Mode to help players get the hang of the move set.
The trailer for the single-player mode shows off a similar setup to the original, with floating platform stages broken up by enemies and puzzles, though now the stages look bigger and more complex, there are a few new enemy types, and there are hints at the ongoing plot, driven by the split of Squid Sisters Callie and Marie.
Up to eight Switch systems will be able to connect over wireless or LAN for lag-free multiplayer, in addition to a Private Battle Spectator View to allow spectators to watch the game from multiple angles.
For those who want to play online, Splatoon 2 is the first game to take advantage of the Switch smartphone app, which is used to track your stats and gear, and use online voice chat within your team.
Splatoon 2 also features a new co-op mode called Salmon Run. This is a four-player co-op mode where players team up and for a wave-based horde mode against the new Salmonid enemies, with the goal of collecting Power Eggs, which you can then exchange for new gear.
There are a variety of different Salmonid enemies to fight, and when players die, their teammates can revive them with ink.
There's also a selection of weapons and outfits to unlock, and some new maps to play on too.
Outfit items come with unique abilities attached - rather than just the stat tweaks from the first game - and are sold at a selection of new stores. There's also a dedicated shop for customising the abilities attached to each clothing item, so you don't have to compromise your fresh looks to get the skills you want.
The game is also compatible with existing Splatoon Amiibo figures, along with three new Amiibo figures: Inkling Girl, Inkling Boy and Inkling Squid. Each will remember the player's favourite weapons, gear, outfits and option settings, and can also store screenshots.
Oh, and the first game's soundtrack is absolutely brilliant, and Splatoon 2 not only features new tracks, it includes a whole mini rhythm game to make the most of the music.
For the best look at the gameplay check out the 6 July Nintendo Direct dedicated entirely to Splatoon 2:
Nintendo has announced extensive free DLC plans for Splatoon 2. It has confirmed that there will be a year of free updates for the game, including new weapons, maps, and outfits.
Beyond that, there will be a total of two years' support for the popular SplatFest events, which pit the player base against themselves to answer vital questions like 'cats or dogs?'