Comparing Splatoon 1 to Splatoon 2


So it might not be a secret that I am a big Nintendo fan. Well before the Switch’s release, I wanted a Wii U, if only to play the Virtual Console title Earthbound. This article isn’t about that game. One of my next purchases was Splatoon. I found the demo to be a blast to play, and wanted more. I was surprised that the online worked as well as it did, both due to my wi-fi being a room away from my living room, and Nintendo being notorious for questionable online services.

The Splatoon series has been my go-to online game since I started playing it.

Now that Splatoon has a sequel for a while, and it is still updating (as of this writing), I feel like talking a bit more about the game. Today I will be comparing the two games, and will be mostly noting what is new in the second game. This will be a feature comparison and will be detailed with a lot of terms used in the Splatoon games. Additionally, I will not cover the difference in play styles between the two games, or the makeup of the online community. So, let me break down the sections that this article will have:

  • Main weapons
  • Sub weapons
  • Special weapons
  • Abilities (page 2)
  • Modes (page 3)

So, that being said, let’s begin:

  • Main weapons

So, right off the bat, most of the main weapons in the game are the same between the two games. There might be a few subtle differences, such as how the ink is spread with each shot, how much of the ink tank is depleted with each use, and how much damage is done, but otherwise, many of them function the same. Additionally, the sub and special weapons on each set is generally or noticeably different.

The Splatoon games have a lot of weapons. These are only a few in Splatoon 2.

Even so, there are two new weapon types. These are the Dualies, and Brellas. Dualies are similar to the shooter weapons, but your character is holding two at a time. Oddly, this weapon type is the only one that can perform dodge rolls, which is not something that you would expect from essentially holding two guns. These are very popular in the game thanks to this new feature.

Brellas are umbrellas which fire shotgun like bursts of ink. As you might expect, it is possible to open the umbrella canopy, which is used like a shield. For most weapons in this category, you can’t fire and block with the shield at the same time. For the ones that cannot fire and shield at the same time, the umbrella shield can detach from the weapon as well and moves forward, usually causing a diversion.

There have been changes to two of the returning weapon types, though. The Roller weapons can now swing both horizontally and vertically. The new vertical swing allows the rollers to reach a little further, with the loss of width. It is trickier to control this new trait but is helpful to those who can master it.

Chargers have been changed slightly as well. They can now temporarily store a charge in squid form, making them more useful. Additionally, at full charge, the player will glow, partially giving away his or her position. The storage of charge is somewhat difficult to master, but chargers are for skilled players anyway.

  • Sub weapons

Most sub weapons are the same between the two games. The only ones missing are the seekers and the disruptor. The disruptor was replaced by the similar toxic mist, both the distruptor and toxic mist slow down and reduce ink supply of any opponents hit by these weapons. Toxic mist’s distinction is that the blast lingers on the stage after hitting a player or obstacle.

The Curling bombs and auto bombs replace the seeker. Previously, the seeker moved forward in a straight line, and homes in on nearby opponents. The curling bombs move straight too, but eventually explode. They also ricochet off walls they hit at varying angles. Curling bombs do not chase foes. The auto bombs on the other hand are thrown, then they either explode if no foes are close enough to the landing point, or chase a nearby opponent if there is.

The point sensor has been modified too. Before, if gave off a brief blast that tracked opponents. Now, the blast lingers for a bit, making it easier to track foes.

In addition, the ink mines were changed quite a bit. In the first Splatoon, they could take out an opponent in one blast. Only one could be placed at a time. In Splatoon 2, you can place two at a time, but they cannot knock out an opponent in one shot to anyone in the blast radius. Instead, they start tracking players that survive the blast, changing their utility.

  • Special weapons

All of the special weapons are new in Splatoon 2. In fact, the only special weapon that returns is the bomb rush, now renamed the bomb launcher, with slightly adjusted features. Most of Splatoon 2’s special weapons have a similar one in Splatoon, but the weapons in Splatoon 2 are generally weaker when they do have a similar function.

A good example is the bubbler from Splatoon 1. When used, it immediately activates a shield around the user, making him temporarily impervious to all damage. Nearby allies could also get this bonus during its duration. The similar ink armor special in Splatoon 2 does not immediately protect its user, and even then, it breaks after one or two hits. The ink armor also protects the entire team in the same fashion, regardless of distance to the user.

Of note is that the echolocator special from Splatoon 1 has no equivalent in the sequel. This means that tracking is limited to point sensors and ink mines in Splatoon 2. The new ink storm and bubble blower specials are entirely new, with no equivalent in the original game.

The next section is kinda long, so go to page 2 to view the abilities section.


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