Nintendo is getting ready to release another update to their much-loved ink-shooting game Splatoon. This Splatoon update promises to be its biggest yet. Not only will it include several new weapons and outfits, it will also bring some overdue adjustments to the ranking and matching systems. And it’s free.

New Levels

Playing Splatoon’s online mode is a ton of fun, and the more you play the more you level up your squid/kid avatar. Presently, the highest level you can reach in Turf War is 20, and the game has been out for long enough at this point that the servers are overflowing with level 20s. After the August update, however, players will be able to level up all the way to 50, motivating all of those level 20s to continue to play. And in Ranked Battle, players will be able to surpass A and A+ level to attain the new S and S+ levels.

Splatling Gun splatoon updates

Splatling gun looks like fun.


New Weapons and Gear

Every time you upgrade your level, you get access to new weapons and clothes. So, to go with the new available levels, Nintendo will be rolling out two new weapon types and 40 new pieces of gear. The new weapon types are Sloshers, which fling buckets of ink, and Splatlings, which are based on gatling guns. Notice I said “weapon types” and not “weapons.” There will probably be multiple versions of both the Sloshers and the Splatlings.

Gear-wise, get ready for cool new clothes, including a leather jacket and a sushi-chef costume.

New Matching Options

Finally, finally, Splatoon is releasing improvements to its matching options. Previously, if you wanted to play online with a friend, you could play only in Turf War and you couldn’t decide who was on whose team. Worse, you would often have to wait around for up to 15 minutes for a slot to open in your friend’s server.

Now there are two new modes of playing that are specifically designed for groups of friends. Squad Mode will allow four friends to team up in Ranked Battle and play against teams of strangers. Private Battle will allow two to eight friends to play together in customizable matches. That means that you will get to choose who is on what side and what rules you’ll be playing by. It will also allow for local tournaments of up to eight Wii U consoles on a single internet connection. That’s more relevant to game event organizers than it is to families, but it’s still interesting.

Rainmaker splatoon updates

The Rainmaker

New Maps and Ranked Battle Mode

In addition to all of the above, includes in the Splatoon updates will be new maps and a new Ranked Battle mode called Rainmaker. Rainmaker was initially teased in a Nintendo Direct before Splatoon’s release. It will require that one team obtain the “Rainmaker” weapon and carry it deep into the enemy’s territory (kind of like American football).

Want to learn more about Splatoon? Read my review or watch some videos of Simone and I playing the single-player campaign!

This article was written by

Courtney is Pixelkin's Associate Managing Editor. While working with the Girl Scouts of Northern California, she mentored young girls in teamwork, leadership, personal responsibility, and safety. Today, she spends her time studying adolescent development and using literary analysis techniques to examine video games.