Splatoon by Benjamin Sawyer

Splatoon was released by Nintendo for the Wii U on May 28, 2015. This game is Nintendo’s answer to first person shooter games popular on other systems. However, the game focuses more on shooting ink to gain territory instead of killing other players or inklings. While you can still kill other players in multiplayer, I think this game brings a different concept to the shooter genre. Characters can shift between a humanoid inkling and squid forms in battle. Players can use their weapons, jump, and run while in the humanoid shape. But players can change into a squid, diving into the ink on the battlefield, for cover from attacks and quickly swim through their own color ink, but take damage and slowdown when in the enemy’s ink. You can even climb up obstacles and walls while in the squid form adding different scenarios and strategy to combat.

Inklings use a variety of guns and painting equipment to battle other inklings for territory. Each weapon class has a main weapon, sub weapon and a special aspect. Each inkling can wear three different types of armor: shoes, headgear, and clothing. Gamers can buy these at the different shops based on level of play and money. Each item starts off with one ability, but the more you play with the item on, it levels up more abilities (up to four). Before buying a weapon or armor item, you can try them out. I really like this feature to see how one weapon differs from another without having to waste money on it or hate it in battle. The game is Amiibo compatible unlocking new challenges and Amiibo exclusive gear. The inkling boy and girl can be bought individually, but you have to buy the set to get the inkling squid Amiibo.

The game offers both single player and multiplayer. The single player storyboard gives the gamer experience with gameplay. It is a great way to get used to the levels and abilities before heading into the more fast-paced multiplayer. In single player, gamers can collect red power eggs to upgrade their weapons and sunken scrolls with the backstory of Splatoon as they make their way through levels trying to catch the Zapfish at the end. You must rescue the Zapfish from the evil Octarians to get the Great Zapfish and restore the Inkopolis’ source of power. After collecting all the Zapfish in the area, that unlocks the boss battle. After facing off with the boss, you are given blueprints which can then be made into more weapons at the weapon shop.

Muiltiplayer offers a variety of gameplay options. Gamers can play with friends or against other players online. There is an option of all levels competing or a competitive mode for online and with friends. Online matches last about 3 minutes, making for quick games. Each game gives the gamer experience to level up and unlock new gear and weapons as well as money to buy the gear and weapons.

Overall, this game is super easy to pick up and play. It is perfect for those hardcore gamers and newbie gamers alike. Nintendo did a great job with this ink-tastic shooter. 

I give it 8 bits out of 10.


Legend of Zelda: Triforce Heroes by Benjamin Sawyer

Legend of Zelda: Triforce Heroes for the Nintendo 3DS is a sequel to the Link Between Worlds released two years prior, but this is not your typical Zelda game. The game allows the player to play with two friends (on separate 3DS’s of course), online with strangers, or single player with dolls or “Dopples”. The single player game can be frustrating. The time challenges make the player switch between the Dopples or physically pick them up and throw them around the dungeon with you. Online gameplay becomes cumbersome as well if the internet connection goes out or lags for any of the three players.

Instead of having a collection of items to complete a dungeon, each Dopple or player can only use one item per dungeon. These items are pre-selected for the dungeon, forcing players to work together to defeat enemies and complete challenges. Once again, this is super inconvenient for solo players who then have to switch to a Dopple with a specific item to defeat a monster.

If your friend is really into the Zelda universe, they might be disappointed with this game as the main story is about saving a princess who is cursed to wear a black jumpsuit instead of her fancy clothes.

The game price is $39.99, I would really only get this game for $20 max.