Splatoon 2, in regular Splatoon tradition, will continue to roll out more free (crazy, right?) content. Updates will come to the Nintendo Switch third-person shooter on Thursday, Nov. 23, with a second update to follow in mid-December.
The late-November update will include four new battle stages, starting with new shopping store-themed stage MakoMart, arriving just in time for Black Friday. Following in the subsequent weeks will be another new stage, Shellendorf Institute (presumably named after the grandfather of Splatoon weapons expert Sheldon), and classic stages from the first Splatoon, Walleye Warehouse and Arowana Mall.
Also in late November will come a new map for horde mode Salmon Run (Salmonid Smokeyard), 140 new pieces of gear, clothing and accessories (including items from the original Splatoon), new battle music from “two new bands,” new hairstyles for your Inkling character, a raise in the level cap from 50 to 99 (with a reset option, a la Call of Duty’s prestige system), the ability to take photos with your Inkling on battle stages and the long-overdue ability to change your loadout within the game’s multiplayer lobby.
Mid-December will bring a new Ranked Battle Mode, called “Clam Blitz.” The mode will have two opposing teams gather clams around the map, then deposit them into a bucket on the other side of the map. Players can steal each other’s clams by splatting (“killing”) them, and 10 clams are required for a “Power Clam,” which allows for players to break through a barrier that protects the bucket.
“These free new additions to Splatoon 2 deliver surprises to fans to keep the fun going,” said the awesomely named Doug Bowser, Nintendo of America’s Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing in a statement. “This new content significantly expands the game and provides a great value for players, regardless of whether they purchased it on launch day or have it on their holiday gift lists.”
Speaking to The Verge, producer Hisashi Nogami said that the big updates were created in the hopes of reinvigorating the player base, as he jokes that there was a decline in active users after the release of the excellent Super Mario Odyssey. Check out a video detailing the massive update below.