Sunday, May 31

Splatoon, and other things that shouldn't exist

I've been playing Destiny almost exclusively for the last 3 months. I might play the odd round of Hearthstone, or an old Virtual Console title as I wait for sleep to take me, but on the whole, it's fair to say I'm obsessed with my second life as a space magician (and my third life as an alien woman who can kick and shoulder charge intergalactic evil).

For 3 months I've played the same missions again, and again, and again, hoping for a chance at weapons and armour that people brag about (or secretly yearn for) on various forums. I have earned some items of so-called 'phat loot', and despite my expectation, finding Gjallahorn (and Vision of Confluence, and Monte Carlo, etc, etc) wasn't reason to down tools; if anything, it fuelled my desire to see more of this post-apocalyptic vision of Earth, and the galaxy surrounding it.

Destiny, as a shooter made by a time-tested developer, makes sense to exist and be enduringly popular in this day and age. While it isn't gory, it is certainly violent. People like violence in video games. People like space ships and visions of the future, be they positive or otherwise. I can accept that Destiny is thing in the year 2015.

Splatoon doesn't make sense. I don't know how it exists in a world where Call of Duties, and Batmans, and sexy Witchers shoot, bludgeon, and butcher everything within range. Destiny is colourful, but few shades of its palette are bright enough to match the neons that players splatter across skate parks and warehouses in Splatoon. Splatoon doesn't support functionality like voice chat, that most Destiny players use with a modicum of respect, but others use to mercilessly criticise any mistakes you might make. You don't need to attack your fellow players to win in Splatoon. I say again, no one has to die in Splatoon.

You can just paint. You can just equip a big paint roller and run. No one has to die.

I've won matches in Splatoon with a kill count under 5. I watch the mini map, not to detect enemies, but to discern where best to place my giant brush.

Splatoon is a miracle. A flawed, beautiful miracle.

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