Pressing hard at the end in Rainmaker (17-7, Tri-slosher)

21st February 2017 – 7.00 am

I'm not too confident about being in the open spaces with my Tri-slosher on Mahi-Mahi Resort. I feel exposed with a short-range weapon, and generally get splatted quickly. The feeling is lessened in Rainmaker, when the action can be concentrated elsewhere, but I still find myself skirting the edges and looking for flanking points.

So it is that I set about skirmishing to indirectly support my squidmates and the Rainmaker, rather than making the Rainmaker my focus. My usual back route to start with can often be noticed, but this time it isn't, which is good. But the inklings don't stay on that ledge, and I have to jump down to give chase. I get a couple of splats, but maybe could have got more with some fancy footwork. Never mind.

I can't quite reach the Splatterscope, but I pressure her away from reaching the potential of her Splat Bomb Rush, and divert to take another route around the back, where I get the jump on a handful of inklings. Nice! Of course, I eventually push my luck. Back to the base! Jumping in to a Splat Bomb sends me back sooner than expected too, as does jumping in to the Rainmaker's blast.

But I know my way around most of these maps (except for one nook on Mahi-Mahi where I fell in to the water a few times today), and sneak around and behind the purple inklings near our base. I don't think they expected that. My Bubbler reactions are good tonight, saving me again, but the Rainmaker shield gets in the way of an Inkstriking inkling that ultimately causes me a splatting. Oh well.

I'm not giving up on the flanking strategy, and again it works a treat, along with a timely Bubbler charge. There's nothing quite like splatting the backs of other inklings with a Tri-slosher. But we still have a big lead to overcome, and time is running out.

We enter extra time holding the Rainmaker, and even though we've barely got close to the podium all battle, some good concentration, caution, and dashing at the right moments, and we squid in to a surprise victory. Woomy!

Supporting the Rainmaker (3-3, Tri-slosher)

20th February 2017 – 7.00 pm

The battle switches to Rainmaker! Okay, bucket, we can do this. I like Bluefin Depot and have a good relationship with Mahi-Mahi Resort, both maps that I can skirmish on and around. I even start this battle with a good Disruptor throw, even if I don't get the splat from it.

But even though skirmishing can work well, it can also be a bit selfish and circumstantial. In this battle, I see a squidmate grab the Rainmaker and press forwards, and this seems like an ideal time to have his back.

Well, not so much his back, but keep him protected, which generally means inking a path and splatting inklings out of the way, if you're competent, or getting in the way of their ink, if you're me. I do a bit of both, and give a 'Nice!', hopefully to signify that the way is clear.

I have to super-jump back, but we still have the Rainmaker and he's holding back to stay safe, whilst still making progress when he can. This is good Rainmaker carrying. I press ahead again, causing a bit of Disruption, a bit of a distraction, and hopefully help to clear the path ahead.

One more blast from the Rainmaker, and I watch from beyond the splat as he squids up and on to the podium for a victory dunk. Woomy!

And no one came to the Splat Zones (6-4, Tri-slosher)

20th February 2017 – 7.00 am

I think some people don't rate the Tri-slosher on Moray Towers, but I think it can work well. You definitely need to avoid the watchful eye of chargers, but its ability to slosh down from above, and ink walls effectively makes it viable.

I keep our Splat Zones blue to start with, and try to move across to the other one at a good opportunity. A retreating inkling puts paid to my move, though. Coming back, I take the same route, to check our Splat Zone, and have a mild panic moment as I think there's a green Kraken behind me. It looks blue as I jump down, but I'm pretty sure there was a green one there too.

I make it across to the other side, going the more direct route, and in the ink of a fallen squidmate capture the other Splat Zone. It doesn't give us a score, as our Splat Zone is in green tentacles, but I can keep this one covered in blue in the best I can.

The Squiffer is avoided, the Splat Zone is blue, and I squid up the wall to help me ink turf from a less vulnerable position. This attracts attention, as it should, but I am indeed safer here than in the Splat Zone, and any ink sent my way won't ink the Splat Zone either. But there's a lot of pressure.

I drop down to avoid immediate attention, falling in to trouble. But I do pretty well to come out of it unsplatted, albeit with some green on me. It was good to see a squidmate on this side of the map too, as it feels like I'm alone over here. At least they recapture our Splat Zone. For a little while.

I am undone by a blaster eventually. I can't hide around obstacles from that, sadly. I try to get back to the other Splat Zone again, and manage it briefly, but not being able to keep our own Splat Zone makes it ultimately meaningless anyway.

Being a nuisance in Splat Zones (10-6, Tri-slosher)

19th February 2017 – 7.00 pm

Me and a Tri-slosher normally equals my trying to get around the back of the map and causing some disruption from behind. This doesn't change when playing Splat Zones on Museum d'Alfonsino.

I attract some early attention from the charger, which is good in a way. If he's looking at me, he's not looking at my squidmates or the Splat Zones. I think I get away with being spotted, until I am run roughshod over by a respawned inkling.

I go back and across to the other side, and end up popping a speculative Bubbler, which would serve me better if I could move away from Splat Bombs quicker.

Hey, we take the lead! Nice work, squidmates. I like to think I'm contributing, mostly doing my own thing over here. Surely getting splats and preventing the inklings from getting to the Splat Zones helps.

I see the rotating arm of the main platform and think of different way of getting to the opponents' side of the map. If I can ink the edge and jump from that side platform, that should do it. I don't even get to attempt the jump, though. But I'm going back to try again.

My second attempt at the jump just ends with a flop, as I mis-time it quite badly. There's more time to give it a proper go! I get back and the rotating platform stops. That makes me pause, and see action below me. I can't ignore it. But I take care of that, and as the arm swings by me I make the jump. Nice!

Getting up there doesn't help me much this time, though. I drop down and squid around, and try to help our charger in the battle with the other charger, but my Disruptor throwing arm is clearly not as strong as I thought. And it doesn't help to slosh ink over a ledge for ten seconds, so ignore that.

Time is up and we're in the lead, but the purple team has control of the Splat Zones. Now is a good time to concentrate on the Zones and not the splats. Extra time ends nice and quickly.

Just Disrupting in Tower Control (7-7, Tri-slosher)

19th February 2017 – 7.00 am

I'm starting to feel the pressure and frustrations of S-Rank battling again, where I'm getting splatted and splatted with little to show for it. I try to compensate by playing smarter, but it seems I'm not that smart after all.

I try to use my Disruptor well, and not charge headlong in to poor situations, but squidding beak-first in to a couple of Splat Bombs doesn't make me feel positive.

I think I would feel better about my competency if more of the splats that I contribute to were credited to me. I suppose it's enough to know I'm helping, it would just be nice to see that more obviously.

In the end, it seems like the best way I can help is by Disrupting the yellow inklings as much as possible, and letting my more competent squidmates deal with them.

It seems to work! I'm sure the E-litre 3K can't get as many shots off as she'd like, which must be a benefit as the Tower trundles to the goal. I like to think so, anyway.

Applying pressure in Rainmaker (8-7, Tri-slosher)

18th February 2017 – 7.00 pm

Oop, I nearly get too close to the Rainmaker's shield at the start, but I hang back and nick it off the teal team to get an early, but slight lead. They come back immediately, beating my measly metres, and I both show some restraint to get a splat, and impetuosity in running in to one.

I don't think that Splatterscope hit me, but whatever. You have to play with what you've got. I also cheat a splat by being close to the Rainmaker's shield again, and get my own back by splatting those on the other side of it.

I manage to spot the Suction Bomb just in time, and spy the Splatterscope's laser sight pointing at me, popping my Bubbler to give me a slight reprise. Not enough to run in to the Splatling. The Splatling who apparently has eyes in the back of his head, but this is S-Rank battling, I suppose.

I sneak around the back successfully, and although I get the drop on the Splatterscope I fail to see which way she squids, so move on. And as the only reason I get around the back is because the Rainmaker is behind me, I should go backwards. This has an inkling drop in to my lap, which is nice.

I ignore the Rainmaker with intent to cause more trouble. I think I succeed, although had I squidded a bit better I could have got the Splatterscope as well. Super-jumping back causes a bit more trouble, but mostly for my bucket, which somehow doesn't splat the Splatling.

We did enough, though! We come back from behind to get a decent victory, and although my splat total isn't massive, I consider the splats I got to be good.

Saving it at the end in Rainmaker (10-8, Tri-slosher)

18th February 2017 – 7.00 am

I don't think it benefits me and my bucket to get anywhere fast on Hammerhead Bridge in Rainmaker. I slow down a bit, inking turf, building my Special's charge, and still get caught out by an inkling. I've never been a fan of jumping either.

At least I survive the next splat, but Tri-slosher versus Splatling is generally only going to go one way. The same is true with the .52 Gal, even at close range, when I can't sidle out of the way.

I pause for breath, not wanting to sacrifice my squidy self for nothing, but not quite realising I'm not in my ink. It shouldn't matter in this case. I see my moment and pounce, but the Gal jumps annoyingly. I still don't like that.

I battle smarter, and gain some height over the Gal when I surprise him from behind, completely nullifying his jumping efforts, getting my a very satisfying splat. A second splat is welcomed, and from there I move forwards, a little cautiously, to support the Rainmaker, now moving forwards.

Again, a bit of height helps me superbly. The Splatling is thwarted, the Roller is thwarted, and I come out on top with my bucket. Woomy! I push forwards, but see activity from behind. When I can't find it, but do find the Rainmaker for the taking, I grab it and do what I can.

Some disappointing moments follow. I miss the Roller who super-jumps away a split-second in time, and then my squidding up the side of a wall just puts me in the way of the Rainmaker blast. On top of that, more silly jumping gets the better of me. That's not quite as bad as my ink simply missing, though.

I persevere with getting behind the opponents, though, and it pays off in the end. I splat an Inkzooka from behind, chase the Rainmaker, slowing it down with a nicely aimed Disruptor, and get the splat just as the battle ends. That'll do!

Splats all around in Rainmaker (11-7, Tri-slosher)

17th February 2017 – 7.00 pm

I like Walleye Warehouse, and I like running around the back on Walleye Warehouse. But will it work on more experienced inklings? It doesn't look like it. I almost but not quite get a splat, and whilst I do nothing the other team takes an early lead.

My Bubbler is ready as I sneak around the side of the Kelp Splatterscope, so I am a little disappointed to have him snap a perfect shot off at me. Never mind, it happens. And I sneak around the side and get my own back.

A little concentration on the Rainmaker, and I go inking again. I don't splat the brush, but my Disruptor looks to help a squidmate, and the Splatterscope is too high for my bucket, so I look for a different route. Heading back around the side, pausing for breath shows me the extra inkable block. That'll do me for a splat!

How I get no splats when I have my Bubbler up and a couple of inklings in tentacle reach is part of the reason why I get frustrated with S-Rank battles. I'm sure I'm not doing so badly as to miss so wildly, but I suppose I'm just not spotting their inky trails.

I trade splats a few times, in ways I'm happy with, under the circumstances, and I use my Disruptor to good effect a number of times. I shouldn't have jumped over that inkable block when the Splatterscope was charged, though. That was a mistake.

We make a final push as the battle enters extra time, but despite getting some splats and inking ahead, we don't manage to gain the lead.

Hits and misses in Rainmaker (11-9, Tri-slosher)

17th February 2017 – 7.00 am

Back in S Rank, woe is me. But I'll try to stay optimistic. For this venture, I'll stick with my Tri-slosher, and see if I can hold my own on occasion with the bucket.

The battle doesn't start well, as I am easily spotted by two inklings as I try to flank down Hammerhead Bridge, a map I am rather ambivalent towards. I'll just have to be smarter. Apparently that means going straight down the middle.

It helps that I use my Disruptor well, both in throwing it and waiting for the inkling affected to have to recharge. It also helps to know your alternative routes. The only problem is that they really need to be inked first, or aware inklings will see you coming. S-Rank inklings seem to be pretty aware.

I try to make good use of various routes, as well as the ledges and walls. Hammerhead Bridge is a decent map for being highly manoeuvrable, but it also means you have to watch yourself in every direction. I prefer it when I am doing the flanking, of course, particularly to catch a Heavy Splatling and Inkzooka from behind.

I manage that again, this time nullifying the Rainmaker as well as catching a brush in the shield explosion. Good times. That helps us keep our lead, and I manage a decent victory in S-Rank Rainmaker.

Taking care of the Splat Zones (5-0, Tri-slosher)

16th February 2017 – 7.00 pm

The bucket is working well for me tonight. Maybe I'm bucketing smarter, not harder. I think that's the case in this battle.

I refuse to be sucked in to pointless squabbles or petty revenge, and look after myself first and the Splat Zones second.

I make good use of my Bubbler, which saves me nicely, and my Disruptor, which slows down the teal inklings when required.

Along with a little bit of luck, I help the team to a smooth knockout victory. It doesn't get much sweeter.