I start the Hoverboard Splatfest with a safe, comfortable weapon, the Splash-o-Matic. I will switch a few times, particularly as Moray Towers is one of the maps, but it's good to get a decent start.
First battle is on Saltspray Rig, a map that I like, but where circumstances can go quite wrong. It goes well to start with, and my vantage point is found.
A bomb threat flies towards me, but I evade it easily and deal with inkling responsible. I even dodge an Inkzooka, and a squidmate splats that inkling holding it. The battle is going well.
I don't manage to stay where I want to, though, and there follows the spirited battle to get back there. I don't quite manage to rout the other team, although I have fun trying.
I stay down the on the lower levels after that, because they need to be inked and it's embarrassing to lose a Turf War battle when holding the top but not the bottom. And we get a decent win, which is a good start!
Romain was on our team in the last battle, and he seemed pretty good. Now he's on the other side. I hope that doesn't bode ill. It's the first battle of the evening on Mahi-Mahi Resort too, so naturally I get confused by what is water and what isn't. And get splatted first by Romain. Aww.
The water level drops, which kinda helps, but also means that the orange team have just taken a massive lead. We are in trouble. At least they don't get to the podium, allowing us to grab the Rainmaker and, well, I jump in to water. I didn't mean to! I thought that was a platform after the water level goes down. Maybe not in Rainmaker.
The orange team keep their commanding lead, and press for the knockout. It seems like we're just running damage control from here, as even when a squidmate makes a good bolt forwards, we are still far from coming close to equally their lead.
We keep pressing. I get a kinda triple-splat, finishing with Romain carrying the Rainmaker, which leads to no orange team being unsplatted. This gives us an opportunity, if only we could get past the inkling doing his best Lakitu impression, tossing the occasional Suction Bomb at us from an unreachable platform.
But get past him we do, and take the lead! Great work, squidmates! And so close to a dunk for our team too. Just a little too much orange on the podium for a squid to climb.
There's not long to go either, and a strategic pause lets me splat the Rainmaker. Although a Killer Wail misses the orange inkling, a squidmate grabs the Rainmaker and takes it back towards the orange podium. That's enough to secure us the victory, and so I don't mind the Rainmaker shield bumping me unceremoniously in to the water.
Sticking with the Tri-slosher for Rainmaker, although I don't expect another battle like the last very often. I go for the charger again, because that worked well for me last time. Not so this time. I'm not convinced his aim was pointed sufficiently at me, but so it goes. I probably shouldn't be messing with him head-on like that.
I get right back in to the battle, and although the Rainmaker is there I spy some Beakons on my gamepad. Those must go. I get rid of both strategically placed Beakons, and one inkling, but not the other that super-jumps in behind. Never mind!
We get hold of the Rainmaker, and I do my best to protect him and ink a path. I kinda lose track a bit, though. Not a problem, as we take the lead! I'm not the best bodyguard, though, splatting the assassin only after losing the Rainmaker.
I grab the Rainmaker myself but find myself in a sticky situation. Back to base, but at least I get the inkling who Wailed on me. Not so the .96 Gal hiding in the corner, but I don't know how.
I race a bus back to the battle, and start doing, I dunno, whatever comes naturally. Hopefully helping. Throwing lots of ink around, anyway. That generally helps!
[I've had to edit out a few seconds of the video, as the recording glitches and cannot be rendered]
Ranked rotates to Rainmaker! Let's give the Tri-slosher a try. It's maybe not the ideal weapon for Rainmaker, but I like it as a general weapon anyway. I make an early beeline around the Rainmaker to get an early splat on the charger, which is satisfying, even if I get splatted afterwards.
My squidmates take control of the Rainmaker and make an excellent charge in to the green team's territory. I think we're going to get a knockout victory, but the other team swarm and splat everyone but me. I hide for a moment, and try to disrupt their shield bursting, but get no splats.
We have a commanding lead, but the battle is still early. The green team inevitably get control of the Rainmaker and start tentatively bringing it back to the centre. We tussle for a bit, where I find out that my Tri-slosher is no match in range for the Slosher Deco a couple of times. I should remember that.
The green team makes little real progress. When they get just about get back to the centre and we steal the Rainmaker back, I head off to ink a route. But we lose the Rainmaker just as fast, and I have to double-back.
That's just fine, as it turns out. Catching them unawares, I splat the Rainmaker, his super-jumping buddy, and the other two green inklings with the help of my Bubbler. All four green inklings are out of action at the same time for at least a second, getting me a quad-kill with my Tri-slosher! Oh yeah.
Two last splats are highly satisfying. Both are from breaking the Rainmaker's shield, which ends the battle in our favour, and one is from a very threatening Kraken who reverts back to inkling form at just the wrong time. My luck is in at the moment!
Moray Towers is in the rotation. I grab my Splatterscope without even seeing what Ranked mode is live. I really like Moray Towers (and there is only ten minutes before a Squid Sisters update).
Splat Zones! That'll do, pig. My Splatterscope can reach across the Splat Zones nicely, and I can perch up on high to avoid too much attention on Moray Towers. That's good too, because there is not only an opposing Splatterscope, but an E-litre 3K too. That can easily out-reach me, so I'd best be careful.
Securing our Splat Zone is pretty straightforward, particularly with the height advantage and charger range. But the orange team aren't going to let us keep it. I decide to try to keep control of our Splat Zone and let my squidmates go for the other. I think they are happy with that, and I hope they recognise what I'm trying to do.
Of course, despite my best efforts, I can't help but push forwards a little myself, when my squidmates are in control. I try to ink the chargers' perch, and cover up some approach routes. And I see a Kraken approach. With impeccable and not at all lucky timing, it's splatted. But I can't rest, and am splatted right back just to demonstrate that.
Our Splat Zone is breached, and the Splatterscope makes his way to the perch above the zone. One shot splats the Sprinkler, which is useful, but I fail to hit the charger. Not a problem. I manoeuvre closer, see my Special charge, and start lobbing bombs. Two splats! I didn't know two inklings were up there, and I didn't see a super-jump, but I do see the Octoshot Replica's hat fly over the railing. Excellent!
Back to keeping control of our Splat Zones. And doing okay, but not great. I mean to watch my gamepad for approaching ink trails, but forget in lieu of inking the Splat Zone, which costs me a splatting. But we're in a good position, and my squidmates are doing a great job overall.
The Splatterscope isn't a great choice for Kelp Dome and Hammerhead Bridge. It's a workable weapon, no doubt, but I find I have to try harder to make it work for me. I'll have another go, this time with the Tri-slosher.
The bucket should work fairly well on the Bridge, given the height of the tower above the ground for most of the course, and being able to slosh up through the grates in Kelp Dome can be handy.
I don't make my usual first mistake in this battle, which would be to get on to the tower immediately. That generally only ends up with my getting splatted after moving the counter to 97 or so. Instead, I try to get rid of the oncoming yellow team. What do you know, it works!
Feeling a bit safer, it's time to ride the tower. I even notice that my Bubbler has charged, and I'm not going to let it go to waste. I also don't want to waste it for nothing. But first, I should work out how to hide in the ink. It's not as easy as it looks.
I keep a close watch on the grates, but we're safe, and so I use it on the closing stretch. With some excellent support from my squidmates, who are keeping the other team away superbly, we ride the tower to the end! Woomy!
Well, it's more that other inklings seem much better than me, making me look quite poor in comparison.
I try to do my best, but I seem simply outmatched too often. That, and I am an Inkzooka magnet. Maybe I should learn how to aim that. Or learn how to aim the Splatterscope first.
I make a bold move on the tower as it fast approaches, yellow inklings swarming over it, but my Splat Bomb bounces too hard off the tower and falls uselessly off the edge. Just a slightly softer throw and I could have done some good.
I get a decent double-splat as I time an incoming super-jump. It's not a huge achievement, but it makes me feel better. My map awareness then gets me a nice splat through the grating.
A bit of a charger dual ensues between me and two yellow inklings, and I have to say I quite enjoy it. I think I did quite well, considering. When that ends, I also get the only splat on the E-litre 3K, which hopefully counts for something.
My squid towards the tower to hold it for respawning squidmates goes a bit awry when a yellow inkling reclaims it first, moving the tower away and stranding me in yellow ink. Never mind. I'm more disappointed that my Splat Bomb Rush hits no one, and that it ends with my getting double-teamed by a Roller and Inkzooka fighting over who gets to splat me.
It's not a win, and it's not actually a terrible result for me in the end . It just felt much tougher during the battle.
Not a great start to the battle. I miss squidding up the block, then don't realise an orange inkling is right behind me. Looking right down the barrel of an Inkzooka is never good sight either. To top it off, a Kraken jumps over some grating to splat me. I am feeling pretty terrible.
On top of that, trying to return to the fray just gets me splatted by the same inkling, reverted to Roller form. And I see what he's up to by his lingering a little too long after the splat.
Personally, I think what the Roller is doing is a dick move. Maybe he can, but it's far from sporting. I am close to putting down my gamepad and walking away. Thankfully, I instead decide to flush the Roller out calmly, so that we can battle properly.
With the Roller out of the way, my squidmates advance the tower to take the lead. Probably not a direct cause of getting rid of the Roller, but a positive move in the battle all the same.
The battle moves in to extra time, but with us losing the tower in the other team's territory, and me in a good position. I manage to splat a different Roller and reclaim the tower to end the battle. In the end, it's almost worth a woomy!
I missed that Splatterscope on the opponents' base before the start. I would have been more circumspect in approaching the tower had I noticed. As it is, I get splatted pretty quickly by her.
New plan: circle around the back. The plan works quite well, but mostly by accident, as the charger had been knocked off her perch already. A bit of opportunistic suppression follows, and then I go looking for the tower.
My Bubbler has charged, so I want to get on the tower, pop the Bubbler, and ride with my protected squidmates. But I don't know where the tower is, and when I find it the orange inklings have also caught up and splat me before I can either get on the tower or activate my Bubbler. Oops.
The middle of the battle is best forgotten, as I charge repeatedly in to the other team's sights.
When I get myself together and go for a flanking move, it turns out to be not quite the bet time for it. Although I manage to flank, and get some splats, it is at the cost of the other team rapidly approaching our lead. It is by the diligence of my squidmates, and an excellent Kraken battle on the tower itself, that we keep our lead intact.
Not only do we keep our lead, but my squidmates do a bang up job of improving it. I'm squidding around doing who knows what whilst they ride the tower to within 2 points of the goal! I didn't even realise. I really need to pay more attention to the objective.
Sticking with the Dual Squelcher, and improvising the start, where I move around my squidmates. I think that Inkbrush is going to be a problem for me, but it seems the Sprinkler is more my nemesis.
I really do try to make use of my weapon's range, when I have it, but it seems like I can't accomplish much without closing the range, which inevitably gets me splatted. I honestly don't care for constant jumpers, though.
I don't think I'm going to do much in this battle, same as the last, but a bit of fortune gets me three splats in quick succession, and boosts my mood. Getting splatted by another Sprinkler is just unfortunate after that.
It's a closer battle than I would have predicted after the start, but close only counts in horsehoes and hand grenades.