Reaching the goal in Tower Control [6(1)-1, Splat Charger]

6th December 2017 – 7.00 pm

I quite enjoyed Humpback Pump Track in Turf War with the Splat Charger, and I can only expect the weapon to be more suitable in Tower Control. My first splat is a rather nice snap shot, and although I am happy to sit back and support, I take the opportunity to squid forwards to help push the Tower when.

My Sting Ray perhaps isn't too effective, but it inks a bit of turf, and I'm otherwise not hassled at the first checkpoint. We trundle on to the second, which looks like a spot more susceptible to inky interference, and, sure enough, I'm easily splatted off. That's really no place for a charger to be.

I drop back to a defensive posture, which turns aggressive when we push the Tower again. We don't get as far as before, but we also stop the blue team at the first checkpoint again. My next Sting Ray still gets no splats, but it sprays a whole lot of ink over the Tower, which may help a little.

We saunter past the first checkpoint, having previously passed it, and when I immediately avenge my squidmate on the Tower I hop on to keep things moving. The second checkpoint is threatening again, but I hop off before I'm splatted, a squidmate super-jumps in to keep possession, and a blue inkling hops on and off looking for splats instead of Tower Control.

With the blue inkling off the Tower, and others splatted or not around, the path to the goal is short and free from trouble. It's an early knockout victory for us. Looking at the map at the end, it seems a squidmate was causing some good trouble for the blue inklings as we rode the Tower. Good job, inkling!

First Tower Control [13(4)-3, Splat Charger]

6th December 2017 – 7.00 am

I can played Ranked battles, so let's play some Ranked battles. It's Tower Control, my favourite mode from before, but with some changes. The biggest is probably the checkpoints, and I don't quite know how they work. I should probably use the recon option to find out, but, as usual, just dive in to the battle and work things out as I go.

My choice of weapon is the Splat Charger, which should be good for picking off inklings on the Tower. But, of course, I don't know the route of the Tower, so I'm having to wing it. The pigeon looks like a good vantage point, at least, which works until my squidmates push the Tower. I follow, have a quick look at a checkpoint, but retreat as we are pushed back, my aim still as rough as ever not repelling the purple team.

The Sting Ray, feeling a bit weak in itself, should be a bit stronger with a Tower to aim for. My first use is from a bit too close to be effective, but I'm still unimpressed by the number of hits I get without a splat. The Tower is coming towards us as I return, and despite the acute angle at the first checkpoint, a purple inkling is just squidding on the wrong part of the Tower. They don't make that mistake again.

My second Sting Ray actually gets a splat, which is good, and lets the Tower move forwards a bit more. Whilst my squidmates push the Tower, the purple Inkbrush is trying to make room on our side of the Academy. It keeps me busy, but it does nothing to stop the Tower, and as I eventually splat him away I think his decision wasn't the best.

The Tower starts coming back our way, but I'm moving forwards and keep our progress positive. Naturally, the purple pressure gets more intense as we hit the third checkpoint (and it's good to see that checkpoints only need to be cleared once), and although a bit of hopping on and off keeps the purple ink off me longer, I am splatted away before too long.

I watch the progress of the battle on the map whilst splatted, for all the good it does me. I get a bit disorientated, and by the time I've found the Tower trundling past me it has two inklings on it protected by Ink Armour. A squidmate stops that push, but not for long. We are all splatted, all the purple team are unsplatted. But our lead is still looking strong.

We have a protracted battle at the our first checkpoint, where Splat Bombs and a bit of Splat Charging helps prevent purple progress, and a final Sting Ray maybe helps keep the purple team off the Tower. Either that, or their own Specials encourage them to move forwards, forgetting the Tower just when the need to be on it. Either way, time runs out, and victory is ours.

Not a bad first battle.

Huge tally in Salmon Run (24-26-29, 20/606)

5th December 2017 – 7.00 pm

Low tide and the Carbon Roller is a good start to a Salmon Run for me. The vertical flick helps feel helpful against Steel Head too. I nearly get bumped in to the water, but just about keep my footing. We splat boss after boss, and I even throw a cheeky bomb towards a Maws chasing a squidmate as I turn back to collect another golden egg. In fact, the hardest part is collecting the golden eggs.

Two Stingers cause us problems, but only for two of us. Our squidmates are fine and revive us as they bring back more golden eggs, and we start the second wave with a load of golden eggs already. I can't quite find the first boss, which could be a problem as it is Steel Head and I have the charger. But I just about snap my shot off to splat him before the first bomb is released. Maybe that's a good omen.

Two Steel Eels look awkward to deal with, but taking them one at a time, whilst they aren't come for me, proves effective. But, naturally, things start to get a bit hectic as we don't quite deal with the bosses efficiently enough, and my holding my charge for a Drizzler proves dangerous when a Maws is gunning for me. Still, I'm revived quickly, and with enough ink to toss a Splat Bomb at Maws.

My squidmates continue their good work with splatting and collecting, and we finish the run with double our quota, whilst I'm almost twiddling my thumbs. The third wave starts with a Splash-o-matic in my hands. I love the weapons today. And glowflies appear around me. Nice! I drop back and, with perhaps the best weapon for this round, just shoot and collect.

A squidmate makes great use of his Sting Rays, aiming them right down the throats of the salmonids rushing us, whereas I just fall down the hole again and have trouble getting back up. But I get back in to the action, and splat wave after wave of salmonids, before getting too in to the action, whilst the glowflies are around me, and am splatted myself.

Once more my squidmates come to my rescue, and I can return one more golden egg just as the wave ends. This feels like a salmon run to celebrate, and it really is. 79 golden eggs in total! Yeah, we deserve Mr Grizz's praise for this one.

Top-notch Salmon Run [17-19-22, 22/446]

5th December 2017 – 7.00 am

Glowflies! And they're on me! Cool. Line 'em up, squidmates! I only move away from the basket when the glowflies have moved off me, which lets me grab a couple of golden eggs. The next time I drop down to try to save a squidmate, who turns the corner as I drop down in front of the manic salmonids. Not a great move.

I wonder how many of my squidmates have seen the glowflies before. The way they are spread out makes me think not, but as the squidmate with the glowflies appears in front of the basket again, I'm happy ignoring the rubber rings and just splatting salmonids and Goldies for golden eggs. I take pity eventually, as I have a shot I can take, but that just costs me getting splatted. That'll teach me.

All is good, and we get a good haul for the first wave. Carbon Roller next, and I can reliably run fast now, which is good. The Steel Eel is straightforward, I don't think the vertical flick is as effective is horizontal on the Scrapper but we splat him anyway, and our charger deals with the Stinger as I collect eggs and dodge the Maws. The Maws doesn't give up on me, so I just sensibly lure it to the basket, giving me time to recharge ink, and drop a Splat Bomb for it to eat. Those are some easy golden eggs.

My dropping of the golden eggs isn't as quick as I think, and I end up carrying one for longer than I should, without realising it. We've made quota already, so it doesn't cost us anything, but does make me look a bit silly. We survive fairly easily, and make it to the third wave, where I have the Tri-slosher. Nice! I make quick work of a Stinger, and our Carbon Roller a Maws. I return the favour for him, but ignoring the Stinger costs me a splat, as well as denying my reviving a squidmate.

The threats move away from us, which isn't that good, because it means they are moving towards our squidmates. But not the squidmate running away from his own troubles, and towards us. We are revived, and can get back to splatting away the bosses. It goes okay for the most part, but an ill-advised Splat Bomb thrown towards a Steel Head runs me low on ink just when I don't want to be.

At least my splatting gives my squidmates a nice big target in the Maws, and they can grab some last easy golden eggs as the final wave comes to an end. They revive me, we celebrate the solid run, and get back to the boat with an good haul.

Off by one in Salmon Run [17-15-13, 11/424]

4th December 2017 – 7.00 pm

Oh yes. Look at the weapons today. The Tri-slosher and Carbon Roller are both main weapons of mine, I pull out variants of the Splat Charger regularly, and the Splash-o-matic was my first love. Nothing can go wrong in today's Salmon Run! I'm even handed the Tri-slosher for the first wave, which is at low tide. Not even a Flyfish as the first boss fazes me. Still, I can do better than sit under the shadows of his missiles.

I spy a squidmate in trouble, and push through the salmonids to help out. Good stuff, and there are golden eggs that he was trying to get. I snag one too and ink a new path back, which hopefully will help. It lets me splat half of a new Flyfish, at least. But I run out of ink when approaching a Scrapper from behind, and wanting to help a dunked squidmate, which contributes to my being bumped in to the water myself. So it goes.

Carbon Roller to the rescue! That lets me drop a golden egg at the basket, then accidentally activate my Special. Amusingly, I wonder just how sensitive the activation trigger is, and activate it again to find out. This is how I find out we only have two specials per Salmon Run. What an idiot. But we make quota, and I decide mostly to stay safe as the wave draws to an end.

Carbon Roller next. I haven't quite sorted out why I can't reliably get up to a sprint, but I'm getting there. I'm getting used to the vertical flick, though, which is really useful. I never really liked the silly jumping inklings before, but now there's a good reason to jump with a Roller, and facing Steel Head is one of those reasons.

My egg retrieval is slowed down by a Steel Eel, which is fine, as he's not coming for me, and I splat him easily. Jumping the grate is harder. I sort myself out and look for where the call for assistance is coming from. I spy the Flyfish and pat myself on the back for an excellent Splat Bomb throw, but then the Flyfish turns and I realise he still has one launcher left. Oh well.

A second Flyfish appears, and my Splat Bomb throw is less accurate. Plus a salmonid is trying to nick their golden eggs back, and a Scrapper comes after me, as does a Steel Eel. Things are getting a bit hectic. As the seconds tick down, it looks like we have at least two Flyfish, which isn't fun, but we happily survive to move on to the third wave.

I have the Splash-o-matic now. Probably the most straightforward shooter for me, and dealing with the Stinger is pretty simple, right up until I run out of ink from the probably pointless Splat Bomb and get bumped in to the water again. At least I'm revived immediately, and get out of there, dropping a Splat Bomb behind me to help my squidmates.

I help a squidmate, get cornered by a Steel Eel, fall between the grating again, and feel that I am not the right inkling to deal with Steel Head this time. I decide to just grab a dropped golden egg and get out of there, as Maws appears underneath me, but turning back sees two more Steel Heads. I get a feeling we're now out of our depth.

There is at least one inkling down, and far too many bosses for our health, with time ticking down. I grab a golden egg and return it, knowing we are below quota, but I don't have time to get another, and it looks like my squidmates aren't in a position to get that final one either. We fail, by a single golden egg.

Never mind, it wasn't a terrible run, but we could have been better coordinated at the end.

N-ZAP '85 splats in Turf War [1973p, 9-2, N-ZAP '85]

4th December 2017 – 7.00 am

I remember my earlier advice, and hopefully now won't forget, and activate my Ink Armour early, so that it is active and that I start to recharge it. That gives me confidence in chasing a blue inkling, although a second Ink Armour effect kicks in. I don't think every inkling realises yet that it buffs the whole team, without needing to be close to share it like the Bubbler. But no matter, I get the splat.

That Heavy Splatling could cause problems with her range. A Suction Bomb doesn't dislodge her from the ledge, but she drops down when pulling out the Stingray. That's a good opportunity to splat her away, and I don't let it go to waste. I circle around, and just about get out of the blue ink before I'm splatted, and get enough distance to make sure my new Ink Armour will activate before I head back.

Two more splats for me, but I am chased again. I sensibly retreat, although I'm leaving behind a chunk of blue turf that I could be inking. I go around the long way to see what I can do, and I get close to inking it pink, but get caught in a crossfire. The map is a good tool to use between splats. It feels a bit weird watching it back, though, with no control over it.

I super-jump back to the middle of the Reef, and retreat away from blue danger, happy to hold the majority of the turf as much as anything. Trying to splat the Sprinkler from low turf turns out not to be entirely straightforward, and timely as a result. I'm glad the blue inkling looking to flank me is just out of range, as it gives me time to react.

My Ink Armour lets me chase another inkling successfully, but my next target turns out not to be an inkling but a Suction Bomb. That was unfortunate. Super-jumping back requires some evasive manoeuvres fairly soon, which is almost to be expected, but my chasers become chased, thanks to diving under the bridge.

The last twenty seconds of the battle is pretty much just holding the turf we have and not letting the returning blue inklings slip through our tentacles. In the end, it's a comfortable victory, and I hit level ten. Now I can enter Ranked battles!

N-ZAPing in Turf War [1843p, 9(3)-4, N-ZAP '85]

3rd December 2017 – 7.00 pm

I've got access to the N-ZAP '85, so let's try it out. It should be better at inking turf than the Splattershot Jr, and it still has the Ink Armour. I have already forgotten my own advice to activate Ink Armour sooner rather than later, though, which really doesn't help when jumping in to the middle of a Curling Bomb Rush.

At least this mistake reminds me of my advice, and I get my Ink Armour up before pushing to engage a Roller. I come out on top of that one, but I think that's more because of the Roller's mistake than my own brilliance. This is obvious when I mis-time my jump from the middle structure, almost forcing myself to waddle ineffectively in to another N-ZAP '85. Ah, so that's how they are supposed to be used.

We're still holding most turf, but maybe not for long. The middle ground looks safe, and I make the jump this time. It's a short-cut, and not needed to get up here, but it lets me ink turf for a couple of seconds longer. I almost remember how to get up closer to the purple base, but am distracted by the tempting back of an inkling. That splat leads me to others, where my Ink Armour beats purple Ink Armour. Nice!

I persist with the jump for no reason, and get quite close to getting near to the base, but am caught. Maybe I shouldn't have splatted all those inklings. I move down our flank to ink the edges, and find the probably inexperienced Roller again.

My final move is to be splatted from above, but as I am quite far on the other side of the Academy, and with squidmates, I don't mind. That all means that we hold the majority of turf. Sure enough, the battle is ours.

Making quota in Salmon Run [8-9-11, 9/332]

3rd December 2017 – 7.00 am

I can use a Splatling. I've toyed with them before, and had fun with the Mini version. It is a good long-range support weapon. And that's handy, because the first wave is Grillers, not covered in the induction, and quite nasty if you don't know what you're doing. They are laser-guided and pick one inkling to chase. You have to splat the one tentacle first, then the others that spin when it's damaged. And you need to do it fast, otherwise more Grillers will come, and that gets dangerous.

Most importantly, if you're the target of the Griller, run away. Actually, more important than that is, when you're running away, don't run past your squidmates, or you'll get them all splatted. I get picked on twice in a row, and I try to keep the Griller at bay whilst keeping it close enough for my squidmates to shoot, but it doesn't quite go to plan. That gets us multiple Grillers, and it almost looks like we won't make quota. It doesn't help that I can't jump up a small step, but at least we have the bare minimum to complete the wave.

Second wave, and I have the Octobrush. I have used brushes before, but have never really found myself effective with them, and it's only been in passing. I will have to get better with them. I get myself in all sorts of bother, being in the wrong place at the wrong time, and the right place at the wrong time, and am really not the right inkling to be dealing with Steel Head. I can't even find an escape route at that point, with the bosses building up. We meet quota, but our survival isn't guaranteed, with three inklings down with fifteen seconds to go.

Our Splat Dualies revives the Splat Roller before being splatted moments later, and the Splat Roller revives the Splat Charger before also being splatted moments later. It is quite an achievement to make it to the third wave, where I'm given the Splat Dualies. That would be better for me, if I had seen a Mothership wave before. This is new to me, but I quickly work out you need to splat the drop-ship salmonids to get eggs. It's difficult o read Mr Grizz's advice mid-battle, though, and it takes a squidmate to point out that the Mothership is stealing our collected eggs.

Thankfully, we shoo away the Mothership this time, and get back to egg collecting, such as it is. We're not reaching the drop ships quickly enough, but luckily some collecting coincides with the Mothership moving in again. We repel the Mothership a second time, and deposit our newly collected eggs, but with under ten seconds left we are two shy. Two eggs are nearby! With some alacrity, we collect them and race back to deposit them, and with two seconds remaining we make our third-wave quota.

Few, that was close. We only just made quota in each wave. It doesn't really get much closer than that. I don't think that makes me much of an overachiever, but I'll take it.

There's a cannon in Salmon Run [10-12-19, 6/1054]

2nd December 2017 – 7.00 pm

Another low-tide start to a Marooner's Bay Salmon Run. I'm prepared, and have the Jet Squelcher again. I'm glad that the first boss salmonid isn't going for me, because Maws is coming from a different direction and I don't see it until its almost underneath me. Flyfish as the second boss is easier than as the first, as we have some kind of path inked. It's a shame two of us hit the same launcher, and my rush to recover ink puts off my quick aim of a second Splat Bomb.

I am sadly splatted by Flyfish. I think I see a Splat Bomb land in the other launcher and move forwards to take on the Scrapper, but I just get hit by Flyfish's exhaust. How embarrassing. I have to waddle back in the rubber ring with a squidmate, and I don't last long when revived. Not a great first wave for me, really. I even miss depositing a golden egg by under a second.

It's low tide again for the second wave. I hold back, because in an earlier Salmon Run I got thoroughly splatted by Cohocks on the beach, shortly before the rest of the team did, and My Grizz said something about a cannon in our debriefing. Sure enough, it's a similar wave, and a cannon appears. A cannon!

It takes me a few goes to work out how to operate it: it's not a toggle, you have to stay in squid form. My trigger-happy shooting also makes me realise that it doesn't have its own ink tank, and uses your own, which you need to pop out to replenish. But it makes short work of those Cohocks, and I would say having a cannon operator is vital to complete this kind of wave.

I take down a couple of bosses with the cannon, and moderate my shots a bit more so that I can be more supportive of my squidmates collecting the eggs. I can't do anything about Flyfish, though, and Flyfish can do something about me. But by the time that happens, and I have to drop down to be revived, our quota is met, the wave is nearly over, and we just have to defend a little.

The third wave has mist setting in. That's very cool to look at, but makes it difficult to see where the salmonids are coming from. Sticking to high ground helps, even if it potentially means we get a little overwhelmed. We get split up, but good communication gets us back together. And one squidmate splats a boss near the basket, so that when I take one egg back, I can grab another really quickly. Our quota is met nice and early.

I get in to a spot of bother when trying to rescue another squidmate. I have to fight past a Goldie, but pick up a golden egg in the process, and chase my squidmate who is boldly making their way back to the basket. In fact, they get revived before I can reach them, whilst I am being hit on multiple sides. I don't think I'm going to make it, and decide to just hold back and survive the last few seconds of the wave.

Job's a good 'un! We have a celebratory squid party and super-jump back to the ship for payment. Not too many golden eggs for me, because I effectively sat out of the second wave, but splatting all those Cohocks with the cannon bagged me hundreds of normal eggs. And I'm an overachiever. Nice!

Awesome last wave in Salmon Run [17-11-21, 15/523]

2nd December 2017 – 7.00 am

A new day at GrizzCo, a new set of weapons. The Blaster first! Not the Range Blaster, but I've used this before. Bring on the salmonids! And it's low tide, so we know where they're coming from. Not the best first boss to get, needing to blast through the small fry and still have enough ink to lob a Splat Bomb, but my squimdates are on it.

Things get a little more straightforward for a while, until a Steel Eel appears as I am trying to snatch another egg. I get bopped in to the toxic waters. Still, I got the egg, and I am revived and just about avoid a Maws to deliver the egg to the basket. Our quota is easily met.

Jet Squelcher for the second wave for me, and we are immediately hit with both a Steel Eel and a Maws. The Eel comes for me, the Maws for a squidmate, and we just about survive. I'm splatted again, by a Smallfry, although I think the Flyfish had more to do with it. At least it's in a convenient position, and I am revived to help out some more.

A Steelhead joins in, which should be up to me to splat, with the range of the Jet Squelcher, but my aim and timing lets me down a little. I also miss seeing a squidmate in distress, although I am taking an egg back to the basket, and revive him and another shortly after that. Second wave complete!

The Splattershot should make this last wave smoother for me. A Steelhead is despatched efficiently, as is a Drizzler as I am carrying an egg. A Drizzler and Scrapper are splatted in to eggs, as is a Stinger. We pretty much have more eggs than we can carry, and have to leave half-a-dozen behind, and it's not like we're struggling to take them back. The bosses just drop smoothly, and we're constantly back-and-forth to the basket.

We double our quota for the final wave, which gives us a really good haul overall! Good job, everyone!