Another Nintendo gamble with Splatoon that paid off.
When Splatoon first launched, there was a fair bit of concern and uproar over its control scheme, which included gyro aiming in conjunction with analog movement. The control scheme was activated by default, and although an option for traditional dual analog was offered, a lot of people simply felt that the gyro controls were shoehorned.
Nearly two months later, those people have been proven wrong, as gyro controls provide the kind of speed and precision that dual analogs simply cannot match, especially for a game like Splatoon. In an interview with Eurogamer, Nintendo’s Tsubasa Sakaguchi, who was the co-director for Splatoon, discusses the motion controls, as well as the reception they have had.
“Since the release of the Wii U, Nintendo has experienced and learnt a lot regarding player controls, especially for the gyro sensor, and we’ve been able to learn from that and incorporate a lot into Splatoon,” he said.
“We were slightly concerned about whether users might feel the gyro controls were a little bit difficult, but I like to use the analogy of riding a bicycle. You need a lot of practice, but once you’ve learnt that the bicycle becomes one with your body and it opens the whole world to you. In that sense, we’re really happy that many users have learnt to ride the bicycle!”
“About 70-80 per cent of players are using the gyro controls. That’s not to say we’re forcing it on to them. From our point of view, we think that the gyro controls are the best way to play Splatoon, the reason being there are two main movements you need for a shooter. One is moving the body, the other is aiming where you’re shooting. In that sense, we think for Splatoon the gyro gives that subtle movement and more precise actions to be able to really experience the game in a much better way.”
Whereas I defaulted to dual analog controls myself, I have to concede that the gyro controls are simply far superior for this game, assuming that you are willing to sit down with them and learn them. It’s good to see Nintendo’s gambles with Splatoon, and in general, all pay off this time around- maybe it will prompt them to take more chances, and to get out of their comfort zone a bit more.