Splatoon 3

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Splatoon 3: Expansion Pass: Inkopolis & Side Order (Nintendo Switch) – Review

In 2022, Nintendo’s premiere third-person shooter, Splatoon 3 was released to critical acclaim, with the Inklings and Octolings bringing even more of their splat-filled mayhem to the Nintendo Switch. It introduced new weapons, new stories and new arenas for players to splat their opponents online. This review will be focused on the Expansion Pass which packs even more into an already splat-tastic game, so be sure to check out our review for the base game HERE.

The Expansion Pass includes Handy Items, Inkopolis and Sider Order. Handy Items gives players extra in-game currency with 123, 000 Cash, three double XP food tickets, one of each drink ticket and the Squid Sisters banner.

Inkopolis was actually part of the Wave 1 DLC which was already released back in February, 2023. It brings back Inkopolis Plaza, the original hub from the original Splatoon game released back in 2015 on the Nintendo Wii U. It looks just as good as it did in the original game with some minor changes and upgrades, featuring the same shops from Splatsville, the main hub of Splatoon 3.

It’s a nice option for players to have if they want a change of scenery or just revisit the old stomping grounds. During a Splatfest season, Squid Sisters will even appear to perform their songs while wearing their outfits from the original Splatoon game. Revisiting Inkopolis is a nice trip down memory lane.

The main attraction for Expansion Pass is of course Side Order, an all-new single-player campaign. Players take control of Agent 8, who has been unexpectedly transported to the Order Sector, a mysterious world built out of its own unique rules. Agent 8 wakes up to find what appears to be Inkopolis Square, suddenly drained of color and is uninhabited. They are challenged to ascend the Spire of Order, a tower that changes floor structure each time it’s entered, which has mysteriously replaced Deca Tower, as “something wants to make the entire world orderly”.

The story is like a ‘what-if’ scenario if Team Order had defeated Team Chaos. It even features a few familiar faces, but not in the way you might remember them. The Spire of Order has many floors for players to ascend with a boss battle on every tenth floor, who are all sights to behold. Each floor and the boss battle comes with their own unique challenges and conditions that will really keep players on their toes.

It can feel repetitive the longer you play, seeing and doing the same things over and over, but it is a real test of endurance. Side Order is a real challenge for veteran Splatoon players, as it gets progressively harder and is very rewarding for those who manage to make it all the way to the top.

Side Order has a very different look and feel from what we’re normally used to with Splatoon games. It’s still bright but nowhere near as colourful, with its greyscale look. Removing the colour from the environments really changes the mood and atmosphere, giving it a post-apocalyptic look with a grim feel. The music has over an hour’s worth of new tracks, which all perfectly complement the look and feel Side Order is aiming for.

Rather than the usual upbeat tracks heard in the other modes, it has a mix of slower and deeper beats that suit the post-apocalyptic setting. The Splatoon series has always had that underlying theme of a sad and somewhat depressing post-apocalyptic world, but hidden behind all the colourful, happy and upbeat art style and personality of the game, so seeing a Splatoon game focus more on its darker side is an interesting contrast to the main game.

The Splatoon 3: Expansion Pass DLC is a very neat package full of goodies providing even more fun and mayhem for fans of the game. With a very generous offering of in-game currency, revisiting Inkopolis and an all-new single-player campaign with Sider Order, all valued at $37.50 AUD, the Expansion Pass for Splatoon 3 is a must-buy for those seeking even more splat-tastic action.

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The Good

  • All-new single-player campaign in Sider Order
  • Incredibly challenging
  • Unique look and feel without a lot of colour
  • Revisit Inkopolis from the original game
  • Provides more in-game currency via Handy Items

The Bad

  • Can get repetitive

Written by: Sammy Hanson


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