Splatoon 3 Has Been Rated In Australia, And That’s A Little Weird

Splatoon 3 Has Been Rated In Australia, And That’s A Little Weird

The Classifications Board has handed down its rating for Nintendo’s forthcoming multiplayer ink shooter Splatoon 3.

Nothing too surprising: it’s a flat PG rating. In fact, the only significant note the Classifications Board had to make about the game was that it featured “mild impact violence”, which sounds about right. This tallies with both the original Splatoon and its sequel Splatoon 2, which received the same rating.

So nothing out of the ordinary there. What is interesting about this rating is that Splatoon 3 does not currently have a confirmed release date. Nintendo’s US website states a “Summer 2022” release date, which puts the game on track for a Q3 launch (or Winter for us in Aus). To see it get a rating now, many months in advance of this launch window could suggest Nintendo plans to move the release up.

Splatoon proved a surprise hit for Nintendo. When the original game was released, it was considered very far afield of Nintendo’s usual fare. A competitive online shooter? It’s just not something anyone ever expected them to make. I’d love to know the story of how the team successfully pitched it internally. I’ll bet it was the territory control angle that got them over the line. Shooting the ground to cover it in ink that destabilises the enemy team is exactly the kind of passive mechanic Nintendo would approve of. “See? They’re just paintball guns! There are no bullets here!”

Smash Bros lead Masahiro Sakurai famously said that when he decided to pitch Nintendo on his fighting game idea, he knew he’d have to go about it carefully. As much as Sakurai, a Street Fighter enthusiast, would have loved to pitch something similar, he knew it would never fly. Super Smash Bros, then, became his way in. I have to imagine something similar happened in the creation of Splatoon.

Splatoon 3 is coming later this year, exclusively for the Nintendo Switch.

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