I am considering buying Splatoon but I can't find how many players it supports locally.

I've been able to find some articles that talk about a one-on-one local multiplayer mode, but nothing official or complete.

Then I've found some stuff about 4-on-4 "Turf Wars" but nothing that explicitly says how many local players can play at the same time.

What are the local multiplayer game modes for Splatoon and how many players does each game mode support?

What are the online multiplayer game modes for Splatoon and how many players does each game mode support?

As a side note, I almost always have difficulty finding this information. After some fruitless Google searches, I check IGN.com and Gamespot.com and find nothing.

Why is it so hard to get quantitative information about video games?

  • "Does it offer online coop?"
  • "If so, how many players?"
  • "Does it offer offine coop?"
  • "If so, how many players?"
  • "Does it offer other online modes of play?"
  • "If so, how many players?"
  • "Does it offer other offline modes of play?"
  • "If so, how many players?"

It seems way too hard to get the answers to these questions...

  • Nowadays games are increasingly leaning towards online multiplayer and ditching local coop, which is quite a shame especially for young people who still share a house quite often. Actually o hardly find many exceptions on big production games nowadays... If they don't mention local coop then mostly likely such functionality is badly supported or maybe nonexistent altogether.
    – xji
    Jun 30, 2015 at 20:25

3 Answers 3


What are the local multiplayer game modes for Splatoon and how many players does each game mode support?

There's only one local mode, Battle Dojo. it's a 1v1 mode between two players as one player uses the entire TV for their screen, and the other is limited to the WiiU Pad for their own screen.

This battle mode has two players trying to shoot stationary targets (Balloons) for points, but splating your opponent will deplete their points as well. It's implied from the devs that this mode is ment to be more like a practice in comparison to the online modes. The main points to take from these battles are that:

  1. Territory Control is important. (more ink means more movement for you, and less for your enemy.)
  2. Fighting for the objective is how you win the game. (In here, you pop the ballons, in the other modes, it's keeping things inked your color.)

I suggest looking at the Wiki link for more info on the limitations of the Battle Dojo, but to the best of our current knowledge, there's no other plans at the moment on expanding the offline game.

What are the online multiplayer game modes for Splatoon and how many players does each game mode support?

As of right now (begin of July 2015), we have the following options for online Multiplayer:

  • (Non-ranked) Turf War - The side that has the most ground covered in their own ink after 3 minutes wins.

  • (Ranked) Splat Zones - King-of-the-Hill mode with one or two small zones that needs to be completely covered with your team's ink. Capture and hold the point untill you win!

  • (Ranked) Tower Control - King-of-the-Hill mode on a moving platform. Control the tower by standing on top of it to make it move towards the enemy base. Reach the endpoint to win!

As it is right now, these two modes can only be played with a single user and requires a WiiU pad. Both of these modes require eight players in total to start, and are limited to eight players per session. In the event a player is dropped from the session, the match will continue until it's over, and then fill back up again to 8. If not enough people join a lobby (pre-match room), then the group is disbanded and needs to re-queue again.

While limited, these are just the few modes out of many others planned for release/unlocking. The Splatoon Direct video showed two other modes, (Tower Control and Rainmaker), but there's no word on when their release date will be. Our current information is that these are also 4v4 modes based on the video clues provided. Besides that, there's no known plans to update the game to allow more then one person per Wii U console to play online. If you have NNID friends setup, they can currently join a session in progress, and there's new modes coming in the future as well to make personal/custom rooms with friends.

  • 1
    It's probably worth mentioning that the non-gamepad player in the Battle Dojo cannot use a Wiimote+Numchuck, they have to use one of the extra gamepad style controller peripherals that are available, without which you cannot play this mode.
    – DMA57361
    Jun 25, 2015 at 12:26

The only thing you can do with two players, is an offline balloonfight in the Battle Dojo. Not the single player story mode. No turf wars.

You cannot play online at all with 2 local players. Not in co-op, turf wars or ranked.

  • Although there's no online co-op, it is worth mentioning that if you have two WiiUs and two copies of the game, they can play together online. (Normal battles only, not ranked) The teams generated are random, so sometimes you will be on the same team as your friend and sometimes you'll be on the opposite.
    – Pyritie
    Jun 25, 2015 at 9:08

What are the local multiplayer game modes for Splatoon and how many players does each game mode support?

For local multiplayer there is only one game mode and only allows 2 local players. Player 1 uses the gamepad's screen and Player 2 uses the TV screen to compete who can pop the most balloons. You can totally use this to compete for kills instead or other rules you make up with your buddy instead.

What are the online multiplayer game modes for Splatoon and how many players does each game mode support?

There are several online game modes in Splatoon, and some are unreleased. All modes are 4v4 with automatic team matching. Manual teams coming in a future update.

  • Turf War - Compete with the opposing team to ink the most turf. Your team wins based on % turf covered vs opposing team's % turf covered. This mode is unranked meaning losing has no consequences, however automatic matchmaking will place you in lobbies with similar play styles and skill levels.
  • Splat Zones - Kind of like King Of the Hill. Each map has 1 or 2 zones that must be ~80% your team's color to be considered in your control. If you hold control of the zones for 100 intervals of time (~50 secs) you win via Knockout. Otherwise the in game timer will determine the winner after 5 minutes based on which team held the zones the longest. This mode is extremely intense compared to the lax turf wars. Winning/losing affects your rank.
  • Tower Defense - (This mode will be released in a future update in August) If you've played TF2 this mode is similar to the Payload mode. There is 1 tower that moves on a rail towards the spawns. By standing on the tower, it will move in either direction depending on what team you are on. If it reaches the end, your team wins, otherwise when timer is up, which-ever side the tower is closer to wins.
  • Rain Maker - (Another mode to be released in a future update) Similar to CTF in other games but you will be competing with the other team to bring the "Rainmaker" to your base. It can shoot Inkzooka strikes but makes you move slower. Not much else is known about this mode at the moment.
  • More? - Nintendo has said that they will constantly add content to this game for a while. It's possible more modes are on the way.

"Does it offer online coop?"

Not sure what this question is asking. For the single player campaign? No. For online as in making your own teams with friends and having "clan/guild wars": Yes, but in a future update.

"If so, how many players?"

4 Friends can form a team

"Does it offer offine coop?"

No, only competitive play with 1 other player.

"Does it offer other online modes of play?"

Offline modes of play include the single player campaign, the amiibo challenges, the 1 on 1 local competitive play, and the arcade games (minigames)

Nintendo said that they will be actively supporting the game and constantly provide updates so they will most definitely add more modes and features in the coming months. Already, we are getting 2+ new weapons per week, and new stages every other week. In August they will provide a huge content update which is confirmed to have new modes, creating your own teams, and new weapons/customizations.

Closing words/Personal thoughts: I am simply in love with this game and recommend it to anyone who has a Wii U. I find myself wasting days on end playing it to figure out new strategies and ways to play. It's a really refreshing game and I'm excited to see more!

(PS: Thanks for your help on SO!)

  • 1
    The goal in Rain Maker is actually to take it to the enemy base, not your own (I don't know if that was known at the time you answered)
    – Random832
    Aug 31, 2015 at 19:55

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