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Splatoon’s Splatfest returns with a 4v2v2 twist in Splatoon 3

A Splatoon 3 demo launching Aug. 25 will give fans a taste of the new Turf War

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Splatoon 3 will bring back the series’ popular multiplayer events known as Splatfests when the Nintendo Switch competitive ink-shooter launches this summer. But Splatoon 3’s version of Splatfests, where players fight for a themed side (e.g., sci-fi vs. fantasy, vampires vs. werewolves) will have a twist: Instead of two team choices, players will pick from one of three sides. And they’ll ultimately battle for dominance in a three-team, 4v2v2 match called the Tricolor Turf War.

Nintendo revealed the first Splatfest coming to Splatoon 3 during a Nintendo Direct presentation on Wednesday. It’ll be rock vs. paper vs. scissors, and will kick off on Aug. 27 as part of a Splatoon 3 demo coming to Switch ahead of the game’s full release in September. Team Rock, Team Paper, and Team Scissors will battle it out like this:

In the first half, the three teams will compete in 4-v-4 Turf War battles. The second half includes the new Tricolor Turf War battles, a mode where three teams fight at the same time. Can the first-place team defend themselves in this unique 4-v-2-v-2 match type?

It looks and sounds chaotic, and seems like a fun remix of the Splatoon Splatfest formula.

The Splatoon 3: Splatfest World Premiere demo will be released on Aug. 25, giving competitors a chance to brush up on their Splatoon skills for a couple days before diving into the new three-way Splatfest. That event starts Aug. 27, and runs from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. PDT.

Previous Splatfests in Splatoon 2 were hosted by Marina and Pearl, but in Splatoon 3, it’s a three-creature team called the Deep Cut Trio: Frye, Shiver, and Big Man (a manta ray). The most recent Splatfest, held in Splatoon 2, took place more than three years ago.

Splatoon 3 launches on Nintendo Switch on Sept. 9. Later this month, Nintendo will release a Splatoon 3-themed Switch OLED model (that does not include a copy of the game).

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