This weekend marks the final Splatfest, a celebratory event in Splatoon that brings the community together in a giant team-based popularity contest, and the final battle is between Callie and Marie, the in-game pop idols who host the Splatfest competitions themselves.

We thought the opportunity was ripe on
a recent episode of Nintendo Week, our Nintendo-themed podcast here at Gamnesia, to look back on the past year of Splatfests to see what went well, what went wrong, and how Nintendo can improve them the next time they want a Splatoon game to make a big splash. Check out the discussion video above for our full thoughts, or keep reading below for a brief, brief summary.

We all think Callie vs. Marie is the perfect note to end the series of competitions on, but can’t help but feel Splatfests are over a little too soon. After all, the bulk of the work is probably recycled from event to event—the biggest changes any given time they run a Splatfest are a small handful of images for the respective teams and an even smaller handful of conversations to write for Callie and Marie’s various announcements.

While a year of Splatfests may be satisfying for dedicated
Splatoon players, we (and surely many players like us) haven’t really gotten our fill. It’s good, then, that Nintendo is releasing new Amiibo of Callie and Marie which let players can enjoy the sensory experience of a Splatfest at any time, though it is a bit frustrating to see features that were once free to enjoy locked behind a commercial product.

We don’t think we’d be sad to see Splatfests ending this soon if we had participated in more of them, but
we’ve expressed before that Nintendo missed lots of opportunities to improve the core idea of Splatfests. Few matchups were interesting enough for us to give significant amounts of time on Friday night and Saturday morning over to the competition, and there was little long-term incentive, like commemorative clothing options, for participating in any given competition. There were a few excellent Splatfests themes—namely crossover events with Transformers, SpongeBob, and Pokémon—but when it comes to exciting Splatfest opportunities, Nintendo left far more on the table than they actually used. Nintendo itself oversees a goldmine of excellent IP for crossover Splatfest themes, like a Fire Emblem Fates cross-promotion squaring off the two kingdoms of Hoshido and Nohr, or a more timeless matchup like Mario vs. Luigi.

Hopefully Nintendo considers all of this when planning for the next major release of Splatoon, but for now let’s enjoy our last hurrah with Splatfests. Cowabunga for Team Marie, duderinos!!

For our full in-depth thoughts beyond this brief write-up, be sure to check out the discussion video above. If you like it, you can
subscribe to Nintendo Week on iTunes, where we release new episodes every Wednesday, or you could check out the full episode. If you don’t like long-form podcasts, you can subscribe to us on YouTube, where our discussion segments are uploaded on Thursdays, and these select snippets from the rest of the podcast—which we call NWC—are uploaded throughout the week. If you like what you hear, we’d love it if you leave us a review on iTunes, where you can find episodes covering tons of other subjects, or send us your feedback! We’d love to know what you think of the show, and how you think we can improve it.

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Colin McIsaac
I first played Donkey Kong Country before even turning three years old, and have since grown into an avid gamer and passionate Nintendo fan. I started working at Zelda Informer in August 2012, and helped found Gamnesia, which launched on February 1, 2013. Outside of the journalism game, I'm an invested musician who loves arranging music from video games and other media. If you care to follow my endeavors, you can check out my channel here: http://youtube.com/user/pokemoneinstein I was rummaging through some things a while back and found my first grade report card. My teacher said, "Oddly enough, Colin doesn't like to write unless it's about computers or computer-type games. In his journal he likes to write about what level he is on in 'Mario Land,' but he doesn't often write about much else." I was pretty amused, given where I am today. Also I have a dog, and he's a pretty cool guy. I don't care for elephants much. I suppose they're okay. You've read plenty now; carry on.

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