Splatoon 2 is a third-person shooter, just like its prequel, and it also presents the same unique mechanics to the genre, like shooting ink from your guns instead of bullets, and being able to use that ink to traverse through painted zones, by turning into a squid. This squid form can move quicker through these zones, although it cannot shoot like the humanoid form. The game once again combines motion controls with the analogue stick.
Several new features are present, while maintaining the same gameplay elements of the original. There is a brand new single-player campaign, besides a local multiplayer mode due to the Switch’s ad-hoc functionality, both on the Switch console itself and on the TV. Besides classical weapons from the original game, like Splattershot, Ink Roller and Splat Charger, the game also presents the player with several new guns, like Splat Dualies, which allow for a wider range of fire. New special attacks are also introduced, being unlockable throughout the matches, including a rocket launcher with lock-on capabilities or a jetpack able to fire Inklings (the playable characters) into the sky and have them drop bombs. There also new maps exclusive to this game, making it larger than the original.
The sequel retains the aesthetic look of the original, with an even more vibrant color scheme. This comes into play particularly during the stylistic character customization system, which is meant to have players make use of the screenshot functionality, to take pictures of their personalized Inklings and share them online.