The arsenal of weapons available in Splatoon 3 is varied and complex, which can make it difficult to pick one weapon to focus on, but we’ve put together a guide detailing twenty of the very best to make that choice easier. We also have brief descriptions of each weapon to explain what makes them so great.
Of note, this guide will mostly cover weapons from the perspective of Anarchy Battles, the game’s ranked mode and the one used in competitive play. Furthermore, it should be noted that every weapon in Splatoon 3 is viable to some degree, assuming you aren’t playing in a highly competitive setting. The weapons detailed in this guide are simply the ones that will have the easiest time achieving good results if used well.
1. Sloshing Machine
One of the main and best weapons dominating the competitive scene, the Sloshing Machine is a fantastic weapon in Splatoon 3. The weapon itself is solid, boasting high damage, good range, and the ability to hit enemies over ledges and behind cover. That last point is especially useful since it allows the Sloshing Machine to threaten backline weapons like Chargers or Splatlings by poking at them while avoiding their sightlines.
The Sloshing Machine also has a fantastic kit, arguably the best it could ask for. Fizzy Bombs are the perfect sub weapon for it, providing great area denial due to their range and multiple explosions, as well as comboing with the damage dealt by the Sloshing Machine itself. To be specific, an indirect hit with a Fizzy Bomb will splat an opponent when combined with a direct hit from a Sloshing Machine, and two indirect hits from a Fizzy Bomb will also splat an opponent if they’re tagged by an indirect hit from the Sloshing Machine. Such efficient damage combos between main and sub weapons tend to be very rare in Splatoon, and their presence here only adds to the Sloshing Machine’s great ability to follow-up on its Fizzy Bomb and eliminate enemy players. Its special weapon, Booyah Bomb, is also excellent, being one of the strongest specials in the game with lots of utility. Its ability to simply deny an area from enemy control is very valuable, and it can even be used to funnel enemies into specific locations by tossing the bomb behind them, allowing your team to follow up while your opponents are still on the back foot.
The Sloshing Machine simply ends up being one of the best all-around weapons; you could use something like a regular Slosher to achieve similar results, but the excellent combination of range, damage, and area control the Sloshing Machine boasts makes it nearly-uncontested in any of the categories it might compete in.
2. E-liter 4K/E-liter 4K Scope
The E-liter 4K is the longest range weapon Splatoon 3 has to offer, and it certainly puts that range to good use. This Charger boasts the highest range of its weapon class (and of every weapon in general), which is compensated by its high ink consumption, slow charge speed and poor mobility. In spite of these flaws, the E-liter 4K can dominate the battlefield thanks to its superior range, allowing it to cover the entirety of the battlefield while mostly ignoring retaliation from other backline weapons, which it simply outranges. The map design of Splatoon 3, which tends to feature less cover and flank routes than previous games, can make it very difficult to successfully disrupt or threaten the weapon, almost requiring the use of a special to do so. This in turn makes the E-liter a relatively safe weapon that can still exert its presence over the entire stage, even just by threatening the opponent with its line-of-sight marker.
Its sub weapon, Ink Mines, can let it cover the few flank routes that do exist that it might not be able to account for otherwise. While the mines themselves will rarely splat a target, they can alert the E-liter 4K of an incoming attacker, providing enough time for it to retreat and live to fight another day. The weapon’s special weapon, Wave Breaker, is alright for it. If it hits another opponent, having their location revealed can be a great advantage to an E-liter, letting them follow-up with its superior range. However, the E-liter 4K isn’t likely to build its special up very often because of its weak painting capability, and even if it does, the Wave Breaker is a special weapon that becomes far more useful when deployed closer to the enemy. Since the E-liter 4K plays from much further away, it would have to leave its perch to set it within range, which exposes it to danger and deprives your team of the cover the Charger usually provides. It can still be used effectively, it just doesn’t synergize incredibly well with the weapon.
The E-liter is certainly a tricky weapon to learn, since the weapon’s ink consumption, mobility, and charge speed mean you really need to be able to land the shots you take, so player skill is definitely a requirement. But if you can work around that skill floor, you’ll be rewarded with one of the most threatening weapons in Splatoon 3.
The E-liter 4K Scope is virtually identical to the base weapon, despite being counted as its own separate entity. The scoped version differs from the original through its scoped viewpoint, a little bit of extra range the weapon gains and the loss of its ability to store charges while moving in ink. Fundamentally it ends up playing basically the same, so simply pick whichever variation of the weapon you prefer.
The Splash-o-matic is one of the best weapons’ and strongest shooters in Splatoon 3, with its main claim to fame being its relatively quick time to splat combined with its perfect accuracy. Its accuracy is its most important feature, as it guarantees you’ll hit whatever is in its reticle, and more uniquely, it prevents the weapon from suffering any deviation in mid-air. Out of the Shooter class, this trait is unique to the Splash-o-matic and grants it greater mobility in head-to-head fights, since jumping around can easily cause your opponents’ shots to miss while yours are guaranteed to land due to your perfect accuracy.
Its kit is also very solid, consisting of Burst Bombs as its sub weapon and Crab Tank as its special. Burst Bombs are generally one of the best sub weapons around; while they can’t deal lethal damage, they consume very little ink compared to other bombs, detonate on contact, and spread a solid amount of ink, providing a lot of versatility. They can be used to harass longer ranged enemies, cut off their escape routes by inking at their feet, deal some preliminary damage before jumping in to finish them with the main weapon, or even quickly ink at one’s own feet to allow for a quick escape. The Crab Tank is one of the best special weapons in the game and is only seeing more and more use. While it is vulnerable from behind, as long as the player has their back defended by either their teammates or the terrain, the sheer oppressive capability of the special cannot be understated. Its rapid-fire lets it suppress and ink a huge amount of terrain, while the lobbed explosive shot even allows it to deal with enemies hiding behind cover. As long as it’s used properly, the area denial it provides almost makes it equivalent to a 9 second-long Booyah Bomb, making for an incredibly powerful tool.
The frequency with which the Splash-o-matic can trigger its Crab Tank, combined with the accuracy of the main weapon and the utility of its Burst Bombs all contribute to making this weapon one of the best in its class.
4. Splattershot/Hero Shot
Arguably the game’s flagship weapon, the Splattershot is an average short-range Shooter, boasting a quick three-shot splat and decent range. Like all short-range shooters, it’s very maneuverable, easy to learn and can provide fantastic results, whether that be through turf coverage, head-on fights or sneakier flanks.
The Splattershot has access to Suction Bombs as its sub weapon, one of the better sub weapons in the game. While they have very long fuses, they also possess the largest range of all bomb sub weapons, giving them the ability to shut down an area for a considerable amount of time when thrown properly. Their ability to stick to surfaces can also come in handy, enabling the use of unexpected and tricky bomb placements. But the main draw of the Splattershot compared to other Shooters is its special weapon, the Trizooka. While the Trizooka definitely has a bit of a learning curve, it’s one of the best specials in the game, boasting enough range and power to easily threaten backline weapons like the E-liter, which is a big deal. Its mobility is also nothing to scoff at, since being able to swim around with it makes it a very flexible special weapon.
Despite being your average Shooter, the Splattershot just manages to ink its way to the top through its great combination of mobility, damage, and range, giving it the ability to deal with any threat in multiple ways.
The Hero Shot, unlocked by completing the game’s Hero mode, has the exact same stats as the Splattershot despite being listed separately. Simply use whichever design you prefer
5. Splattershot Jr.
This may come as a surprise, but the very first weapon the game provides is also one of the best! The Splattershot Jr may not be the best fighter due to its inaccurate shots and relatively short range, but it makes up for this in sheer supportive ability. It’s able to output a significant amount of ink, which also lets it build up its special, the Big Bubbler, more easily. The Big Bubbler is a great defensive tool. Even though it can be penetrated and shot down, it puts up a solid shield, can be used in a pinch to win an engagement, can lock off an area from enemy control or simply be set onto the tower in Tower Control to score some easy points. And while it’s true that the Splattershot Jr. itself may not be fantastic at fighting, that’s where its sub weapon comes in.
Splat Bombs are Splatoon’s default grenade, and they’re one of the best sub weapons in the game; they’re able to deal lethal damage, have a relatively short fuse (especially if rolled along the ground), have decent range, and similar to the Suction Bombs, can shut down an enemy’s approach. Splat Bombs make up an essential part of the Splattershot Jr.’s kit for two main reasons; the first is that they provide a reliable long-range offensive option that the main weapon simply lacks. The second is that, for whatever reason, the Splattershot Jr.’s ink tank is 10% larger than all other weapons. This allows for the weapon to fire off quite a few shots even after tossing a bomb, and if enough of the Ink Saver (Sub) ability is used, even allows the player to throw two Splat Bombs in a row. All of these factors make the Splattershot Jr. a great weapon that’s easy to pick up, great at supporting its team and even better at trapping its enemies under a flurry of Splat Bombs.
6. .52 Gal
The .52 Gal is one of the most aggressive short-range shooters in the game, capable of splatting opponents in only two shots. This makes it one of the best slayer weapons around, and a major threat if it can get close enough to enemies to land a couple of successful shots.
This is made easier by the use of its Splash Wall, which, coupled with the .52 Gal’s relatively long range, allows it to push into dangerous territory while staving off potential counter-attacks from longer range opponents. Since the .52 Gal also has decent painting ability, it’s also one of the best weapons with a Splash Wall, being able to take advantage of it by painting the surrounding area while protected by the wall, gaining relatively free area control in the process. This also lets it build up its special weapon, the Killer Wail 5.1; while this special is arguably not as valuable as a Booyah Bomb, Trizooka, Crab Tank, or Tenta Missiles, it can still come in handy for gathering information on enemy positions or providing a second source of damage to create a sort of “pseudo-flanking” opportunity against an enemy player.
The .52 Gal is ultimately one of the more dangerous weapons in the game due to its high splatting potential, while remaining relatively easy to learn due to being a standard Shooter weapon.
The Explosher is one of the more interesting weapons in the game, being the only Slosher-type weapon that could be qualified as a backline weapon. Its main benefit over other backline weapons like the E-liter 4K or the Hydra Splatling is that, as a Slosher, its shots can be lobbed over cover. This allows it to flush out frontline weapons trying to hide and approach it while also allowing it to directly contest weapons like the aforementioned E-liter or Hydra, since it can fire at them while remaining out of their line of sight.
This is only made easier with its sub weapon, the Point Sensor. While Point Sensors can sometimes feel less than adequate on certain weapons, the Explosher can make great use of them. Since part of the Explosher’s trademark is hitting over cover, lobbing a Point Sensor can provide direct information on where to fire your shots in order to land a hit, even without being able to physically see your opponents. It’s also a great intimidation tool for a backline weapon like the Explosher, since the size and lingering effect of a Point Sensor’s detection bubble means it can be tossed ahead of an approaching opponent. If they choose to take the gambit and get detected, they immediately become more threatened by the Explosher’s superior range. The Explosher’s special, Ink Storm, is slightly less interesting but still valuable. It provides a consistent amount of paint coverage, very solid in Splat Zones, and its residual damage can turn the Explosher’s potential 90 damage shot into a one-hit splat.
Overall, the Explosher ends up being one of the more unique yet effective backline weapons in the game, providing an interesting and potent playstyle that differs from that of the more common Chargers and Splatlings.
8. Flingza Roller
Welcome to the game’s premiere Tenta Missiles-spamming weapon! Yes, contrary to popular belief, the REEF-LUX 450 isn’t really the best Splatoon 3 weapon at using Tenta Missiles, it’s the Flingza Roller. The main reason for this is that, on top of laying down a solid amount of ink with its vertical flicks to build up Tenta Missiles, it’s also just a solid main weapon in general. The aforementioned vertical flick, while slow, reaches very far, making it great at both inking and harassing longer range targets, particularly those standing on higher platforms. The horizontal flick, on the other hand, is fast enough to let the weapon serve a stealthier role and surprise unsuspecting opponents by leaping out of the ink and splatting them in one flick.
But of course, the main draw of this weapon is its special weapon, the Tenta Missiles. Arguably the strongest special in Splatoon 3, Tenta Missiles can provide disruption from anywhere on the map, dislodge opponents and particularly backline weapons from valuable positions, and just generally be a complete nuisance. The special alone justifies the potential use of this weapon, it’s that potent. Now, the Flingza’s sub weapon is a different story. Ink Mines just don’t really provide that much value to the weapon; they’re already not a great sub weapon, but the Flingza in particular just doesn’t rely on them much. They can serve some use in covering flank positions if you’re trying to hold down a particular area, but they’re just generally not going to be a huge part of the weapon’s playstyle.
Still, this doesn’t stop the Flingza Roller from being a very real threat through the use of its irritatingly long-range flicks and constant barrage of missiles, making it a solid pick for any team.
The Squeezer is the most complex Shooter in the game by virtue of its two firing modes. By holding the trigger button down, the Squeezer will fire a continuous set of shots that is sadly pretty ineffective, only really useful for some light inking. This weapon’s bread-and-butter lies in its tap shots; these boast great accuracy and some ridiculously long range for a Shooter weapon. 3 of these shots is all it takes to splat an opponent, making it a substantial threat to any weapon it outranges or any backline weapon it can sneak up on.
Similarly to the Splattershot, the Squeezer shares the same special weapon, the Trizooka. Everything mentioned earlier applies here – the Trizooka is a fantastic special, with great range, mobility, and damage. The sub weapon, Splash Wall, is sadly not as useful. While it can provide good support for teammates and shut down enemy approaches, the Squeezer can’t make use of it as well as a .52 Gal, since its superior range means it doesn’t typically need the Splash Wall to approach in the first place. While the Squeezer would definitely prefer a bomb of some kind, the Splash Wall still isn’t bad per se, and it certainly doesn’t prevent the Squeezer from being one of the more deadly mid-range splatters in the game.
10. Range Blaster
The first Blaster weapon on this list, the Range Blaster is just a very solid weapon so of course we had to feature it in our Splatoon 3 best weapons list. As a Blaster, it boasts very solid accuracy and the ability to poke at enemies from under ledges, which is only made more annoying by this weapon’s range and one-shot capability.
Its sub weapon, Suction Bomb, allows it to poke at enemies outside of its range and irritate backline weapons. Its special weapon, Wave Breaker, pairs well with the weapon since it will usually be close enough to the enemy for it to be able to tag them. If tagged with a Wave Breaker, an accurate Range Blaster can also have a pretty easy time following up thanks to its good range and indirect shots. This weapon’s main weaknesses revolve around its slow firing rate and difficulty dealing with any threats up close, but that won’t stop a skilled Range Blaster from shredding through a team of unsuspecting opponents.
11. Rapid Blaster Pro
The Rapid Blaster Pro fills a niche by being Splatoon 3’s longest-ranged Blaster. The weapon’s shots reach quite far away and come out relatively fast for a Blaster, letting it serve as a pseudo-backline weapon if necessary, but it cannot deal lethal damage in a single direct hit and requires at least two shots to splat. Still, it can do a great job at harassing the enemy team from far away and irritate enemy backliners by poking over ledges.
Its kit differs drastically from the Range Blaster’s though, consisting of a Toxic Mist and Ink Vac. The Toxic Mist, while not deadly, is capable of disrupting approaching opponents or cutting off enemy backline perches, which can also coordinate with the Rapid Blaster Pro mowing them down while they’re slowed down in the mist. The Ink Vac is a bit of an odd special weapon, and while The Rapid Blaster Pro is one of its better users, it can still end up being a bit awkward. It’s helpful in absorbing shots while your team is trying to push an objective, even being capable of absorbing opposing specials like a Booyah Bomb, Trizooka shot, or Tenta Missiles. But it’s also surprisingly vulnerable; higher mobility weapons like Shooters can easily flank the Ink Vac by approaching it from the side because of the Vac’s slow strafing speed, and even once the Vac is fully charged up, there’s a brief moment of vulnerability before its shot is fired off where it can be easily splatted by any weapon gunning for it. Plus, it’s a long-lasting special that will cause your main weapon, the highlight of its kit, to be completely unavailable throughout the duration of it, which is a bit unfortunate.
Regardless, the Rapid Blaster Pro still ends up being a solid weapon, providing support to your team while doing a great job at denying the opponent space.
12. Goo Tuber
That’s right, the REEF-LUX isn’t even the second-best Tenta Missiles-spamming weapon in Splatoon 3! That dubious honor goes to the Goo Tuber and frankly speaking, this weapon is only really used for two reasons: its sub weapon, Torpedo, and its special weapon, Tenta Missiles. The main weapon just doesn’t really provide much utility, being a mid-range Charger that charges pretty slowly. Its main gimmick, the ability to hold charges for long periods of time, simply doesn’t come in handy that often, and makes the main weapon feel outclassed compared to other alternatives like the Squiffer.
Good thing it has a Torpedo then! This is one of the more unique sub weapons Splatoon has to offer; if tossed along the ground or if no targets are in range, it’s a fairly ineffective 60 damage bomb. But if it detects an enemy when tossed in the air, it’ll home in on them, dealing 60 damage on contact and spraying several pellets of ink around the explosion. This sub weapon has quite a few uses; first, its homing ability simply helps deduce where enemies might be, which is always useful. Then, while the Torpedo can be shot out of the air, doing so forces the opponent to change targets and focus on it momentarily, which can be just the distraction needed in order to win an engagement. Finally, if the Torpedo does land, the amount of ink it lays down is nothing to scoff at, and can seriously disrupt an enemy’s movement to follow-up for an easy splat. Plus the ink it lays down lets it build up its special faster. Tenta Missiles can be built up pretty quickly on this weapon between the Torpedo and the Goo Tuber’s decent enough painting ability, and just like for the Flingza Roller, they’re fantastic at disrupting the opponent.
While the Goo Tuber’s main weapon can’t quite compete with the Flingza, its ability to poke with Torpedoes and spam Tenta Missiles lets it fill a very specific yet useful niche, even if the Goo Tuber itself might not see as much use on the kit.
13. Splat Charger/Splatterscope
The game’s default Charger, the Splat Charger differentiates itself from the E-liter 4K by being more well-rounded with better mobility, charge time, and ink efficiency, making it a little bit easier to learn. Sadly it also loses the extra range the E-liter 4K possesses, which is enough for the E-liter to edge it out in most cases. It does have advantages of its own; for one, not all maps require the E-liter’s extra range, so the Splat Charger can compete confidently on those that don’t while taking advantage of its superior attributes.
It also has Splat Bombs for its sub weapon, which can provide far more disruption and utility than the E-Liter 4K’s Ink Mines. Its special weapon is the Ink Vac, and well, it sadly struggles even more with it than the Rapid Blaster Pro. On top of all the disadvantages listed earlier, the Splat Charger also needs to push farther ahead with it to be of use due to its nature as a backline weapon, and the Splat Charger itself not being active while the Ink Vac is means your team will have to make do without a Charger supporting them for a bit, which can be a big downside.
Regardless, the Splat Charger can absolutely pull its weight thanks to its sniping prowess and Splat Bombs, giving it the ability to compete with the E-liter 4K as the Charger of choice. It’ll just have to depend on the current map rotation and the user’s personal preference a bit more.
The Splatterscope variant shares most of the same attributes as the base weapon, simply possessing a scoped viewpoint, gaining a small amount of extra range and losing the ability to store charges. The differences are minimal, so pick whichever one you’re more comfortable with.
14. Dualie Squelchers
The Dualie Squelchers are an interesting weapon, being the game’s longest-range set of Dualie weapons. They end up being very solid at this role, combining both the range provided by the weapon itself along with the Dualies’ natural dodge-rolling ability to become one of the more irritating and versatile midline weapons in the game. While they take four shots to splat, their inherent range and aforementioned roll means they’re surprisingly capable of achieving this by simply poking at opponents repeatedly while denying them the ability to approach.
Furthermore, they have access to Splat Bombs, which only helps their ability to poke at opponents, providing a solid option for dealing with backliners. Its special weapon, which it can use pretty frequently, is the Wave Breaker. This is the other weapon along with the Range Blaster that can make good use out of this special, since its nature as a midline weapon means it’ll be close enough to the enemy to set up the Wave Breaker where it’ll cause the most disruption.
The weapon ends up being easy to learn thanks to its Splat Bombs and range, while its maneuverability and dodge rolls provide a high skill ceiling that makes the weapon very satisying to master.
15. Nautilus 47
The first Splatling on this list, the Nautilus 47 is a mid-range Splatling weapon, with its special characteristic being that it is able to hold its charges similarly to a classic Charger. This immediately makes the weapon more dangerous as a slayer weapon, since it remedies the main weakness of most Splatlings – the necessary charge time before attacking. Furthermore, the weapon has enough range that it can function as a pseudo-backline weapon if necessary, providing it some versatility.
Where the weapon begins to falter is its overall kit; for as solid as the Nautilus itself is, neither the Point Sensor nor Ink Storm provide a great benefit for it. Point Sensors would be more practical on a weapon that can either snipe enemies from afar or hunt them down more easily, while the Ink Storm provides decent support but deprives the Nautilus of a more aggressive special like the Trizooka or Crab Tank, which it would appreciate a lot more.
Even with its heavily support-oriented kit, the Nautilus 47 still manages to compete thanks to its potent main weapon, and has the potential to be truly scary if it receives a more offense-oriented kit in the future.
One of the only two Brush weapons in the game, the Inkbrush is the speedier variant of the two. It uses its impressive movement speed to navigate around opponents, hopefully disorienting them or distracting them enough for a teammate to follow up with the splat. That’s not to say it can’t fight, as it’s perfectly capable of surprising a foe and sweeping them away with some rapid brush flicks.
Splat Bombs are a fantastic sub weapon for it, giving it the range it otherwise sorely lacks and synergizing with the weapon’s speed, letting it toss bombs from unexpected directions before running away. Its special weapon, Killer Wail 5.1, is just alright; it can provide disruption and allow the Inkbrush to distract a player before quickly approaching them from a different angle to splat them, but it does lack the offensive or disruptive capability of something like a Booyah Bomb or Tenta Missiles.
The lack of flank routes in most Splatoon 3 maps also doesn’t help the weapon, since it stops it from sneaking up on enemies as easily. This is, however, one of the more solid overall kits the weapon has ever gotten, and painting circles around your opponent remains just as fun as ever hence why we’ve added it to our Splatoon 3 best weapons list.
17. Hydra Splatling
The longest-range Splatling in the game, the Hydra Splatling has the potential to be a true terror and one of the best weapons in Splatoon 3. While it boasts the longest charge time of all Splatlings, it also deals the most damage of all of them; the weapon has both the range and firepower to easily turn any opponent with its line of sight into a little puddle of ink.
It’s also got what is probably the best kit the Hydra Splatling will ever get. Autobombs are homing bombs that will either explode on the spot or, if there’s an enemy in their radius, begin waddling towards them and exploding once they get close enough. Autobombs can deal lethal damage, but they usually won’t given their relative slowness. Instead, their primary use often ends up being information-gathering, tossing them at a suspicious patch of ink to see if there might be anyone hiding there. This can be incredibly useful for the Hydra, since it lets it scope out potential sniper perches and make sure they’re safe, or alternatively toss them into a contested area to get a better idea of how an opponent might be moving. And just like a Splat or Suction Bomb, Autobombs can still be used to disrupt opposing backline weapons or simply force an opponent into moving how you want them to, even if it can’t cut off a chokepoint as effectively. The Hydra Splatling’s special weapon is Booyah Bomb. As mentioned earlier, Booyah Bomb is a fantastic special that possesses great utility, and it can even be thrown effectively from the range a Hydra Splatling would usually stay at. Plus, the Hydra Splatling builds up enough ink through its ridiculous range and rate of fire that it can actually use its Booyah Bomb pretty frequently.
Sadly, the catch is that like many other weapons in Splatoon 3, the Hydra Splatling is heavily affected by the game’s more linear, less cover-prone maps. While this can come in handy for the Hydra, being a backline weapon itself, it also creates a huge problem for it; it’s way more susceptible to long-range weapons like the E-liter 4K, Splat Charger or Explosher, which can pretty easily outrange it, interrupt its charges, or simply shoot it down during its openings. This is what the weapon struggles with the most, as it constantly needs to find ways to play around these other longer range weapons, which is just made harder by the general map design. So while the Hydra can absolutely be a potent backline weapon and has one of the best kits it could ask for, it ends up very reliant on the specific map and lack of enemy backline weapons in order to perform effectively.
18. Ballpoint Splatling
The Ballpoint Splatling is definitely the most unusual Splatling in Splatoon 3 yet still one of the best weapons. Similarly to the Squeezer, it boasts two firing modes; a shorter range spread fire, which turns into a more accurate long range stream when firing for long enough. The weapon is also one of the few Splatlings that can interrupt its current charge while firing in order to start charging the next volley, which is even more important for the Ballpoint because maintaining its charge in this way lets it remain in long range-mode without needing to go through its shorter range fire first. So with all that said, the Ballpoint itself is a solid main weapon, with the ability to both paint decently well or even fight up-close with its short range shots while being able to fulfill a more traditional backline role with its long range shots.
In terms of its kit, it has access to Fizzy Bombs and Inkjet; Fizzy Bombs are naturally useful, although they arguably don’t synergize well with the Ballpoint. Because the main weapon already has decent range and relies so heavily on maintaining its charge, it doesn’t really want to constantly toss Fizzy Bombs as frequently as, say, a Sloshing Machine. The Inkjet is an interesting tool, since it lets it harass enemy backline weapons as long as it can get up close. It is however a tricky special to use, since the player has to adjust for its particular movement options and shot timing.
Ultimately, that difficulty to learn is what defines a lot of the Ballpoint Splatling; it has a lot of potential hidden away, but it takes a good amount of work to actually unlock. And similarly to the Hydra Splatling, it needs to live in fear of opposing backliners, which is far from ideal.
One the two new weapon classes in Splatoon 3, the Tri-Stringer is an odd little weapon. At first glance it may seem like an underpowered, inefficient Splat Charger, but that really isn’t the case. What the Tri-Stringer excels at is denying the opponent space; rather than only trying to land direct shots like a Charger would, you can take advantage of the delayed explosion on the weapon’s charged shots to slowly chip away at an opponent without requiring perfect accuracy, all while restricting their movement options.
This is complemented by the sub weapon, Toxic Mist, which can perform a similar role as the weapon’s explosive shots by locking off certain areas from enemy control. The Killer Wail 5.1 fills out the kit by providing a disruptive option, albeit one that might not always have the largest impact.
The biggest issue the Tri-Stringer faces is that its disruptive area control role can also be performed by other weapons like the Explosher, Rapid Blaster Pro or even Sloshing Machine, which arguably do the job better and reduce the niche the Tri-Stringer can operate in. It’s still a competent option to fill that role though, and just like the Explosher, can provide a different playstyle compared to more traditional backline options.
20. Dark Tetra Dualies
Finally, the Dark Tetra Dualies, arguably the strongest main weapon Splatoon 3, not to mention one of the best. These Dualies possess decent range, are able to fire during their dodge roll, and boast a very useful four dodge rolls compared to the standard two. A skilled Tetra Dualies user is, frankly, ridiculous. The weapon has so much maneuverability that it can dodge circles around enemy players, all the while peppering them with shots and wearing them down. The main challenge the weapon faces is twofold; first, it cannot ink well for itself, which means it might need a supportive weapon like the Splattershot Jr. to lay down ink for it so that it can maintain its mobility, even in enemy bases. The other, more glaring downside, is that the weapon is simply very difficult to master. It certainly has the potential to be an extremely strong option, but its user needs to be able to use its dodge roll effectively and excel in disadvantageous combat scenarios, which can be a big ask.
The sub weapon, Autobomb, is surprisingly useful. Its ability to scout ahead works very well for the Dark Tetra Dualies, since it provides the necessary information to approach fights from more advantageous positions. Its special weapon, Reefslider, is somewhat less useful for it. While it can be used to push into an opening or corner an enemy with no real escape, it’s very predictable and leaves the player open to retaliation after its use, particularly if they’re being aimed down by a longer range weapon like a Charger.
Dark Tetra Dualies still end up being a very strong weapon overall, with some of the highest skill ceiling the game has to offer; it’ll just require some support from your teammates and a lot of practice if you want to see that potential unlocked.