One feature that the Gamepad brings to Splatoon is the inclusion of the minimap.
Yeah, this thing here. The minimap is way too useful to simply accommodate your super jumping, as this little map provides many great insights into the game. Of course, a tool's only as good as its user, and thus learning how to use the minimap to its full power is up to the player.
First, one must understand the problem with having the minimap on the gamepad instead of the screen. Because all of the action is on the screen, it is very common to simply look at the screen exclusively, only looking at the gamepad if you want to Super Jump (or, as my family calls it, Squiddie jump). While there is wisdom in this, there is an even better way of observing the game. Like so.
For those of you who know how to drive, you know that you need to do the following: A) Keep your eyes on the road at all times, and B) check your mirrors. Normally these seem contradictory, but in reality all that you have to do is glance into your mirrors every so often for less than a second, and then immediately place your gaze back upon the road. The same basic rules apply for the gamepad; Keep your eyes on the screen at all times, and occasionally glance down at the minimap. You don't have to do this often; one glance every 5-10 seconds is good. However, just performing this trick will allow you to more easily keep up with what the gamepad is telling you, without detracting from the game itself.
Now, what exactly the gamepad is telling you is very important information to take in. Glancing down at the gamepad will allow you to see where your allies are, so that you get a basic idea of where you can Squiddie Jump to safety. Of course, your spawn point is always a safe spot, but it can also put you far away from the enemy ink, which means you may not be able to assist as quickly as if you dropped onto an ally.
You can use the minimap to determine which path to go down. Let's say you advancing down Port Mackerel, like in this picture.
As the picture demonstrates, you are the blue circle. You have three options to advance: The Green Path, the Red Path, or the Yellow path. However, you already have two other teammates who have gone on without you down two different paths. If you wish to go alone to splatter more ink, which path should you go down, and more importantly, how do you quickly check which path your allies went down? Well, you can swim down each path until you see an ally, but that's precious time not inking. Your other option is to use the gamepad, as it shows you where your allies are. If you glance at the gamepad and see that your allies have gone down the green and red paths, you can take the yellow path in order to ink more places.
The gamepad can also help you see where enemies are. Since it displays what the ground looks like in real time,you can use this fact to guess what opponent is coming down a path. For example, if you see straight thin lines being made down the yellow path, you can assume that there is a charger or an Inkzooka user going down that path. A thick, constantly creeping line of ink or a thin, uneven line suggests a roller or a brush, and uneven splotches usually mean shooters. This way, you can tell what's coming your way.
This technique can be further improved by gear and weaponry, too. If an opponent is standing in your ink or is wounded, he will be revealed on the Gamepad, but not on the screen, so you can see where he is. The same goes for Recon, as it only reveals the opponents on your map and not your screen. Point Sensors and Echolocators, while they do reveal the foes on your screen, give a more accurate reading on your Gamepad, as they reveal the foes actual location rather than the direction.
That is all that I have on my study of the Gamepad! I hope that some things that I said were helpful to you during your splatting needs. Good luck on your next matches, and remember to glance down at the pad!
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Map Awareness and You!
Winning games can be all about utilizing the minimap properly.