‘Splatoon 2’ for Nintendo Switch

As a parent, finding online multiplayer games that I feel safe letting my son play feels like an uphill battle. Even putting aside all the violence I’d rather keep him away from, a lot of online game communities are filled with absolutely toxic people who scream or type obscenities all game long, or call for teammates to be banned for minor errors, or what have you.

Splatoon 2 for Nintendo Switch is one game I don’t mind letting him go online with. Yes, it’s technically a “shooter”, but there are no bullets or blood — in this game, your weapon is ink. The “Turf War” game mode has two teams of four players battling to claim territory by “inking” as much of the ground as possible in their teams’ respective colors in three minutes. Players can splat one another as well, but rather than dying, they simply disappear and go back to respawn.

Watch this gameplay video to see what that’s like:

In terms of in-game communication, there’s no voice chat or anything built into the game. Teammates can only communicate with one another though a handful of simple emotes like Booyah! and Ouch! As far as shooter games go, Splatoon 2 is as kid-friendly as they come.

You can get a physical copy of the game for $53 on Amazon. If you’re afraid of your kid losing that tiny cartridge, the digital version is $60.