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Will we ever get to play Splatoon 3?

Splatoon was a surprise success for Nintendo when it released on the Wii U in 2015. That led to a sequel, Splatoon 2, which showed up in 2017 on the company's most current console, the Nintendo Switch. The big question is, will there be a third? Will we ever get to play Splatoon 3?

The answer is a big ole' maybe.

Here's what we know of Splatoon 3 at the moment. As of July 2019, Splatoon producer Hisashi Nogami confirmed that a third game in the series was not in development. More than that, though, he wasn't even sure Nintendo would make another entry after Splatoon 2.

"We'll think of them after everything is over," Nogami said in an interview, stating that the company would consider another game in the franchise after completing updates to Splatoon 2. "We're not yet at a phase where we can make a promise, but we'd like to return the favor in some sort of way to many people who have supported us."

So what's that mean? Nintendo would like to do something for the Splatoon die-hards out there. The company can't guarantee a new game will come along. But clearly, Nogami and his team want to put something out for fans of the series. What that is, we don't know.

One reason Nintendo might be hesitant to make promises is because Nintendo EAD — the studio that handles the Splatoon series — also works on Animal Crossing. And as we all know, the latest game in that franchise recently got delayed. All hands are likely on deck trying to make sure New Horizons gets out the door by March 20, 2020. After that? We'll have to wait and see.

The best thing you can do right now is remain hopeful yet realistic. We probably won't get an announcement about a potential Splatoon 3 until Animal Crossing: New Horizons is released. But given the success of the Switch — and the success of Splatoon 2 on it — it would be mighty hard for Nintendo pass on a third.

Then again, when has Nintendo ever done what we've expected?