The Heavy Splatling is a long ranged anchor's weapon, similar to chargers, albeit not as long ranged:
- Like most chargers, the Heavy Splatling needs to charge before it can fire:
- When barely charged, its effective range is only 84 units — shorter than that of a Splattershot. Finishing the first full level of charge will increase the range to its maximum of 168 units.
- Charging takes 50 frames (about 0.83 seconds) to reach the first full level and an additional 25 frames (about 0.42 seconds) to reach the second level.
- Due to both the long charging time and the reduced range when not fully charged, the Heavy Splatling is vulnerable to attack from shorter ranged weapons while charging, so it is generally advised to remain out of sight from the opponent (e.g. behind an obstacle) and not too close to opposing ink while charging.
- Partly charging a Heavy Splatling will reduce its effective range but also allow it to fire more quickly – especially in a tight situation.
- Once charged, the Heavy Splatling's high firing rate (4 frames between shots, or 15 shots per second), moderate damage (30 health points, or HP), and long range allow it to mow down opponents near and far:
- While the Heavy Splatling's firepower is devastating up close, it is still recommended to keep shorter ranged opponents from getting too close, where their fast shot velocity and high DPS will allow them to either trade or win a confrontation outright.
- Despite its long range, the Heavy Splatling has a slower initial shot velocity (21 units per frame) than do some other weapons, such as the Jet Squelcher (33.6 units per frame) and the Splat Charger (48 units per frame). Therefore, a Heavy Splatling user should lead their shots to hit their targets.
- The Heavy Splatling's high firing rate and excellent ink coverage give it an advantage over chargers and the Jet Squelcher in terms of turfing:
- Combined with its long range, the Heavy Splatling can either gain or maintain map control and capture or hold zones in Splat Zones from a relatively safe distance while simultaneously watching for any flanking opponents.
- It also makes a great complement to poorly turfing weapons, such as a Splattershot Pro or a blaster, providing both support fire and turfing.
- Due to the time spent charging and firing their weapon, a Heavy Splatling user spends a larger proportion of their time in humanoid form than do users of most other weapon classes.
- While a Heavy Splatling user has decent running speed (0.7 units per frame while firing, 0.62 units per frame while charging) compared to users of other weapons (e.g. Jet Squelcher at 0.6 units per frame while firing), its time spent running instead of swimming makes it comparably slower and more vulnerable to attack, especially from opposing chargers.
- Both Run Speed Up and Ink Resistance Up can improve the mobility during charging and firing, particularly while strafing.
- Weapons that outrange the Heavy Splatling (e.g. most chargers and the Ballpoint Splatling) are its most difficult matchups since it has neither the range nor the mobility to challenge them. Remain out of range from these weapons and instead focus on helping teammates splat other opponents, allowing your teammates to challenge the long-ranged opponents.
The Sprinkler can be used in a variety of ways to help its user:
- Turfing areas that are either out of reach or unsafe to approach.
- Maintaining turf onto highly contested areas, such as on the Tower. A Sprinkler placed high on a wall or ceiling can also be a distraction for an opponent.
- Acting as a light shield in a pinch. Sprinklers have 120 hit points but are easily destroyed by opponents armed with Object Shredder.
The Sting Ray excels on stages that are long, narrow, closed, and relatively flat, especially Port Mackerel and Walleye Warehouse, particularly in Tower Control and Rainmaker. Special Charge Up and Tenacity can help hasten the building of the special gauge.
- Before starting the Sting Ray, it is advised to keep a safe distance from battles, as firing a Sting Ray too close to an opponent can leave one vulnerable to attack.
- When firing the Sting Ray, if an opponent escapes from the ray, bring up the map with . An opponent who has taken any damage will be visible on the map until completely healed. Redirect the Sting Ray until the popping sound is heard.
- Users of other anchor's weapons each have to confront a Heavy Splatling differently:
- Most chargers and some splatlings (i.e. the Ballpoint Splatling and Hydra Splatling) outrange the Heavy Splatling user and can simply zone them out.
- The Custom Jet Squelcher has an equal effective range (168 units) and better mobility but less firepower than the Heavy Splatling, so outmaneuvering it is more effective than a direct approach.
- The heavyweight Explosher is less mobile and far slower firing than the Heavy Splatling and would also lose a direct encounter. Use the terrain and any obstacles to provide cover while lobbing accurate shots to cover the area around the opponent in ink to demobilize them.
- Unless a Heavy Splatling user is caught charging, approaching one directly with a shorter ranged weapon usually leads to a one-way trip back to the spawn point. Rely on flanking or sharking to get within range of an opponent wielding a Heavy Splatling.
- If an opponent's Sprinkler is present nearby, make sure that no opponents are hiding nearby before attempting to destroy it.
- Always be aware of when the opposing team's Heavy Splatling has Sting Ray fully charged on the HUD, particularly when pushing the Tower or Rainmaker.
- Fight fire with fire by using a Sting Ray against an opponent's.
- Tenta Missiles are a quick way to either counter or disrupt an opposing Sting Ray user, as well as displace any anchor from an otherwise safe perch.
- A properly launched and piloted Inkjet can splat an opposing Sting Ray user while being relatively safe from the beam.
- Quickly swimming away from the Sting Ray's beam is generally the best way to avoid getting splatted without using Specials, as users turn relatively slowly while the Sting Ray is active. This is a useful tactic in Tower Control to maintain a Tower push.
Gear abilities provide different effects in battle that benefit the player with their equipped weapon. This is a guide to gear abilities in relation to the weapon. Strategy, synergy, viability, and purpose may be written here.
Because a Heavy Splatling user spends comparatively more time in humanoid form charging and firing their weapon, they can be easier targets for opponents to splat. Run Speed Up increases the running speed of a Heavy Splatling user, including while charging and firing.
- 15 ability points – either five subs or about one main and two subs – are enough to increase run speed while firing above 0.8 units per frame; 23 ability points – two mains and one sub – increase it above 0.85 units per frame.
- 13 ability points – one main and one sub – are enough to increase run speed while charging above 0.7 units per frame; 23 ability points increase it above 0.75 units per frame.
Special Charge Up accelerates building up the special gauge for Sting Ray, which can prove invaluable for stopping or slowing the Tower or Rainmaker.
- 13 ability points – one main and one sub – effectively reduce the special gauge requirement to below 180p.
- "Splatoon 2 - Weapon Roles and Playstyles (Classifying every Weapon)" by Wadsm
- "STAY FRESH - Heavy Splatling Guide (Splatoon 2)" by MadiKuma, formerly of Blue Ringed Octolings
- "How to Heavy Splatling - Splatoon 2 Weapon Guide" by undead
- "How To Get Good Using The Heavy Splatling?! (+ Handcam) | Splatoon 2" by ThatSrb2DUDE, formerly of Team Olive
- Stat Calculator & Gear Planner for Splatoon 2, applicable for Version 4.8.0
- Sendou.ink Weapon Builds
- Lean's Loadout Database - Useage of abilities in Ranked modes