Chapter 1: Rider
Rider is the first chapter of the Splatoon manga.
It debuted on 13 November 2015 as part of CoroCoro Comic's December 2015 edition. It is the first chapter of the ongoing manga series, separate from the standalone #0 Yellow that was released several months earlier to tie into the release of Splatoon. As a result, Team Blue appear slightly different from this chapter onwards.
In Inkopolis Plaza, a huge crowd of excited young Inklings gathers to watch Callie and Marie of the Squid Sisters announce the start of the long-awaited CoroCoro Cup Turf War tournament. Three Inklings named Specs, Headphones, and Bobble Hat walk through the crowd, feeling equally excited and nervous to take part, but as team leader, Specs is more concerned about where their missing fourth team member, Goggles, has disappeared to. Eventually, Goggles swims up in squid form to meet them, apologising, but transforms into humanoid form naked. After a slap from Headphones, he puts on his clothes and gets ready for the tournament as the final member of Team Blue.
As they talk, a group of nearby Inklings starts whispering about the team, leading them to think they have finally become famous, not realising that they are only known as being famously stupid. However, their attention is drawn by a new arrival that Specs recognises instantly: Rider, a famously strong Rank S+ Inkling who does not like teamwork. However, he has been forced to make a team with Stealth Goggles, School Uniform, and Bamboo Hat to enter the tournament, worrying Specs that they would be doomed if they meet him in battle. Goggles and Bobble Hat are convinced they could take him on, though, but when he ignores them, Goggles pulls his pants down and he leaves, furious. A terrified Specs reminds his team that none of them are higher than Rank B- but all laugh off the idea of battling Rider first in the tournament...
Lining up for the first battle on Arowana Mall, Team Blue face up to Team Yellow-Green: Rider's newly-formed team. Goggles tries to convince his teammates that they can win if they work together, which Rider deems "pathetic". Taking their places on either end of the stage, the Squid Sisters explain the basic rules of Turf War before starting the battle.
Knowing that whoever secures the centre of the stage takes an early advantage, Goggles rushes off to do just that, but immediately falls into the water, getting splatted and being forced to respawn back at the spawn point. Regardless, the other three take the central area, but Rider takes advantage of their close proximity by splatting all of them in one swing of his Gold Dynamo Roller. After respawning, Goggles attempts to take a high lane, but Rider cuts him off by launching his special weapon, the Inkstrike. Although Team Blue fear the worst, Goggles barely manages to avoid getting splatted. However, all three other members of Team Yellow-Green fire off Inkstrikes in tandem, inking a huge area.
Team Blue assume that Goggles is done for and decide to continue regardless, but are quickly cut off by Rider, who threatens them not to move while his teammates build up their special gauges, deeming it all they are good for. With 80% of the stage covered by Team Yellow-Green, Rider boasts about not needing teamwork but is interrupted by Goggles, appearing miraculously to pull his pants and underwear down. Taking advantage of his shock, Goggles splats him and explains that he was hiding on the wall the whole time. With their leader out of action, Team Yellow-Green panic, and Bobble Hat and Headphones team up to splat Bamboo Hat while Specs deals with Stealth Goggles.
Team Blue start to make their counterattack, covering most of the stage, and the respawned Rider has no chance to turn things around before being cornered by Goggles. He explains that everyone needs a little help from their friends, before hitting Rider with a point-blank Inkzooka attack just as time runs out. Judd calculates the turf coverage and Team Blue wins by a margin.
Rider interrupts Team Blue's celebrations to ask them how they coordinated themselves, to which Goggles explains that they just know from practice. Understanding, he asks Goggles to promise not to lose the next match, adding that "I'll tear your squid legs off if you don't win this whole tournament". Back in the plaza, Goggles leaps into the air in celebration... and falls straight down an open manhole.
- Team Blue
- Team Yellow-Green
- Stealth Goggles
- School Uniform
- Bamboo Hat
- Squid Sisters
- Like in #0 Yellow, Team Blue have a reputation among their fellow Inklings for being "stupid".
- Goggles establishes using a last-second Inkzooka as his signature finisher, like he also did in Chapter 0.
- Rider's Triple Inkstrike tactic is also the name for a special in Splatoon 3.