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Thursday, January 5, 2023

Which Music Plays in Which Alterna Kettle in Splatoon 3

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - This is important and undocumented information!

It is a common view in the Splatoon fanbase that the music of Splatoon 3 is great—but the music that plays during online multiplayer matches is limited in quantity, which is said to increase in later seasons. However, much of the best music isn't in online multiplayer—it's in Splatoon 3's single-player mode, Alterna.

There are 11 standard pieces of background music across the 63 normal missions (10 + 8 + 7 + 12 + 13 + 12 + 1). This excludes the four Crater missions (which all share the same background music), the Crater's boss, the three boss fights (which all share music), and the final levels leading to the final boss. These missions are divided into gold and silver kettles. Silver kettles require an entrance fee of a certain amount of Power Eggs (earned by completing kettles, slaying enemies, and collecting things in levels), while gold kettles do not. There is one exception, which is the post-story level After Alterna. After Alterna is accessed via a gold kettle, but it also has an entrance fee. (The biggest one by a wide margin!)

Because of how the mode is structured, you do not need to complete every mission to get to the end of the game—simply enough to clear mission-critical paths to the three bosses. Not purposefully doing every kettle means you will miss out on some great game design. You may also miss out on great music!

This article sorts the missions by the background music that plays during them, so you can see which mission you can hear each music in. (The music is also embedded.) This also lets you know how well each track is distributed across all of the missions. I quickly figured out the gold/silver kettle distinction means that songs 1–4 only play in gold kettles, while 5–11 only play in silver kettles. I didn't know that! Only song 4 is named, despite the increased focus on world-building and such in Splatoon 3. Perhaps we'll know the official names of these songs later. Most of the other songs in the game are named, because they're played by bands that want you to know the names.

Update! As of Version 3.0.0, we now know the names of the songs thanks to the lobby's jukebox! Anyway, let's get through the list!

Alterna Music 01: Nine out of Tension (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 1-01 [gold]: Get to Know Alterna, Your Only Choice
  2. Site 2-02 [gold]: Absorbency and You
  3. Site 3-01 [gold]: Climbing the Corporate Splatter
  4. Site 4-02 [gold]: Octohoppers Don't Have a Sense of Humor (and They Hate Puns)!
  5. Site 5-03 [gold]: Uh-Oh! Too Many Snipers!
  6. Site 5-04 [gold]: Barriers! They've Got You Covered
  7. Site 6-03 [gold]: Torture Tour
  8. After Alterna (checkpoint 2)

Alterna Music 02: Underwater Neon (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 1-02 [gold]: Octopods at Rest Tend to FLIP OUT!
  2. Site 1-03 [gold]: Splat You on the Flip Side
  3. Site 2-01 [gold]: Twirling, Swirling, Whirling
  4. Site 3-03 [gold]: Ink Wheels-Experience Tomorrow's Technology Today!
  5. Site 4-03 [gold]: Let's Put a Pin in That
  6. Site 5-01 [gold]: Trouble Round Every Corner
  7. Site 6-02 [gold]: Octarian Heights
  8. After Alterna (checkpoint 1)

Alterna Music 03: Flop to It (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 1-04 [gold]: Doors, Doors, Doors! And More! (Doors)
  2. Site 2-03 [gold]: Soak It to Me!
  3. Site 3-02 [gold]: They Said We'd Have Flying Cars, and We Do! Kinda!
  4. Site 4-01 [gold]: Propellered to Greatness
  5. Site 5-02 [gold]: The Upside to Enemy Backsides
  6. After Alterna (checkpoints 3 and 4)

Alterna Music 04: Octoling Rendezvous (by Turquoise October)

  1. Site 6-01 [gold]: Bet You Mist Us!
  2. After Alterna (checkpoint 5; final)
Octoling Rendezvous already has a name because it's actually from the first two Splatoon games, and played in those games’ story modes in the dedicated Octoling combat levels. Bet You Mist Us! is also an Octoling combat level, the only dedicated one of its kind in Splatoon 3, but it's in the fog so it's quite a bit more difficult. As a result, this is the least-played song in Alterna. Octoling Rendezvous also plays in the final part of After Alterna for a very important reason that I won't spoil here.

Alterna Music 05: Smoke and Mirrors (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 1-05 [silver]: Relic Restoration
  2. Site 1-07 [silver]: Become One with Your Smallfry
  3. Site 2-08 [silver]: Switching Things Up
  4. Site 4-05 [silver]: Amusing a Bemused Muse
  5. Site 5-09 [silver]: Low Viz, High Risk
  6. Site 6-12 [silver]: Enter the Stamp Gauntlet

Alterna Music 06: Ride or Fry (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 2-04 [silver]: Splitting Crosshairs
  2. Site 3-06 [silver]: Time Trial and Errors
  3. Site 4-08 [silver]: Easy Ride, Tricky Targets
  4. Site 4-12 [silver]: The Path to Perfect Penmanship
  5. Site 5-07 [silver]: One-Way Ride through Target Town
  6. Site 5-10 [silver]: Shooter on Rails
  7. Site 6-09 [silver]: Dive and Dash
This theme often plays in the "break all targets before time runs out." stages or the similar on-rails "break the targets to reach the goal." Same with hitting all of the switches.

Alterna Music 07: With Flying Colors (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 1-06 [silver]: Zip, Splat, and Jump
  2. Site 3-05 [silver]: Conveyor-Belt Tightening
  3. Site 5-06 [silver]: Zipping over the Neighborhood
  4. Site 5-08 [silver]: Making Waves with Splashdowns
  5. Site 5-11 [silver]: Simply Zipcastic!
  6. Site 6-06 [silver]: Keep It Rolling
  7. Site 6-11 [silver]: Don't Tease with the Keys
This theme is used for levels based around getting the most out of special weapons, like the Zipcaster or Splashdown. But curiously, not the Crab Tank level (Tread Heavily) or the Inkjet level (Mission: Fly-Fishin'). 3-05 and 6-06 also doesn't use a special; you're fleeing from an ink stick while smashing targets or rolling around and crushing enemies. Perhaps being a roller main is its own kind of superpower? 6-11 has nothing of the sort, however.

Splatoon 3 Agent 2 Marie awesome turning into a roller main keep it rolling Alterna story mode
When I'm not using the Splattershot Jr., I am a roller main.

Alterna Music 08: Seep & Destroy (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 2-05 [silver]: Tread Heavily
  2. Site 2-06 [silver]: Getting Lost in Three Easy Steps
  3. Site 4-09 [silver]: Flying Worst Class
  4. Site 5-12 [silver]: You'll Go Far If You Shoot Far
  5. Site 5-13 [silver]: Learn to Reflect, and This One Is in the Bank
  6. Site 6-08 [silver]: Breathe In, Breathe Out
#08, otherwise known as Bang Bing within the fanbase, is the most beloved song in all of Splatoon 3. Despite its fanbase association with moai statues, the song never plays in Site 1, which is where the moai statues actually are in Alterna. It also doesn't really have a coherent level archetype it plays in. Like, 5-13 should really play in track #09, but as it is, the song is by far the best part of an otherwise difficult level. Still, Bang Bing is the real reason I even put this article together. I think it deserves to play more than six times.

Splatoon 3 Alterna Site 1 moai statues ancient face bang bing
The moai statues are canonically known as “ancient faces” and were 3D-printed out.
The gold kettle you see is 1-04, which plays song 3, not 8.

Alterna Music 09: Marine Machines (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 1-08 [silver]: What Caused the Big Bang? YOU!
  2. Site 2-07 [silver]: The Ink-Conservation Project
  3. Site 3-04 [silver]: Try Curling! Alterna's 11th Most Popular Athleisure Activity!
  4. Site 4-06 [silver]: Those Aren't Birds
  5. Site 4-10 [silver]: Ink Fast, Hotshot
  6. Site 6-04 [silver]: Conserve Ink-Splat Sustainably
Given the track's atmosphere, it plays on levels where you really need to concentrate and focus on a central gimmick. That's not really that different than normal, but... Well, for example, it has both of the game's levels where you need to get to the goal without running out of ink (2-07 and 6-04).

Alterna Music 10: #35 caught (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 1-09 [silver]: The String's the Thing
  2. Site 3-07 [silver]: Rail Pass
  3. Site 4-07 [silver]: Charge Now, Splat Later
  4. Site 5-05 [silver]: A Compulsive Collector's Paradise
  5. Site 6-05 [silver]: The Enemy Ink Is Lava!
  6. Site 6-07 [silver]: That Sinking Feeling

Alterna Music 11: Don't Flinch (by Octoplush)

  1. Site 1-10 [silver]: Deadly Dance Hall-Jump, Jump!
  2. Site 4-04 [silver]: Splash the Block Party
  3. Site 4-11 [silver]: Stamp 'Em Out
  4. Site 6-10 [silver]: Mission: Fly-Fishin'
The final standard song is relatively rare, and that's to make the levels it does play in feel quite intimidating. I think it does a good job of that.

Is this article Ludwig's attempt to pre-emptively lobby support for Splatoon 3 in KoopaTV's Game of THAT Year 2022 awards, especially for the Best OST of 2022 category? Nominations will be published on January 6, 2023, with winners published on January 9!


  1. Marie is so supportive of roller mains despite her being a charger main. Callie is a roller main as well. What a supportive cousin.

    1. Charger mains like to fight roller mains, because rollers have no way to fight against an entrenched charger and are easy pickings.

    2. Is there some sort of weapon triangle like with Fire Emblem's axes, lances and swords in Splatoon?

    3. As far as I can tell in Splatoon 3, Chargers beat everything.

  2. What a fun collection of names, although i hope the rest of the tracks get official names soon. I hate opening a playlist just to be greeted by "Track 38". On the one hand it makes you have to listen through the entire ost to get to the song you want, which can open you up to much of the soundtrack that you might not have fully listened to. But on the other hand, putting aside the fact that many people hate to do that, how would you remember what number song you really liked anyway? Say you like a lot of a game's ost but none of the songs have names, you are going to have to do a lot of guessing everytime, especially if you put them all back to back in the same playlist.

    1. Somehow, Alterna Mission 08 is easy to remember it's Bang Bing.

      But here's a counter-point that's been a pest for many years. Look at the Pokémon original series anime music playlist:
      Everything is named but it's very similar. There's a "Raid!" and a "Total War" but also "Absolute Death" and "A Huge Free-for-All". Which song is the one stuck in my head? Turns out it's "Who is Stronger? Epic Battle!"
      And "Total War" is, in fact, not a battle theme whatsoever but more of a "We're in the hard-earned success part of the episode!"


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