Inklings are the lone player-controlled race featured in Nintendo's online multiplayer-focused third-person shooter Splatoon. They appear as humanoids with brightly-colored tentacle-like hair, hinting at their inherent ability to transform into a smaller squid form at any time. Their squid form allows Inklings to quickly swim through like-colored pools of ink and replenish their own ink supply. Inklings can dispense ink of their own color from any number of ink-based weapons available in the game. The city of Inkopolis serves as a hub for the Inklings' most popular recreational sport: Ink Battles, arena-based competitions with various objectives such as territory control and target shooting.
Inklings are very fashion-focused and can gain special perks during Ink Battles by wearing different articles of clothing purchased from Inkopolis' shops. Additional abilities can be unlocked from a single garment by earning Battle Points through multiplayer matches.
Inklings have a history of conflict with another sentient species known as Octarians; this animosity directly leads into the events of Splatoon's single-player Hero Mode.
Several Sunken Scrolls uncovered during the course of Hero Mode provide additional information on the origins of the Inkling species. They are actually a race of highly-evolved terrestrial squids whose society exists on Earth approximately 13,000 years in the future, long after rising sea levels have led to humanity's extinction. Ironically, the Inklings' evolved bodies are extremely water-soluble, causing them to dissolve upon direct contact with any body of water. This weakness is apparently shared with the Octarians and likely contributed to the numerous conflicts between both species over the planet's remaining habitable land.
Super Smash Bros. for Wii U/Nintendo 3DS contains downloadable Inkling costumes for the Mii playable characters.