Splatoon 3: How to unlock ‘After Alterna’ and get the bear ears

Nintendo /

The vast majority of Splatoon 3’s story mode takes place in a hidden away bubble city known as Alterna. Now, while I’m disappointed that a game about fish puns refuses to take a second to call it “All Tuna,” it is a city rife with mystery and interesting info.

In fact, if you wanted to put enough work in, you can actually find out what happened to humanity and how the Inklings came to be. And spoilers, it’s more out of place than the players’ custom messages.

Nintendo /

After Alterna is a special stage that can only be unlocked after not only beating the game but beating every stage. You’ll know you’re good to go when all your journal entries have check marks. Upon completing the final boss, that will finish out the last journal and you’ll get a notification after the cut scenes that you’ve unlocked “After Alterna”.

So where is it?

I’ll put this out there to make you feel better if you, like me and like a bad joke about men from the 90s, did not consult a map for directions when looking for it. Instead, I wandered forward, confident that I’d find it quickly.

Except the damn thing is behind you.

Right when you spawn. Turn 180˚ and you’ll see it on a little island right behind you. It’s just got a normal kettle lid you gotta pop off and then down you go.

So WHAT is it?

After Alterna is a very special stage that gives you some cool unlocks. For example, if you’ve seen players running around with little bear ears, they got it from completing this stage.

The stage itself though? Oofbagoof.

After Alterna is, without a doubt, the hardest stage in the game. If there’s a part of the story mode you hated I PROMISE you that it’s represented here. For me, that part is the bits where you have to slide on a rail and hit targets as you pass or else you plummet to your doom.

Oh, and you know these fish eggs you used to get rid of the fuzzy slime? Do you know how some stages cost like 40 eggs to get in or retry? After Alterna costs 333. I don’t know what 333 has to do with the game or why it pops up so often in the story but if you’re not great at the game like I am, 333 to continue can start to hurt quickly. When I started playing it, I had about 15,000 eggs on me and by the time I had beaten it, I was wondering if I was going to run out.

dark. Next. Splatoon 3’s first Splatfest theme and dates announced

But I will say this. If you got pulled into the lore of Splatoon 3, which, again, is surprisingly dark, you also will get one last journal for completing this which I will not spoil but is worth snagging. Get to it, squids.