Narrow winding corridors and large arenas are both present on this oil rig. With the map being symmetrically split down the middle, one team's approach to any area will directly mirror the other team.
Saltspray Rig consists of two large spawn platforms on either sides of a large central structure with a clear incline, being highest at the north point of the map and lowest behind the spawn point. The spawn area is quite high compared to the surrounding areas and is totally inaccessible to the enemy team, but the map's design makes both team's spawn areas quite close together. The spawn platform has long walls to block shots, and has several spots for players to drop down on to the main battlefield. Going forward leads to some winding paths, to one side is an exposed corridor that drops down on to a small arena, while heading up the hallway on the other side leads to a square behind the walls surrounding the top area.
The walkways form the paths that lead to the map's various areas of interest. They connect two distinct floors in this area outside of spawn: the higher platform that leads into the map's main field of conflict, and the lower floor which branches off to an oft-neglected rectangular area. This area is the lowest point on the map and is flat except for a few crates, and is within line of sight of both team's spawn platforms. Falling off the walkways results in instant death, but it is possible to use the elevation to perform aerial assault on enemies below. There are several crates and barriers for cover, as well as large signs hanging over the walkways to block shots. Other than the winding walkways, there are also two small elevators that move between the two floors at the center of this region.
The top part of the map is where both teams mainly clash at, regardless of the mode. It is a very key spot to control and is fairly defensible with walls surrounding the area and a small chokepoint being the main entrance into the region. However, attackers can also use the walls to their advantage, using the few inkable pipes and towers attached to the walls to swim onto them. The two towers in particular has a great view of the arena enclosed by the walls, making it a popular sniper spot as well as a decent alternate entrance into the region. A T-shaped wall is present at the center of the region with a single inkable surface leading to its top. Behind that arena is a huge square with a bunch of large crates that serve as both walls and platforms. A suspended grate sweeps high across the area, making for a hard to reach, albeit exposed vantage point.
A couple of barriers are present in the top region that aren't in other modes.
Turf War is the only mode in which every part of Saltspray Rig can contribute to a victory, and is clearly what this map is mainly designed for. The spawn area is inaccessible but makes up a fair amount of turf, which is usually inked as players take the routes to reach the center. The most important region of the map is the top. The northernmost part of the map is a wide open area that can give a lot of turf points that is also relatively defensible, so expect it to be heavily contested for the whole match.
During the initial teamfight, long-ranged weapons like chargers should head for the platform overlooking the top arena or the top of the walls surrounding it, as it gives the best view of the vital area. Everyone else will likely clash in front of the chokepoint leading into the north platform. The barrier here forces you to strafe around it to fire at the enemy, which in turn exposes you to up close to enemies on the other side. You can also use the lifts below or jump around the barrier off the edge for a sneak attack. Jumping into the arena using the sniper perch is a slower alternate path, but lets you fire at foes at the chokepoint.
If your team manages to win the fight for the top area, first secure the entire zone leading to the large platform with the crates. The enemy has many avenues to attack this region from, but you can see all of them coming if you've covered the area in ink. Save the shipping crate area for lulls in the match to charge up your specials. A Sprinkler on top of the moving grate can spread ink over a wide area while being tough for enemies to destroy. A player can also do the same, but must eventually drop off the grate to refill. If you have Beakons, hide them under the ledge leading into the area or behind some crates to provide access to teammates in case enemies manage to control the paths outside the top area. The crates also provide cover and height for defenders when the enemy team tries to push into this region.
If you're trying to claim the top region from the enemy team, you have several options to attack. The chokepoint is the safest spot as it limits where enemies within the region can attack you from. The enemy sniper perch is a concern as they can see you, but you can quickly duck out of sight using the T-shaped wall. Snipers on the perch can ink the area underneath with near impunity, but using the perch to drop into the arena is dangerous, as enemies at the back can spot you sooner and you're very exposed when dropping to the ground. There's also always a risk with enemies ambushing you from behind. Due to how defensible the top area is, the winning team may extend outward to cover more turf while leaving one or two players to defend, during which a concentrated blitz may push through. Use an Echolocator or simply acute observation to determine when it's time to push.
Other than the top area, the paths leading up to it as well as the small platform to the south can also contribute turf, but it's hard to match the huge area of turf of the northern area. They are fairly low priority, but a good place for the losing team to charge up their specials. If the enemy is adamantly turtling within the top region and no pushes are successful, inking everywhere else can either force them out of hiding or even overcome their point lead if you're really thorough. These areas are in relatively low points on the map, so watch out for ambushes from above.
The zone covers a large area that includes half the central arena and part of the area outside the bottleneck. Two blocks have been added below the sniper perches to allow defenders an easier time at retaliating against snipers.
The strategy for Splat Zones is quite similar to your normal goal in Turf Wars: control the arena in front of the northernmost region of the map. The fight for the zone will be quite similar to that of Turf War, but without the other parts of the map drawing player attention, the action is going to be much more focused around the zone. The minor changes do matter, primarily the repositioned barrier in front of the zone drastically reduces your cover against enemies while approaching the zone.
The zone is a bit oddly placed, having part of it sticking out past the chokepoint. This property favors the attackers, as the only way to the outer part of the zone from the inner region is through the choke, so the attacking team can at least neutralize the zone by inking the accessible outer areas to draw out a turtling enemy team. The inkable walls beside the choke point also benefit players coming in from outside, and the sniper perch is still there for long-range pressure and as an alternate entrance into the region around the zone.
While there are many ways to attack the Splat Zone from, controlling the Splat Zone gives plenty of advantages as well. The sniper perches are less effective, as the added blocks below let you harass foes on the perch using mid-ranged weapons. While the top region won't see any activity, it can be a strong staging ground if your team can set up camp within it. Having some well-hidden Beakons here lets teammates jump to a defensible position quickly, and can be qite difficult for an attacking force to take out unless the attackers manage to dominate the fight.
The tower is located at the back of the central arena. It loops around the T-shaped wall, passes through the bottleneck, descends down to the lower level and comes to a stop at a bend on the walkway. Inkable blocks have been added to either side of the walls surrounding the center for better mobility in and out of the region. The odd, winding path of the tower and the lack of rotational symmetry for the tower's path made this map unpopular with players, and it is no longer present in Ranked map rotations.
Due to the strange layout of the map, the tower's path doesn't really diverge for either team until around the 60 point mark, which is shortly after the choke. Compared to other Ranked modes, the objective is initially located quite far from spawn, just before the ramp leading into the shipping crate area. There are less barriers here than in other modes, as well as inkable blocks leading up the walls on the path where both teams clash, so mobility is more important to make up for the lack of cover and safe areas. The first 30 points on the track will be spent going around the T-shaped structure. Both the structure and the sniper perch are great places to attack the tower from, as well as to stop the enemy's tower.
The bottleneck is a very tough part of the journey and tends to be where the tower stops dead in its tracks for either team. If the passage outside the choke is controlled by the enemy team, they can box you in and pick off any players trying to get out. Fortunately the walls beside the choke can now be inked both ways, helping players behind the bottleneck to push out. Nevertheless, getting the tower through the bottleneck is difficult, as you'll not only confront enemies head on, but also have to deal with sneak attacks from foes dropping from the sniper platforms behind you. The top of the wall running across the passage can also be used by mid-long ranged players to harass foes on the tower or the passage just out of reach, but the addition of metal blocks on the side of the walls gives you an easier time reaching enemies camping on them.
Things do not get easier for the attackers past the 50 point mark, as the tower descends on to the lower passages. The walls remain a great place for defenders to fire on the tower and any enemies nearby. The tower being level with the passage also lets shorter-ranged weapons attack the tower directly. It is also risky for the attackers on the tower as it travels across a deadly pit, which makes it difficult to reclaim if you drop off even if you manage to land on the lower passages. Control of the passage is crucial for the tower to progress through this part of the track. The last stretch of the track puts you right outside the enemy's spawn area, but the walls and signs provide valuable cover for the attackers. The height advantage gives the desperate defense a large advantage for harassing the tower passing below.
The Rainmaker bubble starts off in front of the bottleneck into the central arena. The spawn platforms have been heavily altered, with a new area added near the spawn point for the end goal. Inkable walls have been added at the drop-off points from the spawn platform so that attackers can reach it from the walkways. There are also additional barriers and the long hallway trailing off from spawn has been walled off. Lastly, there is a huge Rainmaker-forbidden area that encompasses the entire topmost region with the crates and the sweeping grate. The timer counts down quickly there, and dying in that area causes the Rainmaker to respawn in its initial position.
Like in other Ranked modes, roughly 50% of Saltspray Rig is neglected in Rainmaker. The nature of this map gives the Rainmaker a very short path from the start to the goal, but while the distance isn't much the terrain makes it very hard to break down the enemy resistance. Also unlike other maps, the spawn areas of both teams, and thus the goal ramps they connect to, are quite close together, which leads to very volatile back-and-forth rounds. Despite going through several revisions, Saltspray Rig has been deemed to be a poor map for Rainmaker due to its unusual design, and has been effectively removed from online rotations in this mode.
The initial skirmish for the Rainmaker will be very direct. Since the flank routes out of spawn have been blocked off and the Rainmaker itself begins on the edge of the pathway in front of the choke point, most players will clash directly on either side of the Rainmaker's shield, though the lower passage, while risky, can be used to ambush the enemy team. The sniper perches and the area behind the choke point is a bit far from the action, but they can provide a useful alternate angle of attack.
Once one of the teams breaks the shield and secures the Rainmaker, they can get up to 50 points really quickly by dropping on to the lower passages and swimming up to the enemy's spawn area. However, this is where progress grinds to a halt, as the carrier must swim up a completely vertical wall into deep enemy territory. Even mobile offensive shooters have trouble pushing through, as the enemy has plenty of cover to stay out of sight while being able to respond to any players to climb up, or even just drop down to deal with the other team directly. If the carrier dies, it is also difficult for the attackers to reclaim it, especially if it was dropped in the enemy's spawn area.
If you're on the offensive, avoid having your team mostly wiped in quick succession. The path from the enemy spawn to yours is rather short, so a disastrous push can lead to the enemy knocking on your doorstep instead. The wall close to the center is more direct and closer to the victory podium, but lets enemies fire at you from the sides on the spawn platform. The wall closer to the sides of the map is a bit further away, but harder for enemies to safely fire on, though it is narrower. A coordinated push with players attacking up both walls should give the best chance of creating an opening for the carrier to bring the Rainmaker to victory.
On the defense, make the most of your height advantage. Dropping bombs off the edge is a good way to disperse of enemies. If your weapon has good range, you can harass enemies from the spawn platform. Lacking that, jumping off to engage them can lead to plenty of surprise kills. The Rainmaker's charged shots cover the spawn exits very well, so approaching the carrier head on is a bad idea. Use the cover you have from the walls to pick off the incoming offense. Use the barriers for added protection if the enemy is successful at pushing on to the platform. If you have trouble breaking offensive pressure, just grab the Rainmaker and jump into the sea to respawn it at the center, which can distract enemies. Lastly, while the top area is restricted from Rainmaker camping, the middle area is not and is still fairly defensible, but is to only be used when your team has the lead and needs to secure a timeout victory.