Fight for the freedom of feudal Japan in Sucker Punch’s new samurai epic
Nearly three years after it was announced, and six after its last video game Infamous: Second Son, Sucker Punch Production is finally ready to release its much-anticipated samurai epic, Ghost Of Tsushima.
Although there’s a little bit more to go before Ghost Of Tsushima officially arrives, new details regarding the game’s plot and gameplay are still being slowly revealed by its developer and publisher.
Ready to find out more? Read on for everything we know so far about Ghost Of Tsushima.
Ghost Of Tsushima is a long-awaited action RPG game from Sucker Punch Productions, which was first announced as a PlayStation 4 exclusive back in 2017 at Sony Interactive Entertainment’s Paris Games Week press conference.
The game is inspired by true events in Japanese history. It is set in the late 13th century on Tsushima island, during the first Mongol invasion of Japan. Players control Jin Sakai, one of the island’s last samurai, as he learns the way of the Ghost – a unique combat style – in an effort to drive back the invaders.
Ghost Of Tsushima is developed by Sucker Punch Productions, which is responsible for other popular series such as Infamous and Sly Cooper. The game will be published exclusively on the PS4 by Sony Interactive Entertainment, which also owns Sucker Punch.
Notably, Ghost Of Tsushima is also Sucker Punch’s first video game release in over six years, since 2014’s Infamous: Second Son, which was also a PS4 exclusive. The game will also be one of the final PS4 exclusive games before the PlayStation 5 launches during the 2020 holiday season.
In April 2020, Sony Interactive Entertainment pushed back the release of Ghost Of Tsushima to July 17. Sucker Punch cited challenges from its shift to a work-from-home setting due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Ghost Of Tsushima was originally released to be released on June 26. Prior to the postponement, Sucker Punch had noted that the game was “on track” for its initial June release date.
Ghost Of Tsushima revolves around Jin, one of the last samurai on the island of Tsushima, whose world has been shattered by the invading Mongol hordes. The first wave of the invasion laid waste to the island, easily defeating the island’s defending samurai forces, and now threatens the Japanese mainland.
Jin will stop at nothing to protect his homeland, even if that means setting aside the samurai tradition of honour that he was brought up with. As Jin, players must learn the path of the Ghost, a fighting style similar to that of a ninja, in order to defeat general Khotun Khan of the Mongol Empire and drive back his armies.
Patch 1.06 for Ghost Of Tsushima arrived in August. It included a buff of the Traveler’s Attire, alongside new accessibility options and bug fixes. The armour was updated with new visual and audios cues to highlight collectibles near the player in order to “offer a better, more accessible experience”.
On July 26, Sucker Punch released a new patch for Ghost Of Tsushima which added new difficulty and accessibility options.
It introduced a new difficulty level called “Lethal” which makes both protagonist Jin and enemies in the world more deadly. A host of accessibility options have also been incorporated, including the ability to make text larger, switching off the speaker’s name when talking and being able to change the colour of subtitles.
A new cinematic trailer, titled A Storm Is Coming, was released on June 29. The clip did not feature any gameplay footage, but detailed the game’s storyline.
On March 5, Sony Interactive Entertainment released a story trailer that gave players a glimpse of Jin’s upbringing as a samurai, the surviving members of his clan and the first wave of Mongol invaders.
In December 2019, Ghost Of Tsushima received an action-packed cinematic titled The Ghost, which showed off Jin’s Ghost fighting style.
The first gameplay footage of Ghost Of Tsushima was released during E3 2018. It showcased the game’s sprawling open world, battle mechanics and in-game cutscenes.
Ghost Of Tsushima was originally announced back in 2017 during Paris Games Week with a trailer that featured the voice of the game’s main antagonist, general Khotun Khan, over dramatic cinematic cutscenes.
On May 15, Sony released an in-depth look at the gameplay of Ghost Of Tsushima, as part of its State Of Play series.
The 18-minute episode featured gameplay details for exploration, combat, customisation and photo mode, among others. The video is the first showcase of in-game footage since Sucker Punch showed off the game at E3 2018.
The game features two distinct fighting styles that Jin can use: Samurai – a precision-based battle system of parries and dodges – and Ghost, a stealth-based fighting style that he will gradually learn as the story progresses.
However, creative director and art director Jason Connell noted that gamers will not be forced to play protagonist Jin in a certain style. “We don’t spec you out and suddenly you can’t play as a samurai. [Jin is] always at his core, his heart of hearts, a samurai. The Ghost is this legendary warrior that he’s evolving into,” he said.
The Ghost Of Tsushima State Of Play episode also introduced the game’s customisation options, and how different armours affect your chosen playstyle. Besides armour, players can also equip Jin with Omamori Charms, which feature different buffs that will give him an edge in battle.
The State Of Play presentation also confirmed that Ghost Of Tsushima will have a photo mode, with customisable options such as colour grading and depth of field. Players will also have the ability to manipulate elements in the world, including wind direction, lighting and particle effects.
In April, Sucker Punch revealed that Ghost Of Tsushima would not feature physical waypoints to guide players to their destinations. Instead, physical landmarks and a guiding wind mechanic will be used to navigate around the island.
Ghost Of Tsushima will also not feature any sort of morality meter, unlike Sucker Punch’s previous release, Infamous: Second Son, which had a karma system. Connell stated that the developers felt that a morality meter would take away from the game’s central narrative.
“We realised it was more important to us that we wanted to tell a human story of someone who is this way and has to evolve into something else, versus transform completely into something else,” he explained. “[Jin] doesn’t flip flop back and forth, it muddied it up for us. We really wanted the story to reflect his transformation.”
On October 30, Sucker Punch a four-player raid for Ghost Of Tsushima‘s multiplayer mode. The three-chapter raid, called The Tale Of Iyo, will be the “culmination of the story in Ghost Of Tsushima: Legends” and will bring players straight to the realm of Iyo.
The mode, however, will not support matchmaking, so players will be required to gather their four-player team before heading into the raid. Sucker Punch also advises teams to have gear at “KI level 100 as an absolute minimum” before trying their hand at the challenge.
On October 16, Sucker Punch released Ghost Of Tsushima’s multiplayer mode, Legends. It launched alongside New Game+ mode, which allows players to carry over all of Jin’s unlocked techniques, gear and vanity items to a new playthrough with increased difficulty.
Sucker Punch has announced that Ghost Of Tsushima’s multiplayer mode, known as Legends, will be released on October 16 for free. It will feature various two- and four-player missions that range from story-driven to survival modes.
Two mission types will be added when the mode launches: story and survival missions. Story missions are designed for two players and will include some unique narratives. Higher difficulties can be unlocked, and as players progress they will unlock new encounters, tougher enemies, bonus objectives and better rewards.
Survival missions are built for four players and will have groups facing waves of enemies. Blessings can be activated, which act as modifiers, gifting perks such as igniting enemies on fire or summoning a spirit bear.
Ghost Of Tsushima will launch exclusively on the PS4. It is unlikely for Ghost Of Tsushima to be released for other platforms, such as PC and Xbox One, as developer Sucker Punch is a subsidiary of Sony Interactive Entertainment. Moreover, none of the games from its Infamous series have been released on non-Sony platforms.
The game’s score is helmed by British composer Ilan Eshkeri and Japanese composer Shigeru Umebayashi. “Ilan and Ume both brought something very special to the score that we used to craft the emotional backbone of the entire world: from the story to combat to exploring the island,” said Rev. Dr. Bradley D Meyer, audio director at Sucker Punch.
In July, Sucker Punch announced that it has enlisted a lineup of musicians to remix the songs from the upcoming title’s soundtrack. Titled ‘Sound Of The Storm – Ghost Of Tsushima Soundtrack: Reimagined’, the four-track EP features contributions from TOKiMONSTA, Tycho, The Glitch Mob and Nine Inch Nails’ Alessandro Cortini. It drops July 10 via Milan Records, a week before the game officially launches.
Ghost Of Tsushima can be pre-ordered on the PlayStation Store. The standard edition is available at £54.99, and features special pre-order content such as a mini soundtrack, a Jin PlayStation 4 dynamic theme and a Jin avatar.
Meanwhile, the digital deluxe edition is available at £64.99 and includes the pre-order content as well as a handful of exclusives. These include a digital mini artbook, director’s commentary, a samurai PlayStation 4 theme and several in-game items.