Blog entry by jack henry
Developed by the Sucker Punch Productions, The Ghost of Tsushima is an action game that was released in July 2020 or PlayStation 4. In 1274, the Mongols invaded Japan for the first time. Their forces were led by The Khan who fought against Lord Shimura and Jin Sakai (Shimura’s nephew), the counterattack of the inhabitants of Tsushima island did not go as they had planned. The leader of the Samurai, Lord Shimura was captured in the battle while Jin Sakai was injured. After Jin recovered, he knew what he was meant to do. He assembled allies to rescue Lord Shimura and take revenge for defeat from Khotun Khan. The game beautifully creates the narrative of an injured samurai who is motivated to defeat his invaders to protect his island and free his people. In order to become the warrior of the shadows, he creates the identity of the “Ghost”.
Everything about the game from graphics to music, acting, gameplay and visuals is astonishing. It is hard not to get hooked on the game as it has the ability to draw players and stimulate curiosity. The fights are especially praise-worthy as they have been brilliantly choreographed and are really immersive. Jin has to face mercenaries, generals and warriors to accomplish his lofty goals as the Mongols wreak havoc and try to kill him. The gameplay experience is settled by the mind boggling visuals and music that narrate Jin’s story and brilliantly capture his fights.
The Ghost of Tsushima does not fail in giving the players the experience of facing the Mongols as the creators have carefully kept a threatening and scary aura around them. This, in turn, creates greater immersion and the players feel much more emotionally invested in the story as they struggle to liberate town after town from the grips of Khotun Khan and his men. With the growth in Jin’s notoriety, the foes also adapted to the changing scenario as they would often be terrified by the sight of the “Ghost”. Such attention to detail is commendable and is not expected from a game. Tsushima’s environment also adapts to the changes in Jin as he commits some dishonorable deeds. It changes accordingly from bright and sunny to dark as a reference to Jin’s transition into the “Ghost”.
Jin’s journey, although at first starts with him being very respectful about the samurai code as he engages with the Mongols head-on. But with time, he uses various inexcusable means to take the upper hand in the fight. Lord Shimura, who has tried inculcating values of honor even in battle, is horrified by the actions of Jin, as he has been involved in his upbringing. They share a complicated relationship as they have conflicts about Jin’s methods after Shimura is freed. However, there are always heartwarming flashbacks that bind them together even after differences of opinion.
The moral conflict of Jin and Lord Shimura puts the players in a spot as both of them have very sound and logical arguments for the methods that they believed should be used in approaching the Mongols. Shimura is right that there is a sense of duty of the fighters even in battle to honor life and not use disingenuous means to defeat the opponent. But at some point, one also has to ask if Shimura’s methods are self-destructive. While facing the Mongols, it is necessary that one uses all the means available because if the Mongols win then there would be no room for moral debates as they would take over and destroy everything, they get their hands on. The ruthlessness of Mongols does give Jin’s argument some weight as one can’t just sit back as the invaders unleash their reign of terror and genocide.
It is Jin’s relationships with other characters in the game that makes it even more impressive and dynamic. One can go on side quests on many of the characters which shed a different perspective on the journey of the samurai. The most common criticism of the games is about the storyline. Ghosts of Tsushima is very predictable, and even though the story is captivating and engrossing one can’t help but feel a little disappointed because of lack of creativity.
The game does well in most aspects like gameplay, music, graphics, but when it comes to the character of Jin, it can be a little complicated and contradictory. There is a lack of consistency in his characterization, which might leave many conflicted and disillusioned by the game. Another disappointing aspect of the game is that the antagonist Khotun Khan becomes relatively less threatening with each of his appearances, which doesn’t make sense. Since he is the main villain, it is crucial that there is a consistency in his role, but just like Jin, his character too fails to hold onto natural character development.
Even though the game is predictable with inconsistencies in character development, it is nevertheless still quite entertaining. The mind-blowing graphics create breathtaking visuals which are bound to stay with the players for long. Ghosts of Tsushima doesn’t fail in capturing the attention of the players and engrossing them in the rollercoaster ride as Jin embarks on a journey to liberate his people and protect Tsushima island from the Mongols who plan to rule over the land.
Source:- Ghosts of Tsushima.