Gost of Tsushima gameplay reveal
Courtesy of Sucker Punch

Ghost of Tsushima from Sucker Punch Studios has been highly anticipated by the PS4 community all around the world.

And after a small preview during E3 2019, we finally got an 18-minute, in-depth reveal which talks about a lot of the aspects that surround the gameplay mechanics.

From vast, detailed open-world exploration, to stealth options, and the removal of the UI, the game seems to be experimenting with a lot of genres all at once.

So here are 5 things that struck out from the latest gameplay reveal:

  1. No hand-holding: Your environment is your quest point indicator

No UI to help guide players to the quest
No UI to help guide players to the quest / Sucker Punch

The first thing that will immediately jump out at you from the video, is that there is no UI. This came as quite a big surprise to fans, who had previously known Sucker Punch for their Infamous series.

The developers seem to be going full From Software when it comes to the quest indicators for their new IP. Historically, titles like Dark Souls, Bloodborne, and Sekiro were quite notorious for not holding the player’s hand and giving them quest objectives without a map or even a waypoint indicator.

And it seems that Sucker Punch will be going in that direction as well; however, not every part of the exploration will be left to the player’s curiosity. Once you select a quest, you will notice a ‘guiding wind’, which will show you the direction of the quest objective; there will be swirling drafts of air that will float across the screen carrying leaves along with it.

Much like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, the world in Ghost of Tsushima is going to be big, detailed, and very interactive. 

Sucker Punch tells us that the guiding winds will not be the only quest indicators in the game. Odd-shaped trees that stand out, distant smoke in the horizon, as well as random encounters (like the bear attack in the footage), all point to the fact that something is interesting to check out.

  1. Combat: Sekiro meets Nioh

Parrying and dodging have to be very precise
Parrying and dodging have to be very precise / Sucker Punch

When it comes to the combat of Ghost of Tsushima, precision is key, and button mashing is only going to get you killed in the long run. Dodges and well-timed parries will open enemies up, and help you to get them vulnerable for a killing blow.

The parry is very similar to that of Sekiro; however, Sucker Punch has decided to add one extra element to it to set it apart, and that is the combat stance. Like Nioh, Ghost of Tsushima will provide players with a variety of combat stances.  

From the Stone Stance to the Water Stance, Jin will be able to switch between them mid-combat. Each stance has a different set of moves, that inflict more damage to certain types of enemies.

  1. There is more than one way to kill

There are some amazing stealth options in the game
There are some amazing stealth options in the game / Sucker Punch

Though Jin is primarily shown as a samurai of the late 13th century, his katana is not the only weapon in his arsenal.

As much as the gameplay is revealed, we could see that Jin has access to a lot of tools to help him take down the Mongol invasion.

Stealth is a key to the gameplay aspect of Ghost of Tsushima, as the ultimate goal of the narrative is to turn Jin into a ‘ghost’. Although using certain aspects of the game like ‘throwing wind chimes to distract enemies and lead them away for a stealth kill, or using smoke to blind them and leave them exposed to attack’ is seen as ‘dishonorable’, it’s still an important aspect making Jin ‘the Ghost of Tsushima.’

And this is precisely why Jin will have access to weapons like the longbow for more powerful shots, half bows for a quicker fire, and kunai and small daggers for instant takedowns.

  1. Unique customizations

Charms and armor are a very important way of customizing Jin
Charms and armor are a very important way of customizing Jin / Sucker Punch

In Ghost of Tsushima, there is going to be a right set of clothes for every quest, and the clothes will determine how Jin fights, as they are integral to the progress of the narrative.

But, apart from the clothes, there will be charms in the game as well. You will be able to strengthen Jin in subtle ways and boost specific attributes to not just match the quest at hand, but also your playstyle.

‘For instance, the Charm of Okuninushi will allow him to slowly recover health while outside of combat, while the Charm of Unseen Respite will make smoke bombs and also restore 25 percent of his health when used.’

At first, you will only be allowed to equip a limited number of charms, but later on, when you find more Inari Shrines, you will be able to increase the total available slots.

  1. Kurosawa-Esque cinematography and narrative

The Kurosaway-esque feel of the Samurai mode
The Kurosawa-esque feel of the Samurai mode / Sucker Punch

You might find the word ‘cinematography’ strange when applied to a video game, but hear us out on it. 

Sucker Punch has decided to give the game something called the ‘Samurai Cinema Mode.’ Apart from giving the game a photo mode style of gameplay option which Infamous: Second Son is particularly renowned for; the devs have gone a bit further to allow players the option to switch on a filter that will let them play out the narrative in grainy black and white.

Ghost of Tsushima takes its inspiration from some of the most celebrated works of Akira Kurosawa like Seven Samurai (1954) and Sanjuro (1962). This cinematic gameplay mode is a form of tribute to his unique style of cinematography.

These are the five major takeaways from the recent gameplay reveal. Ghost of Tsushima is scheduled for the PS4 on July 17.

What are your thoughts? Did we miss something? Let us know in the comments below.

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