In 1274, the Mongol Empire has invaded feudal Japan, beginning their conquest on the titular island of Tsushima - their swift, unrelenting campaign have killed nearly every Samurai on the island. Players take on the role of Jin Sakai, nicknamed "The Ghost of Tsushima", one of the few remaining Samurai who is resolved to repel the invasion; however, Samurai tactics might not be feasible anymore against the Mongol horde. Instead, Jin may have to resort to the most unconventional forms of combat.
A teaser for the game can be seen here.
Ghost of Tsushima provides examples of:
- Anachronism Stew: The samurai armor seen wasn't developed until the 1600s, over 300 years after the game's setting. Katanas shouldn't exist either, considering that Japanese swordsmiths had to develop them in direct response to this invasion since the old tachi swords were ineffective against Mongol armor. In this case, the aesthetics were intentionally designed to be inaccurate:"Most people's idea is really based on an idea of samurai which is really more of a 16th-, 17th-, 18th-century idea of samurai; 13th century, historically, is pretty different. In terms of how they fought, what they wore, it doesn't match your expectations. So we're not sticking exactly to the historical truth of Kamakura-era samurai. It's gonna be a little different. The armor that you see him wear, it's not 13th century armor. It's more warring states period armor. Because, honestly, the 13th century armor is pretty jarring looking, it's not what you'd expect. It's really boxy. It doesn't look aspirational. And we wanna make sure that what we give you is your fantasy of what being a wandering samurai is."
- From that same interview, they also admit Jin's swordplay is flashier than what a real Kamakura-era samurai would fight like such as spin strikes.
- Darker and Edgier: This is far and way the darkest game Sucker Punch Productions has made; their past repertoire being T-rated fare while this takes its M-rating in stride.
- Divided We Fall: Jin's opinion after his companion attempts to kill the monk he's trying to save in the gameplay trailer, due to a familial grudge against the man. She replies that they've already lost.
- Optional Stealth: Depending on the situation, players can have Jin strike directly at a group of Mongols or find other methods of dispatching them without alerting the rest. Justified as the developers state Jin will slowly curb away from the standard Samurai tropes of Attack! Attack! Attack! and will rely on Ninja-based tactics.
- Scenery Porn: Ghost of Tsushima will be R-rated, but it's not entirely clear if this is because of the blood, gore, dismemberments and War Is Hell aspects of the game, or if it is because of the gorgeous landscapes which may push some of us to spend extra time in our bunks.
- Single-Stroke Battle: It's possible to dispatch Mooks with one strike upon drawing Jin's katana, making him akin to an Iaijutsu Practitioner.
- Translation Convention: Zigzagged; while Japanese characters speak fluently in English, Mongol warriors will converse only in Mongolian, provided certain Mongols don't know the Japanese language themselves In-Universe, such as the Mongolian warlord who narrates the teaser trailer. Additionally, the game will provide a full Japanese voice track, allowing players to completely avert this, provided English subtitles aren't used.
- Truth in Television: The Mongols historically did invade Japan, with their first stop being Tsushima Island.