Ahead of The Game Awards 2018, we’re starting to see rumours about what may manifest at the show circulate online.
The first big rumour revolves around Sony and its exclusive roster for the PS4 and – maybe – the PS5.
Brazilian website, Combo Infinito, claims to have received an email from Sony Brazil that reveals the company intends to announce the release dates of Death Stranding, Ghost of Tsushima, and Dreams at the famous awards show.
The site (via Google Translate), claims “Update: Release windows for Death Stranding and Ghost of Tsushima will be revealed during this year’s edition of The Game Awards next month. Official release date of Dreams will also be announced.”
Of course, this is just a rumour and shouldn’t be taken at face value.
In our opinion, it’s likely Sony will have a presence at the show (after all, the company debuted a confusing trailer for Death Stranding there last year) but dropping three big release dates all at once? It seems unlikely.
However, with Sony announcing it will be skipping E3 in 2019, it’s not unreasonable to assume the company is going to want a big hype drop late this year to keep fans engaged and following the company into whatever its 2019 plans are.
It’s worth noting that Geoff Keighley is good friends with Hideo Kojima, so we could potentially see a Death Stranding release date dropped at the show. In our eyes, that’s the most reasonable option.
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Ghost of Tsushima: Overview
Release Date: TBC (estimated 2019/20)
Developer: Sucker Punch Studios
Platforms: PS4, PS4 Pro – Maybe Sony PS5?
Genre: Action, Adventure
What is Ghost of Tsushima?
Ghost of Tsushima is a brand new IP from developer Sucker Punch, a studio best known for its work on the Infamous series of games, as well creating the Sly Cooper games.
The new game will see you take on the role of a samurai, fighting in the Tsushima region of Japan against invading forces.
From what the trailer has so far revealed, the game will fuse exploration with elements of stealth and combat action, all within the setting of a feudal Japanese setting.
If Sucker Punch’s previous games are anything to go by, you can expect this to be a third-person action adventure game with an emphasis on narrative and traversal mechanics.
The game will be a PS4 exclusive (undoubtedly with enhancements for PS4 Pro players) and will likely push the boundaries of what the PS4 architecture can achieve.
The game will be published by Sony Interactive Entertainment.
Ghost of Tsushima – E3 Gameplay
At E3 2018, Sony debuted a new trailer for Ghost Of Tsushima.
It shows a samurai wandering with his horse. The game seems to be split into days, and there is very very minimal UI. We get Witcher vibes from the way the world is set up, and those incredible moody skyboxes.
We see the Otsuna Grasslands – a playable region – for the first time. A whistle brings your horse (dialogue is in English in the demo, but there will be a Japanese option, too).
As your main character moves into woodland, we see bandits slaying civilians – this moves into our first combat gameplay, with proper Zantetsuken style swordplay.
Parries, timing and heavy/light attacks seem to be the order of the day. We get Souls vibes.
Main character appears to be called Jin, and gameplay has buddy mechanics and perhaps an emphasis on stealth. Your mission here is to retrieve a monk from a guarded temple.
Dropping in on an enemy location, it seems you have a ‘bullet time’ mechanic where time slows down if you have the upper hand. Combat is quick, pacey and interesting – we can’t wait to get hands-on to feel how it plays.
There seems to be an emphasis on choosing which of your various blades you’ll use going into combat – each will have different pros/cons in combat depending on what you’re matched up against.
A one-on-one brawl under a blizzard of falling red leaves really shows off what this game can do graphically. Astonishing visuals.
You can see the newest trailer below.
Ghost of Tsushima – Release Date
Ghost of Tsushima was announced at Paris Games Week 2017, but since the game’s spectacular reveal, we haven’t really seen much else of the game since then.
The game is currently in development at the studio behind the inFamous series of games – Sucker Punch – but has currently not even been given a release window by publisher Sony.
However, a job listing on the developer’s site could shed a little light on when we could see Ghost of Tsushima ship.
The listing over on the site states: “We’re always looking for people who share our drive to make great games. We celebrate self-starters who care about the details. So, if you’ve always wanted to work on a samurai game in feudal Japan, then check out our positions below.”
The listings available are for an Environment Artist, Senior Environment Artist, Facilities Coordinator, Senior HR Office Manager, and Gameplay Programmer – the first and last of those titles suggest the game is quite early in development… gameplay programming is key to a game from the early stages, and generally speaking environmental development is done in the early stages, too.
Long story short, don’t expect this game in 2018. It’s likely it could release even as late as 2020.
Ghost of Tsushima – Screenshots from Sucker Punch’s new PS4 game
Ghost of Tsushima: Story
There isn’t an awful lot of details about the game’s story revealed just yet, however the initial trailer’s description hints at what we can expect from the game when it finally releases:
“The year is 1274. Samurai warriors are the legendary defenders of Japan–until the fearsome Mongol Empire invades the island of Tsushima, wreaking havoc and conquering the local population.
“As one of the last surviving samurai, you rise from the ashes to fight back.
“But, honorable tactics won’t lead you to victory.
“You must move beyond your samurai traditions to forge a new way of fighting – the way of the Ghost – as you wage an unconventional war for the freedom of Japan.”
Ghost of Tsushima – Preview
Not an awful lot is known about the game at this point, but we do have some bonus information on the title courtesy of Nate Fox – game director at Sucker Punch Studios.
In a post on the PlayStation Blog, Fox explained a few things that previously hadn’t been revealed by Sucker Punch:
• Ghost of Tsushima is described as a “sprawling samurai open-world game”.
• The debut trailer was created using the in-game engine.
• You play a samurai taking on members of the Mongol empire.
• Jin is the name of the lead character, while Khan is the name of the other voice-acted Mongol leader.
Ghost of Tsushima – Developer Update
13 November 2018 – Sucker Punch has revealed a little bit more information about the development of Ghost Of Tsushima.
Nate Fox, creative director at the game, noted in an interview with GamesIndustry.biz that the studio is committed to authenticity and that there has been a definite level of pressure on the studio thanks to the success of Sony’s other massively successful first-party games that have released this year.
“We absolutely feel pressure to live up to the standards set by these other Sony PlayStation exclusives—but what a good pressure it is,” Fox revealed.
“We want to provide players with the same joyful experience that they got from these other great games—and what’s better is these other studios, they talk to us, they give us tips, we learn from each other. We feel more capable than ever because of those studios being more open with their knowledge.”
Ghost of Tsushima still has time to take all this feedback on board – the game still goes without a release date.
Ghost of Tsushima – Development
The team at Sucker Punch aren’t resting on their laurels when it comes to researching Ghost of Tsushima – they’re putting in a lot of research to make the game more authentic than anything its worked on before.
Creative director Nate Fox notes in a development diary that the studio has pumped tons of research into the title, but that it won’t be hamstrung by trying to make a 1:1 replica of 13th century Japan.
“It’s inspired by history but we’re not recreating history stone by stone,” Fox reveals in the video (above). “That said we do want to take people back to Tsushima island, and the team’s done a lot of research.”
“Two trips to Tsushima island itself, we communicate a lot with experts in different fields from the way that a samurai would hold their katana, to how they would drink sake, to dialogue experts, to experts on religions of the time. We want to do everything we can to make the place feel transportative.”
Ghost of Tsushima – Development collaboration
Sucker Punch has revealed via Twitter that it is working with real-life samurai to make sure the game feels as real as possible.
The development team has revealed it’s working with the likes of Masakumo Kuwami, who is the 10th Grandmaster of Tenshinryu Hyohou, andAssistant Instructor Ryusetsu Ide to make sure samurai movesets and animations in-game are as realistic as possible.
Tenshinryu Hyohou is a martial arts school in Tokyo that was originally founded in the 17th century and teaches various disciplines used by samurai in ancient and modern times.
In working in a partnership like this, you can assure Ghost of Tsushima is going to feel just right – whenever it launches.
- E3 2018
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