Rumours and murmurings suggest that Ghost of Tsushima 2 is already in development, but will Sucker Punch decide to continue Jin Sakai’s bloodthirsty quest for vengeance in the upcoming sequel?
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Ghost of Tsushima is a high-quality, open-world stealth game that takes place on the island of Tsushima. Players play as Jin Sakai (who is voiced by Daisuki Tsuji), a samurai on a quest to protect his home from the Mongols during their first invasion of Japan. Throughout the game, he faces a constant eternal battle when having to choose between sticking to his warrior code to fight honourably or taking a more pragmatic but despicable way that will repel the Mongols and result in minimal casualties from the island of Tsushima.
The action-adventure game was developed by Sucker Punch Productions (who have also created Sly Cooper and Infamous) and it is clear to everyone who plays it how much love and attention to detail went into the Sony PlayStation Exclusive. They collaborated with Japan Studio (a Tokyo-based video game developer, best known for Ape Escape, Gravity Rush, LocoRoco, and Patapon) and visited the island of Tsushima twice to make sure that Ghost of Tsushima was both culturally authentic and historically accurate. The art style and landscape of the game were very heavily influenced by Shadow of the Colossus and while the in-game island is designed to be geographically similar to that of the real-life Tsushima Island, it is not a one-to-one recreation.
Ghost of Tsushima was published by Sony Interactive Entertainment and released on 17 July 2020 for PlayStation 4. It was later released again for PlayStation 5 on 20 August 2021. The design, story, and combat won gamers over with ease and left players and fans of the game excited for a sequel to the original game.
Let’s discuss Ghost of Tsushima 2 and what we can expect from the sequel.
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Sequel to Ghost of Tsushima Confirmed?
While there has not been an official announcement to confirm the Ghost of Tsushima sequel, after the success of the first game, there isn’t a chance that Sony would stop the development of another instalment.
Fans who have kept their eyes open for any sign of a potential sequel started to get excited when they came across new job listings from the studio back in March of 2021. The ad called for a Technical Combat Designer, which isn’t much in and of itself, but when that was combined with the stipulation that any potential candidates “must have played Ghost of Tsushima and understand its core gameplay systems” and that they should be able to “deliver interesting and varied encounters in an open-world game, with a particular focus on melee combat and stealth”, many fans believed the studio was working on Ghost of Tsushima 2.
Theories About the Ghost of Tsushima 2
Since the credits first rolled at the end of Ghost of Tsushima and news about the ad for a Technical Combat Designer reached their ears, fans have been theorising about what could possibly happen in the next game and we’re hoping that a couple of them make it into the new game.
The Second Invasion of the Island of Tsushima
The Mongolians have actually invaded Japan twice in history and with the first invasion as the setting for the original title, it would only make sense for the second game to be set a couple of years later during the second Mongol invasion. Given that the second invasion was significantly larger and saw not only the Mongolian forces doing what they could to take on a united Japan, but also warriors from China and Korea, this is the most likely course to be taken in Ghost of Tsushima 2. It would be a great opportunity for Sucker Punch to include larger-scaled battles and would provide a lot more enemies with different fighting styles for Jin to take out.
Given that Jin was essentially exiled after the events of the last game, we will probably see him, working on his own to save his homeland from invaders once again. This could mean a lot more stealth combat in the future game (which had been a bit of an issue in the previous one).
Mainland Japan Could Have a Large Role to Play
There is a very high chance that Ghost of Tsushima 2 could expand past the island of Tsushima and into the Japanese Mainland. The second invasion was historically met by a very large samurai force and now with most of the island of Tsushima’s samurai killed Jin will most likely have to travel to the mainland to win over the Shogun forces.
Where previously the Shogun was only ever mentioned and his forces seen occasionally, with the new threat coming he will have a much larger role and play a big part in whether or not Japan is victorious.
There is a Potential Student for Jin in the Cards
With the majority of Tsushima’s samurai dead and Jin being the last of his family, there is a chance we may get to see Jin train and interact with a successor, the same way his uncle trained him when he was young, though now with very different ideologies to what he was originally taught since the events of the first game.
Jin having a student will probably set up any future games or DLCs that Sucker Punch plans to introduce. It could be a great way to humanise him and bring back the teachings that Lord Shimura had taught him when he was a child, while also furthering the story of the Sakai clan. The dynamic between the two will also give us more insight into the type of man Jin is. There could be a great contrast between Jin’s student and how he was as a child, unable to save his father because of the fear he felt, showing us the lessons that Jin probably wished he had learned before.
Like the relationship with Kratos and his young son, Atreus, in God of War, this dynamic could work really great in Ghost of Tsushima 2.
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Ghost of Tsushima 2 vs Assassin’s Creed: Japan
Fans of Ubisoft’s flagship franchise Assassin’s Creed have waited a long time to have a game set in Japan and tell the story of a ninja or samurai assassin in Feudal Japan, and three weeks ago, they finally got the good news when the first trailer dropped. This may lead to some competition between the two games given certain similarities, but the clear differences between the two make them both fundamentally their own games.
The thing that most distinguishes the two games is where their mechanical and narrative focuses lie. Ghost of Tsushima focuses on telling the story of Jin Sakai and while there are side quests that take players a bit off the beaten path, everything is eventually brought back to the main storyline. The Assassin’s Creed games, however, have gotten into a habit of going bigger and bigger with each one that comes out, and at this point, there’s so much to do in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla that it takes away from the experience a little bit and overwhelms players with all they are able to do.
This means that as the games currently stand, Assassin’s Creed will never reach the same level of polish that Ghost of Tsushima or Ghost of Tsushima 2 could have.
Ghost of Tsushima 2 will more likely than not just be building on Jin’s story and what we already know about him. This means that Sucker Punch Productions’ Ghost of Tsushima sequel will not only have a significantly less narrative build-up to do, but their story will have a focal point that they can fall back onto. All the game systems, such as side missions, rewards, and a straightforward progression system, will be easily tied into the narrative, the same as in the previous game, and reflect Jin’s development as the player moves further through his story. With each new move learned, Jin becomes way more effective than he was before.
We have seen in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla that upgrades are far less effective and will only make a significant difference later on in the game. Ubisoft has also downgraded stealth gameplay, one of its most iconic, core gameplay systems and integral features that have been woven into and played a massive part in every single game since the first title was released. It has been pushed to the side to make space for more RPG mechanics that Ubisoft decided to introduce in Assassin’s Creed Vahalla. They seem to have become lost in their need to create the largest playable map possible and forgotten their origins.
While Assassin’s Creed does have the advantage of being able to explore stories that Ghost of Tsushima will never be able to, Ghost of Tsushima 2 can delve into their world and the stories of great samurai far deeper than Assassin’s Creed could ever hope to go. As long as the two video games remain fundamentally different, as they have been so far, Sucker Punch will have nothing to worry about.
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Will Jin be Replaced?
As mentioned above, we will most probably be introduced to a student of Jin Sakai as he takes on the duty of training the next generation of samurai in Ghost of Tsushima 2. We already know from previous Sucker Punch games (specifically with their Infamous series) that they are not afraid to kill off their main protagonist and introduce a new one.
At this point, most players have explored the entirety of the island of Tsushima and going through it once again with the same character could bring a sense of déjà vu, no matter what changes have actually been made to the island as a whole, and make the sequel significantly less impactful than the original game.
However, Sony is currently in the process of developing mascots for the PlayStation brand, using some of the most iconic PlayStation Exclusive characters, such as Aloy from Horizon Zero Dawn and Horizon Forbidden West, Kratos from God of War (and the upcoming game God of War Ragnarok), and, of course, Nathan Drake from the Uncharted series. It is very likely that they would want to include Jin in the lineup because of the commercial success that was his story, so I don’t think killing him off will be a very viable option.
Suppose they do decide to kill Jin off and replace him with another character in Ghost of Tsushima 2. In that case, you can be sure that Sucker Punch Productions is going to do it in a way that will utterly destroy their players emotionally while still being a way to further their plot. It would be completely evil and something we are desperately hoping they don’t do.
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9 Other Things We Are Hoping to See in the Ghost of Tsushima Sequel
1. Improvement of the Traditional Open World Design
While Ghost of Tsushima has one of the most gorgeous open worlds with locations that have been specifically designed to be “the perfect photographer’s dream”, it’s not enough to keep the player’s attention until the end of the game. While there is plenty to do on the map a lot of the side activities and different points of interest start to become repetitive after a while. Even petting foxes start to become less and less enjoyable.
Ghost of Tsushima 2 needs to move away from the traditional setup of open-world games. We have already seen what Sucker Punch is capable of through innovations of what were once more traditional game mechanics like guiding wind (Ghost of Tsushima‘s navigational mechanic). If they take a bit of time to expand on that and revamp other mechanics to give players more variety as they travel across Tsushima Island it will vastly improve the gameplay.
2. Improvement of the Random Encounters Throughout the Island of Tsushima
While there were plenty of opportunities to stumble across a helpless civilian who was being terrorised by a group of Mongol invaders or a group of bandits who were hoping for an easy kill, it, again, all starts to become a bit repetitive after a while and leaves almost no room for variation or nuance. One of the best games to look at for an idea of good random encounters is Red Dead Redemption 2. The encounters were used to add more depth to the explorable environment and every interaction with different inhabitants was unique. It would be a brilliant mechanic to introduce to a Ghost of Tsushima sequel as it would make the world feel significantly less empty.
3. Additional Climbing Sections and Improved Ways to Travel
Some of the most visually stunning areas of the game are only revealed when players have finished climbing up a winding mountain-side path to reach one of the many upgrade shrines along the map. The incredible views are a great treat for players who are making their way through the world. The incorporation of even more climbing mechanics would strongly encourage further exploration of the map and provide players with more freedom of movement and a sense of control when claiming the structures and environments of the island of Tsushima.
4. Improved Stealthing Mechanics
While there are stealth mechanics in the game that players are able to use to their advantage, they leave a lot to be desired. The most basic of stealth tropes that have come to be expected in many games like this were included in the game and worked as they were supposed to, but that’s all there was. Sucker Punch didn’t put their own spin on the mechanics and players were often left with a dampened experience when choosing to use stealth as their method of taking care of enemy bases. A better improved, unique-to Ghost of Tsushima stealth mechanic needs to be introduced to the sequel, as well as an overall improvement to the occasionally inconsistent AI.
5. The Addition of Player vs Player Multiplayer
Ghost of Tsushima: Legends introduces a co-op multiplayer experience into the game and is a fantastic addition that many players enjoy. It’s a great way to gain further experience in combat and work with your friends against the environment. However, fans would love it if an element of PvP was introduced to the game, allowing players to rather fight against their friends and show off their skills in combat.
Playing against other people is usually a lot less predictable than playing against AI and having a cinematic samurai duel against real opponents is something players would have a lot of fun with. Even large-scale multiplayer battles, or a stronghold raiding mechanic similar to the set pieces in the main game might be something Sucker Punch may want to consider integrating into their multiplayer environments.
6. The Ability to Build Your Own Clan – The Way of The Ghost
It would be a lot of fun to see Jin start up a new clan based on the new ideologies he formed in the first game and how he defended his people at all costs, even if it meant being driven out of the samurai because of his dishonourable tactics. He could take on a role similar to Ezio’s in Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood and become a very important figure when it comes to unifying a combined defence against the threat to the island of Tsushima and his people in Ghost of Tsushima 2.
7. Additional Large Set Pieces for Battles
Many players found themselves enjoying the large-scale battles on the massive set piece the most fun. Still, unfortunately for them, the opportunity to experience those moments were far and few between, as most battles took place on a significantly smaller scale, or they would involve Jin doing his best to stealthily take out his enemies one at a time. Many fans agree that the frequency of large-scale battles needs to be dialled up a lot in the Ghost of Tsushima sequel.
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8. New Weapons
As much fun as it is wielding a katana and cutting down your enemies, it would be a lot of fun to see Jin wielding a wider range of weapons in Ghost of Tsushima 2. There are plenty of different samurai weapons, and while the katana is the most iconic, sometimes it’s just a lot more fun to go in with heavy weaponry and just start bashing enemies over the head. Different weapons could introduce different gameplay options and perhaps even include specific stances for different types.
9. More Emotionally-Charged Influential Choices
The final decision has a significant emotional impact at the climax of the game’s story. As much as it crushed players’ souls and stuck with them, even after the credits began to tole, they still want more. Fans want to make choices that are going to add depth to the character they are playing and change the story in a significant and moving way. This mechanic could be expanded upon across the whole game by having the decisions made by players change the environment and its inhabitants in small ways that show the overall impact of the decision made.
Fans are incredibly excited to see what Sucker Punch does with the sequel to the 3rd person action game, but if the 5-year gap between Horizon Zero Dawn and Horizon Forbidden West is anything to go by, we won’t be hearing much about the Ghost of Tsushima sequel until at least 2024 or 2025.
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What are you hoping to see in Ghost of Tsushima 2?