I don’t think I like Ghost of Tsushima. Not yet, at least.
I’ve been told by multiple people that the game does get better as it goes on, but I’m maybe six hours in and it’s doing nothing for me. To be clear, I’m a huge fan of Sucker Punch. Sly Cooper is my favorite of any of Sony’s platformer franchises (god, I miss it), and I wear an Infamous: Second Son beanie on my head 365 days a year. But Ghost of Tsushima feels like it’s missing that same kinetic, joyful feeling that studio typically excels at.
Even after years have gone by, Sly Cooper and Infamous have aged pretty well compared to a lot of Sony’s output from the PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3 era. Sly Cooper was unlike any of its platformer contemporaries, and really hasn’t been replicated to this day. Infamous’ traversal is still fluid, exciting, and I’d argue that it’s an industry standard in open-world exploration.
Ghost of Tsushima has yet to do anything that feels like it would tempt me to come back to it after I’m done. Its world is absolutely stunning to look at, but it’s not fun to explore in the way Infamous was and its characters don’t stick with me the way Sly Cooper’s have. The stoicism, while probably thematically appropriate, feels oppressive, like the game is on an emotional flatline throughout.
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So yeah, I’m not feeling Ghost of Tsushima, and because of that, I suspect it will take me a lot longer to beat than I was hoping it would just because I can’t really get through more than an hour or two a time before I find myself closing it out to play or do anything else. But there is one thing about the game that I do enjoy.
As you travel across the island of Tsushima, you’ll occasionally come across hot springs that protagonist Jin Sakai can rest in. As I was led into one by an innkeeper, I passed by other travelers who were wearing towels at their waist, so I assumed Jin would as well. Much to my surprise and delight, after the screen cut to black and then showed Jin again, my man was completely nude and his bare ass distinctly visible. In a slightly cowardly move, Ghost of Tsushima does not go as far to show Jin’s dick, but we get to see everything else. Which is more than I can say for other Sony first-party studios, who might have cowardly hidden their male lead’s ass from me for two games.
Did it get a little uncomfortable when the game immediately followed up this glorious sight by asking if I wanted to hear about Jin’s daddy issues? Yeah, perhaps. But right now, Ghost of Tsushima feels like a complete slog, so I will take solace in that there is one part of the game that I can, without caveat, really, really enjoy.