Sucker Punch has been keeping its upcoming project Ghost of Tsushima under wraps for a long time. Personally, I was entirely convinced that their next game would be a new inFAMOUS, or something still based on superpowers.
I was sitting in the audience at Sony’s pre-Paris Games Week press conference when the trailer of Ghost of Tsushima started rolling. I was even slightly distracted, focused on my laptop as I was taking care of my preparations to cover all the news.
Boy, that was a wake-up call. I’m definitely not exaggerating by telling you that I nearly flipped the laptop onto the floor; Ghost of Tsushima was the perfect storm between an established studio (whose work I love), and an exciting new IP in a setting that I adore.
The game is set on the island of Tsushima in the Korea Strait, right in the middle between the westernmost tip of Japan in Kyushu and the Korean peninsula. The backdrop is the first Mongol invasion of 1274, led by Genghis Khan’s grandson Kublai Khan and culminated with the Battle of Bun’ei where the term “Kamikaze” was born.
It’s an extremely fascinating setting and, after thoroughly enjoying NiOh by Koei Tecmo, I’m very interested in seeing how a western studio with Sucker Punch’s pedigree will tackle feudal Japan. It has the potential to feel very fresh, considering that we’re talking about a rendition of three-hundred years older Japan. It’s a period that is not often represented in media (and close to never in western media), in favor of the much more popular Sengoku Jidai.
But let me get straight to the point. Sony Interactive Entertainment Japan and Asia are most probably going to work on a Japanese voice track. That’s standard procedure for games of this magnitude, and the release of the first trailer voiced in Japanese is a clear indication.
Sony’s Japanese AAA-level voice tracks are very, very good. We normally don’t get to enjoy them because PlayStation’s triple-A games typically aren’t set in Japan, so it wouldn’t really make sense to include the local track for the west.
That being said, Ghost of Tsushima is different. The game is set in Japan, and the inclusion of the Japanese voice track would mean going the extra mile to help immersion. Of course, this isn’t to say that the Japanese voice track is a better option than the English one. Normally Sony does a great job with English voice acting as well, but having the option to pick and choose between the two would be fantastic.
It wouldn’t be an additional cost, because the track is going to be recorded anyway for the Japanese market, and it would enrich the experience for those of us who would like to fully immerse themselves in the atmosphere of ancient Japan.
Of course, there might be disk space restrictions, as Ghost of Tsushima is probably going to be a very big game. Sucker Punch is known for its massive open worlds, and the real Tsushima is an enormous island, measuring 274 square miles. That being said, it would probably be quite easy to provide the Japanese voice track as a separate DLC for those who want it.
To give you a small glimpse of what I mean, below you can watch the first trailer of the game for the Japanese market, with the Japanese track. I don’t know about you, but that’s how I’d like to experience the game.
Ghost of Tsushima currently does not have a release date, and will launch excclusively for PS4. Sony already announced that we’ll hear more about it at PlayStation Experience.