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Monday, July 12, 2021

Review: Ghost of Tsushima (PS5)

 I'm learning the professional game reviewers play games very differently from those of us with day jobs that don't involve games, so stuff that they find mediocre can turn out to be excellent. Ghost of Tsushima is one major example. The game play might not be considered anything out of the ordinary for a genre like "Assassin's Creed", but the game has many features that made it particularly playable:

  • No individual mission lasts more than about 15 minutes, making it easy to play for short amounts of time. Conversely, you also have "just one more mission"syndrome in a big way
  • There are no level gates for missions. This completely eliminated the grind. You don't have to the stuff you don't like, and you can pick and choose what you like to do.
  • Leveling up is fast and easy, and resources plentiful. You can finish the game with the majority of the map undone and still hit the level limit
  • Difficulty levels are tunable in the middle of a game or in the middle of an encounter. You never have to bang your head against the wall just because some game designer thought to punish you.
  • Not all skills are important. You can pick your favorite one to spam/reuse, upgrade everything related to it, and have fun.
  • The stories are reasonably well done, and not to repetitive.
  • The production values are high, and nothing is an eyesore. Playing on a PS5, the responsiveness and speed of loading is so great.
Somewhere at Sony, there's a PM who decides what level of features and difficulty should be in a game. Whoever that person is, they're incredibly respectful of a busy dad's time, and this consistently makes Sony's platforms and first party games great to play.  I played this to the end and am still playing to clear the map. Recommended.

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