Ghost of Tsushima's Three Difficulties Include a "Very Challenging" Mode

Sony and Sucker Punch Productions addressed some pressing Ghost of Tsushima questions about difficulty and much more in a PlayStation Blog Q&A shared this week not long after the game’s State of Play event took place. Players got to see around 18 minutes of gameplay during that event but still came away with plenty of questions after seeing the game in action and hearing the commentary from the creators. Some of those questions dealt with difficulty options and what kinds of settings Ghost of Tsushima would have in place. According to the developers, there will be three different settings, the highest of which will be “very challenging.”

The topic of difficulty was addressed in the Q&A held between Sony and Sucker Punch game director Nate Fox. When asked if there would be a difficulty slider and how higher difficulties would work in terms of larger health bars or more aggressive enemies, Fox outlined the plans for the three difficulty modes.

“The game does feature three levels of difficulty — Easy, Normal, and Hard. On HARD, the game is fair, but very challenging,” Fox said. “Mongols are more aggressive, and players must be precise to pull off extraordinary moves. By comparison, EASY is for players who want to explore the island, enjoy the story and still be occasionally tested by a worthy opponent.”

Fox continued to say that there won’t be any changes to health bars regardless of what difficulty players set the game to, so you won’t have to worry about breaking any realistic or immersive parts of the game by facing off against an enemy who just turns into a damage sponge at higher difficulties.

As for the gameplay which was shown during the State of Play event, some viewers prematurely concluded that the game seemed easy from what was shown. Fox reminded players that the person playing the game during the demo was well-versed in the combat and mechanics of Ghost of Tsushima, and the player was using abilities Jin wouldn’t have when players start out.

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“The gameplay we showed was captured by one of the test leads on Ghost, and he’s very skilled with the katana,” Fox continued. “Plus, Jin had some abilities unlocked that he doesn’t begin the game with. We wanted to show what combat can look like when the player has mastered the controls and abilities — when Jin is at his best. We think most will find the combat satisfyingly challenging.”

Ghost of Tsushima is scheduled to release for the PlayStation 4 on July 17th.