Ghost of Tsushima: Lore Guide
The core story of Ghost of Tsushima revolves around the hero Jin Sakai, as he goes in a transformational journey with his desire to defend the Island of Tsushima, its people, and way of life, from the invading armies of the Mongol empire.
To appreciate the adventure of Jin fully, we must look into the history where the game borrows some of the most important characters and plot points that will appear in it.
Historical Foundation of Ghost of Tsushima
The most crucial historical person we must know for this game is Kublai Khan, as he is the impetus that started the series of events that will affect the people of Tsushima Island.
After the death of Genghis Khan, the founder of the mighty and vast Mongol empire, one of his grandsons rose to prominence and became the second most powerful Mongol emperor ever for his achievement in conquering the whole of China.
This man's name is Kublai Khan. He will have contemporary rulers for the rest of the Mongol empire, but his rule of China is the most significant, due to its size and cultural heritage.
You can see from the map the scope of his empire. He desires to expand this and conquer the remaining smaller countries of the East and Southeast. These countries are:
Basically, Kublai Khan wants to conquer every other small country that is not yet part of his empire.
By the time Kublai Khan decided to include Japan in his collection of vassal countries, he has already conquered the Korean territory nearest to Japan. This will later become his launching pad for hundreds of Mongol warships for the Japanese invasion.
Kublai Khan planned for his warships to first invade two small islands that separate Korea and Japan.
The first of these two small islands is the Island of Tsushima.
The Premise of the Game
With that historical background, we can now discuss the premise of the game. What is Ghost of Tsushima all about? It is about the transformation of a hero who will do everything in his power to defend the people he loves against the forces that try to harm them.
It is a universal premise that all of us can relate to. And it does not select a time period, a race, or a culture to become significant. We all know the value of this premise.
This hero is determined to do whatever it takes, at any cost, to defend his people and regain his home. He must put aside the customs and traditions that have molded him as a warrior to create a new path, the path of the Ghost, and wage an unconventional war for the freedom of Tsushima.
The Ghost of Tsushima
In playing the game, you will become Jin Sakai and make the decisions that will lead to the freedom of the island and the defeat of the invading Mongol army.
While going through this journey, you will meet people that will either support or obstruct you. You will go through major and minor quests that will reveal and reward armor, weapons, items, and secrets that will help you in your adventure.
The Early Life of Jin Sakai
The first important character you will meet in the game is Shimura, Jin's uncle. He is the lord of Tsushima Island and a father figure to Jin.
He took care and trained Jin since childhood in the art of the sword and the traditional ways of the Samurai.
One of the first and most important lessons he imparts to Jin is the Honor of the Samurai.
When we fight, we face our enemy head-on. And when we take their lives, we look them in the eye, with courage and respect. This is what makes us Samurai.
Jin grows up and matures under the guidance of the Samurai Code of Honor. Years pass, and Jin becomes a full-grown man, a warrior capable of protecting his homeland.
The Coming of the Mongols
Of course, we will not have a story if Kublai Khan does not appear somewhere in the lore.
In the game, his name is Khotun Khan, the intelligent, resourceful and ruthless leader of the invading Mongols.
While life in Tsushima moves on peacefully, Khotun Khan was planning the invasion that will drastically alter their lives.
He studied and learned the language, traditions, and beliefs of the villages.
And knows which villages to tame and which to burn.
The Night of the Mongol Invasion
On the night of the Mongol invasion, Shimura leads the Samurai to defend the island. Jin rides with him and provides support to his uncle.
They didn't expect the size of the Mongol armada, as Khotun Khan is not just planning for an attack of Tsushima, he wants to claim the entirety of Japan.
Jin comments that there might be hundreds of them warships. And Shimura answers him with firm courage.
We will face death and defend our home
The battle begins, and the Samurai fall under the might of the Mongol army.
The Defeat of the Samurai Army
The Samurai were outnumbered and were not familiar with the fighting style of the Mongols. Their defeat was inevitable.
The Transformation into The Ghost of Tsushima
As though a miracle, Jin survives the night of the invasion, and promised to have his revenge, to free his home and his people from the hands of the Mongols.
But he will not be able to do this as a Samurai. He must transform into something that can win against the Mongols, even if it is against the guidance and teachings of his old master.
He will give up his honor to achieve his goal. He will become the Ghost of Tsushima.
I am Samurai, but I will sacrifice everything for my home.