Ghost of Tsushima and My Waning Appetite for Big Games

Ghost of Tsushima is a fantastic game. Its presentation is top-notch, from photographic vistas, to stellar voice acting, to thrilling combat. There’s also a ton of content to experience across its vast map.

The problem for me is…there’s a ton of content to experience across its vast map.

Finding the time and the motivation to play this style of epic game has proven difficult over time. Between my career, non-gaming activities, and my hobby of creating gaming-related content for In Third Person across all platforms, I am spread pretty thin. There are many weeks where most of my gaming time is actually spent on stream. It technically counts as playing time, but I stream with a primary focus on creating compelling content for viewers rather than the sole satisfaction that comes with playing a game.

During these times, I have strongly gravitated towards games that provide a greater sense of accomplishment in a shorter period of time. Multiplayer games like Tetris 99 and Rogue Company allow me to feel like I had a complete experience within the context of a single match. While I oftentimes play more than one match per session, I feel like I get a full experience within each match.

In recent times, roguelite games such as Hades and Slay the Spire have become obsessions. Though I’ve poured in dozens of hours into both, most of that occurred in short spurts. Within an hour, I feel like I’ve gotten a reasonable dose of gaming satisfaction.

By comparison, Ghost of Tsushima and other games of its ilk feel incredibly daunting. I see that massive map with all of the nodes on it and I kind of dread that. It makes the satisfaction of completing one-or-two quests in a session almost feels inconsequential.

Yes, I could beeline my way through the main quests, but then I feel like I’m missing out on so much of the experience. But if I try to play it at my normal pace where I take things on as they come, I won’t finish this game for another few weeks. Some may relish at the thought of having a single-player campaign last them for weeks at a time, but I’m not necessarily looking for that right now.

For many, all of those nodes feel like they’re getting more value out of their game. There’s nothing wrong with seeing it that way, especially if you intend on completing all of it. But for me, I just want something that feels satisfactory in the short blocks of time I have. Will continue to chip away at Ghost of Tsushima because of how awesome it is, but I wouldn’t be surprised if I’m swayed by something that offers a more immediate fix.

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