Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut has lip syncing thanks to PS5's super-fast SSD

Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut
(Image credit: Sucker Punch)

Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut finally enables Japanese language lip-syncing on PS5, but what does new-gen power have to do with accurate lip flaps? It all comes down to the super-fast SSD and its knock-on effects.

We spoke with Sucker Punch creative director Nate Fox about the making of Ghost of Tsushima Iki Island expansion, and he explained why the original game didn't support Japanese lip syncs in cinematic scenes because those scenes had to be pre-rendered. They had to be pre-rendered so your PS4 could play them as it worked in the background to prepare the next big part of the game - one of the many tricks game developers came up with to conceal loading times in the before SSD times. Sucker Punch could just barely fit the pre-rendered scenes on the disk as is, so including more versions with different lip syncing was out of the question.

Blu-ray discs didn't get any bigger between generations, but PS5 is a hell of a lot faster at loading stuff than its predecessor. So, as Fox explains, the console just renders all of Ghost of Tsushima's cut scenes in real time now, then has no problem dropping you right where you're supposed to start playing again with no perceptible break for loading.

"And as a result, we get to do things that we've always wanted to do, like create lip syncing engines for Japanese language, something that we've been stopped on doing before, because of disk size," Fox says. "Now we can invest in that technology, which we really very much are happy to have. And it's not an obvious thing that gets accessible when you do a hardware increase like this, but we're happy that it exists."

Aside from finally clearing up the discrepancy between lip movements and language, we know Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut will also introduce a ton of new animals to pet, including cats, deer, and monkeys. Oh, there's also that entire new island to explore with a new storyline to complete and a new occupying force of Mongol warriors to overcome, that sounds good too.

Fox also told us that being appointed a tourism ambassador of the real-life Tsushima island was one of "the biggest joys" of the project.

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Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.