As reported by VideoGamesChronicle, the island of Tsushima announced earlier this week that game director Nate Fox and creative director Jason Connell are to become ambassadors of tourism for Tsushima’s city, Nagasaki. Ghost of Tsushima has been praised globally for its beautiful open-world environment and its incredible storyline, where Japan is its biggest fanbase.
Due to Covid-19 travel restrictions, the bestowing will be held online and the two directors will be honoured with an award along with a letter of appreciation. Nagasaki further said that it will collaborate with Sony Interactive Entertainment to set up a new initiative for the island to encourage tourism, giving fans the opportunity to see Tsushima right from the game. Once the travel ban lifts, the mayor promises to invite the entire Sucker Punch development team, SIE, and game users who were involved in the game’s production and appoint them as Tourism Ambassadors. Mayor Hitakatsu also expressed that he hopes their visit to the island will only “make them fall in love with Tsushima even more.”
The Tsushima mayor, Hiroki Hitakatsu, released a statement explaining why the two devs have been awarded the honour.
“[Fox and Connell] spread the name and history of Tsushima to the whole world in such a wonderful way. Even a lot of Japanese people do not know the history of the Gen-ko period. When it comes to the world, the name and location of Tsushima is literally unknown, so I cannot thank them enough for telling our story with such phenomenal graphics and profound stories.”
“The appointment of Tourism Ambassador is from today until [Fox and Connell] no longer wish to have it,” he said. “In fact, I had been thinking and discussing about appointing the role to them ever since I discovered they were using Tsushima’s name as the name of their work.” He added: “I did not appoint them for the purpose of having them do anything in the future. Thanks to the two of them, Sucker Punch Productions, and SIE, I have heard from people all over the world who have learned about Tsushima through their works, and now want to see, know, and go to Tsushima.”
Connell tweeted on the exciting news, humbling stating that “I’ve had a really fortunate career but this is almost hard to even process. Thank you Tsushima.”
I've had a really fortunate career but this is almost hard to even process. Thank you Tsushima. 😍 https://t.co/C5GB2IkDVm— Jason Connell (@artenvelope) March 5, 2021
Ghost of Tsushima was released back in July 2020 and immediately became a huge success, and its rapidly growing popularity. After selling over 5 million copies worldwide as of Christmas 2020, Ghost of Tsushima quickly became PlayStation 4’s strongest game launch to date. Fans also managed to raise over $260,000 to rebuild a shrine (Tsushima’s Watatsumi) on the real-island, which was significantly destroyed by a typhoon. The local shrine priest, Yuichi Hirayama, launched a crowdfunding page last November to help rebuild a Torii gate. Over 2,000 people contributed to the project, including many fans of Sucker Punch’s PlayStation game.
“We have received a great deal of support from the players of the Ghost of Tsushima game set in Tsushima, and I feel that it is God’s guidance,” Hirayama wrote on the Campfire the Japanese, crowdfunding page.
With such an incredible projection already, it can be assumed that this isn’t the end for Ghost of Tsushima - so keep up with Aijou for more content on Sucker Punch news.