Rivals is a hot new take on Ghost of Tsushima: Legends, adding a competitive edge to this fan favourite co-op mode. If you’ve picked up the game’s director’s cut edition on PS4 or PS5, chances are you’ve ploughed through Iki Island, looking for more to do in this already massive PlayStation exclusive.
Ghost of Tsushima: Legends beckons you. This completely free add-on (which is now available as a standalone title) boasts hours and hours of highly replayable content, designed for four players. With different classes to choose from, including the Samurai, Ronin, Hunter, and Assassin, you can take on story missions or a more traditional horde-style survival match. There’s also a rock hard three-part raid.
We’re here to talk about Rivals, however. Having just launched, this new mode has you and a partner go up against two opponents in a race to conquer the Oni.
Instead of placing you all in the same arena, Ghost of Tsushima Rivals has both teams enter their own identical gauntlet. It’s here that you’ll hunt packs of demonised Mongol soldiers, each one dropping a resource called Magamata.
This ethereal currency has two purposes. You can spend it at shrines, dropping temporary distractions and curses into your rivals’ gauntlet. For example, you can lengthen the time it takes them to revive one another, shorten their max health, or even bombard them with fire arrows from the menacing hwacha. These unlockable modifiers will vary as you hop between the four Rivals maps currently available.
You can’t just hold onto your Magamata. In order to progress to the second half of a Rivals match, you and your partner need to cash in 65 of these bad boys. This will summon a control point that you’ll then need to defend for three waves, each wave packing stronger Oni to kill.
Although disorienting at first, this has quickly become my go-to activity whenever playing Ghost of Tsushima. Sucker Punch have cleverly reworked what they already had with Legends, that competitive twist turning each match into a nail-baiting samurai showdown.
Bonus layer of strategy come into play, too. Caged Onryo lie scattered across each map and, when freed, will appear before your opponents as deadly spectral warriors. You’ll also find an Oni chest stuffed with Magamata. However, popping it open will spawn a cadre of elite enemies to your location.
For long-time Ghost of Tsushima: Legends fans, Rivals offers a better way of getting that sweet top tier loot. This is ultimately what keeps players coming back, unlocking and upgrading gear to max out the four playable classes. However, finding teams to complete raids or Nightmare difficulty matches is tough. Rivals is by no means a cakewalk yet streamlines this process.
Long after bagging that platinum trophy and exploring everything there is to see on Tsushima and Iki Island, Legends will always be waiting. Rivals builds on what is already such a seminal PlayStation hit, and Sucker Punch have promised there’s even more to come!
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