Ghost of Tsushima Director’s Lower: The whole lot new on Iki Island

Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut took the 2020 game we fell in love with and revamped it for the PlayStation 5. If the Last of Us 2 didn’t exist, Ghost of Tsushima would have arguably taken home every award at the 2020 game awards, including Game of the Year. We’ll likely see the same results with 2021’s nominees. But, with such positive fan feedback, the team at Sucker Punch knew they had to deliver on something special. With plenty to unpack, let’s talk about everything new on Iki Island in Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut.
Warning: Minor spoilers ahead! We won’t be giving away any character-building or story progression spoilers in this article. We’ve only mentioned new abilities to unlock, enemies you’ll fight, and collectibles you’ll find on Iki Island.

Tales of Iki Island

Again, we won’t be giving away any spoilers for the story itself. However, the Iki Island expansion dives deep into Jin’s past as we learn more about the relationship between Jin and his father, Kazumasa. The Eagle has sunk her talons into Iki Island by way of a hallucinogenic poison. Once she’s taken control of Iki, she’ll set her sights on Tsushima. If Jin’s already defeated the Khan, he’ll see the Eagle as the next threat to his home. If not, he’ll know he can’t win a war on two fronts.
Before players leave for Iki Island, Jin makes it clear that the Sakai name is not welcome there. He’ll have to cover his insignias if wearing the Sakai Clan armor and must not speak his true name to residents of Iki. From now on, our protagonist is known as Jin from Yarikawa. As the story unfolds, you’ll learn why the Sakai clan is not welcome on Iki Island.
Other than the main quest, Iki has plenty of side quests and rumors for players to tackle. There are, however, no long tales such as Sensei Ishikawa or Lady Masako’s storylines.
New techniques
Jin was already the deadliest man on Tsushima. Now with a few new techniques at his disposal, he’s about to become the most lethal man on Iki Island. Funny enough, it’s Jin’s horse that’ll be learning these new moves.
As far as our Samurai hero is concerned, Jin can learn two new exploration techniques to help him find new locations on Iki island. The Wind of Harmony will guide Jin to Animal Sanctuaries around Iki. The Wind of Concentration will show him the way to Archery Challenges. We’ll get into both of these new editions later on.
Horse abilities and upgrades

Jin’s horse will learn Horse Charge shortly after arriving on Iki. If you’ve got a handful of technique points leftover from your previous adventures on Tsushima, you can upgrade Horse Charge to its full potential. You’ll find Horse Charge upgrades under the Ghost Techniques tab. So, what is Horse Charge?
While riding your horse, press L1 to trigger Horse Charge. Jin’s horse will stampede toward a group of enemies and trample any that get in its way. Horse Charge is a great way to take out those roaming bands of Mongols and build up Jin’s Ghost Stance along the way. Hop off, trigger Ghost Stance, and clean up any Mongols that aren’t already covered in hoof prints.
To further improve your Horse Charge, you can equip Horse Armor, specifically the Sakai Horse Armor. Unlock this by completing The Legacy of Kazumasa Sakai, a brand-new mythic tale unique to Iki Island.
Finally, Jin can unlock Saddle Bags for his horse, which will hold reserve ammo when Jin maxes out his carry capacity. For example, if Jin is holding the maximum amount of arrows possible, any additional arrows he picks up will transfer to his horse. If you’ve played Red Dead Redemption 2, you’ll understand how this works in a way. Of course, your saddlebags can only hold so much, but Jin can transfer ammo to himself by approaching his horse and pressing Left on the D-Pad. It’s a great way to re-up on ammo before taking down a Mongol stronghold.
New Mythic Tales
Mythic Tales are one of the coolest features in Ghost of Tsushima. The Director’s Cut adds two brand-new Mythic Tales to Iki Island: The Legacy of Kazumasa Sakai and The Legend of Black Hand Riku. Of the two, The Legacy of Kazumasa Sakai is worth doing first, as you’ll unlock the Sakai Clan Horse Armor for your mount. However, Black Hand Riku will net players a new set of armor.
Sakai Banners
Scattered around Iki Island are Sakai Banners that work similarly to the Sashimono Banners on Tsushima. However, Jin can use the Guiding Wind to take him from banner to banner while on Iki Island. Collecting them will unlock new dye for your horse armor. Believe us when we say that these dyes are some of the coolest cosmetics in the game.
Hot Springs, Bamboo Strikes, and Shinto Shrines
Upgrade your health and resolve even further by finding new Hot Springs and Bamboo Strikes on Iki Island. Yes, everyone’s favorite golden bird flew to Iki to guide players to these locations. They can also set the Guiding Wind to take them there if they’ve unlocked the appropriate exploration techniques.
There is one new Shinto Shrine on Iki Island located off the southeast coast, on a small island called Nakajima Island. There, you’ll also find a Sakai Clan Banner, plenty of supplies, and Mashira’s Bite, an awesome-looking sword kit. There are no Inari Shrines on Iki Island, though. Fox dens, apparently, are native to Tsushima.
Progressive charms

Progressive is the only way we can describe four new charms added to Iki Island. The first time you encounter an Animal Sanctuary, be it monkey, deer, or cat, you’ll unlock a charm specific to that sanctuary. Upon your first Archery Challenge, you’ll unlock the Charm of Concentration. Each subsequent discovery and completion will upgrade those charms. Let’s go into more detail.
Archery Challenges
There are eight Archery Challenges scattered all over Iki. You can use the Wind of Concentration to find them all, but don’t get stuck on them. Upon discovering the first challenge, you’ll unlock the Charm of Concentration. This minor charm gradually increases your concentration by one-tenth of a second as you gain upgrade points toward it. Accumulate points by completing all three Archery Challenge time milestones. Hitting all seven targets in seven seconds is no easy task without the right gear and charms for the job.
Animal Sanctuaries
There are three types of Animal Sanctuaries on Iki Island: Deer, monkey, and cat. Each type has three of its own sanctuaries for players to find and complete. However, each sanctuary plays the same way. Jin will sit with his flue and play a tune from his childhood to calm and lure the animal. You’ll physically move your controller up and down, following the song track. The only way we can describe it is Ghost of Flute Hero without the buttons.
Deer Sanctuaries unlock and upgrade the Charm of Subaru’s Might, a Ranged Charm that locks onto an enemy’s head after aiming your bow for 3.5 seconds. The time decreases as you complete Deer Sanctuaries and upgrade the charm.
Monkey Sanctuaries unlock and upgrade the Charm of Mashira’s Protection, a Defense Charm that extends your perfect parry window for six seconds every time you heal. However, healing now costs two Resolve. Upgrading it will increase the time duration.
Cat Sanctuaries unlock and upgrade the Charm of Nekoma’s Hunt, a Stealth Charm that allows you to throw a Kunai at a target 15 meters away during a Chain Assassination. Upgrading this charm will increase the distance at which a Kunai can be thrown.
New enemies
There are several new enemies that Jin will encounter on Iki island. While the mechanics you’ve learned thus far will help you deal with these enemies, it’s how you implement those mechanics that increase your chance of survival.
Shamans are the first new enemy that Jin will encounter. They are The Eagle’s spiritual lieutenants and cause other enemies to attack relentlessly. While under a Shaman’s spell, enemies will attack Jin on all fronts instead of one or two at a time. They are harder to stagger and don’t ever let up on the attack. Therefore, Jin should prioritize Shamans whenever he hears one chanting. Thankfully, killing them is not that hard.
Shamans are technically spear-wielding enemies and thus weak to Wind Stance. Approach one and hold Triangle to launch a Typhoon Kick. Then, roll toward the Shaman and press Square to kill them while they’re still on the ground. The kill window is pretty big, so don’t worry if they look like they’re about to get up. If you’re having trouble locating the Shaman, enter focus by pressing the trackpad. You’ll hear the Shamans chanting above everything else and be able to pinpoint their location.
Multi-weapon enemies are new to Iki Island and will put your stance-switching skills to the test. You’ll need Wind and Water Stance unlocked to fight these guys, as they’ll switch between swords, shields, and spears. Pay attention to which weapon they’re using, and switch to the necessary stance. Thankfully, multi-stance Brutes don’t exist.
Spear Brutes, though, are how Iki Island has taken the game’s biggest enemies and made them deadlier. Wielding a double-ended, spear-like Darth Maul, these Brutes pack a serious punch and are near impossible to perfectly dodge away from. Switch to Moon Stance, and kick them in the face until you break their guard. Their attack can be interrupted with a well-placed kick, too.
Replay missions/duels

Duels in Ghost of Tsushima are the best fights in the game. Boss battles are both cinematically pleasing and hard enough to make you want to pull your hair out. In Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut, you can replay all the duels you’ve previously beaten. When you go to replay a duel, you’re told that it offers a “uniquely challenging experience.” So what does that mean?
Well, it just makes the duel harder than it was originally. Your opponent deals more damage, and they take more damage.
Other than duels, you can replay Mongol strongholds. Again, you’re prompted with the same message and are given a new set of bonus challenges than before.
The Hidden Cove Tournament
Shortly after completing the first few Tales of Iki, you’ll unlock the Hidden Cove Tournament. Here, Jin will face off against four unique opponents with Bokken Sticks, Japanese wooden swords used for training. Each opponent fights with a different combat style and will throw different moves at Jin that he’ll have to parry or dodge away from. There is no penalty for losing, but you do have to defeat the first three opponents before facing the fourth and final enemy.
However, upon beating the fourth opponent, he’ll become available as a vendor known as the Crimson Dye Merchant.
The Crimson Dye Merchant
Your recently bested opponent will offer one item free of charge from his shop. He has a unique inventory of Sword Kits, Armor Dyes, hats, and masks available with his patented crimson color. Choose your free gift wisely. Everything else will cost you those hard-earned flowers.

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Ghost of Tsushima Director’s Reduce: The best way to beat Archery Challenges

Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut comes with a sake cart full of new content. Players will venture to Iki Island, where they’ll dive deeper into the backstory of clan Sakai. They’ll also gain access to several new abilities, mechanics, and challenges that will grow their legend further than the Ghost could have imagined. Archery Challenges are a new edition that has players testing their skills. Spread across Iki Island, these challenges are far more than aiming and shooting. Here’s how to beat Archery Challenges in Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut.

What are Archery Challenges?

There are eight Archery Challenges spread out across Iki Island. After completing the first challenge, you’ll unlock the Charm of Concentration, a minor Ranged Charm. The Charm of Concentration gradually increases your concentration as you level it up. Concentration is Jin’s ability to slow time and make well-placed headshots.
At each Archery Challenge, Jin will be faced with a set of red lanterns placed at different distances in front of him. He’ll have three timed milestones to beat, which you can think of as bronze, silver, and gold. Each “medal” will earn you points towards your Charm of Concentration.

Bronze: 22 seconds = 1 point
Silver: 15 seconds = 2 points
Gold: 7 seconds or less = 3 points

Sounds easy, right? Well, it’s not. Most players should be able to shoot the targets in under 15 seconds after a few tries. However, doing it in seven seconds is impossible without the right gear and settings. Even then, you’ll have to prove you’re better than Sensei Ishikawa and the legendary Tadayori himself. Here are all the best tips and tricks we can think of to win Archery Challenges in Ghost of Tsushima Directors Cut.
Unlock Tadayori’s Armor

First and foremost, you’ll need to head back to Tsushima Island and complete The Legend of Tadayori, a mythic tale available in Act I of the main story. Jin will learn the tale of a legendary archer who singlehandedly defended Azamo Bay while wearing a suit of armor blessed by the Kami. Like every other Mythic Tale, it’s a great story, and we won’t spoil it any further. However, reading ahead will spoil the end reward and what it does.
Upon completion, you’ll unlock Tadayori’s Armor, which boosts your Archery skills, particularly nock speed, reload speed, and concentration. Fully upgraded, Tadayori’s armor will increase your nock and reload speed by 30% and your concentration by two seconds. It’ll also restore 50% of the concentration meter whenever you land a headshot. However, that’s not important when it comes to Archery Challenges on Iki Island. You’ll want to upgrade Tadayori’s Armor to level three for the best results. However, it can be done with level two. Tadayori’s Armor also makes for some great archery shots in Photo Mode.
Unlock the Charm of Efficiency
Next, you’ll need to complete The Sensei and the Student, the second tale in Sensei Ishikawa’s storyline. Upon competition, you’ll unlock the Charm of Efficiency, a minor ranged charm that boosts your nock and reload speed by 15%. Combine this charm with Tadayori’s armor for a 45% boost to nock and reload speed.
Level up Charm of Concentration
Without all the luck in Tsushima on your side, you will not be achieving gold on Iki Island Archery Challenges off the bat, even with all the buffs Tadayori’s armor has to offer. Go around and level up your Charm of Concentration as much as possible by achieving silver on all eight challenges. Then, head back and use your buffed concentration time to go for gold.
Turn on aim assist and target lock

Yes, these exist, and you’ll be kicking yourself for not knowing about them. Aim assist will lock onto targets when you aim near them, and target lock allows you to cycle through targets while aiming.
To turn on aim assist: Pause > Options > Accessibility > Aim Assist > Toggle On
To turn on target lock: Pause > Options > Gameplay > Target Lock > Toggle On or Swap on Defeat
Aim assist is self-explanatory and makes Jin’s life 1,000% easier when it comes to archery. (It even works in Legends mode). To use target lock, press Up on the D-Pad to cycle between targets. If you toggle Swap on Defeat, you’ll automatically switch targets when the first one dies. For the sake of Archery Challenges, it’s best to do it manually. With aim assist on, Jin will compensate for arrow drop as long as you draw the bow all the way back. Switch targets as soon as you let go of the arrow to save precious time.
Even with both of these on, it’s still not guaranteed that you’ll switch between targets flawlessly. Sometimes, targets are too far apart, and you’ll have to aim near them again to lock on. However, once you start shooting at a cluster of targets, the target lock kicks in.
Pre-aim the right- or left-most target
With aim assist and target lock on, pre-aim the left- or right-most target while the timer counts down. As soon as it says “Go!” fire your arrow. You can even try jumping the metaphorical gun to save time. The worst that can happen for shooting too early is having to restart the challenge.
It also helps to practice how far back you must draw your bow to hit each target. If the target is closer, you may only have to draw the bow partially. Memorizing which targets need full draws will save you valuable time.
Use your Concentration ability
Even with all the right gear and aim assist, you still can’t shoot and swap between every target in seven seconds. You have to exhaust your concentration meter, and even then, you’ll find yourself hitting 7.3 or 7.1 seconds. Knowing when to use your concentration meter is key.
Shoot the first two targets without concentration. Then, trigger concentration by clicking R3 and shoot as many more targets as you can before it runs out. Once it runs out, shoot any remaining targets.
How to find Archery Challenges

Other than stumbling upon them naturally, Jin can use the Guiding Wind to bring him to the nearest undiscovered Archery Challenge on Iki Island. This new feature can be unlocked once you’ve made it to Iki Island. Under the Techniques tab, scroll down to Exploration, and unlock the Wind of Concentration ability. Make sure you have a technique point to spare.
Once unlocked, scroll back to the Map tab and press Right on the D-Pad to set a new Guiding Wind target. Select Wind of Concentration, call your horse, and head off on your Archery Challenge adventure in Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut.
We also have a separate guide on where to find every Archery Challenge on Iki Island.

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Ghost of Tsushima Director’s Reduce: Tips on how to unlock Sarugami Armor

Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut made sure to include new Mythic Tales. Arguably one of the most interesting parts of the base game, Mythic Tales tell stories of Japanese folklore, sending Jin on epic quests to unlock legendary items. Gosaku’s Armor and Tadayori’s Armor are just two of many examples. New to Iki Island is the Sarugami Armor and The Legend of Black Hand Riku. Here’s how to unlock the Sarugami Armor in Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut.

The Tale of Black Hand Riku

Upon arriving on Iki Island, you’ll be free to travel anywhere you’d like. Unlike areas of Tsushima that were locked by story progression, Iki Island is wide open. However, we suggest completing the main tale called Jin from Yarikawa before embarking on Mythic Tales.
Open your Journal, tab down to Mythic Tales, and track The Legend of Black Hand Riku. Follow the Guiding Wind to the storyteller, and listen to the story of Black Hand Riku, a ruthless pirate who was overthrown by his crew. Thankfully, his cursed Sarugami armor saved his life, but the mutiny left him blind. The captain had to rely on his pet monkey to guide him to safety. Riku is starting to sound a lot like Captain Barbossa from Pirates of the Caribbean.
Jin’s journey will take him to the base of Thunderhead Cliffs and down into a dark cave on the northeast coast of Iki Island. While exploring the cave, you’ll find plenty of flaming arrows and unlit braziers. Shoot the braziers to light the path and explore the cave. You’ll pick up notes along the way, presumably written by Riku himself. The notes tell of a man who’s become one with darkness, obsessing over the treasures he’s collected. Out with Captain Barbosa, in with Gollum from The Lord of the Rings.
How to beat Black Hand Riku
Jin finally comes face to face with Riku himself, claiming to have been “reborn in the darkness.” Out with Gollum, and in with Bane, we guess. Either way, Riku uses the same moves you’ve grown accustomed to in boss fights. Like most duels, you’ll be using Stone Stance to fight. Parry blue attacks and dodge away from red ones.
Be careful when you lock swords with Riku. He’ll follow up with a quick attack that can be parried if you know it’s coming. Also, look out for a whirlwind attack, and dodge backward to get out of range.
Sarugami armor stats

Once defeated, Jin will claim Riku’s armor for himself. Its description reads, “Imbued with the power of a fearsome monkey spirit, pushing its owner to embrace risk and danger.” The description is an excellent nod to what the Sarugami armor does.
While wearing the Sarugami armor set, your regular parry is disabled, but your perfect parry becomes a chain of three attacks. The Sarugami armor, in a sense, buffs your perfect parries with the Heavenly Strike ability. Perfect dodges also damage nearby enemies. You’ll see a significant increase in your resolve gains, and your perfect parry/dodge window is broader.
Upgrading the Sarugami armor to level four increases resolve gains by a massive amount. It also broadens the perfect parry/dodge window even more and blinds enemies upon perfect dodges instead of damaging them.
So is the Sarugami worth it? Yes, but only if you level it up all the way. Furthermore, you have to be a skilled player to take advantage of it. Otherwise, you’re handicapping yourself. You’ll see how much you rely on normal parries once they’re stripped away from you. However, upgrading the Sarugami armor and opening that window a little more makes it easier to use.
What to pair with Sarugami Armor
Charm-wise, you’ll want to equip any charms that further increase your perfect parry window, overall defense, and resolve gains. Here are some good ones to use:

The Charm of Amaterasu: Killing enemies restores a moderate amount of health.
The Charm of Mashira’s Protection: When you heel, your perfect parry and dodge windows are extended for a limited time. Active for six seconds. (This charm is unique to Iki Island and can be upgraded by finding and completing Monkey Sanctuaries.)
The Charm of Broken Barriers: Breaking and enemies defense grants 15% of resolve.
The Charm of Unyielding II: Majorly reduces damage taken while at 50% health or less.
Hachiman’s Favor: Killing enemies restores a minor amount of health.

Cosmetic-wise, the Petals’ Caress headband and Mashira’s Bite sword kit match the base green color of the Sarugami Armor. You can find both of these items on Iki Island. What good is the Ghost if he isn’t looking fashionable?

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Ghost of Tsushima Director’s Minimize: All Iki Island Archery Problem places

Jin Sakai is back and better than ever, thanks to the upgraded release of Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut. Aside from taking advantage of the PlayStation 5’s hardware to improve visuals and performance, Sucker Punch went the extra mile by adding in an entirely new region with this expansion. Set on the titular Iki Island, Jin will have a new quest to complete that hits very close to home for this conflicted samurai-turned-ghost. Just like the main game, though, the main quest is just one part of what you can do on this brand new island.
Iki is home to all sorts of side content, including side quests, collectibles, and brand new challenges, like the Archery Challenges. These are sort of the companion to the bamboo challenges from the main game, only instead of testing your skills with the blade, you’re given unique tests for your aim and speed with a bow. Completing the first will reward you with a brand new charm, and doing the subsequent challenges will further improve that charm’s effects. Iki is a big place, so we’ll guide you to each Archery Challenge location here.
Further reading

How Archery Challenges work

Unlike the bamboo tests from the base game, where you just needed to hit a series of increasingly long button strings in the correct order to succeed, Archery Challenges in Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut ask you to not only be precise with your arrows but also speedy. Each challenge tasks you with hitting 22 targets in a given location, with a different grade given for how fast you can hit them all.

Bronze: All targets hit within 22 seconds.
Silver: All targets hit within 15 seconds.
Gold: All targets hit within 7 seconds.

Obviously, you will want to go for gold. However, seven seconds may seem downright impossible. And at first, you might be better off saving your gold attempts for after you’ve at least gotten silvers on each of the eight challenges and then trying them again. The reason being that the Charm of Concentration, which you earn for doing the first Archery Challenge, increases how long you can remain in concentration mode while aiming, which slows down time. Every challenge you beat increases that time limit more and more.
Other ways to help with these challenges include equipping Tadayori’s Armor, which also boosts concentration time and reload speed, plus any minor charms you have that further boost your bow skills. Finally, if you’re really struggling, Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut includes some very handy accessibility options, specifically aim assist, that will make lining up your shots much easier.
East of Lone Spirit Falls
This Archery Challenge is almost impossible to miss since it is so close to where you start off when your first arrive on Iki Island. Just go slightly east from the Lone Spirit Falls between the rivers. Some archers will approach you and introduce the rules of Archery Challenges.
Yahata Forest
From Yahata Forest on the eastern coast of Iki, simply start going south. You’ll quickly encounter the group of archers hitting targets in a meadow full of pink flowers.
East of Kidafure Battleground
To the east of Kidafure Battleground, the next challenge is on the western bank of the Zasho river. The archers you’re looking for are taking shots at targets lined up by a waterfall near a field of tall grass.
South of Kidafure Battleground
From the middle of Kidafure Battleground, go south just past the small lakes, but not so far as to hit the river feeding into Laka Nagata. The archers you’re looking for are shooting at lanterns they’ve positioned at the abandoned huts.
Rider’s Promontory

Way up top at the northern end of Iki is Raider’s Promontory. The challenge is on the western island, but the path to the actual challenge will be inaccessible when you arrive. Instead, take a detour to the left of the path and utilize some grappling points to reach the challenge.
Senjo Gorge
From the far north to the far south, head from Weeping Mother’s Meadow southwest to the edge of Senjo Gorge. You’ll know you’re in the right spot when you see all the vibrant purple trees. Find the archers and take on their challenge.
Raiders Memorial
Sticking to the south and not too far from the previous challenge is Raiders Memorial. Unlike the other challenges, this one is a bit more hidden than the others. Here is where you learned about the memorial for warriors who were slain by Tadayori Nagao, who you might recall from one of the base game’s mythic tales. If you haven’t done that tale yet, you will need to head back to the main game and do so before you can access this challenge.
Once you’ve done that tale and have the Tadayori armor set, wear it here, and speak to the man at the top of the stairs to unlock this Archery Challenge.
West of Saruiwa
Finally, on the far southwest coast of a narrow peninsula on Iki is our last challenge. Right between Saruiwa and Sarubashi, this challenge is almost impossible to miss. You will find the archers set up right on the beach, waiting to test your skills with a bow and arrow.
If you get at least a bronze score in all eight challenges, you will earn yourself the Pride of Ishikawa trophy, so it’s worth it to track them all down and give them at least a good shot.

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