Ghost of Tsushima: Who Is Sensei Ishikawa?

In this edition of Who’s Who, we’re asking “Who Is Sensei Ishikawa?” Sensei Ishikawa is a notable secondary character which aids Jin Sakai throughout his journey in Ghost of Tsushima. He is a former Samurai who served under Clan Nagao. He is an unrivalled marksman with a Bow, with few knowing the secrets of his technique.

Ghost of Tsushima is a fantastically broad game with an amazing cast of characters. Each character plays a vital role in Jin Sakai’s journey throughout Ghost of Tsushima‘s main storyline, while also offering the player the opportunity to explore Tsushima further through character-specific tales.

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Sensei Ishikawa is an unrivalled bowman who has come out of a secluded retirement to aid Jin Sakai in his mission to free Tsushima from the grip of the Mongol Empire. He is overly proud and shameful of his failures, yet remains unrelenting and callous. It seems as if he is doomed to repeat his failures forever, however he learns to accept them as important steps in his own journey through Jin’s help.

Who Is Sensei Ishikawa
Credit: Sucker Punch

Who Is Sensei Ishikawa?

Sensei Ishikawa is a character you come across fairly early in Ghost of Tsushima… He comes across as arrogant and proud to a fault, however, he needs Jin’s help and accepts it… Reluctantly, sure. But, he accepts it.

Ishikawa is renowned across Tsushima for his skill with a bow and his teachings of this, creatively titled the Way of the Bow. Sometime before the events of Ghost of Tsushima, under Clan Nagao, he taught Hironori Nagao the Way of the Bow. However, against his instruction, Hironori begins to use his skills against his own clan in an attempt to secure power.

The rebellion against Clan Nagao failed and he was executed, however Ishikawa was indicted as the enabler of this crime as a scapegoat. Clan Nagao chose to announce his death as a result of defending his home from bandits. Ishikawa was allowed to peacefully resign from Clan Nagao, but vowed never to teach again.

His pride, however, soon overcame his shame as he reluctantly began to train Tomoe. She quickly became adept with a bow, with Ishikawa continually telling Jin how naturally talented she was. This, much like Hironori, soon turns sour and Ishikawa is forces to recruit Jin in taking her down. The two find out that she has been training Mongol Archers in the Way of the Bow and go on a quest to kill her.

Sensei Ishikawa is reluctant to accept aid throughout Ghost of Tsushima, a proud but shamed Samurai. However, throughout his journey he learns to accept that he ultimately cannot control the actions of others. This does not stop him from being unforgiving though. Throughout his time in isolation, he has grown callous and harsh.

When journeying with Jin, he repeatedly ignores obvious dangers to those around him in pursuit of his end goal. He even goes as far as to suggest that they should sacrifice Hiyoshi Springs in order to bait Tomoe out. This draws heavy criticism from Jin, who believes that he may have pushed Tomoe too hard and forced her into betraying him through his unforgiving nature.

He, much like the other characters in Ghost of Tsushima, is complicated. He acknowledges his mistakes, warning against them, yet continually appears to be on a course to repeat them. Despite this, he remains a loyal ally to Jin Sakai throughout Ghost of Tsushima.

Sensei Ishikawa is portrayed by Francois Chau, known for his portrayal of Dr. Pierre Chang in Lost.

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