Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice – How to Beat Genichiro Ashina

Save the Divine Heir and defeat your rival.

by Kyle Hanson

You fought your way through the Ashina Outskirts, you defeated Gyoubu Masataka Oniwa, and you slashed your way through the Blazing Bull. All of those things led you here, to Ashina Castle where Genichiro Ashina holds the Divine Heir hostage. As you make your way to the top of Ashina Castle you will begin what seems like the toughest boss fight yet. And while it is epic, it’s not the ultimate boss battle in the game. There’s ways to take him out. Here’s how to beat Genichiro Ashina.

How to Beat Genichiro Ashina in Sekiro

First off, the fight against Genichiro Ashina is made more difficult due to one thing that other Sekiro boss battles allow: there’s no way to get an early deathblow. This fight starts after a cutscene, and due to some invisible walls, there’s no way to retreat afterward. No, this time you have to take out both of his health bars through actual skill. Of course, this isn’t your first time fighting Genichiro Ashina, but that last one was at the beginning of the game and is practically impossible to win. This time you definitely can do it though, and without much preparation going in.

The fight against Genichiro Ashina, specifically the one in Ashina Castle, is basically three stages. The first two are very similar, with Genichiro simply amping up and changing his moves for the second. It plays out like a pretty straightforward Sekiro boss battle, with Genichiro wielding a bow and arrow along with a large sword. Whenever he pulls out the bow, be ready to block as his arrows deal a lot of damage and typically are followed by other attacks, either ranged or melee.

At the start of each of the first two phases you will want to focus on damaging him and lowering his overall Vitality, Sekiro’s name for health. While posture is the most important thing, he recovers it too fast at near full health, so you need to fix that. Watch his attacks and learn the patterns to find your openings, which usually allow for only 1-2 sword hits. Using your Axe Prosthetic you can deal a lot of posture damage, if you have an opening for it. Alternatively you can use the Firecracker Prosthetic to stagger Genichiro then deliver a Combat Art attack such as Ichimonji. Even if he blocks it, you will deal some heavy posture damage to him.

During the first phase you should watch for him to perform a perilous attack. These are almost always lunges, which you can use the Mikiri Counter on to deal heavy posture damage. Just be ready to jump away if he switches it up on you, which happens from time to time. The second phase perilous attacks almost always result in swipes, so jump onto him to stun for a followup sword swing, or get out of the way.

Any time you need to heal, be ready for an arrow to fly your way. Use your Healing Gourd sparingly, and always be ready to jump or dodge out of the way. Follow these steps, being extra patient to find your openings for attack and you’ll take out both of his health bars, likely with a final deathblow, and enter phase three.

This one looks very daunting, but is actually the easier part of the boss fight against Genichiro Ashina in Ashina Castle. He sheds his armor and transforms with lightning shooting from his body. If you’ve been reading everything you come across in Sekiro then you kind of know what to do here, at least in regards to the lightning attacks. When he’s on the ground, the fight is pretty standard. Block and deflect his attacks, then hit him when he’s left an opening. When he steps back and prepares a perilous attack it’s probably his lightning move, so get ready.

When lightning attacks come your way you need to jump into the air. If it hits you then once you land you can hit the attack button to counter the move and deal a ton of damage. Combine this a couple of times with standard hits, possibly mixing in some Firecracker Prosthetic moves and Ichimonji Combat Arts and you’ll take him down. If you fail though, you have to go through it all over again, and again, and again. Either way these are the best tips for how to beat Genichiro Ashina in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.