Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice – How to Level Up

There are many ways to improve your character without defined levels.

by Kyle Hanson

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice may be the newest game from Dark Souls creator FromSoftware, but not everything is the same between the two games. Dark Souls was an RPG and while Sekiro mimics a lot of those features, it is more of an action title than anything else. Of course, you do still power up and improve your character, though it’s not technically leveling up like before. So, to break it down in terms that fit with player expectations, here’s how to level up in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.

Like I said, there’s no actual levels in the game specifically, however you do level up in other ways. First off are the Skills, which are purchased using the XP earned by killing foes scattered around the maps. This is the closest that Sekiro comes to a true level up system, and is likely what you are looking for if you’ve been asking this question. How do you manage all of this? Easy.

Hitting start will show you how many skill points you have to spend. It’s the blue bar at the bottom of the screen. To the left should be a number. If it’s zero then you have no skill points to spend, likely because you died a bunch and lost half your progress to the next skill point in the process. If it’s one or more than you’re ready to go. To use these skill points and “level up” your character, just head to any of the Sculptor’s Idols you’ve encountered along the way. Use the Homeward Idol if you aren’t near one and have a lot of Skill Points to spend.

Once at the Idol simply choose Acquire Skills to head into the menu where you can use these points. At first you’ll only be able to pick from one skill tree for Shinobi Arts, and even that is earned after a little while playing the game, so if you don’t have anything here just keep playing. More will open up later, including one devoted to Prosthetic Arm attacks. Each starts small, offering skills at 1-2 points, then building up to higher cost and more powerful attacks and passive abilities. Browse around and use your points wisely, but don’t horde them or you could lose a lot after dying too often.

There are other ways to improve your character in Sekiro, but they almost exclusively involve beating bosses. This includes finding four Prayer Beads and using the memory of certain boss battles to increase your attack power. Some Prayer Beads can be found out in the world, but only a couple and they are pretty difficult to locate (check back for a guide on this). Memories are totally exclusive to the full bosses found in the game, such as Gyoubu and Lady Butterfly. To level up in these fashions you only have to find the nearest boss and beat them. Easy enough, right?

And that’s all the ways to improve your character, which is basically how to level up in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.