Nioh - Demo on PS4


Do you have to switch between the difference stances all the time to do well? Or do you just mostly pick your favorite and only change it once in a while for specific enemies or types of enemies?

And do you change weapons all the time, or do you basically just stick with one weapon for long periods?


I’m using mostly sword and dual swords and they’re both awesome. I have tried other weapons and liked almost all of them, but I just love swords, so I’m trying to stick to them. I might try kusarigamas and what not in future playthroughs. ;)

As for stances, you can stay most of the time in one of them (usually middle stance), but you’ll be more efficient if you realize which stances are better in which occasions and feel comfortable switching between them as needed. I now switch between middle and low stances very often. I rarely use high stances, but I can remember a certain boss fight that pretty much required me too, and I love it all the more for that. ;)

Of course, keep in mind that I went for a low armor, high mobility build, in which speed is life, since you’re trying to never get hit. If I had an armored/power build, I’m sure I’d use high stances a whole lot more.


You can stay in mid-stance all game. Some people prefer low for better dodging. I was too lazy to switch. It’s there for style and efficiency if you want it.

My first 30-40 hours was all mid-stance sword (low stance for one crawling monster) switching to high-stance spear against bosses for range and damage.


That was my problem with the game in the end. All this complicated stance and button combo stuff and none of it matters. You can beat 95% of the game’s content with mid stance and attack-attack-backstep-repeat.


I don’t see that as a game problem because it’s common to all brawlers. I see it as a me problem because I have to force myself to get out of the rut, especially when it’s so satisfying to do the same thing over and over.

I did eventually use other stances because I got so good at the reads that I started toying with the enemies for style and variety.


The first boss must’ve kicked my ass like 30 times yesterday, easily. I think my problem might be that I’m wearing a purple Warrior of the West set which I looted off one of the level ~20 revenants (I barely meet stat requirements lol) so stamina management is a bit of an issue.

Loving the game though.


Oh yeah never go C agility (yellow). It’s a killer.


Thought so, the basic principles from Dark Souls (stamina and mobility >>>> *) still seem to apply here.

Do I gain more equipment weight by having multiple melee or ranged weapons equipped or is that only down to armor?

I’m really digging the axe btw, seems to be a great weapon for taking down larger enemies. Spear is also pretty fun, I’ve certainly come around on that one. I just can’t get used to the sickle though, which stance is generally the best for that one - High has a nice ranged attack but it’s very slow.


Axe is okay for variety. I don’t like it much. It’s also pretty hard for most new players.

Kusarigama might be my least favorite. It just doesn’t flow the same way. Advanced players use it a lot for living weapon builds. The Blade Spin attack does 3 hits in quick succession for that.


Wow and I thought first boss was hard. This game certainly doesn’t hold back when it comes to bosses.


Hehe first 3-4 bosses are probably the hardest in the game. Then it evens out to a nice balanced difficulty.


Hino-Enma was the one that I really got stuck on. The real Nioh started there for me.


That’s good to hear. I like challenge as much as the next Souls masochist but that was a pretty big spike in difficulty. It wouldn’t be so bad if tracking wasn’t so strong - you either evade at the right moment or you eat the attack. Stunlocks were kinda annoying too, lol.

Anyway, I beat her after some 10-15 tries by switching to low stance spear, the heavy combo seemed to work really well.


She’s the trial by fire. Once past that you’re pretty much equipped to take on the rest of the game!


I just found out that you can rebind every gamepad key on the PC version - this is a real game changer for me, I was struggling with using Guard and stance switches in the middle of combos because I’m playing with the x360 pad and those functions are mapped to bumpers by default. So I changed both to triggers and it’s like a whole new game now.


This combat system is amazing - the fact that bosses have a stamina bar that you can deplete and then use finishers on them is mind blowing. If we ever get another Souls game I hope they borrow some combat principles from Nioh.


I get a lot of joy out of the stunlock twitching when the huge bosses are out of ki.


Iga Escape mission is AWESOME. Apparently a lot of people hate it though, lol. It had some real Ninja Gaiden vibes, loved it.

I’m now using the Kingo set and more or less Kusarigama 100% of the time, seems to work pretty well (also Summer Twilight is amazing!). I’m about to make the switch to Iba set and try out throwing weapons since they have a nice synergy with Kusarigama which I’m already specced into.

Am I gimping myself by not getting proficiency in other weapons?


Nah, technically you’d gimp yourself if you branched out because you’d have to level 2 or more primary stats for damage. Which is fine either way, because builds are pretty loose in NG.

That’s funny that you landed on the kusa.

I liked Iga Escape. One of my favorite boss fights too.


Yeah well, the synergy was a little too obvious to ignore. I like the moveset too, but I’m mainly using high and low stance.