10 Tips I Wish I Knew Before Starting Nioh

If you're looking for Nioh tips, you're doing the right thing. Team Ninja's latest game is merciless and at times brutal, making every bit of knowledge and skill that you can acquire instrumental to your progress.

We've beaten Nioh, and it was a soul-crushing experience. Along the way we learned 10 things that we wish we knew before we started. Let's talk about them.

Master the art of Ki. Ki is essentially Stamina, and although it is your friend in battle, it can also be your greatest enemy. Both offensive and defensive maneuvers consume Stamina, and unlike in comparable action RPGs (Souls) it regenerates slowly. As such, Ki Pulse is an instrumental element of battle. You can use this move by tapping R1 shortly after any attack. Later on using a passive trait acquired in the Skill Trees you can achieve the same result by dodging. Ki Pulse will restore a chunk of your Ki bar, allowing you to remain in combat safely and retain momentum.

Trade in your excess items before a boss encounter. At a Shrine, you have the option to trade-in weapons and equipment for Amrita (experience point). Sometimes when you trade-in you will receive additional Elixirs, providing huge self-healing opportunity. Though, these aren't permanent, so when you have a large stack of Elixirs you should use them wisely, such as when you've made your way to a boss that is giving you a rough time.

Decide on heavy or light armor. In regards to equipment, the two most effective ways to play are either by going with full heavy armor, which allows you to mitigate more damage, or light armor, which makes you far more agile. Heavy armor is the more new player friendly of the two, making it the default option for most players. However, those who master the art of dodging and Ki Pulse should try light armor, as it can be far more effective at high skill cap. We advise against finding a middle ground with medium armor as the two other extremes are better.

Low Stance should be your default. Enemies are quick and dangerous, making it incredibly important that you can attack quickly throughout the game. This is best achieved using the Low Stance of any weapon type, which reduces your damage output, but makes attacking far more safe. This is particularly important when fighting new enemies who you haven't learned how to fight effectively yet.

Pick a good weapon type. As much as Team Ninja tried to balance all five primary weapon types, they aren't equal. As discussed in our weapon type guide, while the Sword is by far the most popular choice among players, it falls behind in key areas. The Kusarigama and Spear are much more effective at allowing you to safely deal damage. Meanwhile, Dual Swords are a remarkable option for high skill players.

Co-op when you're stuck. This is a very challenging game, and you're going to die often no matter how good at video games you are. When things get rough, make sure to take advantage of co-op play by inviting someone into your game to help you progress. Even if you end up dying again, at least you won't be alone.

Grinding is important. Your character will become much stronger as he gains access to additional stats and skills. Although killing regular enemies might seem like a hurdle, the Amrita (experience points) you gain from them is valuable. Don't be afraid to clear an area and head back to the Shrine to spend your Amrita.

Become Familiar with a weapon. We don't necessarily mean practicing your skills with a weapon type, but rather using a specific weapon for a long period of time. As you do so, you'll earn Familiarity with the weapon, resulting in improved effectiveness. The attack bonuses granted by a weapon with high Familiarity are significant enough to allow you to not worry about upgrades for long periods of time. And when the time comes that you want to part ways with any given weapon, it'll have higher value.

Use ranged weapons to pick off grouped enemies. The biggest dangers you will face outside of boss battles are when you have to deal with more than one enemy at a time. It's overwhelming, and puts you against great odds. The best way to tip the odds in your favor is to snipe one or more enemies before they can get to you. This can be achieved with the bow, gun, or cannon. Just make sure to aim for the head.

Work toward Prestige Points. This system works similar to trophies in that it rewards you for milestones, such as killing a specific number of an enemy type. Although grindy, Prestige Points effectively give you free level ups. To see what the milestones are, head into the Titles menu.


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