Box art - Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

Sekiro Gyoubu Oniwa Boss | How to beat the demon horseman

Gyoubu Oniwa is the second major boss you’ll encounter in Sekiro Shadows Die Twice. This demon horseman is the quickest foe you’ve faced up to this point, and he’ll put your deflection skills to the test. Fortunately, like the other bosses, there’s a method to beat Gyoubu Oniwa in Sekiro easily.

How to get to Gyoubu Oniwa boss in Sekiro Shadows Die Twice

Sekiro Gyoubu Oniwa Battlefield

You’ll find Gyoubu Oniwa at the very end of the Ashina Outskirts area. He’s not too far from the Ashina Castle Gate Fortress Sculptor’s Idol. From the idol, you just need to skirt around the fort you’re in until you reach a vast battlefield. There are only two soldiers that stand in your path, and you can use the grappling hook to bypass them if you choose.

When you reach the battlefield, you can see Ashina Castle in the distance. This is your next destination, but there’s a catch. When you drop down to the battlefield and approach the castle gate, the demon horseman Gyoubu Oniwa rushes out to challenge you. You’ll have to defeat him before you can proceed to the castle.

How to beat Gyoubu Oniwa boss in Sekiro Shadows Die Twice

Sekiro Gyoubu Oniwa Grapple

Just like with the ogre boss, there’s a method to easily beating Gyoubu Oniwa. The catch with Gyoubu is that he’s the fastest enemy you’ve taken on in Sekiro so far. His horse can easily outpace you and his lightning-quick spear strikes can easily end your life if you get caught in one of his combos.

There are two things that work in your favor in your fight with the Gyoubu Oniwa compared to your previous boss battle:

  • You can deflect his attacks.
  • He doesn’t have any instant kill moves.

Unlike the ogre, Gyoubu won’t just pick you up and slam you against the ground, killing you in one hit and ending an otherwise good run. Gyoubu may be intimidating, but he’s not that tough if you fight him using the following method:

  1. Wait for him to run at you.
  2. As he draws his spear back to hit you, hit the block button.
  3. When you deflect his attack, hit him with 2-3 slices (or 1 thrust).
  4. After you complete your attacks, immediately dodge backward multiple times to avoid his attacks.
  5. Repeat.

He’ll use this same attack strategy for most of the fight. Sometimes, he’ll change it up and use a more powerful attack with a longer range where he spins his spear outward. When he’s doing that, watch for the icon above his head. When this appears and turns green, you can use your grappling hook to propel yourself through his offense and get some attacks off. Again, when you’ve hit him 2-3 times, dodge backward before he can counterattack.

Sekiro Gyoubu Oniwa Boss Deathblow

Gyoubu Oniwa’s other go-to attack is running away from you, spinning his horse, and charging you with a forward thrust. This is fast, but it’s easy to dodge. When he’s turning, and his horse is digging in the dirt, the grappling icon will appear again. He’ll usually be a bit far off, though, so you’ll have to sprint sometimes if you want to take the opportunity to grapple to him.

This is really just another fight of attrition more than skill. If you bought the firecrackers earlier on in the Ashima Outskirts, you could use them to startle Gyoubu’s horse if you’re in a pinch, but more than likely you don’t need to. Just your katana and patience will see you to victory here. Gyoubu Oniwa has two deathblow markers you must take out by whittling down his health. After you’ve thrown off his posture a second time, you can perform your first Shinobi Execution.

What do you get for beating the Gyoubu Oniwa boss in Sekiro Shadows Die Twice?

Sekiro Gyoubu Oniwa Memory

For defeating Gyoubu Oniwa in Sekiro, I got the Memory: Gyoubu Oniwa and the Mechanical Barrel for the Shinobi Prosthetic. You can use the Memory at any Sculptor’s Idol to increase your attack by one point permanently. The Mechanical Barrel can be used to upgrade your prosthetic to unlock the Prosthetic Skill upgrades.

Sekiro Mechanical Barrel

By killing Gyoubu you also unlock access to the next area: Ashina Castle.