New Player Help for Nioh are located on this page, that helps you understand the basics of the game's mechanics and links helpful resources.

Helpful Pages

  • Controls: Details the basic layout of the controller. Controls can be customized.
  • Lore: Understand Nioh's time period and setting, and the lore of Yokai.
  • Combat: Explains the basics of combat, Stats, and Stances.
  • FAQ: How to quit a mission? How to re-spec your character? And all frequent questions.
  • Skills: Lists all available skills for all weapons and magics.
  • Weapons & Armor pages: All available equippable gear so you can plan your build. You can also look at the Builds page for further suggestions
  • Blacksmith: A full explanation of all menus and possibilities for crafting at the Blacksmith
  • Walkthrough: Nioh from start to finish
  • New Game Plus: What happens once you finish the game.
  • Nioh Forums: Ask questions, help others, find in-game help.
  • Nioh Subreddit:  Another Forum to Ask questions, help others and find in-game help.


New Player Help

Most new players, especially those unfamiliar with the Souls type of game, have a lot of difficulty managing stamina (KI) in Nioh.  Nioh uses a fast and agile combat style.  This leads new players to attempting far too many attacks on one enemy at a time.  Watching the player's Ki bar, and learning how many attacks can be used before exhausting it, should be every player's first priority.  Learn to control the number and speed of attacks, and to avoid panic responses in all combat situations before learning attack strings and patterns.

Once the player understands the Ki system, the next thing to learn is the Ki Pulse ability.  Pushing the 'change style' button on its own activates the Ki Pulse ability, recovering all still-reducing player stamina before it expires.  The pace and rhythm of combat is heavily balanced to utilizing this ability in order to maintain attack pressure, or to have stamina to block and counter enemy characters during a fight.  There are several versions of Ki Pulse to use, but this method describes the most basic. Players should invest in Skills and gear that optimize Ki Pulses to their advantage

It is advisable for new players to experiment with stance switching, though in-combat switching is likely an advanced technique for most players.

Starter Tips

  • Unlock any DLC acquired with your purchase or via the demos by visiting a Shrine and going to the "Boons" menu. Pre-order items include full Set Bonuses gear, which will make the first mission much easier.
  • When you chose your first Spirit Guardian, Isonade is an excellent one to pick, as Spirit is one of the most important stats in the game. You will be able to collect all Spirit Guardians throughout the game, so don't worry about the initial choice locking you out of options.
  • The Katana and the Spear have straight-forward but powerful movesets, they are both excellent for beginners.
  • You can get help for any mission by using an Ochoko cup to summon a random visitor into your world. Password matching seems to only be available if you have both completed the mission.
  • Equip shortcuts for Elixir, Stone, Sacred Water and Talismans. You will use the stones to lure enemies out, Sacred Water to replenish your Ki faster, and the Talismans to buff your weapon with elements that cause Status Effects.
  • Most of the builds will probably use these three stats for sure: Body (more HP), Heart (More KI), Spirit (guardian spirit passives requirment). Therefore it seems a wise choice to pick  these weapons and spirit after the prologue mission: Spear, Sword and Isonade for the permanent bonus of +1 in each of these stats.
  • The spear is an excellent weapon to learn the game (imho of course). In mid stance you have wide horizontal swings with light attacks and long reaching straight pokes with heavy attacks. That way it is great for crowd control, single enemies, tight spaces and corridors and new bosses and enemies whose patterns you still need to learn. Just hold back, watch and get a poke in there every now and then. 
  • If the manual Ki-system is too overwhelming to you in beginning: Every weapon has the option to unlock Ki-regain on dodging. You have to unlock it per weapon and per stance but it is very much worth it and will make thing a lot more fluent till you master manual Ki-regain.
  • Work towards Prestige Titles. The last area of the first mission has several human enemies, dwellers and crates to destroy. Work towards weapon kills, elemental damage, equipment offering etc. etc. All for the permanent bonuses the prestige system offers. Just pray at the shrine when everything is destroyed and dead and repeat. 
  • Do not be afraid to switch weapon classes even if you have skills unlocked on your current one. Some weapons suit some situations better, and some playstyles may not even suit you, even if the DPS output is objectively better. Try out as many weapon classes and stances as you can to find what suits you best! I found myself switching from Spear to Tonfa to then Fists, Katana and Dual Katana.
  • Do not underestimate the potential of bare-handed attacks. Properly buffed, they can dish out thousands of damage per hit even during your first playthrough from around mid-game.


Gameplay Hints

  • Archers have a certain range. You can, with practice, attack from a greater range than them, ensuring they cannot attack you in return.
  • Its recommended on the first playthrough to not use the soul matching function as it grossly overpriced during the first playthough, Instead simply use the strongest weapon for the class you wish to play that you happen upon.
  • If you find a wall with eyes, don't panic. It's just a Nurikabe. You can tackle it in one of two ways. You can attack it, and kill it like any other enemy (Kayaku-dama are recommended, so you can stay at a good distance from its attacks), or you can take the peaceful route. If you do a gesture to a Nurikabe, it will disappear peacefully if the gesture is to its liking. A Respectful gesture (blue) is your best bet to start with, and if that doesn't work, try a Neutral gesture (yellow).
  • If there's a grave near it that says they were crushed to death for their behavior, check what color their behavior was given. If it's red, do a blue gesture to the Nurikabe. If blue, do a red one. If you're unsure, start off with a yellow to test the waters, and make a choice of red or blue gesture if that doesn't work.
  • All enemies telegraph their attacks beforehand. Take note of these, even if it takes a few deaths to learn them, and you will have much greater success in Nioh.
  • Triggering Living Weapon next to bosses often drops them to the floor allowing for several undisturbed hits.
  • If you try to roll a "caster" or ranged build keep your eyes peeled  for equipment giving 'Unlimited Ninjutsu/Omny/Ammo Use xx %.' That way you have a chance not to use a charge of your spells.
  • All item drops scale with mission level not the player level.
  • Small detail, but hard to notice: your Amrita icon on the bottom-right corner of the screen will turn gold (from the standard grey) if you have enough Amrita for a level-up.

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