Dragonrot is super disappointing tbh. It basically does nothing
I kinda wish the Dragonrot had way harder consequences instead of mostly just dressage (it doesn’t kill anybody and can be trivially cured) but it would drive so many people straight up the wall when they’re already upset about the game’s difficulty
Also Ring of Sacrifice was more interesting and relevant than Unseen Aid
It makes me feel bad giving npcs tuberculosis cause I’m not good enough
Look, I don’t know about all of you, but I never for a moment let someone suffer from dragonrot if I could help it. Every time it hit me, I cured it right away. I’m not a monster.
Yeah that was basically the only reason I ever cured it. Especially after fighting a boss I’d feel bad for inflicting it on everyone
Feels like now I can better collect my thoughts on this, after grinding the last couple hours to finish the skill tree and saving the Return ending for last to tie my experience off 100%.
Sleep though. I’ll just say I hope they do some sort of sequel. The entire package here seemed a bit at odds with itself and might not sound immediately appealing to take further but they did some real fine work; open to fresher iterations (I think) than the Dark Souls sequels turned out, plenty of space for improvement, and the hints for what would come after are pretty damn cool.
Hmm and by the time of reaching Ng+++ my approach was a world apart from careful beginnings. Aside from dodging perilous and wide/damaging attacks, staying at a distance felt way too time consuming and routine. It hit me when I realized I was frequently up in Owl’s and Saint’s faces forcing them to guard and wear posture down bait then returning moves time after time. Not without tons of slip ups here and there but yeah, automatic all up on mode.
The game rewards you a lot for being aggressive. Even the “secret” boss is easier if you’re right up on them rather than farther away. It’s counter-intuitive, but even when you’re damaged, rushing the enemy down is usually the right choice. Additionally, because of how lock-on seems to work, the camera apparently has a lot to do with how enemy hitboxes work or don’t work, for whatever reason. Speedrunners have found a lot of strats at this point where you can pretty much just stand behind (or in some cases, in front of) the enemy and hit them forever because the camera seems to have something to do with enemy hitboxes (and your hitbox seems to become wider as well, stretching behind you, probably a concession to things where wilder swings are necessary).
I still want to study a few speedrunners then maybe step into the recording ring. But I’ve already sunk so much time in Sekiro so nah not any day soon.
By second run I was more willing to experiment with constant deflects and tools instead of just situationally implementing them, and from there everything in Sekiro became more of a bike ride. Course I’d faceplant when leaning too far into some showy button mash shit, sucks you can’t make better use of certain high end skills by the time you’d get them (like One Mind, Spiral Cloud Passage) but then again, Mortal Draw and Shadowfall can still be killers.
I was mostly in the face of the endgame humanoids in my NG playthrough, I’m not even sure how else to fight them. They don’t seem to provide a lot of openings to cut away vitality, and trying to run away or dodge sideways tends to deny you from deflecting when you discover you’re still in range because you have to be facing them for that to work. Actually, probably what I need to improve on the most now is how to safely weave in dodging normal attacks instead of always deflecting them.
Yeah I’m just saying the degree I guess; up close and personal w/deflects has to come naturally to some degree by the end of NG, but I was still throwing in a lot of baiting and waiting for openings as well. Just to get through. I actually feel the side step-dodge and jump are both roughly equal for best evasion tactics.
The difference to me was by later playthroughs laughing at how I treated those two bosses like they are to fresh meat, first facing the odds like “how do I even…!!!” You can still get spanked being sloppy or having fun as they hit a whole lot harder, but even on a fresh ng I’d be an entirely different player.
I can’t stop thinking about how much more I liked it w/out HUD stuff. If we could reach for more visible tells on Wolf/opponents (or even some blend of screen effects like the vignette for stealth, red near death) I would be extremely hype. Just takes some trying and compromise. IMO that’s next level tough yet fair.
I treated both jump and dodge as fully situational by the end, just to dodge certain undeflectable attacks. That is probably suboptimal, but basically in the early parts of the fight when posture regen is high and deflecting and mikiri counters dont do much for you, I figured I still needed to train myself to play with full posture aggression – so that I would ready to do it when their vit has been chipped down later on. I.e. if I only have learned one playbook the best one is the full deflect playbook, which tends to get in a passable amount of vit damage over time anyway.
Now that I know it, if I keep playing and revisit these bosses, I should learn to jump and dodge more in the early parts of the fight. And the one I would choose in each situation would be whichever positions me best to cut into their vitality after it finishes (dodge can get to their side, and maybe jump can be good to get behind them?)
I think a second playthrough is really valuable for anyone, it can bring a great sense of “oh I’m an accomplished shinobi now, far from intimated or overwhelmed”. If someone gets there without actually playing a whole lot better, it’ll eventually be like the first all over again.
I’ll admit Mikkuri Counter frustrated me enough to start I kinda glossed over it till ng+, which would not have been the issue had I allowed enough deaths to teach: you do in fact dash toward the counterable move. Just look for the middle of the perilous’ animation and time it.
To me kickflipping off enemies is one of the first things I’d address with this team - I’m sure master players implement it well (if much at all), but I always feel like the camera puts it just below being something more badass and efficient.
Also, is Demon of Hatred worth fighting? It looks un-Sekiro and there’s a lot of grumbling about its design on the comments to the wiki. Thinking of skipping that one and just calling it “as good as a platinum as far as I’m concerned” after I beat the Shura bosses.
I mikiri countered the crap out of most bosses (well OK, not Shinobi Hunter) ASAP because after all I had 5 skill points invested in it. My breakthrough with Sword Saint was in the second phase of four, mikiri countering not only his right-hand thrust but also his sneaky left-hand thrust, which a video guide claimed is basically impossible and not worth trying (but I figured out his tell is he always walks a little bit before he does it). After learning that trick his posture would just crumble and I started getting to the next phase with full flask sometimes.
“Lorewise” it’s a small but good (and sad) addition. I see the comparison to BB and Souls bosses but I don’t recall any with an arena that huge. I didn’t find it bad or out of place, just removed from most everything else battle wise. Not a pushover long as you catch the patterns and take advantage of Sekiro’s speed, stay away from walls.
It’s also got three deathblows so you need to last. The final upgrade for the finger whistle can provide some free combo unloads.
OK I am truly done unless modding for flavor
When I have been screaming about the camera getting me killed it was this boss.
Sekiro got me more killed by the camera than any previous Souls game. I think I did not play it like it expected me to.
Given some balance and enough opportunity not to quickly screw yourself (or npcs) over, this would’ve improved the Dragonrot aspect a great deal.
OK I did the Shura ending as well on an NG I started this morning. I wasted an hour grinding for drops for a Suzaku Umbrella and XP for Projected Force but I barely would up getting any value out of that at all, as usual when it comes to prosthetic tools I guess.
Quite an ending, that one. I mean they’re all particularly poignant this time because of the “protect a child” core concept, but this one certainly takes a different angle on Sekiro’s character. I get the sense the last straw was when his dad mentions his real name, when he never bothered to give his foster child anything better than an animal name.