I stole this title from Playstation Access because it’s very clever – one of their team members, Nathan, recently went for the platinum in Sekiro, which you can check out in this video here. I had been debating doing the same, and finally decided to go for it; I knew I was going to keep playing the game anyway, as I was having so much fun with it, so I figured I would put on my trophy hunter hat and go for that 100% completion. I’ve decided to do a short write up on the journey, and the trophies I picked up last. Also, spoilers? Obviously?
Master of the Prosthetic – Upgraded all prosthetic tools to their limit
This trophy was a bit tricky just because of the materials needed for some of the upgrades – some require a bit of farming, while others are a limited resource (i.e. the Lapis Lazuli) and need to be collected over the course of multiple playthroughs – at least two. The Lapis from the Demon of Hatred boss fight was definitely the most aggravating to get, as that boss is no cake walk.
Man Without Equal – Defeated all bosses
This trophy requires that you beat every boss in the game on a single save file – again, at least two playthroughs are needed. I ran through the regular NG cycle and beat every boss, including the optional double ape fight, and the Demon of Hatred. I ended the game with the Dragon’s Homecoming (Return) option, as I hadn’t done that one yet. By this point, I had gotten every ending (one trophy each) aside from the “bad” Shura ending. This one has a different final boss, and essentially ends the game much earlier than it would otherwise. I needed the trophy for this Shura ending boss to unlock the Man Without Equal trophy. Doing this for the first time on NG+ was rough. Emma (the so-called Gentle Blade) who is effectively the first phase, was a super difficult boss, much harder than fighting Genichiro in the other endings. Her grab attack in particular has a stupid amount of range, and she can move extremely quickly. Learning her moveset and being able to comfortably defeat her alone took me about ten tries. Then you have Fire Lord (kidding – kind of) Isshin Ashina.
The Isshin in this ending has a much different moveset than the Sword Saint version, though he only has two phases. The first phase wasn’t too much of an issue, but the second phase was a nightmare. This is the Fire Lord phase – fire, fire everywhere. Isshin starts to incorporate fire into his attacks, and many of them are extremely hard to dodge and do insane amounts of damage.
There is one in particular, which I learned to interrupt using the firecracker prosthetic, that incorporates an AOE that spans the entire arena. If he catches you with this, you are dead. I found this version of Isshin much harder than the Sword Saint (though obviously I’m more familiar with that one) and was definitely breathing a sigh of relief when I beat him – the final boss I needed. Also picked up the Shura ending trophy in the same go!
Height of Technique – Acquired all skills
This trophy was the bane of my existence. The skill tree system in Sekiro is based on XP which you get from defeating enemies and bosses, that fill your XP bar. Once the threshold for the XP bar is met, you bank a skill point. You can’t lose skills points (if you die, you’ll lose half of your current XP bar however) and these points are what you use to purchase skill upgrades in-game. However, there is a catch – every time you purchase a skill (each has a different price, the better skills are more expensive) the XP threshold to the next point goes up. The fewer skills you have, the less the threshold increases each time you bank a point. In my original playthrough of the game, I needed about 35 – 40 skill points still, and the amount I need to fill the XP bar was around 50,000, and increasing by a large margin every time I banked a new point. For some context, the end game enemies will give you around 1,000 XP each (depending on the NG cycle). The grind would have been absolutely absurd.
I ended up starting a new save file (which I used to get all the above trophies) and making it through the game with the absolute bare minimum skills I needed, to keep the XP threshold (and its growth) as low was possible. I finished in NG+3 buying only Mikiri Counter, Ichimonji (in order to access the following two skills) and Ascending/Descending Carp. You need 125 skill points for every skill in the game, and holy shit the grind was real. I ended up running the Ashina Outskirts Stairway route for about 3 or 4 hours total (not in one sitting – I would have gone mental) in order to get from around 90 points banked (over the course of my 3 playthroughs), to the 125 I needed. At that point, the XP threshold was around 90,000 to the next point, growing by about 1 or 2,000 for each new one I earned. RIDICULOUS. I actually ended up with some points left over, which was fine. This was the final trophy I needed for the platinum.
So I guess I’m done with Sekiro for now. I love this game, and I know I’ll be back playing it again within the year, but for now, I’ll go and pray for some DLC. In the mean time, I’ll get back to Persona 5, which I was playing before Sekiro dropped. I hope everyone’s Monday is less painful than this trophy grind, and happy gaming!