Here we explain the Nioh Ship Boss Fight. This game is incredibly difficult for new players. Seen by some as the hardest because the fighting style is still new. The idea of being killed in one or two hits by demons and ghosts forces us to use a certain playstyle.

Charging in like Leroy Jenkins, swinging your sword till all our stamina is empty will lead to frustration. No worries though. Our Nioh Guide was made to help beginners understand a fundamental playstyle. That feels rewarding when used correctly.

Tips For Beginners

A rule of thumb in Nioh is Defense first. Most enemies can be blocked and all enemies can either be dodged or interrupted. Choose your engagements. Every enemy in the game has a certain set of moves that eventually become predictable. Not just the first boss. The main tips for beginners are:

  1. Wait for an opportunity
  2. Get in close
  3. Strike once or twice
  4. Back up

Sounds easy right? Once we understand who we are fighting and catch on to patterns in their moves the above steps make a lot more sense.

General Strategy and Playstyle

Killing an Archer in one combo after dodging arrows feels amazing. If you try that same tactic on Yoki you will have a tough time. The key Strategy and Playstyle for Nioh is to get in, do damage and get out. Some enemy types need multiple combos to kill. Slow Down. Look for openings. Chip their health bar and repeat.

How to Beat The Nioh Ship Boss

Nioh Ship Boss Fight
Nioh Onryoki Boss 1

After clearing out the regular enemies on this possessed Isle Of Demons, you will meet your first true test in Nioh. The Onryoki Boss Battle! Guarding your path forward, stuck in an old ship. This Boss has very high defense and takes a lot of damage to kill.

Onryoki has two phases in battle. Smashing his balls into the ship and spinning around covering a large area. Second phase changes in speed and unpredictability. His balls are now detached and will throw them at you! Mixing it up with belly flops and grabs.

Boss Fight Phase One

Nioh First Boss
Nioh First Boss 1

This boss fight takes place on a ship. Not much space to move around. Keep your distance at first and bait his main attack. Will either slam one or both balls. Dodge to the side and close in for a couple of swings. Hit no more than 3 times (2 is safe) and dodge back out. When you are close to his back Onryoki will spin for massive damage. Don’t stay there!

His moves in the first part of the battle are easier to spot. Will telegraph when he attacks with his arms before striking. Onryoki Boss Moves in the first phase are:

  • Slam – Whips a ball in front of him slamming it into the floor.
  • Double Slam – Slow wind-up then hurls both metal balls in a frontal attack.
  • Spin – Rotates in a 360 swinging everything in a large area. Use mostly when you hit in the back.

Easy Strategy

To summarize his first phase. Stay back/ Dodge his slams. It requires some timing. Block his spin if you can’t get out in time. Only strike 2 – 3 times.

Watch out for the Slam and Spin combo. It will kill you!

Boss Fight Phase Two

This First Boss Battle in phase two begins with breaking his chains. This guy is now throwing his balls at us! Not really a big deal if we dodge right as they leave his hands. Don’t bother with blocking this attack.

Now that he’s angry his speed is increased. We freed it from his chains and still tries to kill us. How ungrateful. Like the first phase, keep your distance. Onryoki will run around the ship for a while. The easiest way to win this phase is to wait for him to face plant on the ground. Lying there in defeat. He will stun himself because it’s out of Ki. Opening up an opportunity for easy damage.

If you can block his spin without losing all your stamina this can be cheesed. On a successful block, get a few hits in and block again. Get familiar with his abilities. Onryoki Boss Moves in Phase Two are:

  • Hand Slam – Breaks the ground in front with his fist.
  • Leap Of Yoki – Leaps across the map aiming to crush your soul.
  • Face Plant – Lands on his face trying to slam you.
  • Balls Of Steel – Throws his massive balls.
  • Spin Of Satan – Quickly rotates to smack you.

Best Strategy

Keep dodging until we can counter with some damage. Punish his Face Plant and Leap attacks. If you damage his back he will spin. So block or get an early dodge. Follow those guidelines and you can easily beat Onryoki.

Boss Weakness

There is only one real weakness in the first Nioh Boss Fight. Knowing his patterns and predicting his actions. Unless you have a Weakness Talisman in your inventory. Will allow our samurai friend to do more damage resulting in less time swinging our sword.


Our guide on How to beat the first boss in Nioh is mainly about playing it safe. Learn your enemy’s movements and counter with quick strikes. Get in, do damage and get out. We hope this information was helpful. Good luck on your journey moving forward!