Sekiro Prayer Beads Guide

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Table of Contents

Overview

From Software’s Sekiro changes their standard approach to a faster-paced-action heavy adventure, and to defeat all those you come across. It would be best if you had certain buffs, skills, and items to make your character “Wolf” reach his full potential. One of the game’s most critical items is the prayer bead. To sustain heavy blows from his enemies and be able to stand in battles against the harshest of foes, you need to increase Wolf’s health bar and his posture. While the health bar is a must-have, the posture bar in Sekiro allows you to block enemy attacks. Still, as you take on more hits, the bar gets filled, and when it’s broken, well, most mini-bosses don’t let you counterattack after that.

To increase the Health and the posture bar, you need “Prayer beads .”By offering 4 Prayer beads at a sculptor’s Idol, you can grow these bars by approximately 20% each time. There are 40 prayer beads in total spread across Ashina, and true strength is achieved by those who fight for it. Mini-bosses guard most, and you can find some in tricky or hidden locations.

While you can obtain many prayer beads by defeating enemies, as you progress through the story, some might become unavailable if you miss the fights. So it is important to follow this guide accordingly and obtain each prayer bead. Do note that for the final portion of the game, The Purification Ending would be necessary to acquire the last few prayer beads.

Item Information

  • Item Name: Prayer Beads
  • Item Type: Upgrade Material
  • Total amount: 40

The item needs to be taken and offered at the sculptor’s Idol for it to be used. Four are used at a time to create a necklace that allows you to receive the upgrade. I recommend using the homeward Idol (An item received as you begin the game) to go to an idol; as soon as you obtain 4 of these, you will see an option to Enhance your Physical Abilities. Select that to use the prayer beads and increase your status.

You will be going against many mini-bosses, and the best approach against them would be the stealth route for the initial strike. It’s easy to differentiate them from regular enemies, but a few noticeable features would be:

  • The different health bar.
  • They are named enemies.
  • They are usually in different or striking attire.

Warning! Spoilers ahead

Location

Ashina Outskirts – Outskirts Wall – Gate Path Idol

Ashina Outskirts - Outskirts Wall – Gate Path Idol

You can obtain the first prayer bead of the game by defeating General Naomori Kawarada. He is right next to the doorway in the yard and easily be spotted from a distance. The best way to approach him would be stealthily maneuvering behind him by traversing the rooftops and going for the stealth kill. This would remove one of his health bars and give you an easier chance at victory against him: one down and a lot to go.

Ashina Outskirts – Outskirts Wall – Stairway Idol

Ashina Outskirts – Outskirts Wall – Stairway Idol

Next up is the Chained Ogre. Now fighting him can be daunting; I know his grapples and dropkicks had me raging many times. To fight against him efficiently, get the Flame Vent prosthetic from the bonfire in Hirata Estate, which you can reach by taking the bell from Inosuke’s Mother to the Dilapidated Temple. Using flames against the Ogre causes him to flinch, giving you opportunities to land a few hits before he recoups. Defeat him to receive the prayer bead.

Ashina Outskirts – Ashina Castle Gate – Stairway

Ashina Outskirts – Ashina Castle Gate – Stairway

Right after defeating the Chained Ogre, grapple to the hole right above the large door on top of the stairway and move left. You will see the broken wall on the right side, which will lead you to General Tenzen Yamauchi. He will be in the courtyard and patrol the area at intervals. Crouch and hide in the tall grass. Try to go for a stealth strike to take away one of his health bars but be careful, he can quickly turn, and you’ll lose the advantage. After defeating him, you’re almost done with your first Prayer Bead Necklace. Just one more bead left.

Ashina Outskirts – Ashina Castle Gate Idol

Ashina Castle Gate Idol

This one is tucked away at the top of the building, and I missed it on my first playthrough. After defeating Gyoubu Oniwa, go from the battlefield to the large stairs on the right. Climb up to enter the large building on the right. Ignore the Samurai for now and go up the stairs. Grapple up the broken ledges to get close to the attic, then climb up the final broken beam by jumping on it. You will find a chest, open it, and have the required beads for your first status upgrade. Go to any idol and quickly power up.

Ashina Outskirts – Ashina Castle Gate Idol

Ashina Outskirts – Ashina Castle Gate Idol

You’ll have to go against the Blazing Bull for this Prayer Bead. A very tough mini-boss to defeat that gives very little room for attacking unless you have the right tools. Be sure to go and get Roberts Firecrackers from the Crows Bed Memorial Mob or Battle Field Memorial Mob. You can either go through the main entrance and fight against all the enemies or use the grappling hook to move from the rooftops to reach the Castle Gate, which two people guard. When fighting against the Bull, use the firecracker tool to create openings so you can go on the offensive. Hopefully, this will somewhat ease the fight, and you’ll have another prayer bead in your inventory.

Hirata Estate – Estate Path Idol

Hirata Estate – Estate Path Idol

As you progress further, the challenge increases. The next mini-boss you must go against is the Shinobi Hunter: Enshin of Misen. You will require a few moves and items to deal with him efficiently and the surrounding enemies, starting with the Mikiri Counter; obtain the skill from the skill tree as most of the hunter’s move set consists of thrust attacks. The second helpful item would be the Shinobi Axe tool which you can obtain from inside the shrine in the Hirata Estate.

For the primary fight, try to stay hidden first and take out the enemies with stealth. If you are ever near two enemies, take one out with stealth, break the other one’s posture with the axe, and land a finishing blow. After dealing with an enemy, quickly go back into hiding because the Shinobi hunter will come to examine the scene. Try to land a stealth attack on him to take one of his lives. For the remainder of the battle, use the Mikiri Counter, and you’ll have the prayer bead in no time.

Hirata Estate – Main Hall Idol

Hirata Estate – Main Hall Idol

This time you’d be going against Juzou the Drunkard. He can be found in the front yard of the burning building across the large pond. Before reaching the building, you will find a samurai in the pond, talk to him, and he’ll support you in the fight. Be careful of his breath attack, and godspeed. Once you win, you will uncover the prayer bead.

Hirata Estate – Main Hall Idol

Hirata Estate – Main Hall Idol 1

Right after defeating Juzou, enter the main building. Go left in the corridor, and you will enter a room with a banner that two guards guard. Go to the banner and hug the wall with the banner; this will take you to a hidden room. You will find the prayer bead inside the chest.

Ashina Castle – Upper Tower – Antechamber Idol

Ashina Castle – Upper Tower – Antechamber Idol

You could go for the General, but I recommend getting this bead first since you can open the main door and land a stealth attack on him. Go to the room on the right in the upper tower, and you will find a banner. Go and hug the wall with the banner; you will enter a secret room. The bead will be in the chest.

Disclaimer: Some mini bosses might disappear from a few areas or be replaced because of the game’s story progression. Mainly the Ashina areas, so be sure to get the prayer beads first.

Ashina Castle – Upper Tower – Ashina Dojo Idol

Ashina Castle – Upper Tower – Ashina Dojo Idol

You will find the dojo near the Antechamber in the same building. It is easily spotted and has Ashina Elite Jinsuke Sake sitting there waiting for a challenge. As soon as you see his blade flash, he will start a two-hit strike, counter it, and you can beat him within a minute. You’ll have another prayer bead.

Ashina Castle Building – Main Door/ Stairway

Ashina Castle Building – Main Door Stairway

The best way to go against General Kuranosuke Matsumoto would be after getting the bead from the upper chamber. Open the main door of the building and land a stealth attack from behind. You can go from the rooftops and dive to land a stealth attack, but that would cause all of his guards to attack you as well, all at once. Defeat him to get the prayer bead; now, only 30 are left.

Ashina Castle – Ashina Reservoir Idol

Ashina Castle – Ashina Reservoir Idol

Time to backtrack from where you began the game, and this time you will go against Seven Ashina Spears Shikibu Toshikatsu Yamauchi. From the Idol, go left, and grapple to the farthest branch. You will see a temple, defeat the enemy who rings his shield and crouch down to move under the temple from the small hole right next to the stairs. Defeat the enemy and move from the ledges leading you to the building. Now you have the perfect opportunity to strike Shikibu with a stealth attack. Prayer bead got.

Ashina Castle – Ashina Reservoir Idol

Ashina Castle – Ashina Reservoir Idol 1

Get back to the area with the enemy who rings his shield. Instead of going through the path, go into the tall grass and keep to the mountainside. Get to the other side, and you will see an entrance to an underground pathway. There you will find the Lone Shadow Longswordsman, your next enemy. Land a sneak attack while his back is towards you, or find the other entrance, which is a bit far away, and dive down to land a stealth strike. You’ll get a prayer bead from him.

Ashina Castle – Abandoned Dungeon Idol

Ashina Castle – Abandoned Dungeon Idol

This might be one of the easiest ones to obtain. From the Idol, just go and talk to the Memorial Mob. Buy the Prayer Bead for 1400 Sen. if you don’t know where the Dungeon is, jump left and grapple the branch from the castle bridge. Keep moving forward, and behind a large wall will be an enemy with a bell. Just go through the main door behind him, and you’ll be there.

Senpou Temple – Shugendo Idol

Senpou Temple – Shugendo Idol

Now it’s time to face the one enemy you can’t stab. The Armored Warrior is someone you have to fight. The path is pretty straightforward; just keep grappling up and climbing the ledges. You will find the closed-off bridge; inside, the warrior is waiting. You have to push him off the bridge, and the only way you can do that is by posture damage since his health bar doesn’t decrease. You will have the prayer bead as soon as you hear Robert’s name called out.

Senpou Temple – Temple Grounds

Senpou Temple – Temple Grounds

Next up, you must face Long-Arm Centipede Sen’un, the enemy you have to parry to defeat. Now I went through the front door and just died instantly. Don’t do what I did; instead, keep to the rooftops; on the right side, you will find a building with an opening beneath the roof. Don’t jump directly down. Instead, grapple onto the ledges and defeat the enemies first. Then use the drop-down stealth attack to take one of the Gentipede’s lives. Be good at parrying, and you’ll have the prayer bead.

Sunken Valley – Under Shrine Valley Idol

Sunken Valley – Under Shrine Valley Idol

From the Idol, go back where you find an entrance to a cave where two riflemen are standing guard. Defeat them and progress further, climb up and use the ledge to get to the open area. The prayer bead is in front of the memorial tombstone statue in the middle.

Sunken Valley – Sunkeyn Valley Or Gun Fort Idol

Sunken Valley – Sunkeyn Valley Or Gun Fort Idol

Your next enemy will be Snake Eyes Shirafuji, and this one does get a bit rough. Many riflemen are targeting you, so you have to be quick. As soon as you cross the bridge after dropping down the ledge, try to stay on the ledges so that you can land a sneak attack on her.

Sunken Valley – Gun Fort Idol

Sunken Valley – Gun Fort Idol

If you move down the tunnel from the Gunfort idol, you will encounter Long-arm Centipede Giraffe. Similar to the previous Centipede, just parry, and you will get that prayer bead in no time.

Sunken Valley – Gun Fort Idol

Sunken Valley – Gun Fort Idol1

In the same room where you defeated Centipede Giraffe, there’s a broken floor which you can go into on the left side. Drop down and crouch and keep towards the left. Follow the path, and you’ll reach an uninhabited cave, grapple up towards the light and then drop down. You can easily pick up the Prayer Bead. Be careful of the Lizard enemies near the light since they poison you easily. Congratulations, you’re halfway done.

Ashina Depths – Ashina Depth’s Idol

Ashina Depths – Ashina Depth’s Idol

Your next challenge will be Snake Eyes Shiharagi. Just drop down the wooden platforms from the Idol and execute the gunner. From that platform, grapple using the trees to reach the Budha statue’s head. Climb down and stealthily maneuver towards the right side. You will see Shiharagi looking across the area. Take her first life with a stealth strike, and you will get your prayer bead after she’s gone.

Ashina Depths – Ashina Depth’s Idol

Ashina Depths – Ashina Depth’s Idol 1

Right where you find Shiharagi, enter the cave to the left and grapple the ledge that is to the left. Keep moving forward, and you will have to crouch down. Keep going until you’re able to get back up. Now jump on the ledge to the ledge, and you will have to wall jump to reach the next point. The Prayer Bead is on top of the Budha Statue’s head.

Ashina Depths – Hidden Forest idol

Ashina Depths – Hidden Forest idol

Now, this might be one of the problematic areas to traverse; keep your eyes on the lights in the trees. From the Idol, grapple the branches to reach the flat land on the right; it also has a bonfire on it. Drop down on the branches to the left and go into a small pathway from the second branch. Keep to the ledge on the left, and you will see Tokujiro the Glutton, your next enemy. Try to keep to the ledges and stay above Tokujiro, land a diving stealth strike to take one of his Health, and the battle begins. He will give you your next prayer bead.

Ashina Depths – Water Mill Idol

Ashina Depths – Water Mill Idol

Next, you will have to execute a seemingly innocent bystander; O’Rin of the Water. As you go forward, you will see an NPC playing an instrument to the left. She is our target, and now, for a death blow, you will need to get behind O’Rin and jump on her, DO NOT hit her; just jump on her, and you will see the death blow symbol. Strike, and now you will have an easier time against her. Remember to use the Firecracker Tool to confuse her since you won’t be able to land consecutive attacks otherwise.

Ashina Depths – Water Mill Idol

Ashina Depths – Water Mill Idol 1

Go straight past where you fought O’Rin, cross the bridge, and you will come across a house whose main door is surrounded by many people. Sneak behind them and then crawl under the right side of the house. There’s an opening right next to the stairs. If you keep moving, you will notice the area where you can hug the wall. Do it, and you will enter an empty building with an NPC, exit it, and enter its roof by grappling. You will find the Prayer Bead on a small altar.

Note: You need the diving ability from the Corrupted Monk

Ashina Depths – Mibu Village Idol

Ashina Depths – Mibu Village Idol

You need to dive down to get this one. From the Idol, go up to the large body of water and dive down to the lake’s depths. You will find a shining chest that is easily visible; open it to get the prayer bead.

Senpou Temple – Temple Grounds Idol

Senpou Temple – Temple Grounds Idol

Backtrack with the diving ability and just dive into the small pond. You will find the Prayer Bead next to the statues over on the right side.

 Ashina Depths – Poison Pool Idol

 Ashina Depths – Poison Pool Idol

You will find a new cave, enter it, and it’s time to go against the most challenging fight I had in the game; The Guardian Ape. If you thought that fight was brutal, well, you’re going against two of them this time. Be sure to use your Firecrackers, be fast and GOOD LUCK!

Ashina Castle – Upper Tower – Antechamber Idol

Ashina Castle – Upper Tower – Antechamber Idol 1

From the Idol, go inside the main room, which is guarded and leads to other rooms. Jump down and grapple onto a ledge; you will find a Chained Ogre right below you. By now, I reckon you know what to do, defeat him, and you will win the Prayer Bead.

Ashina Castle – Lone Grave Idol

Ashina Castle – Lone Grave Idol

Your next opponent is Lone Shadow Masanaga, The Spear-Bearer. Now reaching him might take a bit so just make a break for it. Go through the gateway, across the bridge, and leave the area to enter the forest. Go downhill to a shrine that is guarded by wolves. Either find a way to reach the top or crouch up the stairs stealthily. Slowly maneuver behind Masanaga, and you guessed it, land a death blow. Win the fight and get the Prayer Bead.

Ashina Castle – Upper Tower – Ashina Dojo Idol

Ashina Castle – Upper Tower – Ashina Dojo Idol 1

Go back to the room where you fought Ashina Elite Jinsuke Saze. You will find Lone Shadow Vilehand. Now there are a few ways to go about it, but firstly, crouch down, keep left after you enter the room, and stealth kill the enemy. This will alert Vilehand, and the fight will start. Either use the Puppeteer Ninjutsu to get some help in the fight, or you can use a glitch.

After killing the enemy, quit the game to the main menu and start the game again. Immediately crouch down, and you can slowly get behind Vilehand. Land a deathblow and win yourself another Prayer Bead.

Note: Now that we are approaching the final part of the game, you require the Purification ending, which includes the Fountainhead Palace and the changed Ashina landscape.

Hirata Estate – Bamboo Thicket Slope Idol

Hirata Estate – Bamboo Thicket Slope Idol

After using the Father’s Bell in the Dilapidated temple, you will be taken back to Hirata Estate. Now you need to go upwards, and many enemies guard the path. Just run and be quick; when you reach a burning building, enter it, and you will find Lone Shadow Masanaga, The Spear-Bearer, waiting for you. Defeat him to earn his prayer bead.

Hirata Estate – Main Hall Idol

Juzou the Drunkard

With round two a success against Masanaga, now it’s time for round two against Juzou the Drunkard, and this time there is no samurai to help. Crouch and slowly approach him from behind for, well, you guessed it, landing a death blow. Win the rematch, and you will get another Prayer Bead.

Fountainhead Palace – Flower Viewing Stage Idol

Fountainhead Palace – Flower Viewing Stage Idol

Head forward and grapple to the rooftop on the left. Stick to the rooftops and keep right. On your left, below, you will spot a beast. The Sakura Bull is in the corridor, and you have to defeat him. Now I was pretty surprised by this fight, and so I will leave what to do to your imagination.

Fountainhead Palace – Great Sakura Idol

Fountainhead Palace – Great Sakura Idol

From the Idol, grapple onto the large broken branch, and you will see Okami Leader Shizu at the end. Defeating him is reasonably easy, and his health bar is just like a regular enemy, so you shouldn’t have any problems. You will get a prayer bead; now it’s the last stretch.

Fountainhead Palace – Great Sakura Idol

Fountainhead Palace – Great Sakura Idol 1

Where you defeated Shizu, get to the edge of the branch and dive down. Keep going down, and you will notice a few houses underwater. Dive deeper until you reach a house with a broken wall and a shining chest visible from afar. Open the chest, and you will get a Prayer Bead.

Ashina Castle – Ashina Reservoir Idol

Ashina Castle – Ashina Reservoir Idol 2

As soon as you reach the area, you will see everything burning and Seven Ashina Spears Shume Masaji Oniwa standing guard in the courtyard, back to back with an ally. You can use the item Gachiin’s Sugar to trigger invisibility and land a death strike on either his partner or him. I recommend using it on his ally and utilizing the Puppeteer Ninjutsu to get an ally in the fight.

Ashina Castle – Upper Tower – Ashina Dojo Idol

Boss

The second last Prayer Bead of the game. You will have to get to the Dojo Idol the old-fashioned way. After reaching the Idol go down the stairs and follow the corridor. Destroy any wooden curtains that block your path, and the route will lead you to Ashina Elite Ujinari Mizzou. Defeat him to get the Prayer Bead.

Ashina Outskirts – Outskirts Wall – Stairway (Where the Chained Ogre was)

Chained Ogre

The last obstacle between you and perfect status is Shigekichi of the Red Guard. You can find him where you previously fought General Yamauchi. Take all the strategies you used before and go for the win. You will get the Final Prayer Bead.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: I missed a few Prayer Beads in my first Playthrough. Can I still get them?

Answer: You can get some if you have chosen the Purification ending, but in the case of other endings, you won’t be able to. If a mini-boss in Ashina Castle or Ashina Outskirts is missed and you’re unable to challenge them due to the end portion of the game, worry not. Go to the offering box next to Hanbei outside the Dilapidated Temple, and you can buy the beads, which the bosses would drop for a specific price.

Question: I bought all the Prayer Beads from the Offering Box, but I don’t have 40?

Answer: If you don’t choose the purification ending or if you fail to acquire the Young Lord’s Bell Charm and the Father’s Bell Charm. The first won’t let you get the ones from Hirata Estate, and the latter would not allow some mini-bosses from arriving. You will be unable to get those Prayer Beads, and your best bet would be New Game+ since all the progress carries over.

Question: Can I get more Prayer Beads in New Game+?

Answer: While the progress does carry over, all the previously obtained Prayer Beads are changed with items. The ones dropped by mini-bosses are replaced with Heavy Coin Purses. The others obtained from chests and locations are replaced by Bundled Jizo Statues or Divine Grass.

Question: Can I get all 40 Prayer beads with an ending other than the Purification one?

Answer: No, you won’t be able to get it because you need to reach the fountain head palace to be able to get a few of the prayer beads. You need to stay loyal to Kuro when talking to Owl, and for that, you need to utilize all dialogue options of Kuro. Then enter the Tent in the cave near the Wedding Cave Door Idol to reach the Fountainhead palace. Be sure to grab all the Prayer Beads before going against the Divine Dragon.

Conclusion

Now you finally get the achievement “Peak Physical Strength,” and you’re all set for anything the land of Ashina throws at you. This allows you to use Wolf’s max potential and gives you a chance to experience everything the game has to offer. The Prayer Beads force you to go against the Mini-bosses and learn about their place in the world. It will make the game a lot easier and much more enjoyable since you’ll get a more profound understanding of the events unfolding in the game.

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