Sekiro Endings Explained

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The award-winning Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is a classic modern game from the iconic developers at FromSoftware and game directors Hidetaka Miyazaki and Kazuhiro Hamatani. FromSoftware game titles are known for their challenging difficulty and unique style, and Sekiro is no exception. One of the hallmarks of FromSoftware titles is having multiple endings, and Sekiro has four in total.

If you’re curious about the specific endings for Sekiro and want to know the conditions to unlock them, that’s what this blog is all about. Be forewarned, as I will be discussing all the endings for Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. Here’s the breakdown and how to the game’s four different endings.

The Basic Plot of Sekiro

Sekiro - Activision From Software

In Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, players assume the role of the shinobi known as Wolf (aka the Sekiro of the title). For this blog, we’ll be referring to Sekiro as Wolf to keep things simple. Wolf is a shinobi in service to Kuro, the Divine Heir.

Kuro is the last descendent of a rare and mysterious bloodline. In the Sengoku period of 1600s Japan, Genichiro seeks to save the clan of his elderly, ailing grandfather, Isshin Ashina; a warlord who has taken over the land of Ashina.

Genichiro seeks the power within Kuro’s blood to create an all-powerful and immortal army. After losing a duel to Genichiro, Wolf’s hand is cut off and Kuro is kidnapped.

Thanks to the power of the Divine Heir, Wolf managed to survive at the hands of Genichiro and now has a new, handy prosthetic arm. Wolf now seeks to strike back at the Ashina clan and rescue Kuro.

The “Shura” Ending

The “Shura” ending for Sekiro is the proverbial “bad end,” and the worst possible outcome for all the characters in the game. It is also a way to end your game early. You will have access to the “Shura” ending as you progress throughout the game and collect the Lotus of the Palace and the Shelter Stone items.

When you reach the top of the Ashina Castle, Wolf’s adoptive father Ukonzaemon Usui, The Owl, returns and reveals that he also seeks the power of The Divine Heir. The Owl then offers Wolf a choice, “Obey the Iron Code, Forsake Kuro,” or “Break the Iron Code, stay loyal to Kuro.”

Selecting the “Iron Code” option will unlock the “Shura” ending, and you will be able to witness the bad end for Sekiro. You will likely want to save your game here before you make this choice. As Wolf, you will now have to face two more bosses to get the “Shura” ending.

After agreeing to uphold the Iron Code and obey The Owl, the two men are then confronted by Emma. The Owl leaves Wolf to take care of this boss fight, and Wolf will execute her by slashing her throat.

Following Emma, Wolf is next confronted by Isshin Ashina, who you will also have to dispatch to continue with the “Shura” ending.

After defeating Isshin, The Owl returns and is quite impressed with Wolf’s work. Now, The Owl believes nothing is standing in their way to take over all of Japan. However, while The Owl is monologuing, he too is betrayed by his adopted son, as Wolf impales him from behind. The Owl is shocked by Wolf’s actions, but the accursed path Wolf has taken has awakened a bloodlust in him that has taken hold.

As Ashina Castle is engulfed in flames, an injured Kuro crawls toward Wolf, seeing him pick up the Black Mortal Blade from The Owl’s dead body. Kuro remarks in terror that Wolf has become a Shura; someone who is singularly obsessed with the joy of killing.

With Wolf’s full-fledged transformation into a Shura, he goes on a killing spree. Soldiers and townsfolk alike fall to his wrath, with few survivors. The land of Ashina becomes ground zero for the worst massacre of the entire Sengoku Era.

One thing to keep in mind when obeying the Iron Code to unlock the “Shura” ending, this will lock you out from all the other endings in your current playthrough session. It will end the game earlier, and you will miss various items, including the best tier upgrade materials.

The “Shura” Ending also results in an early New Game+. However, it is also the only way to unlock the One Mind skill, which requires defeating Isshin Ashina after obeying the Iron Code. So, these are factors to keep aware of in your request to obtain 100% completion for Sekiro. The “Shura” ending is still required at some point to obtain that nifty 100%.

The “Immortal Severance” Ending

Sekiro Shadows Die Twice - Genichiro

Rather than uphold the Iron Code, to unlock the other endings, including “Immortal Severance,” you will have to opt to remain loyal to Kuro when confronted by The Owl. This will allow you to continue playing the game, but you will first have to fight and dispatch The Owl. Entering the Divine Realm to collect the Divine Dragon’s tears is also necessary to obtain this ending.

Eventually, Wolf will find Kuro under attack from Genichiro who will currently hold the Black Mortal Blade. After defeating Genichiro, he will kill himself to restore his grandfather, Isshin, to his prime youth in the last-ditch effort to restore their clan. Now, Wolf is matched against the revived, younger Isshin for the next boss fight.

After Isshin’s defeat, he departs the mortal plane by complimenting on a job well done Wolf. However, it is too late for Kuro, who was mortally wounded by Genichiro. Here, Wolf will be given the option to offer the dying Kuro the Divine Dragon’s Tears.

With the Mortal Blade, Wolf removed the Dragon Heritage from Kuro’s body, but it comes at the tragic cost of Kuro’s young life. Kuro sadly submits to the ritual of his death voluntarily.

A later epilogue depicts a forlorn Wolf at the dilapidated temple, as he appears to have taken the Sculptor’s place and given up the life of a shinobi now that his master is dead. Emma appears and leaves behind the prosthetic shinobi arm for the day to arrive when a new shinobi will come seeking strength as Wolf once did.

In this ending, while Isshin and Genichiro have been defeated, and Wolf avoids becoming a Shura, it’s still rather tragic as it comes at the cost of Kuro having to sacrifice his own. So, while this is generally the most common ending in the game, it may not be the preferred ending for everyone.

The “Purification” Ending

Sekiro Shadows Die Twice temple

The “Purification” ending evolves similarly to the “Immortal Severance” one. However, if you managed to follow the steps to seek out how to save Kuro’s life and obtain the Aromatic Flower, or the Everblossom, you will be able to spare Kuro from a grisly fate.

In “Purification,” Wolf will have the option to offer Kuro both the Divine Dragon’s Tears and the Everblossom or just the Divine Dragon’s Tears on their own. If you grant Kuro both the tears and Aromatic Flower, it will purify Kuro of Dragon’s Heritage, so he will finally be able to live his life as a mortal human.

However, to complete this ritual, Wolf has to take his own life to sever the Immortal Oath and Dragon’s Heritage from Kuro’s body. Wolf dies having sacrificed himself to save his master and serve Kuro until the bitter end.

In the epilogue for this ending, Kuro and Emma are seen paying their respects to Wolf’s grave. Kuro says he will live and pass on just as Wolf did for him. He then thanks Emma before bidding her farewell.

The “Purification” ending is an option for players to find a way to save Kuro and end the game with a valiant, heroic sacrifice by the protagonist. He defies the Iron Code and continues serving Kuro in the end. This is a bittersweet, yet heroic ending because Wolf performs his sworn duty and ultimately saves Kuro.

The “Return” (Dragon’s Homecoming) Ending

Sekiro Shadows Die Twice environment

In this ending, you will have to continue serving Kuro, along with confronting and defeating The Owl, yet again. After beating Isshin Ashina in this ending, you will need to find the wounded Kuro. There will be an option to give him the Divine Dragon’s Tears or to give him the Divine Dragon’s Tears along with the Frozen Tears.

Unlocking this ending requires you to find the Divine Child of Rejuvenation. If you obtain the Dried Serpent Viscera and the Fresh Serpent Viscera, you will be able to feed these to the Divine Child, who then sheds and grants Wolf the Frozen Tears to unlock the “Return” ending.

After Wolf purifies and heals Kuro with the tears, he will then take the boy to the Divine Child of Rejuvenation. The Divine Child will perform a ritual that will save Kuro’s spirit, while Kuro’s original body dies. The Divine Child takes Kuro’s spirit within herself.

The later epilogue then shows the Divine Child set out on a journey to the west to return the Dragon Heritage to its original resting place. Wolf survives and bids to join the Divine Child in her journey to the west to find the birthplace of the Divine Dragon. The two then leave the temple together to start their quest.

In this ending, Wolf lives, and Kuro’s spirit at least lives on in a way. Also, this sort of solves the problem of the Dragon Heritage curse to find a more permanent solution to the problem, rather than others constantly vying for its power.

This is arguably the “best” and most satisfying ending for the game. However, that choice is ultimately up to you.

FAQs

Question: How Many Different Endings Are Playable in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice?

Answer: In short, the game has four different endings: the “Shura” ending, the “Immortal Severance” ending, the “Purification” ending, and the “Return” ending. All the different endings must be unlocked to achieve 100% completion for the game.

Question: What Determines the Different Endings?

Answer: The “Shura” ending requires you when given the option, to uphold the Iron Code and side with The Owl against your master, Kuro. In the other three endings, the main choice requires you to have Wolf continue serving Kuro. However, obtaining more items and completing various tasks are necessary to achieve the different endings.

Question: Why Should I Play to Unlock All the Various Endings?

Answer: Besides getting more items and materials, certain endings will give you access to unique boss fights, techniques, achievements, and outcomes. If you want to receive the All Bosses trophy or achievement, it’s necessary to unlock the “Shura” ending  to face and defeat Emma.
In addition, the “Shura” ending is the only way to unlock the One Mind technique. The other endings allow you to unlock the Dragon Flash technique. So, if you want to unlock and learn all the various techniques in the game, you will want to play and unlock everything. Plus, it will give you the most replay value out of your Sekiro gameplay experience.

Question: What Platforms Can Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice be Played on?

Answer: Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is a multi-platform game that was originally released for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows PC in March 2019. It’s also playable on Google Stadia, which it was released on in October 2020.
The game is playable on PlayStation 5 and Xbox One X consoles with backwards compatibility. PlayStation 5 owners who want to enjoy Sekiro have to upload the latest system software on their PS5 to play the game. Also, the game has Xbox One X Enhanced features for Xbox One X players. The game will also need the latest software uploaded to play it on the Xbox One X.

Question: What’s Included with the Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice – Game of the Year Edition?

Answer: The Game of the Year edition includes some extra bonus content, including the Reflection and Gauntlet of Strength. Reflection of Strength is a boss challenge mode that was added in 2020. Players can face any previously defeated boss for a rematch in a new challenge mode. Gauntlet of Strength is a gauntlet challenge mode.
Also available for the Game of the Year Edition is the Remnants feature. With Remnants, players can access messages by previous players with a maximum length of 30-second recordings for various techniques and tips on how to tackle various levels, difficulties, and/or bosses.
Finally, the Game of the Year release includes three additional unlockable, alternate cosmetic skins. These are the Ashina, Shura, and Tengu skins. With the original Memory: Wolf skin, there are four skins total that players can now enjoy if they get the Game of the Year edition.

Question: If I Enjoy Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, What Are Some Other Similar Games Made by FromSoftware I Might Enjoy?

Answer: If you enjoy the style and gameplay experience from playing FromSoftware titles or Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, here are some other titles by FromSoftware you might want to give a look:
• Demon’s Souls
• Dark Souls Trilogy
• Bloodborne
• Elden Ring (Due out February 25, 2022)
If you enjoyed the gameplay, the period Japan setting in the Sengoku Era, along with the unique atmosphere for Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, here are some other titles I would recommend checking out:
• Nioh
• Nioh 2
• Onimusha Warlords
• Onimusha 2: Samurai’s Destiny
• Onimusha 3: Demon Siege
• Onimusha: Dawn of Dreams
• Ghost of Tsushima

Conclusion

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is a visceral and challenging experience. It pays off big time and rewards your patience and trying to find and unlock all of its secrets.

The multiple endings are a big part of the game experience and unlocking all of them is how you will achieve full completion for the game, along with various other achievements and learning all the techniques. Hopefully, this blog was a good primer on looking into the various endings for Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.

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