The world of Sekiro holds many secrets and mysteries, and while its grand setpieces are a sight to behold, I’ve often found that it’s in the silent, shadowy moments that the atmosphere of the game reaches its apex; when creeping around in the dead of night against the sensory backdrop of crickets chirping rhythmically, the moonlight casting ominously on a meandering river as carp slink by beneath the water.
The scene would be almost serene if it weren’t for the imminent threat around every corner—a deadly pack of wolves, a great serpent, or maybe, a ghost.
Nocturnal in her lamentations, O’Rin of the Water, a lonely spectral warrior, is one such encounter for curious players on these midnight escapades.
In this guide, I’ll be going through everything you need to know to beat her, and I’ll also cover some background context for the lore hunters amongst you.
Bottom Line Up Front
If you’re in a rush, you most likely want to know how to beat O’Rin. Here’s what you need to know.
- O’Rin is a female specter mini-boss found in Mibu Village.
- She is not initially hostile but will engage in combat with the player after a short conversation.
- Players may visit her location and fight her when they please, but they must know that doing so negates Jinzaemon Kumano’s quest.
- When fighting her, players should especially take note of her Perelous attacks, as dodging these provides openings for your own strikes.
- Above all, it’s best to let her come to you rather than attacking first!
Beyond finding O’Rin and fighting her, I’ve included a brief rundown of the surprisingly interesting story and lore of the character at the bottom of the article. If you have time, I also recommend checking out the Frequently Asked Questions section too.
Before we begin, I must mention that I’ll be using a map made by an artist on Deviant Art called lucas reiner. As many of you will have come to know by now, there’s no real-time world map in Sekiro, but this fan-made one notes each location and savepoint. Here’s the map in its entirety for reference when I zoom in later:
O’Rin is found in Mibu Village at the location indicated below.
If you’re just looking to beat this boss and are not concerned with engaging further in the story, you can simply go to this location and fight O’Rin directly.
Doing so will lock you out of any conversational interaction with Jinzaemon Kumano, however, a key character within the story of this character. If you kill O’Rin before visiting him, he will attack you on sight, rendering his questline and O’Rin’s story inaccessible.
If you want to do things the proper way, next, I’ll show you how to go about locating O’Rin whilst preserving the quest relating to her.
The sections below will simply deal with the logistics of reaching each location, but if you’re interested in elucidating the story first, head to the section Who is O’Rin of the Water? If you’re just looking to beat her, head straight to the Beating O’Rin section and skip the section below.
Starting Jinzaemon Kumano’s Quest
The first thing you’ll need to do is locate the Samauri Jinzaemon Kumano himself. He can be found by the Ashina Reservoir, indicated below.
You’ll find him here at the well on his hands and knees, drawn there by O’Rin’s music. From here, he proceeds to move around to three other locations, each time nearing O’Rin of Water’s location.
The next place you’ll find him is in the Bottomless Hole Sculptor’s Idol in the Abandoned Dungeon. Speaking to him again will divulge more about his mysterious musician and reveal that she resides in Mibu Village.
His third location is within the Hidden Forest, just before you reach the sculptor’s idol. Here, Jinzaemon is found to be passionately embroiled in his own regret; he has finally laid eyes on the Shamisen player but is lamenting his neglect to ask her if she had been calling to him this whole time.
Naturally, his final location will be just outside of Mibu Village; he’s found sitting on the ground close to the Water Mill Sculptor’s Idol. He is now awe-struck by the fact that she has finally visited him.
O’Rin is located just around the corner from where he sits, and you can now fight her safe in the knowledge that you have fulfilled the story; return to Junzaemon’s location having beaten the boss, and he’ll offer you Jinza’s Jizo Statue before he passes on. Using it restores one node of resurrection Power.
First, a Crucial Item…
First of all, there’s a unique item that will make fighting this boss a lot easier. Before attempting the fight, players should ensure they have the Divine Confetti activated on their sword. This is specifically helpful for buffing your weapons against ghost-type enemies.
It’s possible to beat this boss without obtaining Divine Confetti, of course, but the fight will be far harder.
To get the Divine Confetti, you’ll want to head to Ashina Castle, specifically the upper tower areas. In this section of the building, you’ll find several blue-robed samurai, which, if defeated, often drop the item in question.
Handily, there’s a save point in Upper Tower, so if you die in the middle of your gathering quest, you won’t have to travel all the way back!
To make the drop more likely, players can also make use of the Mibi Possession Baloon: this item increases enemy drop rates by +50 and can be found at random either as a drop itself or as a reward for defeating enemies at Hirata Estate or the Ashina region.
O’Rin is most certainly one of the tougher bosses in Sekiro, owing to her incredibly fast combos, which leave little time to react (or to heal).
The first place to start is by deducing what sort of attacks are coming your way. Her repertoire contains the following three Perilous attacks that Wolf cannot guard against and three standard attacks:
- Deadly Spin: O’Rin raises her blade for a second and then rotates violently at Wolf at immense speed. The combo consists of four slashes of her knives, ending with a final strong blow. For phase two, an extra slash is added to the combo.
- Perilous Lunging Sweep: This attack is particularly effective, given that it’s both offensive and defensive. O’Rin will spin out of harm’s way if you mount an attack, only to swiftly lunge forward with a quick slash followed by a Perilous Sweep.
- Perilous Grab: For me, this was her most dangerous attack when I was struggling to cement my strategy. When Wolf’s posture is broken, she pursues a deadly blow to slit his throat, usually killing him.
- Quick Attack: A swift spin forward and either one or two quick slashes
- Blade Flourish: A combo consisting of five slashes, a pause, and then a stronger finishing blow to end.
- Slow Attack: Two stronger slashes with pauses between, which sometimes include a Blade Flourish in place of the pause.
First of all, if you’re here for the fight and not the story, then avoid talking to O’Rin at all costs; this allows her to get the drop on you rather than the other way around.
As with most fights in this game, if you can, you should strike from behind and follow it up with a single quick attack of your choosing. This will take down a decent chunk of her health and start you off on the right foot.
When the fight actually commences, I recommend you study the above attacks and watch for them as you fight—get a feel for their frequency and for the standard attacks that you can guard against.
For me, the best way to illuminate gaps in O’Rin’s sequence of incredibly quick swipes is to hang back rather than jump to the offensive; a big part of the challenge with this boss is distinguishing between each attack, as everything happens so quickly.
All in all, it’s better to let her come to you: let her attack you with her flurries of quick jabs, building up posture damage, and affording you strong and decisive hits when she’s at her weakest.
More often than not, trying to find holes in her standard attacks, at which point you could strike, but it is futile because of her speed, so be patient.
Regarding her special abilities, O’Rin frequently uses her ghostly nature to float and vanish out of sight, only to reappear where you’re not expecting her and swipe at you with her sword.
The attack that follows her disappearing act will usually be one of the three Perilous attacks, so always be on the lookout for this.
It’s also worth noting that when she triggers this disappearing act, she’ll sometimes slowly spin backward as she does so. This is to lure the player towards her, but don’t bite! If you follow her, she’ll follow up with an incredibly quick lunging attack.
Instead, watch closely for when she reappears and immediately dodge; this should position you behind her—the perfect position for a backstab.
One of the most common Perelous attacks she’ll use is the Deadly Spin, and the trick here is to jump above her head to avoid it.
Once you land, this is the perfect opportunity to follow up with an attack of your own to reduce her posture gauge; as with most battles in Sekiro, successfully avoiding a perilous attack makes the enemy vulnerable.
Phase two of the duel ushers in the Perilous Grab. Be sure to be extra careful of this one as she tries a strong lunge attack to impale you, dealing a lot of damage (from my own experience and from what I’ve seen online, the Perilous Grab is where most players succumb to this boss).
Watch closely for the red kanji Perilous sign and the blink of her blade, dodge as far out of the way immediately and then head in yourself for an attack.
These above strategies should be all you need to beat O’Rin. As I mentioned, above all, it’s about being patient: don’t try to match her one-on-one in a sword fight because she’s too fast.
Instead, focus on taking advantage of her slower movements following a stronger attack as described, while diligently blocking the standard attacks.
Beating O’Rin of Water affords the player several worthwhile rewards.
The best of these is the Breath of Life: Shadow, which is a latent skill that enables you to recover vitality upon performing a Deathblow. You’ll also gain 1530 Exp and one Prayer bead.
Who is O’Rin of the Water?
Now that we’ve covered how to beat O’Rin, let’s take a brief look at the character herself.
I’m aware that many players, myself included, were very confused upon meeting O’Rin as to who or what she was, and interestingly, O’Rin’s inclusion in the game appears to have its roots in a Japanese ghost story called Goze no Yurei – The Yurei of the Blind Female Musician, a Yurei being analogous to the Western idea of a ghost.
The story describes a young Samauri who killed a blind woman he heard singing a beautiful song and playing a Shamisen. Having followed the music, he then slept with her, but he didn’t notice her face because it was dark. He woke to find that her appearance was ugly to him, and ashamed, he murdered her by pushing her off a cliff.
Upon returning to the same retreat a year later, the ghost of this woman confronted the man for his heinous crime and dragged him to the shallow grave in which she resided. A group of monks later discovered the missing Samauri in the grave, with the woman’s skeleton wrapped around him.
In the game, we see that O’Rin has taken on much of the appearance of the woman in the story. She, too, is presented as a blind woman, wearing a cherry blossom kimono and carrying a shamisen (similar to a Banjo).
As you approach her, you’ll notice she isn’t hostile at first. Instead, she stands alone, playing a shamisen, and quietly cries. She frequently ejects dialogue about someone called Lord Sakuza; exactly who this remains unknown, but it is assumed by many that this is her former lover (and possibly another loose allusion to Goze no Yurei).
O’Rin claims to have been sending this mysterious figure letters that received no reply, and upon receiving the answer that you have not seen him either, she attacks you on the assumption you are lying.
Regardless of who this particular individual is, the only other character who mentions her is Jinzaemon Kumano, the samurai who protects and patrols Ashina Castle. In fact, he’s infatuated with her, apparently bewitched by her music.
As he moves from location to location described in the guide above, he’ll become more and more entranced by the ghost. He’ll eventually start believing that she is calling to him specifically — and he is right in this assertion.
Having killed O’Rin, the ghost describes how she is thankful that she can be with “him” (Jinzaemon), and following her death, the player can return to Jinzaemon Kumano.
He thanks Wolf, stating that he brought him to the Shamisen player, and as a result, she came and spoke to him, apparently revealing that she was indeed playing in search of him.
This tale isn’t really explored further as Jinzaemon promptly dies afterward, which somehow ties his own salvation with the defeat of O’Rin.
Beating O’Rin frees her from her torment of pining for Lord Sakuza, and it is presumed that Jinzaemon is an ancestor of the fabled Lord. It is implied that the two characters are at peace together in the afterlife following this event.
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: Will O’Rin of Water be in any other From Software Games?
Answer: Given the ultimate fate of her character detailed above, and also that we have no news of what a Sekiro sequel might entail as of yet, I’d see it as unlikely that we’ll see O’Rin of Water return in any future games.
It’s possible, of course, but I see it as far more likely that the developers will venture to create more interesting side characters with unique backstories rather than repeating ones they’ve already covered.
Question: Is it Possible to Kill O’Rin of Water via Stealth Methods?
Answer: Unfortunately, O’Rin isn’t one of the bosses you’ll be able to use stealth with. She has two Deathblow marks, neither of which can be struck by sneaking up behind her. Having said this, you can get the drop on her in a sense by attacking her before speaking to her.
Question: Even Given the Explanations above, I’m Still Struggling. Are there any Cheeses to Beat this Boss?
Answer: If you’ve practiced the steps above but to no avail, there is a way to get through this fight easily. If you lure her through the valley directly in front of her up until you reach the last rock at the end, her AI will start to malfunction, and she will stop attacking you.
From here, you can simply slash at her until her health reaches zero. Check out this walkthrough on YouTube for exactly how to go about this.
I hope this guide was helpful for you in beating O’Rin of Water, and I hope you enjoyed reading about the backstory of this enigmatic and mysterious boss.
If you’re still having a tough time with O’Rin, I highly recommend posting a question on the Sekiro board on Reddit to have the fan base help you out.