General Tenzen Yamauchi is an optional mini-boss in Sekiro who you’ll find in the area immediately after the Chained Ogre. He’s optional — you can run straight through this area and onto the Underbridge Valley, but defeating him will earn you a Prayer Bead.
In this guide, we’ll show you how to defeat him.
Approaching General Tenzen Yamauchi from the Outskirts Wall
There’s no Sculptor’s Idol right before you face the general, so we’ll be starting at the Ashina Outskirts > Outskirts Wall - Stairway Sculptor’s Idol — this is also where we started the Chained Ogre boss guide.
Head for where the Ogre was chained up — you can either skip or murder the three guards on your way — and grapple up into the gatehouse. Grab the Nightjar Monocular ahead of you. Turn to the left head toward the corner. Grab the Gourd Seed there, then turn right, and head through the doorway. Grab the Ceramic Shard on your past, then duck into the tall grass on your left.
If the guard with a rifle behind the barrels ahead of you started to take notice (like in the image above), wait him out here. Once that alert triangle disappears, stick to the left side by the fence and run around behind him for a Stealth Deathblow.
As soon as he’s dead, hug the wall he’s standing next to. If you’re quick, you won’t have been seen yet. There are three more bandits to deal with right here. Sidle to the left until you can look around the corner. Target the closest bandit, then use a Ceramic Shard to get his attention. His alert icon will turn yellow, but he won’t know where you are. Stay pressed up against the wall until you get the option to Stealth Deathblow him.
Immediately hug the wall again, target the next guard, and throw another Ceramic Shard. Repeat the process. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to get the third bandit this way, too — like we did in the video above. If he spots you, just try to keep the fight close to the wall so you don’t get spotted.
We recognize that the video above looks like an example of (dumb) luck and perfect conditions, but we repeated it a few times to make sure it wasn’t a fluke. It might not work exactly right every time, but it’s a reliable method to deal with three enemies that can easily overwhelm you.
Once those three bandits are dead, sprint across the walkway and down the stairs on your left. Head past the broken bridge, grapple to the branch on the far side of the arena, then climb up to the top of the wall. Handle the pot-banging enemy there, then turn to the right. There’s another gunman below you that probably hasn’t spotted you yet. Drop down and take him out.
Finally, there’s one more bandit standing just to the left of General Tenzen Yamauchi. You could jump off the wall where the gunman was and take him out with a plunging Deathblow. This, however, would mean that you’ll be starting the boss fight right away.
Instead, creep right up to the edge of the wall, target the henchman and throw another Ceramic Shard (if you’re too far back from the edge, Wolf’ll just throw the shard at his own feet). He’ll head off to the right to investigate. Head to the corner where you killed the other three bandits and hug the wall — around the corner from were you were last time. He’ll probably lose interest right before he gets close to you. Hit him with another Ceramic Shard and wait for the Wall Hug Deathblow.
Now, you can start the boss fight with the general unaware of you.
Approaching General Tenzen Yamauchi from the Underbridge Valley
It is possible to find a second Sculptor’s Idol closer to the arena where you’ll fight General Tenzen Yamauchi. When you exit the gatehouse over the Chained Ogre’s area, sprint straight forward past the gunman. (You can sneak and kill him if you want, but we’re going to be back to deal with him in a minute.) Continue past the guard at the top of the stairs and head down.
At the bottom of the stairs, turn left. Run out onto the broken bridge and look down. Grapple to the branch below you, then drop to the ground. Right ahead of you, you’ll find the Ashina Outskirts > Underbridge Valley Sculptor’s Idol. Grab the Pellet behind you, then visit the Idol.
Now, when you head back up, you’ll get a few free Stealth Deathblows on the guards that are patrolling and the gunman. The rest of the approach above will be the same.
General Tenzen Yamauchi Stealth Deathblow
Head back to where the gunman was looking over the general. Drop down to the ground and start approaching him — stay just a little to his left as you approach. He’ll turn to the right and start walking away. Sneak up behind him and land your first Deathblow before the fight even starts.
General Tenzen Yamauchi tactics
General Tenzen Yamauchi isn’t a specialized mini-boss. He just kind of fights. His attacks are brutal, but they won’t fill your Posture bar or drain your Vitality with one hit. And he’s got a few moves that leave him open to plenty of Posture Damage.
The first — and most useful — move to watch for is his slashing (or sweeping) Perilous Attack. He’ll draw way back and pause for a second before he unleashes it, so you’ll have plenty of time to dodge or jump. Jumping is preferable here since it allows you to hit jump again and deliver a Jump Kick to deal a nice chunk of Posture Damage.
His other Perilous Attack is a grab. If you see him let go of his sword and rear back with his right hand, he’s going for a grab. Wait for the red kanji to appear and Step Dodge out of the way. If you’re really careful (or reckless) you might be able to turn this into a Dodge Counterattack, but we wouldn’t recommend it. It’s not worth the damage you’ll take if he grabs you.
Finally, watch for his big overhead attacks. Sometimes he’ll jump to deliver them like in the video above, but sometimes he won’t. Just watch for him to lift both hands up. Use that as a chance to Step Dodge and Dodge Counterattack.
Beyond those moves, it’s a fairly straightforward fight. You’ve got lots of room and he’s not particularly fast. Block as much as you can, then back off a bit and let him come to you. He’ll leave himself open to plenty of Posture Damage if you watch for the moves above. You just have to keep at it until you get that second Deathblow.
General Tenzen Yamauchi drop, items, and rewards
For defeating General Tenzen Yamauchi, you’ll get a Prayer Bead. Collecting four of these will let you create a Prayer Necklace that increases your max Vitality and Posture.