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Sekiro guide: Ashina Castle bell enemy

How to defeat one of the toughest non-boss enemies

Sekiro Ashina Castle bell enemy guide FromSoftware/Activision via Polygon

It’s not only the bosses that feel impossible to beat in Sekiro — sometimes even common enemies can be a huge headache. Take, for example, the giant carrying a bell that you encounter near the Ashina Castle > Ashina Castle Sculptor’s Idol. His size alone tells you he’s a tough enemy. And he’s got some brutal attacks to deal with as well.

This guide will help you defeat him easily.

Where to find the bell enemy

At the Ashina Castle > Ashina Castle Sculptor’s Idol, back up a little and stand on the bridge. Facing the stairs, turn to the left — there will be an NPC you can speak with sitting here. Jump off of the bridge and grapple over to the branch ahead of you.

Through the gate, you will find a pair of bandits talking — eavesdrop on them for a hint about an upcoming boss. Dispatch them, then continue across the bridge.

Grapple up to the top of the gate and look down. You’ll see the bell enemy along with three guard dogs.

Stealth Deathblow

The easiest way to kill the bell enemy is with a single Stealth Deathblow. You just need to do a little work first.

From the roof, target one of the dogs — preferably the one in the far right corner. Hit it with a single Shuriken from your Prosthetic. It will die with one hit, and everyone else will go over to investigate.

Make sure that you’re targeting another of the dogs and not the bell giant, and throw another. Your target will probably automatically switch to the giant. Switch to the third dog, then throw one more shuriken.

As soon as the third dog dies, drop down to the ground. Move a little to the left to stay out of the giant’s line of sight, then move quickly up behind him. If you move fast enough, you’ll get a Deathblow and a one hit kill.

You can see the entire process in the video above.

Combat

If you don’t manage the Stealth Deathblow or you just happen to get spotted, you’ll have to take on the bell enemy more directly. It’s a surprisingly tough fight for a non-boss enemy. The giant will throw and swing the bell in far-reaching attacks. If you get caught, it can drain your health quickly (even many, many hours into the game).

We’ll show you his most dangerous moves below. The general advice for dealing damage is to try to stay behind him as much as you can. Wait to deal damage when he’s occupied with an attack and can’t turn around or defend himself.

The first move to watch for is when he swings the bell. Your best approach here is to block the first hit, then rush toward him. Ideally, you want to be behind him, but when the bell is swinging, he can’t defend himself. Just be prepared when he reels the bell back in — you can get hit from behind.

This enemy’s only Perilous Attack is an overhead, trap-you-in-the-bell-like-a-bug move. You’ll know it’s coming when he holds the bell vertically and rears back. When the red kanji appears, start dodging. You can dodge back away from him safely, but it’s better to dodge to the side. He’ll repeat this move either three or four times. Each time he brings the bell down, dodge sideways at least twice. Do not attack or stop dodging until you’re directly behind him. You can see what happens if you attack too early at the end of the video above.

The other move to watch for is a flurry of attacks. He’ll swing the bell over his head repeatedly, then switch to holding the bell and slamming it into the ground in front of him. Block as much as you can while circling around behind him.

Bell enemy rewards

The first time you defeat him, you’ll receive some Scrap Magnetite. Don’t forget to grab the Black Gunpowder in this area, too. Through the door he was guarding, you’ll find the Ashina Castle > Abandoned Dungeon Entrance Sculptor’s Idol and a Memorial Mob vendor.