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Sekiro boss guide: Guardian Ape and Brown Ape

Something old, something new

Sekiro’s Guardian Ape and Brown Ape boss fight is a retread and twist on a previous fight. The good news is that almost nothing that you need to do changes — except in the second phase, when things get complicated.

In this guide, we’ll show you how to defeat Guardian Ape and Brown Ape with our favorite Combat Art, and strategies for reacting to attacks in both phases.

The best items and moves for Guardian Ape and Brown Ape

There are always items and attacks that work well against Sekiro bosses. Our recommendations for the best items to bring to your fight with Guardian Ape (and Brown Ape) are sparse, though. You can get through this without resorting to an arsenal of bonus attacks.

You can always use Shinobi Firecrackers to stun your enemies and open them for attacks, but that’s nothing close to a requirement. The Mortal Draw Combat Art is a good choice for responding to Brown Ape’s combos.

Beyond that, it’s really just a matter of reading attacks and responding to them with regular (and safe) attacks.

Phase 1: Guardian Ape

General strategies

The first part of this fight is just like the second part of your previous battle with Guardian Ape. Generally avoid his attacks and capitalize on two.

Guardian Ape’s attacks

Let’s talk about Guardian Ape’s attacks, how to identify them, and what you should do about them. There are more than we’ll list here, but if you see something we don’t cover, just block it. You saw the same attacks in your last fight, and blocking always works.

Perilous Attack: Terror

Guardian Ape screams and causes a Terror-inducing area of effect attack. Just get away.

Dive and swipe

Guardian Ape dives and swipes with his sword. Jump over his head shoulders, land behind his arms, and attack two or three times, at most. Run away immediately, because he’s likely to follow up with his Terror-inducing attack.

Overhand smash (and stun)

Guardian Ape lifts his sword above his head, holds it there, and then smashes it down to the ground. This it your best opportunity to deal damage.

Whenever you see this attack coming, rejoice. Run into range, and block to Deflect the attack. Guardian Ape falls to the ground, stunned. Attack several times (and then run away).

Phase 2: Guardian Ape and Brown Ape

General strategies

The second phase of your second fight with Guardian Ape adds Brown Ape to the battlefield. What fun!

Eliminate Brown Ape first. Brown Ape tends to stay out of the fight unless you attack Guardian Ape or unless Guardian Ape uses its Terror-inducing Perilous Attack.

Separate the two enemies so that you only fight them individually. Run around the arena, waiting for your enemies to attack. Think defensively, attacking sporadically and only when you can follow up their attacks with yours.

Focus on attacking or avoiding Guardian Ape, but don’t get greedy. Take a swing or two, but keep looking for Brown Ape. When it charges, run away from Guardian Ape and fight Brown Ape alone.

Brown Ape attack and combo

Brown Ape attacks with single swipes of its hand. Those are easy enough to block individually. You can even get in an attack or two after.

Brown Ape has a five-hit combo — four running swipes and then a jumping ground pound. Block and Deflect everything. (And feel free to count to five. That helps us.)

If you Deflect the final attack, you’ll stagger Brown Ape momentarily. Attack at that point. The Mortal Draw Combat Art is a good choice here (and you can see chunks of its Vitality and Posture take damage above).

Guardian Ape Phase 2

There’s really nothing to say about Guardian Ape in the second phase of the fight that we didn’t already say about the first phase. Now that it’s just you and him, do what you’ve already done many times before — avoid his attacks, keep clear of the Terror, and capitalize on his dive and his overhand attacks.

Guardian Ape Phase 3: Immortality Severed

Guardian Ape Phase 3 Immortality Severed
Kill that centipede monstrosity
FromSoftware/Activision via Polygon

Approach Guardian Ape’s corpse, and attack to kill that centipede thing and finish the fight.

Guardian Ape and Brown Ape drops, items, and rewards

Defeat Guardian Ape and Brown Ape, and you’ll receive two Prayer Beads and Memory: Headless Ape. Finish Phase 3, and you’ll receive Bestowal Ninjutsu.