Juzou the Drunkard is the one of the first proper bosses in Sekiro, found in the game's Hirata Estate memory area, following on from Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen in our walkthrough of the game's bosses and mini-bosses.
You'll find the Drunkard Juzou shortly after the Hirata Estate - Main Hall Sculptor's Idol, surrounded by guards in a seemingly well-protected position.
Below, we'll cover how to beat and kill Sekiro's Juzou the Drunkard, including any particularly strong methods or weaknesses they might have and any handy things to bear in mind - how to draw him out from all those guards, in particular.
For more guides and pages like this, meanwhile, cycle back to our main Sekiro walkthrough and boss guide hub.
Sekiro Juzou the Drunkard fight - how to beat and kill the Drunkard boss
Juzou the Drunkard is probably the toughest boss you'll have faced so far - at least he will be if you cam straight to the Hirata Estate memory location as soon as you picked up the bell charm early on.
There are at least half a dozen guards to beat right around the corner after the Hirata Estate - Main Hall Sculptor's Idol, and then another eight to beat on the other side of the pond before the Drunkard's finally on his own.
The way he's set up, too, makes it look seemingly impossible to whittle those guards down without alerting them all - Juzou the Drunkard included - and he starts of sat with his back to the back wall of the area, making it impossible to get a free stealth Deathblow in at first, either. Thankfully though, there's a crafty - but not quite cheesy - workaround. It takes about ten minutes to set him up, from Sculptor's Idol to one-on-one combat with one Deathblow mark down, but it's worth it. Prepare yourself in the usual manner, and then let's dive in.
How to prepare Juzou the Drunkard by defeating his guards
It's a morerately lengthy process, but it's also not hugely difficult to perform once you know how. Here's the method for getting him on his own, step by step.
1. Kill the grunts on the near side of the river. Take out the first archer around the corner quickly; then grapple up to the nearby roof and drop down to get the next two, ideally without alerting the rest. Sneak around left to get behind the torch-waver, then pick off one of the last two and kill the other in open combat. There are also two hiding inside the right-hand buildings guarding a couple of decent items - but they're optional, so only bother if you haven't already got the items or if you've already alerted them.
2. Sneak across the pond to the far left, staying out of sight of the enemies and Juzou the Drunkard on the other side. Do not talk to the old samurai in the weeds.
3. Go up the steps on the far left - still in stealth mode - and stealth Deathblow the first guard you see. There's a torch waver right by him, but you can quickly attack and kill him before he hits you or alerts anyone.
4. Continue through the walkway on that left hand side, until you reach the end of it. This is a little harder now. You need to drop off the ledge behind the shield soldier, quickly Deathblow him from behind, then unlock the camera from him and sprint (hold Circle/X) over to the right staircase nearby and run all the way back you came. Go out through the building back into the river, over to the far side, and hide in stealth. After a few seconds you'll lose all aggro and the enemies will reset.
5. You'll notice Juzou is now standing in the middle of the area, behind three guards and in front of the remaining two that were by his side when he was sat down. Repeat what you just did for the central guard behind him. Sneak left through the buildings, hop down staying as close to the wall as you can, deathblow the middle one, sprint back up the steps and out the way you came to the far side of the pond, hide, and repeat.
6. Same again, for the second shielded soldier - only this time his death won't alert the rest. When he's down, collect the Sen and sneak forwards to the archer on the far left of Juzou the Drunkard. Deathblow him, unlock the camera and sprint back once again up the stairs and the way you came - do not go straight back via the reeds past the Samurai, or you'll set him off too early. Hide across the pond and wait for them to reset again.
7. Now, Juzou the Drunkard is down to two guards, and you have two options - take the riskier option of trying to deathblow them when they're half in his line of sight, or start the battle with him. Our choice is to start the battle with him: sneak around the same way once again, get up close behind him, pop any Sugar items you fancy using, and stealth Deathblow him to take off one mark. Keep your distance from him now and try to kill the remaining two soldiers one at a time, without setting off the Samurai still.
8. Once they're down and you're one on one, bait him very close to the Samurai in the reeds, and they'll start fighting each other. Now it's time to battle. Note one final thing with this method too: even after getting one Deathblow on him from stealth, you can still lose aggro - if you do, his Deathblow markers will go back up to two - but he'll also reset in his position out in the open, so you can easily sneak back around behind him to bring him back down to one.
Looking for more Sekiro pages like this? First up, the first main Sekiro patch notes for update 1.03 are live. Otherwise, our Sekiro boss guide, boss list and walkthrough hub has everything in one place, including pages on Lady Butterfly, Genichiro Ashina Way of Tomoe, Folding Screen Monkeys, Corrupted Monk, Guardian Ape, Great Shinobi Owl, Emma and Isshin Ashina, True Corrupted Monk, and Divine Dragon. We also have in-depth pages like Sekiro tips and tricks to get you started, Sekiro Skills, skill tree and Esoteric Text locations explained, our deep dive on the Sekiro combat system, Posture, and Perilous Attacks, or details on all Sekiro Prosthetic Tool locations, how to cure Dragonrot and Rot Essence in Sekiro, Gourd Seed locations, a Divine Confetti farm route method, all Treasure Carp Scale locations, all, Prayer Beads locations and all Snap Seed locations, too. And when you're ready - the how to beat Isshin Sword Saint and an Isshin Sword Saint cheese, plus the many Sekiro endings.
How to defeat Juzou the Drunkard and when to use the old Samurai
Once the Samurai and the Drunkard are duking it out, you need to act fast but smart - keep your cool. Every time he turns to the Samurai, try to get a couple of hits in - between 1 and 4 was possible we found. Some say the Shinobi Axe works well for doing more Posture damage, but you need to get his Vitality low too for the Posture damage to stick. It's a good opportunity to hit him with an Oil bottle and Flame Prosthetic combo too.
Beware, however, that he frequently does an attack that will hit everything around him - even though it's not technically a Perilous Sweep attack. Get a couple of hits safely, back off, and he'll turn to face you. Wait for the Samurai to hit him again and for him to turn around, get a couple more hits, back off again.
At this point he'll be low on Vitality, but don't get overexcited. He has two Perilous Attacks to be wary of: a Sweep and a Grab, as well as a palm punch that does hefty damage too. Remember to Deflect, jump, or dodge, and between you and the Samurai he's very doable.
When he's dead, you'll be rewarded with Unrefined Sake and a Prayer Bead. Just note as well that, inside the building he was guarding, there are two more standard soldier enemies before the next Sculptor's Idol, which is a couple of rooms into the building by a sobbing woman, so be on your guard as you press on with probably quite low health and resources.
That's all you'll hopefully need for tackling this encounter. Next up in our guide is Lady Butterfly fight, or you can cycle back to our main Sekiro walkthrough and boss guide hub for much more bosses, explainers and advice.