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Sekiro Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen fight - how to beat and kill the Shinobi Hunter

How to beat the mini boss Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.

Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen is the first mini boss of the Hirata Estate memory area in Sekiro, found by a tall building shortly after you head through the village area, following on from General Naomori Kawarada in our walkthrough of the game's bosses and mini-bosses.

You'll find Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen waiting for you across a bridge, with about half a dozen guards dotted around him in the narrow area up ahead.

Below, we'll cover how to beat and kill Sekiro's Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen, including any particularly strong methods or weaknesses they might have and any handy things to bear in mind.

For more guides and pages like this, meanwhile, cycle back to our main Sekiro walkthrough and boss guide hub.

Sekiro Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen fight - how to prepare for Shinobi Hunter

Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen - or just the Shinobi Hunter for now - is probably the toughest boss you'll have faced so far, using rapid attacks and similarly quick movement around the area that'll make light work of your defences if you're not prepared.

Thankfully, there's a pretty specific way to counter the Shinobi Hunter, and a way to completely thin out his guards in advance, too, to make your life easier when it gets down to the one-on-one.

Before fighting the Shinobi Hunter, there are two things you need to do. The first is unlock a specific skill: Mikiri Counter. It doesn't cost much and is a phenomenal counter to the Shinobi Hunter's attacks. More on using it below, and more on Skills themselves in our Sekiro best skills, skill tree and esoteric text locations guide.

The second thing you'll definitely want to do is kill the various grunts around him.

How to kill Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen's guards

Cross the bridge after the two grunts with shields (they're dealth with by using the Shinobi Axe Prosthetic Tool to smash the shield, which you should have acquired a little earlier in a small temple in the Hirata village area with a couple guards out front of it.)

Grapple up to the tree on the right of the bridge, then across to the top of the tall building on the left. Target the lone guard at the end of the bridge with a Deathblow from above, then quickly run back to the tree and up to the top of the building again to lose any focus from grunts who might have seen you.

Next, take out the guard next to the patrolling Shinobi Hunter. Go left into the bushes (you can drop down safely from the roof), sneak up behind him and get a stealth deathblow in the back. This will probably alert the Shinobi Hunter and remaining two guards up on the ledge - just run away again, onto the tree and then building roof, and hide until you lose aggro from them again.

Finally, take out the two on the far right ledge. Wait until the Shinobi Hunter's facing away and sneakily grapple up onto the second tree on that right side, from the ground, then jump across into the bushes on the far right and quickly go into stealth. You can get a deathblow on one of them from the bushes, but beware there's a gap in them just before you reach the two grunts, so you have to hug the wall and be very fast or you'll alert them before you can get the insta-kill.

Quickly kill the second in combat, then flee again, even if the Shinobi Hunter's nearby. Just get up to the trees and onto the roof and eventually you'll lose aggro. If you have to, consider dropping into the water to hide from him - you can grapple back out onto a tree branch when you need to.

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.

Cover image for YouTube video8 Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice tips to get you started

How to beat and kill Shinobi Hunter Enshin of Misen

The Shinobi Hunter has two Perilous Attacks - a Thrust, and a Sweep - but he relies far more heavily on the Thrust.

Before you get into fighting him head on though, first get yourself a stealth Deathblow for one free Deathblow mark out of his two. You can do this by sneaking up on him in the bushes on the left once he's reset - or, if you manage to kill those final two grunts on the right without him fully detecting you, you can actually hop off the ledge for a Deathblow from above on him right away.

Once one mark is down, face him head on. Your goal here should be to stand at a bit of a distance and bait him into a running Preilous Thrust attack. Wait for the right timing - it's a little deceptive in how late the attack comes - and use the Mikiri Counter to stamp his spear into the ground and do heavy Posture damage.

That only needs repeating a couple of times for you to be able to deal out the second Deathblow, but if you're really struggling with the Mikiri Counter and don't want to practise it in Training back at the Dilapidate Temple, or can't unlock it for whatever reason, then you can still beat him when you know what to look for. You need to Deflect his Thrust, and if you're in close, jump over his Sweep. We recommend just staying at a distance to bait the Thrust, so it's more predictable!

You can land one free hit on him for Vitality damage after each Mikiri Counter so you know, before he blocks and then puts you in stun lock if you swing more than twice.

Defeat him and your prize is a Prayer Bead, plus the two items either side of the gate up ahead. There's a Sculptor's Idol just past it, too.

That's all you'll hopefully need for tackling this encounter. Next up in our guide is the Juzou the Drunkard Sekiro fight, or you can cycle back to our main Sekiro walkthrough and boss guide hub for much more bosses, explainers and advice.

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Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

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Chris Tapsell

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Chris Tapsell is Eurogamer's Deputy Editor and most decorated Football Manager. He used to write guides, and will send you links to his favourite spreadsheets if you ask him about League of Legends or competitive Pokémon.