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Nioh: How to Use a Kusarigama Build

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Kusarigama Build – Nioh

The Kusarigama is one of Nioh’s more interesting weapons. It provides a small, curved blade (not unlike a sickle) on a chain that has a blunt weight on the other end. Unlike the other weapons which rely on thrusts and regular cuts, this weapon is swung in large arcs for rapid combos directly in front of you or sweeping combos that keep surrounding enemies at bay. While it does take some getting used to thanks to its unconventional nature, it’s a great weapon for those who want to manage Ki (which acts as your stamina) and keep enemies off balance.

Before getting into skills and builds, it’s necessary to understand what the Kusarigama offers you. Like all weapons in Nioh, it can be used in three stances – High, Mid, and Low. High and Low are extremely similar, with Mid being a strong go-to for a majority of your time. Let’s break them down.


Low – This is your defensive stance. Combos are rapid and tight, revolving around William (that’s you), swinging the blade in tight circles parallel to his sides to deal damage to enemies who are directly in front of you. Damage output is lower here, but that’s in exchange for higher defense.

Mid – Attacks with the Kusarigama in this stance are stronger than in Low and cover a larger area. You can regain Ki while guarding and moving, which is very useful when up against groups of enemies. Even with it’s wider swings, this stance fares well in tight corridors. Skills for Mid revolve around the use of the blunt weight at the end of the chain to pull enemies in and keep them down.

High – High provides the strongest attacks but performs similarly to how the Low stance works. Swings are parallel to William’s body, but they reach further in front of him and behind him allowing him to deal with groups if necessary, though the sides are still open for attack. Many of the skills in this area are sickle versions of the Mid skills, such as the pull and the combo finishers. Combos are faster in this stance than in Low, making them deadlier, but they also eat up much more Ki.

In essence, the chain of the Kusarigama allows for the player to have a continuous attack effect that other weapons don’t have in Nioh. Since they require constant swinging, your combos are much shorter and less threatening to groups in general. This weapon overcomes that thanks to its chain and the utility of both ends. Now that we have a general understanding of the weapon, let’s take a look at armor and stats. 

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