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Ghost of Tsushima Stances Explained: How to Change Stance & What They Do

ghost of tsushima, combat stances, sword stances
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Ghost of Tsushima Stances Explained: How to Change Stance & What They Do

Jin is already a master swordsman when Ghost of Tsushima’s story begins, but as he repels the Mongal invaders throughout the game, he’ll learn new sword “stances” that give him the edge over different types of enemies. Here we’ll explain all sword stances, how to change between them, and what they do in Ghost of Tsushima.

All Ghost of Tsushima Sword Stances Explained

There are four main combat stances in Ghost of Tsushima, each unlocked by taking out Mongol leaders throughout various camps, forts, and story quests. You likely won’t have all of them until about 10 hours into the game. By that time, you’ll be switching between them like a badass samurai warrior.

So why do you switch between them in the first place? Well, different stances are effective against different enemy types, and choosing the right one for the situation at hand will mean you are able to break through your enemy’s guard and more quickly land a killing blow.

ghost of tsushima stances

Here’s what each stance is effective for:

  • Stone – effective against another swordsman.
  • Water – effective against enemies carrying a shield.
  • Wind – effective against enemies using a spear or pole weapon.
  • Moon – effective against large “thug” enemy types.

It is very important to note that when attempting to use a stance to kill a specific enemy type, you will want to use triangle to break their guard. Square attacks are only effective once the guard is broken. So, for example, when a spear-wielding enemy attacks you, switch to Wind Stance and hit triangle to unleash spinning attacks that break their guard.

Further, as you may have noted in the above image, all combat stances have their own upgrade tree that allows you to learn new skills. Typically, these are just one special move, with further upgrades enhancing their power and/or effectiveness.

How to Switch Between Weapon Stances

Learning how to effectively switch sword stances on the fly is crucial to your success in combat. Thankfully, it’s pretty easy, and once you have the muscle memory down it becomes second nature.

Essentially, you just need to hold R2 and then press the corresponding button for whichever one you’re wanting to switch to. Because introduces each stance gradually, you should find that even once you have all four stances, it’s super intuitive to switch between them. Here’s a reminder on the button configuration for each stance:

  • Stone – R2 + Cross (X)
  • Water – R2 + Circle
  • Wind – R2 + Triangle
  • Moon- R2 + Square

That should give you everything you need to know about all combat stances, how to change between them, and what they do in Ghost of Tsushima. For more useful tips and guides on the game, be sure to check out our extensive guide wiki.

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