FAQs in Nioh 2 are the most asked questions about Nioh 2 and the answers that comes with it.


Nioh 2 FAQs


Background information

When was Nioh 2 released? 

Nioh 2 was released March 13, 2020 for PlayStation 4.

Versions for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation 5 titled Nioh 2: Complete Edition featuring all the previous downloadable content were released on February 5, 2021.


On which platforms did Nioh 2 launch? 

Nioh 2 launched for  PlayStation 4, and later recived PlayStation 5 and PC versions.


Is there Character Customization?

Nioh 2 offers customization options when creating the character. Players will be given the option to customize their playable character from choosing a gender, cosmetic options, and eventually a starting gear.

 Will I need to play the first game to understand this game's story?

The vast majority of this game's story is self contained. Outside of call forwards to people and events of the first game, the only major context your are missing is what happens in the last area in the main game, but even still that is largely tangential to the main plot of this game.


 Gameplay Information

How does damage work in this Game? How do Attack and Defense work?

The damage formula for melee attacks in this game is:

  • Attack * Passive Melee Damage * Temporary Melee Buff * De-buffs * Universal Backstab Multiplier
  • Effects within each category are additive with each other (ie. 30% Melee Damage + 30% Mid attack damage = 60% more damage on melee attacks in mid stance), stacking effects across categories will have a multiplicative effect ( 30% Melee Damage * Rage's 30% Bonus = 69% more melee damage).
    • Attack means the attack of the melee weapon you are using. This is influenced by anything that adds flat Attack, like the Attack stat on armor, scrolls and Soul Cores, as well as the Attack Bonus [CORE STAT] series of special effects.  The Defense stat of the thing getting hit directly reduces the influence Attack has on total damage. As you gain the majority of Attack through upgrading your gear's levelsand enemies gain defense as mission level increases, consider this your incentive to engage with the games loot mechanics and continually upgrade and improve your gear if you wish to maintain your damage and prevent yourself from getting killed in one hit by everything. You can compensate with the rest of the effects below and smart play, but if you find yourself lacking in damage or defense despite a solid build this is why.
    • Passive Melee Damage are anything numbered or ranked that appears in the status screen; for example, Melee Damage, Grapple Damage, Damage Bonus (Agility), etc. This also includes the Spear Mystic Art Stability (20% more melee damage on spear thrust attacks) and both Kusarigama Mystic Arts (15% more melee damage for the specified attacks). The exceptions to this are the Tonfa Mystic Art Apocalypse and the Axe Mystic art Inner Light; despite appearing the same as a Buff on your screen, it is still additive with the rest of the passive melee damage effects.
    • Temporary Melee Buffs are represented as icons directly under your Anima Gauge (aside from Apocalypse and Inner Light as mentioned earlier). These include the various Increase Attack effects, the Berserk Status effect, and other unique buffs like Blue Moon, Versatility, and Rock Solid
    • De-buffs are negative status effects that explicitly increase damage taken. This is essentially reserved for three effects: Confusion, Saturation, and the various Reduced Defense effects.
    • The Universal Backstab Multiplier is the bonus you get for hitting an enemy on their back with melee. You can tell you did it by the font of the damage numbers being larger than normal. This value is the same for every weapon: a 1.646 multiplier. The Backstab damage special effect does not affect this bonus; the same amount of Melee Damage will give you the same amount of damage on their back.
  • For the record: the Attack stat of the melee weapon in your hand is also used for the damage of Tengu Fans, Guardian Spirit Skills and Yokai Abilities.
  • The Damage formula for Yokai Abilities would be much the same, with the passive effects being replaced with the various forms of Yokai ability damage, and the temporary damage buff would be exclusively Special Finesse: Focus, a 25% boost to damage after burst countering.

How can I boost my DPS (Damage Per Second)?

How do damage reduction and other reduction effects work?

  • All reduction effects are multiplicative with each other if they affect the same thing yet are different effects. Contrary to damage increases, this is a bad thing: if you get hit by a fire ball and you have 50 vs.fire and -50% Elemental Damage Taken, the damage of the fire ball gets halved twice down to 25% of it's original damage, rather than reduced by 100%.. If that fire ball would deal damage to you while you are blocking, and you have -50% Elemental Damage Taken (Guarding), then it would be halved a third time down to 12.5%, and if you had -50% Damage Taken, it would be 6.25%.
    •  Because of this, the only way to gain immunity to a damage type is to stack one type of damage reduction until you have -100% of it. With that in mind, this isn't possible for several types of damage reduction, such as Projectile Damage Taken, Backstab damage Taken and Physical damage in general, and for others it requires much build dedication, like Elemental Damage Taken and the various vs. elemental damage types.
    • This also incentivizes either stacking one stat very high, such as stacking as much Damage Taken (Critical) as possible, or taking the "low hanging fruit" of damage reduction, such as using individually powerful damage reduction items like the Devigorate Talisman and one of the many Increase Defense effects, which just on those alone would reduce the damage you take by up to 52%..
  • This applies to Damage Reduction effects, Ki Consumption reduction effects (of all kinds) and the Untouched effects. For the Untouched effects, if they would affect the same thing it takes place as two separate probability rolls to leave the ammo or jutsu unused.

What do the letters on certain effects mean? Is it worth it to increase the rating?

  • These are Rank Based Bonuses. What effect it as at each letter grade is arbitrary and depends on the effect in question. Typically these are effects that have some sort of scaling mechanism, based on how much you do something or how much of something you have, though some are binary effects like Counter-Yokai Tactics.
  • Stacking multiple of the same effect works like this: It takes the highest letter grade you have and increases it by one "step" for each version of the same effect you have. For example: You put on 5 pieces of Ferryman Armor, which has "Life Drain (Water Attack)" and Yaonami-Hime, which has "Life Drain (Water Attack) B". The armor will elevate the GS perk 5 times (B -> B+ -> A- -> A -> A+ -> AA-), leaving you with Life Drain (Water Attack) AA-
    • Stacking Rank Based Bonuses is generally not optimal, as though the effect might get much more powerful at higher ranks (see Damage Bonus (Amrita Gauge) doubling in effect from B+/A to AAA) stacking multiple of the same effect will barely move the the rank upward and wont increase how powerful the effect is much compared to the strongest version you have equipped. Effectively, stacking identical Rank Based Bonuses together gives a result that is less than the sum of their parts. You would be much better off stacking other similar, but not identical effects together (ie. Anima Bonus (Amrita Absorption) with Anima Bonus (Unscathed Amrita).
    • The only exception is Attack Bonus [CORE STAT] on set bonuses and weapons. They both apply separately to your attack score.

How do I know if something stacks?

  • If it doesn't have a number or letter grade, it doesn't stack (ex. Faster Winded Recovery - either you have it or you don't)
  • If it has a number or letter it stacks
    • If it increases damage, see "How does damage work in this Game? Is there a Damage Formula? How do Attack and Defense work?"
    • If it reduces something, see "How do damage reduction and other reducing effects work?"
    • If it's Ranked Based (Has a Letter) see "What do the letters on certain effects mean?"

When do I need to worry about Builds?

  • Short answer: when you get a Yasakani Magatama for the first time, and you won't get one during your New Game Playthrough.
  • Long answer:
    • During new game, there isn't a level cap for gear, so any gear you have will get continuously power crept by gear that drops, up until you beat the last mission. Because of this, set bonuses are essentially just their to temporarily allow you to deal more damage or take less damage, but eventually your defense will be compromised. Because of this, most builds early game will revolve around what you can forge and temper easily or find.  Early game especially, having on level gear will matter more than nitpickijng stat distributions and the like.
    • It's not until you get a Yasakani Magatama that your options open up dramatically. The Set Bonus Requirements Reduction effect is so powerful and foundational to the concept of a build that most people that play this game assume you have that effect already. But as you go through the New Game + Cycle you will get access to Divine and Ethereal Graces, and eventually upgraded versions of the classic set bonuses, so even in that sense most of what you build will be obsoleted eventually.
    • All this in mind You should begin to consider builds starting from Dream of the Demon, since that is where the difficulty starts to ramp up again, with the knowledge that what you build at that point then will be short term for the most part. Once again, forging items with the graces you want is the most efficient way here. You can begin to finalize builds on Dream of the Nioh.

What is the Best Weapon/ Best Build?

  • This question is unhelpful to ask for you for several reasons:
    • Best at what? - Not every weapon or build operates on the same axis or are designed to be used the same way. Every weapon in particular is designed either not to do everything and have every tool, and to excel at different areas (that's why you can use two of them).
    • When is it the Best? - Much of what is strong in this game is dependent on where in the game you are in. Many effects, like flat Attack increasing effects, become weaker as the game goes on, but are dominant early game, to say nothing of gear that you can not get until you pass a certain threshold of progression.
    • There are multiple approaches to dealing with every situation. - The game's system is too broad for most applications to be immediately obvious. Because of this, many people will value different things when they look at gear, weapons or items. What may work for someone else may not work for you.

What does Level Sync do? / What is the scale symbol that appear on missions?

  • Level sync reduces your stats and in some cases how high your special effects can go, in exchange for allowing to get the same gear you would get on the highest level mission you completed, or the Underworld floor you are on if you've got that far. The scale symbol on the mission card tells you that Level Sync is active. This is automatically on for twilight missions and playing as a Visitor, and you can turn it on manually after completing the last main mission during that particular New Game+ cycle.

What Clan should I join? How do I increase the Crest Protection bonus?

  • What Clan should I join? - This answer depends heavily on where you are in the game. Early game, the flat attack increasing Clans will give you more damage as your attack scores are very low, whereas later on you are better off using ones that give percentage based melee damage boosts, but eventually you will also have a lot of that as well. Several of them also give unique benefits that cannot be replicated elsewhere easily, Such as Oda increasing Confusion duration and Guardian Spirit Damage, and or Maeda giving an extremely large and short lasting increase in damage to a grappled enemy.
  • You increase the Crest Protection bonus by earning Glory. You gain glory from killing Revenants, playing Co-op and having your Benevolent Grave be used.
  • See the Clans page for more information.

How do I use Yokai Shift? How do I increase the Yokai Shift Gauge?

  • See Yokai Shift for more specific details, but in general the key to Yokai shift is in each Yokai Ability having it's own Anima gauge, allowing you to use several times the amount of Yokai Abilities that you would be able to otherwise. This creates amrita, which you can absorb into you and/or your weapon, increasing the time you can stay in Yokai Shift, and if you absorb it into your weapon, you can unleash a powerful Charge Attack that will also stagger enemies, creating a highly damaging loop that also prevents enemies from fighting back.
  • The best way to fill the Gauge is by using Yokai Abilities. Many of them fill the Amrita Gauge significantly when you absorb the amrita they create. You can also use spirit stones to fill the amrita gauge.

When does Shattered Fragments or another mission appear as a Twilight Mission?

What is a "Generic Loot Source"? Where can I find [insert item]?

  • A generic loot source is a "source" for "generic loot"- any equipment or item that can drop from any enemy, chest or thought amrita. The vast majority of equipment falls under this category, and can appear practically anywhere from anything that can drop equipment.
  • The exceptions to this are typically equipment that only starts to spawn after you've seen it once from the enemy that drops them, like most Set Bonus equipment, or Dokisai's Helmet, or when you have progressed enough through the Main story. The most notable exception is wooden weapons, as they only drop from their respective dojo master normally, and can not be found otherwise through normal means even after you have got them once, so you would need to forge them and/ or use Lucky Drop (Equipped Weapon) during end game.
  • Otherwise, you can find set bonus items from the person that uses it. For example, if you want Imagawa Yoshimoto's set pieces, you should fight him for it, as he will drop it more consistently than other enemies.

What does Melee [damage/ Ki consumption] or similar special effects affect?

  • Going in order of how specific it is: Melee Attacks is the superset of all attacks you do with a melee weapon.
    • High, Mid and Low Stances are a subset of melee attacks. Any attack done while that stance is selected is considered an attack from that stance, even if that attack did not originate from that stance. For example, if you did a Mid stance strong attack and then switched to High stance before it hits, it will be considered a High Stance Attack, and will not rebound off a blocking enemy like it normally would, because high stance quick/strong attacks don't do that.
      • Finally, Quick Attacks, Strong Attacks and Active Skills. Quick attacks are exactly only attacks done with the quick attack button from standing or dodging and nothing else, Strong Attacks are exactly only attacks done with the Strong attack button from standing or dodging and nothing else, and Active skills encompass everything else outside of dashing attacks. Grapples and Final Blows are also active skills.

What is in the Options Menu?

  • A non exhaustive list:
    • Increasing your quick use item slots from 2 pages to 4
    • Hiding offhand weapons, Helmets, and online players transformations
    • Disabling dynamic camera, either from enemy attacks or your own
    • The ability to target Frame Rate or Resolution
    • Removing damage numbers
    • Automatically using acquired locks of hair
    • Displaying numbers for Life, Ki, Anima, Amrita Gauge
    • Increasing the amount of effect icons to display
    • Changing automatic re lock on when target is defeated
    • Enable or disable resetting the camera when you block or lock on without a target
    • Turning off Motion Blur
    • Disabling pickup of low rarity equipment.
    • Changing the color of item rarities
    • Changing font size and removing/ adding various confirmation messages
    • Changing Skill Learning selection to a single tap

Why isn't this effect transferring/inheriting to the other equipment/Soul Core?

  • Make sure your fodder item has a fully maxed out Familiarity Gauge.
  • Keep in mind that only Inheritable effectssoul match icon nioh 2 wiki guide 50px can replace other inheritable effects.
  • Look at The various temper tables or Soul Core Special Effect Tables to see if they is any conflict with whatever item you are using.

What is the highest possible untouched Ninjutsu/Onmyo Magic that can be achieved?

5.5% on armor x 5 = 27.5% (using inheritable untouched special effects and at max familiarity)
5% on accessories x 2 = 10%
8% on scroll
15% on Tsukuyomi(magic)/Marici(ninjutsu) ethereal grace bonus
15% on Seimei (Magic)/Flying Kato (Ninjutsu) set bonus
2.9% on Giant Toad Soul Core max gives untouched Ninjutsu
Total Untouched = 75.5% (Magic)/78.4% (Ninjutsu)
Put another way, on average you would have (1/(1-.755)) = 4.08 times the amount of Magic items and (1/(1-.784)) = 4.63 times the amount of Ninjutsu items.

For comparison, this is the effective amount if you Replace Tsukuyomi/ Marici's grace with Omoikane's Grace. As stated above, they do not stack additively with each other:

5.5% untouched on armor x 5 = 27.5% (using inheritable untouched special effects and at max familiarity)
5% on accessories x 2 = 10%
8% on scroll
15% on Tsukuyomi (magic)/marici(ninjutsu) ethereal grace bonus
2.9% on Giant Toad Soul Core max gives untouched Ninjutsu
total before Omoikane ethereal grace bonus = 60.5% (Magic)/63.4% (Ninjutsu)
(1 - 0.605) x (1-0.4) = 0.24
Total Untouched:
100 [ 1 - {( 1 - 0.4) * (1-0.605)}] = 76.3%(magic)
100 [ 1 - {( 1 - 0.4) * (1-0.634)}] = 78.04%(ninjutsu)
Put another way, on average you would have (1/(1-.605) + (1/(1-.4)) = 4.198 times the amount of Magic items and (1/(1-.634) + 1/(1-.4)) = 4.39 times the amount of Ninjutsu items.

Does Bare-Handed Attack Damage affect Fist Weapons?

  • No. It only effects your melee attacks that you do when you don't have a weapon equipped.

How Do Custom Active Skills Work? What does "Certain Active Skills" Mean?

  • Custom Active Skills need to be set on a specific Active Skill from the Skill Customization Menu. See Custom Active Skills for more information.

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