Sekiro Axe Prosthetic Guide: Get The Shield-Smashing Tool
Smash some shields.
In Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, some enemies are tougher to deal with than others, with a high amount of Posture that makes them tough to defeat. That's where the Shinobi Prosthetic and its various tools come in, providing you options on the battlefield beyond your sword that can exploit enemies' specific weaknesses. One prosthetic tool in particular, the Axe of the Monkey, is perfect for destroying enemy Posture and smashing their shields.
You won't start out with many tools for the Shinobi Prosthetic in Sekiro, though--you have to locate them in the world and bring them back to the Sculptor in the Dilapidated Temple in order to access them. That means that plenty of them are easy to miss, and not finding the right prosthetics can at the right time can put you at a serious disadvantage against some of the game's tough bosses and mid-bosses. You'll also lack the means to defeat some of the more irritating regular enemies until you find the right tools.
The Shinobi Axe is one of the early prosthetics that you'll definitely want, since it's great for smashing through shields and the wooden hats of the small but tough Senpou assassins. If you don't search around enough, though, you can walk right past the axe, and that'll make your progress a little more irritating. Here's everything you need to know to snag this early prosthetic tool. While you're at it, you might want to learn where to grab the Flame Vent, which will help you take down the Chained Ogre boss, and the Firecrackers, which are great for fighting Gyoubu. And check out our Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice review, and our rundowns of how death works and how to cure Dragonrot.
Visit Ashina Outskirts To Find The Estate
The Shinobi Axe is actually located in the Hirata Estate, a place you can only access through a specific quest item that lets you visit one of the Wolf's old memories. The item you need is a bell that you can get from a character early on in the first area you visit, the Ashina Outskirts. Head to the Outskirts Wall--Gate Path area, past the samurai mid-boss you'll fight near when you arrive. In the next, more open area, you'll find lots of enemies patrolling around, and several blasted-out houses. Inside one is an old woman who thinks you're her son when you speak to her. If you let her believe it, she'll give you a bell and ask you to make an offering to Buddha.
That bell is the quest item you're looking for. Take it back to the Dilapidated Temple and offer it to the Buddha statue near the Sculptor. That'll give you access to the Hirata Estate level three years in the past.
Make Your Way Through The Estate
Once you're in the Estate, you'll need to progress to a specific area. Fight through the first section until you reach the Idol marked "Estate Path." It's this section where you'll find the Shinobi Axe, although you'll have to do a little work to reach it.
At the idol, you'll be on a path that leads through some enemies to a closed gate. To get around the gate, you'll need to hop over the wall on the right of the path and head past some huts and houses. If you've already found the Flame Vent prosthetic, you'll need to go past that to get to the Axe. Advance through the yards until you pass an area with a row of huts, where a bunch of enemies are hanging out by a campfire. The path ahead of the campfire will take you back onto the main road, on the other side of the gate you couldn't open. You should pass an injured samurai who tells you the Shinobi Axe is located in a nearby shrine.
Finding The Shrine
As you pass the samurai and come back out on the main road, you'll be able to turn either left or right. To the right, you'll see two enemies standing at a gate where you can eavesdrop on them. Instead, turn left, heading toward the locked gate. Jump up on the wall on your left and you'll see two more enemies talking just beyond. Picking up their conversation reveals they're talking about burning a nearby building, which they call a shrine. That's the place you're looking for.
Drop down and take out those two guys, then open the small square building to find the Shinobi Axe inside. You'll need to return to an Idol Statue so you can travel back to the Dilapidated Temple and get the Sculptor to fit the Axe to your prosthetic, but you can do that quickly by opening that locked gate--it opens from the side you're on, giving you a quick path back to the Idol.
Once you have the Axe, use it to stagger baddies with a big, powerful attack, and to smash anybody's shields. You'll find those shield-wielding enemies just up ahead on the main path through Hirata, so you're going to want to get the Axe ready to go as soon as you can.
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