Corrupted Monk

Location Ashina Depths, Fountainhead Palace
Deathblow Markers 1 (Illusion Version); 3 (True Version)
Weakness(es) Lazulite Axe; Fistful of AshSnap Seed (Mibu Village Version)
Shinobi Firecracker (Fountainhead Palace Version)
Reward(s) Memory: Corrupted Monk (Mibu Village)
Mibu Breathing Technique (Mibu Village)
Memory: True Monk (Fountainhead Palace)
Dragon's Tally Board (Fountainhead Palace)

Corrupted Monk (real name Yao) (破戒僧, Sinful Priest or Corrupted Monk)  is a Boss in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice. Bosses are special Enemies that feature a special display on-screen when defeated, such as "Immortality Severed" or "Shinobi Execution".

The Corrupted Monk can be fought twice throughout the game: once with just one health bar and then again with three depending on the chosen ending. 

Corrupted Monk Location

  • Ashina Depths - Water Mill: At the very end of Mibu Village, guarding the entrance to the Wedding Cave. Defeating this boss is required to collect the Shelter Stone.
  • Fountainhead Palace: She will be faced at the start of this area. Defeating this boss is required to proceed further into the palace.
  • Depending on the player's choices throughout the game (i.e. what ending the player is pursuing), the fight against the True Corrupted Monk at Fountainhead Palace may be automatically skipped entirely and inaccessible, making the boss optional. The Ghost Version found in Ashina Depths is required regardless of the ending desired. 

Corrupted Monk Rewards

Mibu Village (Corrupted Monk Illusion)

Fountainhead Palace (True Corrupted Monk)



Corrupted Monk Strategies

Video Strategies



Strategy Writeup

At Mibu Village

The player must fight the single health bar illusion version in Mibu Village of the Ashina Depths to collect the Shelter Stone in order to proceed through the story. She is not an Apparition type enemy, so Divine Confetti will not affect her however she is an illusion so, Snap Seed, Fistful of Ash and/or Lazulite Axe can be used to briefly stun her; with that in mind, it is possible to perform stunlocks and prevent any counter attack. If the player has the Phantom Kunai with swarming upgrade, this does a lot of damage. With the tanto to provide another 15 emblems, the Monk can be brought to about 25% health with Phantom Kunai alone. It may still be worth trying without the swarming upgrade.

In this fight, the Corrupted Monk has a lot of health and takes very little Posture damage. Because of this, the only effective way to defeat her is to chip away her health by attacking when she is wide open, usually after her many swipe attacks. She has two perilous attacks, the sweep can be jumped, and a thrust that can be Mikiri Countered. Also, the Monk tends to use single big moves when Wolf is at mid range, jumping in for one air hit and two ground hits (let the landing cancel the air attack lag), then jumping away to mid range works well.

Many of her attacks have high ending lag, meaning the player can use this to their advantage and deal direct damage as she recovers. She has two jumping attacks one with a sweep and another with an overhead slash, which the player can run below and attack her exposed back; for the overhead slash, the player can also sidestep and strike as she lands.

One of her most dangerous attacks is a upwards slash that goes through Sekiro's defenses, meaning it cannot be blocked; however it can be deflected, though the timing is very precise. Another attack that should be avoided is a continuous spinning attack with the Naginata, which can quickly exhaust Sekiro's Posture gauge; since the area where she is fought is wide open, the player can run away when she performs this attack. She tends to perform this attack when away from the player, and has a higher tendency to do so if the player uses any consumable (such as the Healing Gourd).

The player will receive the Memory: Corrupted Monk and Mibu Breathing Technique Latent Skill upon defeating this boss.

Corrupted Monk in Mibu Village Moveset Video

At Mibu Village (deathblow strat)

(Works in earlier versions, need to confirm on v1.03) On top of the stairs on the boss stage, right besides the stone door, there are 2 monoliths (one on each side). Get the monk close to one of the monoliths with her back facing it. Use a firecracker to stun/Bait her into a jump attack and run towards the monolith. Jump towards the monolith and use the monolith to double jump backwards towards the monk. Lock on mid air and the aerial deathblow red circle should appear. If done right, you can instantly down her from full health to 0.

At Fountainhead Palace

The True Corrupted Monk will be fought at the entrance to the Fountainhead Palace. She must be defeated in order to proceed further into the palace. The boss will have 3 health bars that must be removed to be defeated.

Phase 1

This phase is very similar to her illusion fight at Mibu Village, however, she takes significantly more Posture damage, which makes deflecting far more effective. She also has less health, considering there are 3 health bars. The same strategy of  the Mibu Village fight can be employed here, as she has the same attacks. She tends to use her perilous attacks more often, though; additionally, she doesn't use her whirlwind attack until the third phase.

In this phase and all subsequent ones, she is susceptible to the Shinobi Firecracker, which can be used to briefly stun her; however, this is best used on the third phase.

Phase 2

At the start of this phase, the Corrupted Monk will disappear, and the area will be enveloped by mist. She then proceeds to three shadow illusions of herself to attack the player in rapid succession. The shadows disappear in between attacks, making lock-on difficult. The shadows do not need to be defeated in order to the illusion to be dispelled; the Monk will eventually end the illusion and return to fight the player. However, she may cast the illusion again if the player is unable to deal the second Deathblow swiftly. If you are having trouble avoiding the shadows, killing yourself with a Bite Down pill will instantly dispel them.

It is possible to perform an aerial Deathblow on the Corrupted Monk as she casts or dispels the illusion by positioning Sekiro on the tallest tree near the temple and jumping down when the Corrupted Monk appears in a squatted over position. Doing this will immediately end second phase. This is best done the moment after the player Deathblows her in the first phase, by grappling the nearest tree branch and proceed to grapple to highest branch, located on the left side of the bridge (with your back to the Idol). From there, look down to see the true Monk and standing in the middle of the bridge; if so, plunge attack her from here. This branch is also extremely useful for dodging the spirits she summons during her second phase, as only the first one seems to be able to hit you there, and not often.

The rest of her moveset remains the same as the first phase; so employ the same tactics.

Phase 3

In this phase, a demon centipede will erupt from her body through her neck. She retains most of the moveset from the first phase, but is far more aggressive than before; on the other hand some of her attacks are a bit more telegraphed and predictable. In this phase she tends to use overhead attacks as a finishing move.

Notably, she gains a new perilous attack where the demon centipede spews toxic goo in front of her, which can inflict Terror. It is advised to sidestep or use the jump kick when she uses this and retaliate, as this attack has a quite lengthy ending lag. Another attack involving the centipede is a toxic cloud; however this is not a perilous attack.

In this phase she uses the whirlwind attack seen in her fight at Mibu Village. Simply run away when she starts spinning.

She is very susceptible to the Shinobi Firecracker in this phase. Simply use the Firecracker, hit the Corrupted Monk 3 to 4 times, and use the Firecracker again, essentially stunlocking her.

Living Force with the flamethrower also works very well; the burning state procs easily and does significant posture damage.

After depleting her third bar, make sure to perform both Deathblows when prompted to finish her for good. The player will receive the Memory: True Monk and the Dragon's Tally Board Key Item upon defeating this boss.

"Cheesing" at Fountainhead Place

As of update 1.03 you cannot deathblow the Corrupted Monk at the beginning of the fight. While the fight against Corrupted Monk in Fountainhead Palace isn't a particularly difficult, there's an extremely easy way to deal with the boss by exploiting its AI. If the player grapples the high tree behind the Corrupted Monk, a Deathblow can be used on her, essentially allowing to skip the second phase. This can be done as soon as the second phase starts, as she will disappear to summon her shadow illusions and return to the same starting point when dispelling it.

In the third phase, since Corrupted Monk doesn't gain resistance to "stun" effects like the Shinobi Firecracker and the Fistful of Ash after being hit, you can cheese the boss by stunlocking her with these items and hitting her between them (firecracker, 2 hits, firecracker, 2 hits, firecracker, 2 hits, etc.) until you deplete her posture or health bar.

Attacks & Counters

Attack Counter
Phase 1
Thrust Attack Mikiri counter
Example Attack Example Counter
Phase 2
Illusion attack Deathblow when revealing herself
Example Attack Example Counter


















Corrupted Monk Lore

"A priestess donning the mask of a guardian deity."

Lore notes, information on folklore, etc go here

Lore theories should be clearly marked as such.

Corrupted Monk Notes & Trivia

  • The illusion version of this boss is one of two bosses that doesn't end with a special execution.
  • Upon confronting the Memory: True Monk in order to increase Sekiro's attack power, it is revealed that she was the guardian of the Fountainhead Palace before being possessed, and that her name was Priestess Yao.
  • She is based on a Japanese folk story of Yao Bikuni (八百比丘尼, "eight-hundred (years) Buddhist priestess"). The story begins with a fisherman who once caught a strange fish with a human face (Japanese mermaid-like creature called Ningyo, who's flesh is said to grant a long life). He served it's meat to guests, but the guests were wise and hid the meat in their robes to avoid eating it. One man was drunk on sake, and returning home he thoughlessly gave the meat to his daughter and she ate it. The daughter would later marry, but she stayed young as her husband grew old and died. After marrying and widowing again and again she eventually became a Buddhist nun and wandered various countries. But everyone she knew always died, she came to hate her immortality and her life was filled with emptiness and suffering. At the age of 800 years she finally died despite her immortality, having simply lost the will to live. The story is know as a cautionary tale for those who fear death and wish for eternal life.
  • The Corrupted Monk is found during the beta version of the game, which was playable at E3, Gamescom and TGS.

Corrupted Monk Image Gallery

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corrupted-monk-apparition-gallery-7-wiki-guide-300px corrupted-monk-gallery-8-wiki-guide-300px


    • 11 May 2019 22:02  

      This was a bit annoying, but the cheese mentioned in the comments and description has helped, using the aerial assassination in phase 2 and the ash/firecracker in phase 3 made it cake. Here is me doing phase 3:

      • Anonymous

        11 May 2019 00:22  

        Just fought the illusory monk on my second playthrough, and it must have been the longest single phase boss fight I’ve ever fought. I must have spent about 20 minutes, all my gourds, pellets and rice. I did play pretty defensively and only used snap seeds but I don’t remember the fight being so dragged out nearly as much the first time round

        • Anonymous

          05 May 2019 18:11  

          Not sure what's wrong with me, but i thought this fight was incredibly fun. The last phase gave me some trouble and generally i think i could have done better. But overall it felt really fun and rewarding. I would even say it was one of my favorite boss fights.

          • Anonymous

            05 May 2019 12:50  

            At the Mibu village, the divine confetti definitely does work, visibly deals more damage. The mist raven attachment was very good for this fight, allows you to get behind the monk consistently and deal vitality damage quickly.

            • Anonymous

              02 May 2019 02:48  

              For third phase of true monk and spirit monk, instead of running away from the spin, go behind her and she cant track fast enough to get you. The dancer does the same***** in ds3 and you do the same exact thing to avoid it as well.

              • Anonymous

                30 Apr 2019 13:17  

                I just want this game to be over at this point. I can’t stand fighting this chick, I just got done hating trying survive owl, and before that hating fighting a giant ape with and without his head and his friend. I enjoyed learning to beat the seven Spears guy but I just am grinding it through at this point. I don’t even want to finish at this stage and I should have just sided with owl.

                • Anonymous

                  29 Apr 2019 02:04  

                  Incase someone struggles with the Illusion in Mibu Village: Using chasing slice after staying out of the combos will let you safely wait out the danger and then get in quick for an attack, damaging vitality pretty quickly

                  • Anonymous

                    28 Apr 2019 08:28  

                    I used yashiriku's sugar just as the third stage started and then stun locked the monk with a long firecracker and was able to 3-4 hits with each use. It looks like you're about to get but the long firecracker stopped the attack and I never received any damage or interruption.

                    • Anonymous

                      26 Apr 2019 11:51  

                      Since 1.03, the first phase doesn't seem to be skippable (after several tries), while second phase skip still works. It's not too bad either way, but it's interesting how they seem to have changed it. If anyone knows the truth let me know.

                      • Anonymous

                        25 Apr 2019 18:28  

                        I'm highly skeptical of the "Divine Confetti" point in the strat section. After testing with and without, I've found there is a good deal more damage done (almost x2) with Divine Confetti applied.

                        • Anonymous

                          22 Apr 2019 22:41  

                          Just dealt with the one in Mibu on 1st playthrough (although far from first try), no seeds, no confetti, no sugars, but you need Mortal Draw (MD). When she does her 5 hit twirly: delfect the 1st 4, then dodge into her guard and hit her 2x with MD. Same with her triple sweeps, deflect the first two, and forward step into her guard to dodge the third, then hit her with 2x MD. Dodge away from her unblockable sweep, but deflect her next slash(es), and MD her. If she goes for her overhead leap strike, dodge to the side, and hit her again with MD. If you have trouble telling if she will leap-strike or leap-slash, Simply deflect and wait for her next attacks. While this takes some time, it is effective since she has a clear rhythm, and….isn't cheesy for those who care :)

                          • Anonymous

                            21 Apr 2019 08:14  

                            I've only fought the illusion version in Mibu thus far, so this might not hold true in the real version fight if the timing, range, area of damage, and/or attack cues change...regarding the big spin attack, it telegraphs well ahead of time and the guide recommends running away, but it is actually fairly easy to evade by repeatedly dodging sideways through the blade (need to dodge ~5 times, but as long as you get the first dodge, the rest are super easy cause it times out near perfect with Sekiro's post dodge recovery), and, given the boss's recovery lag after the attack, this method gives extra time to punish her compared to running away and waiting it out

                            • Anonymous

                              20 Apr 2019 13:33  

                              Holy crap, the Lazulite Axe knocks out a third of her health right off the bat if you perform the full 3-hit combo. Easiest to do if you dodge her leaping slam, then immediately charge up the axe.

                              • 17 Apr 2019 11:08  

                                Phase 2nd if you are quick enough, you can deathblow for free by simple jumping from the tree toward the middle of the bridge. Just looking for red dot appears then attack.

                                • 16 Apr 2019 19:45  

                                  manage to defend against those shadow versions by sprinting to one of the walls at the edge of the bridge and put my back to the wall, and full guard up. two would hit, but the jumping slash would miss

                                  • Anonymous

                                    15 Apr 2019 12:58  

                                    If you don't cheese the boss there is a supereasy way to avoid the illusions in P2. Grapple the giant tree that's on the right side of where you entered the arena and place yourself on the branch and close to the treetrunk. Keep your guard up facing towards the cliff. The illusions won't reach unless they spawn right between the tree and the cliff (hence the guarding). Then you just wait for the original to return while taking the chance to heal up or use other items.

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