Divine Dragon（桜竜, Sakura Dragon） 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". You will need to perform multiple Deathblows on them in order to defeat them, and filling their Posture Gauge is the only way to accomplish this. However, decreasing their health will make their Posture Gauge deplete slower and build up faster, assisting you in accomplishing this feat.
Divine Dragon Location
- Fountainhead Palace: Found at the top of this area by praying at the altar with flowing water above the "Sanctuary" idol.
- This boss is not optional for three out of four endings.
Divine Dragon Rewards
- Memory: Divine Dragon
- Divine Dragon's Tears
- 12,000 Exp (NG)
- 38,400 Exp (NG +3)
- 103,681 Exp without Kuro's Charm (NG+7/8)
Divine Dragon Strategies
Phase 1 - Old Dragons of the Tree
In the first phase the player doesn't fight the Divine Dragon directly, but the Old Dragons of the Tree (白木の翁たち, White-wooden Old Men) which is a very simple fight. As the enemies move very slowly and do not charge directly at the player.
Avoid direct contact with the enemies, as they cough a poisonous gas. Simply stay away until the trees appear and grapple to stand on top of them. Then using a plunge attack Deathblow on one of the many enemies, preferably aiming at one in the middle of the pack, as the Deathblow causes Sekiro to spin the victim around, dealing massive damage to the others nearby. Repeat this until all enemies are dead.
Phase 2 - Divine Dragon
In the second phase the player finally faces the Divine Dragon (桜竜, Sakura Dragon). It is not possible to directly strike it, and attemping to approach it in close range will cause the Divine Dragon to summon a mighty gust that will push the player far away.
In order to damage the Divine Dragon, the player needs to run towards the trees that have are charged with eletricity (this is easy to spot as they will have a yellowish sparkle on them) and grapple up to them. Once done, Sekiro will be vaulted very high in to the air; when this happens press the attack button (R1/RB/LMB) to hit the dragon with spear of lightning. Repeat this process, being careful not to grab the lightning when he blows Sekiro backwards, otherwise the damage will likely be fatal.
The Divine Dragon has only two attacks: an overhead slam that can be easily avoided by running to either side or blocked; or a perilous ground-level sweep which you need to jump over. Both attacks are long range as they emit shockwaves that reach high distances. Holding down the dodge button to run is the easiest way to avoid its damage, and jumping when it uses the sweep attack.
Once its Posture gauge is full, the trees will vanish, and the player will need to "survive" until they reappear, after about 60 seconds. Keep a safe distance, deflecting, jumping, running and generally avoiding all of the Divine Dragon's agressive attacks until a lightning tree appears again, and then strike him one final time; Sekiro will be launched directly over him, where the player can approach to finish it off with a Deathblow.
Upon defeating the boss, the writing "GRACIOUS GIFT OF TEARS" will appear on the screen. (Gracious Gift of Tear also being the true name of the crimson Mortal Blade)
Attacks & Counters
|Phase 1 - Old Dragons of the Tree|
|Simple Punch||Block or Dodge/Side Step|
|Tree Sprout||Running away|
|Phase 2 - Divine Dragon|
|Overhead Slam||Block or Dodge/Side Step|
Ground-level Sweep (Perilous Attack)
|Jump (jumping over)|
Phase 3 - After depleting the Posture Gauge
|Block, Dodge, Jump, Run - generally avoid|
Divine Dragon Lore
- The Divine Dragon continues the recurring theme of missing its left arm, just like Sekiro, Sculptor and the Demon of Hatred (on his main body, at least - he has a smaller pair of arms higher up on his neck). Being also called Dragon of the Everblossom suggests that the missing arm could be connected to the severed branch brought by Takeru from the Divine Realm - which became the Everblossom tree in the Ashina Castle and is later stolen by Owl.
- Old Dragons come in two versions - coughing grey/white (same color as the mark of stagnation on Sekiro's head) and healthy black (killing healthy ones does not decrease boss healthbar). The big tree appears to be withered and dead during the first phase, but after killing the sick dragons the tree rejuvenates.
- The Old Dragon's hacking/coughing may imply they are a physical manifestation of the spreading Dragonrot (being wooden dragons that are literally rotting) or are at least affected by it.
- The implication is that Sekiro is in fact cutting the rot from the tree (like a surgeon would amputate an infected limb to save the rest of the body), allowing Sekiro to fight the true, healthy Divine Dragon rather than its rotting offshoots.
- The dragon's serpentine design is typical of Japanese dragons which are conventionally connected to water. It is not native to Japan but the amalgamated form of "naga" dragons in the Buddhism legends, "lóng" dragons in the Chinese mythology, and great-snakes in the native Japanese mythology. This design is consistent with the in-game description that the Divine Dragon is originated in the west.
- The dragon is associated with the Sakura Tree
. In Japanese, the Divine Dragon is called Sakura-Ryu (桜竜) or the Dragon of Sakura.
- It can be a symbol of the "new" (non-ancient) elements of the Divine Dragon, as the dragon came from the west and is not an ancient Japanese deity. While cherry blossom (sakura) is now regarded as the national flower of Japan, it was not so until the start of the Heian period (794). Before that, plum blossoms (ume) had been considered as the symbol of Japan. Since Sekiro is set in the 16th century, the divine status of the Divine Dragon as a Japanese god counts only less than 1,000 years, which is far younger than the native gods/goddesses of Japan.
- It may have emerged from Fromsoftware's fascination with the Norse world tree Yggdrasil - and the Tree of Life of Jewish Mysticism , which was equated with the Elixir of Life by 18th century alchemists. Such ideas could have culminated in the massive, misshapen Sakura Tree of The Divine Realm.
- They are called 淤加美 (okami) in Japanese, derived from one of the ancient spellings of Kuraokami, a dragon deity of rain and snow from Japanese mythology, born from the blood of the slain god Kagutsuchi. More modern spellings are a bit more obvious as to what the names supposed to mean: 龗 (okami) means "water dragon" and 闇龗 (kuraokami) means "dark water dragon." It's likely that the Divine Dragon (called the Sakura Dragon in Japanese) is inspired by Kuraokami.
- "Okami" comes from Kuraokami, their lightning bolts come from the Vajra of the Shingon Buddhism of Senpou Temple, which means something like "thunderbolt". The Okami are pale and bluish, consistent with Asian depictions of the dead . The Okami actually take after the Primordial Serpents of Dark Souls , which helps clarify why The Old Dragons of the Tree have turned into nāga. The nobles live in an area overgrown by roots which I believe depicts the Japanese underworld "Ne-no-kuni", which betokens something like "land of roots". The Okami were likely all once human and turned into these beings by imbibing large volumes of Rejuvenating Water. The idea of an aroma of the Divine Realm likely stems from two preceding Dark Souls items: "Fragrant Branch of Yore" and "Aromatic Ooze", of which the latter likely reincarnated as some kind of hideous white slime .
Divine Dragon Notes & Trivia
- The sword that the Divine Dragon wields is based on the seven branched sword, one of the oldest relics of Japan. The sword was originally forged in China (possibly in the East Jin dynasty) and then acquired by the kingdom of Baekje, Korea. Later a Baekje crown-prince presented it to a Japanese emperor/empress. This historical fact matches well with the in-game lore that the Divine Dragon is not native to Japan and originally came from the west.
- The sword that the Divine Dragon wields could also be a reference to the Moonlight Greatsword, a recurring weapon found in multiple previous games by FromSoftware. Both swords have the same color, shoot out similar projectiles and are wielded by a pale dragon without legs (Seath the Scaleless in Dark Souls). The sword has a very glassy look and, given the lightning strikes in the divine realm, it is possible the weapon is actually made from fulgurite (petrified lightning).
- The Divine Dragon is unkillable and its body is described as "eternal". Sekiro instead uses the Mortal Blade to slice into its left tear duct to obtain the Divine Dragon's Tears inside after stunning it with lightning.
- After the final lightning attack, the player has an infinite amount of time to collect the Divine Dragon's Tears. the dragon will never get up, and the player can spend as much time as they want in the divine realm.
- It is completely possible to deflect the non-periolous sword swipes of the dragon and fill it's posture meter. However, it will never be able to go completely full, nullifying the possibility of performing a deathblow on it. Even if Sekiro throws the lighting at it, it will simply not be possible to fill it's bar until the last lighting bolt is thrown.
Divine Dragon Image Gallery