So, you’ve decided to play Nioh 2. Commiserations. The first hard stop to the progress of any would-be samurai in medieval Japan is the Enki - an imposing monkey Yokai who wields a deadly spear and a ferocious temper.
Despite appearing from nowhere in a puddle of darkness, the Enki isn’t actually a boss in Nioh 2. It isn’t even a mid-boss either. The Enki is just a regular enemy - a tough one - but still a normal Yokai you will encounter multiple times throughout the rest of the game.
That means you need to learn how to beat them effectively. The main skills this fight teaches you in the early game are what kinds of attacks you can block, and how to use your Burst Counter abilities in a tight spot.
How to beat the Enki in Nioh 2
I’ve embedded a video of me playing this fight on my first blind run of Nioh 2 - it’s not perfect, but gives you the gist of what needs to be done.
The key to this fight is blocking. Despite being twice the size of a silverback gorilla, you can actually block most of the Enki’s attacks with your primary weapon very easily. This goes for a lot of the enemies in Nioh 2 - even bosses. Don’t be scared to throw up a block in a pinch.
With the speed and pressure the Enki puts you under, it's very easy to panic and get squished. Know that even at this early stage your character has enough in their locker to overcome this test - keep calm, and look for the patterns.
As for strategy, try to stay on the edge of the range of his three hit melee combo. You can block all three hits, but it will exhaust your stamina. But you don’t need to actively dodge either. If you’re at the far end of the Enki’s attack range, you can side step the final thrust of his combos with just your normal walk.
You can then dash in for a hit, then dash out, but that’s risky.
When he gets up on his spear and throws, this is your main opening. You can block the spear throw or step to the side. I don’t actually do it in the video, but it’s super safe to dash in and attack him as he rolls towards you as he lands.
You other main opportunities are Burst Counters.
There are three Burst Counters he can do: One where he twirls his spear around before he unleashes a long overhead slam. One where he beats the ground viciously with his spear. And one where he goes full WWE and does a body slam.
At this point in the game, you can try and interrupt the first two easily with a Burst Counter of your own - the timing of the third is a little trickier and I just tend to dodge it.
One attack to watch out for is the Enki’s dark realm grab. This is where his hand fuzzes black and white. These attacks from all enemies are unblockable, so back way off when it comes out.
Finally, in the tight space you encounter the Enki, spacing can be difficult. Know that you can roll (double press dash) or sprint (hold dash) forward past the Enki to reposition yourself when it’s safe to do so. This stops you getting backed into a corner.