If you’ve seen any of the Ghost of Tsushima trailers, you’ve seen the Kensei Armor, one of the pieces of Mythic Gear scattered across the game. The version in the trailers and this article’s header is the first upgrade, both the main armor and hat.
Acquiring the armor is one of the most involved quests in the game outside of the main story, and it’s based entirely around the duel mechanic: six swordsmen, six duels, the Six Blades of Kojiro.
How to Start the Six Blades of Kojiro Quest
To begin your quest to the Kensei Armor, you need to be in Act 2 of the main story. Head to Umugi Cove hidden in the western forests of the second part of the map. You’ll find a musician playing a shamisen near the back of a bar on the left side of the village.
Once you’ve spoken to the musician and heard his story, you’ll be sent on the next leg of the quest: dueling five Straw Hat Ronin all over the map.
How to Find and Beat the Five Ronin
The Straw Hats you’ll need to duel are all over the main area of Act 2. Their tactics are essentially the same, from movesets to health values.
Where to Find the Six Blades of Kojiro
Duels for this quest have a unique icon on the map: a man with a katana in a battle pose. Their locations are below.
Duel Among the Spider Lillies
This duel is easy enough to spot. The ronin waits just on the west side of the lake in a field of red flowers. On the map itself, the duel location is just north of the Field of the Equinox Flower label.
Duel Under Autumn Leaves
You’ll need to follow the coast to reach this one, as the Straw Hat is at the base of a cliff beneath some orange-leaved trees. The duel is to the southeast of Castle Shimura, your main objective in Act 2.
Duel in the Drowning Marsh
Another simple search. You’ll find this Straw Hat in a fetid marsh on the southern shore of the second area. A sickly white fog clouds the area. Go to the southern end of the Old Kanazawa Marsh to find the duel.
Duel Under Falling Water
This one’s a little tricky, as the ronin is at the bottom of a waterfall cliff. Head to the northern part of the area, and you’ll be able to climb down. The duel location is just east of Lucky Genzo’s Inn.
Duel of Crashing Waves
Another tricky one. You’ll need to head south of the location and make your way down the cliffs to the water’s edge. The duel location is east of the Old Toyotama Hills and the Cloud Ridge Shrine.
How to Beat the Ronin
The ronin here guys are fast, hit hard, and they can be unpredictable.
First, you’ll want to have the Samurai Clan armor you receive as part of Masako Adachi’s questline, upgraded if possible. The armor reduces the damage you take, and at later upgrade levels, it grants you Resolve every time you’re struck.
Make a point to go into each of these fights with a full Resolve meter, as well. You’re probably going to get hit at least once, and even on Normal difficulty, three hits is all it takes for the ronin to take you down.
Hopefully, you’ve been practicing your parries using what we talked about in the our Ghost of Tsushima parry guide. Check it out if you need tips.
The ronin use every attack type in the game, including the blue unblockable that you can parry and the red unblockable you need to dodge. Some of their attacks are stabs you can sidestep, but if they look like they’re going to charge you with their sword at their side, be ready to dodge backward, as this is their tell for a spin attack that will clip you if you’re too close.
If the ronin raise their swords into a standard Stone Stance pose, they’re likely to be using regular attacks with easy parry timing.
The blue stabs come in two varieties: one big attack and three smaller, quicker ones. You can parry either, and I suggest you do, because if you dodge the first poke, the second is fast enough to hit you no matter how much you mash the dodge button.
Play it carefully, and you shouldn’t have too tough a time with the five Straw Hats. Again, the only difference between them is the location of their arenas.
With the five Straw Hats dead, head back to the musician in Umugi Cove, and he’ll reveal Kojiro’s location, the eponymous sixth blade. Here’s the exact spot where the duel takes place.
How to Beat Kojiro
In many ways, the five ronin were training you to fight Kojiro, the owner of the Kensei Armor, and the toughest fight of the six.
His attacks are mostly the same as theirs, but his attacks are all faster. He’s also more likely to parry anything you throw at him, either after a dodge or otherwise.
Parrying and whiff punishing are crucial in the fight, and so be sure to learn all the tells from the five Straw Hats so beating Kojiro doesn’t become a lengthy endeavor. You can also grab several deflection techniques to help you here.
If parrying is out of the question, you have a couple of options. You can learn what attacks to dodge and which to block and only attack when Kojiro presents an opening. You could also interrupt his slower attacks before they land. This second strat staggers Kojiro for a brief period, letting you get in a few swings of your own.
A third, non-parry strategy is to attempt breaking his guard using Stone Stance, but this tactic is only doable if you’ve upgraded the Stone Stance tree all the way. You need the extra speed the final unlock provides.
Don’t get discouraged if the first few fights don’t go your way. Kojiro is a monster, but he’s beatable with speed, skill, and plenty of tenacity.
Once you beat Kojiro, the Kensei Armor is yours. It’s primarily a debuff set, causing your enemies to deal and receive up to 50% more damage from Ghost weapons. It also empowers your Ghost weapons themselves, and increases Resolve gains by up to 30%.
Be sure to change the armor’s appearance with “Triangle” in the Outfit screen if you want the look we saw in the trailers.
White and Black Armor Dye for the Kensei Armor
Take your look to another level by visiting the Black and White Dye Merchants. Both have a special vanity item for the Kensei Armor. Check out our guides to the White Dye and Black Dye Merchants to discover their locations.
White Dyed Kensei Armor
Black Dyed Kensei Armor
And that’s how you get your hands on the Kensei Armor and complete the Six Blades of Kojiro Mythic quest. It’s an incredibly useful set, and it looks great, as well, so show it off in photo mode. Check out our other Ghost of Tsushima guides, as well as our review.