This page in our guide to Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice contains the description of Return. This is a secret ending that requires the player to complete a series of additional actions. Read this page to learn how to unlock it, what are the related actions, and which bosses you have to defeat.
- List of actions required for Return ending
- Reaching the final bosses
- Final boss 1: Genichiro, Way of Tomoe
- Final boss 2: Isshin, the Sword Saint
- Choosing Return ending after reaching Kuro
List of actions required for Return ending
Encounter with Great Shinobi - Owl
You can start preparations for this ending after you reach the game's finale - after collecting all items for Kuro. Go back to Ashina Castle. The building is under attack. You need to go through the rooms again. Reach the castle's rooftop - the same place where you fought with Genichiro Ashina.
This time, Wolf will meet his foster father - Great Shinobi - Owl. Speak with him and then choose the second dialog option - Stay loyal to Kuro.
Boss fight: Great Shinobi - Owl
This decision will trigger a fight with Great Shinobi - Owl. The complete strategy for this fight is in the Bosses chapter. Below you can find the most important information about this duel:
- The boss has two red dots meaning you need to perform two Deathblows on him.
- Focus on dodging Owl's regular and poisoning attacks.
- Owl can throw shuriken at you and he can perform a leap combined with an attack. Dodge to the side and use this opportunity to attack the boss. We recommend using the Mortal Draw skill.
- Once the second phase starts, the boss will start using smoke bombs. Move away from the smoke (reduces visibility) and look for the boss.
Great Shinobi - Owl will drop Aromatic Branch.
Unlock access to the Fountainhead Palace
You need to unlock the final location - Fountainhead Palace. All the steps necessary for unlocking this location are described on How to enter the Fountainhead Palace? page. Below you can find the most important steps:
- Meet with Kuro and Emma.
- Tell Kuro you have four quest items - Aromatic Branch, Lotus of the Palace (found in Sunken Valley), Shelter Stone (Ashina Depths), and the Mortal Blade (Senpou Temple).
- Speak to Emma again and interact with the incense.
- Go back to Ashina Depths and enter the Wedding Cave.
- Find the tent and pray inside it. Wolf will be transported to the Fountainhead Palace by a giant.
Boss fight: True Corrupted Monk
True Corrupted Monk stays in the first area of the Fountainhead Palace. The complete strategy for this fight can be found in the Bosses chapter. Below you can find the most important information about this duel:
- Two out of the three red dots can be destroyed by jumping down on the Monk from the trees and performing a stealth Deathblow. However, these attacks must be done at the right moment - not too early, not too late.
- The last part is a typical fight. Avoid the Monk's blade and her poisonous clouds.
- The easiest way to make the boss vulnerable to your attacks is to use Shinobi Firecracker. Use this item to get a chance to attack her a few times.
Go through the Fountainhead Palace
The detailed walkthrough for the Fountainhead Palace is in the Walkthrough section. You don't have to perform any special actions here to unlock the ending. If you want to, you can avoid all regular enemies and focus only on reaching Sculptor's Idols found in this location.
The only mini-boss you have to kill Okami Leader Shizu. You will find her right after going past the Great Sakura Sculptor's Idol. You can kill her fast by using the grappling hook on the hook points and then attacking her with regular attacks. With Shizue dead, you are now able to swim in the large water body in the Fountainhead Palace. Swim through the underwater tunnel. Remember to avoid Great Colored Carp's attacks.
Reach Palace Grounds Sculptor's Idol and stop exploring the Fountainhead Palace for a moment. This is very important because you have to complete a few actions first before you face the Divine Dragon.
Give Holy Chapter: Infested to Divine Child of Rejuvenation
Divine Child of Rejuvenation is in the Inner Sanctum in Senpou Temple.
Holy Chapter: Infested is a quest item received from the monk in the Main Hall in Senpou Temple. This is the same location you visited in order to move to the Halls of Illusion and fight Folding Screen Monkeys. Give the book to the Divine Child of Rejuvenation.
Receive rice from the Divine Child of Rejuvenation three times
Ask the Divine Child of Rejuvenation for Rice during your first meeting - this item is an alternate way of restoring health points in Sekiro.
Place the Rice on the Quick Items bar. Go to any location and eat the Rice. Return to the Divine Child of Rejuvenation twice to receive more Rice.
Use Persimmon to heal the Divine Child of Rejuvenation
When you go back for the fourth share, you discover that the Divine Child of Rejuvenation has become ill. You can heal her with a Persimmon. This item is sold by Shugendo Memorial Mob located near Shugendo Sculptor's Idol in Senpou Temple - more information about his location in the Merchants chapter.
Buy a Persimmon for 30 sen and give it to the Divine Child of Rejuvenation. Besides another share of Rice, you will also get a quest item - Rice for Kuro.
Give Kuro rice
Travel to Kuro's Chamber in Ashina Castle and give the boy Rice received from the Divine Child of Rejuvenation. Kuro has a surprise for Wolf. Rest and go back to the boy.
Speak to Kuro and you will receive Sweet Rice Ball. Place it on the Quick Items bar and eat immediately. Go back to the Divine Child of Rejuvenation. Tell her you gave Kuro the Rice and that you received a Sweet Rice Ball.
Meet the Divine Child of Rejuvenation in the Halls of Illusion
Leave the Inner Sanctum and then go back to this location. The Divine Child of Rejuvenation should disappear. Look for the beam of light presented in the picture above - it should be somewhere in the Inner Sanctum. Interact with it to travel to Halls of Illusion (the same location where you fought Folding Screen Monkeys).
Move forward from the starting point. The Divine Child of Rejuvenation is near the central area with the large tree. Listen to the conversation - you learn about a secret ending. Also, Wolf must find another book.
Get Holy Chapter: Dragon's Return
Leave Halls of Illusion and use the Sculptor's Idol to travel to Main Hall in Senpou Temple. Leave the building through the side exit. The entrance to the caves is nearby. Enter the caves and start exploring them. Watch out for monsters. Reach the opposite end of the caves. Look for a vertical climbable wall.
You have to find the monk's corpse in the cave (see the picture above). Examine it and you will get Holy Chapter: Dragon's Return. Give it to the Divine Child of Rejuvenation - she is back in the large building in the Inner Sanctum.
Give the Divine Child of Rejuvenation two snake viscera
You now have to bring the Divine Child of Rejuvenation two quest items. There is a chance that you may already have them in the inventory - they can be obtained through careful exploration even before you reach the game's finale. The first item is called Fresh Serpent Viscera. Check the walkthrough section for Senpou Temple - Additional activities at the Senpou Temple section. Below you can find a short summary of the actions you have to perform:
- Use Puppeteer Ninjutsu on the enemy standing near the kite in Senpou Temple.
- Reach the place where you can use the grappling hook to move towards the kite.
- Go through the newly unlocked part of Senpou Temple (you will need to use the grappling hook a few times).
- Reach the Great Serpent's lair. Jump down on the creature to kill it.
- You get the quest item by killing the Serpent.
The second required item is called Dried Serpent Viscera. Check the walkthrough section for Sunken Valley - Additional areas: Polluted river and the cave with Great Serpent section. Below you can find a short summary of the actions you have to perform:
- Jump down to the area with the polluted river. Look for the entrance to the large cave - it is near the Toxic Memorial Mob.
- Go through the cave. You will reach the Great Serpent's lair.
- Go left and sneak up on a single monkey. Use Puppeteer Ninjutsu on it.
- Wait for the allied monkey to distract the Serpent. Then, you have to use the grappling hook on the bridge. Enter the building that was guarded by the Serpent.
- The quest item lies on the statue's hands.
Get Frozen Tears from the Divine Child of Rejuvenation
Bring both quest items to the Divine Child of Rejuvenation. Leave the location for a brief moment. When you go back, stand near the locked door to the building and eavesdrop. You learn that the Child is currently eating Persimmons she received from you.
Leave the Inner Sanctum once again. Go back and speak with the Divine Child of Rejuvenation. You receive Frozen Tears - this is the most important item for Return ending.
Going back to the Fountainhead Palace and boss fight: Divine Dragon
Go back to the Fountainhead Palace after you get Frozen Tears from the Divine Child of Rejuvenation. You can't do that after you kill the Divine Dragon. Travel to Palace Grounds Sculptor's Idol and then move to Sanctuary Sculptor's Idol. Pray in the sanctuary. The full description of that fight is in the Bosses chapter. Below you can find the most important information about this fight:
- When the fight starts, focus on attacking Old Dragons of the Tree. Use every chance you get to use the grappling hook and pull yourself towards the tree. After that, jump down on any of the enemies and perform a Deathblow. This will cause a shockwave.
- Once the fight with the boss starts, run to the left or the right to avoid shockwaves. You also have to jump over sweeps.
- Use the grappling hook to move towards the "glowing" trees. When you get covered in thunders, turn towards the boss while you are mid-air and send a lightning bolt at the enemy (press the attack button).
- When the last phase starts, focus on avoiding Divine Dragon's attacks. Wait for the opportunity to use the grappling hook on the tree that was hit with a lightning bolt. After a successful attack, run on the Dragon's weapon to finish the creature off.
One of the rewards for this fight is Divine Dragon's Tears.
Reaching the final bosses
After defeating the Divine Dragon, Wolf is teleported to Ashina Castle. Go to Kuro's Room and speak with Emma. She will give you the Secret Passage Key. Go through the window behind Emma. You don't have to fight with enemies and optional mini-bosses in Ashina Castle. Instead, focus on reaching Ashina Reservoir. Keep jumping down on the rooftops and use the grappling hook a few times. The smoke coming out from some rooftops will point you the direction.
When you are at the bottom, look for a side passage leading to Ashina Reservoir Sculptor's Idol. Turn left and use the grappling hook. You have to reach the area below the large bridge (the one you crossed to reach Abandoned Dungeon).
The picture above shows your destination. This is a new Sculptor's Idol called Near Secret Passage. Use the key you got from Emma to open the door. Follow the path to reach the glade where you will participate in the final two duels.
Final boss 1: Genichiro, Way of Tomoe
The first out of the two final bosses is Genichiro, Way of Tomoe. This fight is similar to the one you had with Genichiro Ashina at the top of Ashina Castle. The biggest difference is that the "new" Genichiro is using Black Mortal Blade. His attack deals a lot of damage and has a great reach. To avoid it, you can run around the boss and attack him from a side or from the back while he is using the Mortal Blade.
Run around one of the larger rocks to make this fight easier. The boss won't be able to shoot you with his bow. You can also use these rocks to hide from Genichiro's thrust. Attack him after he hits the rock. You only need to perform a single Deathblow on Genichiro. Try to lose as less health as possible and try to save the Quick Items. Once Genichiro is dead, the game will start another boss fight. Your next opponent is Isshin. You can't rest nor replenish your supplies.
Final boss 2: Isshin, the Sword Saint
The second final boss is Isshin, the Sword Saint. He has three red dots meaning that this fight has three phases. The first stage is the most difficult. Shadowrush is the best for this phase. Use it every time Isshin ends his combo. It is important to know where to jump backward after using this skill - if you don't do that, you will get hit by Isshin's sword. Watch out for his ranged attacks (shockwaves) and abilities that let him get quickly near Wolf.
As for the second and the third phase, the safest thing to do is to keep running to the side and wait for the boss to use his powerful attack combined with a jump. Run towards him and attack. After that, move away from Isshin and continue running around the glade. This is a time-consuming method but you won't have to risk a direct confrontation with Isshin.
Choosing Return ending after reaching Kuro
Once both bosses are dead, approach Kuro. This is where you will choose the ending. Return ending requires you to give Kuro Divine Dragon's Tears and Frozen Tears.
It is possible to have one or two extra options on the list. Be sure that you have selected the right one that will lead to the ending of your choice.