Onimusha: Warlords
Dark Realm FAQ/Walkthrough

By Brian Mills ďDarkBlade22Ē
version 2.0 (1-24-2005)
e-mail bmgamfrk22@alltel.net


Version History
---------------

version 2.0 (1-24-05) - added a section on weapons

version 1.0 (9-19-04) - completed walkthrough, and ready for submission

version 0.4 (9-18-04) - started walkthrough, and added everything up to the
                        monster list


Contents
--------
1. Introduction
2. Controls
3. Things To Know
4. Knowing Your Weapons
5. Monsters
6. Items
7. Walkthrough
8. Superior Ranking - The Effect of the Dark Realm
9. Thanks
10. Copyright


1. Introduction
---------------
Hello, and welcome to the Onimusha: Warlords Dark Realm FAQ/walkthrough. My
name is DarkBlade22. This is the second of the FAQs that I am writing for the
Dark Realms in the Onimusha games. Hopefully someone will be able to get some
help from this.

The Dark Realm is something that has become a mainstay in each Onimusha game.
They are included as an extra challenge for the player, with a big reward for
those who can make it through. In Onimusha: Warlords, there is only one, but
going through it can have a big impact on your game. This walkthrough will
take the player through each level, showing you what to expect and what to
look for, and will show you just how the Dark Realm will ultimately affect
your game.


2. Controls
-----------
Here are the controls for playing as Samanosuke:

 - start - Opens inventory screen.
 - select - Pauses the game.
 - control pad - Use to move Samanosuke.
 - triangle button - Use magic attack. Also cancels selections.
 - circle button - Hold to absorb souls.
 - x button - Use to confirm a selection.
 - square button - Use to attack.
 - R1 - Use to go into an attack stance. Also changes displays in inventory.
 - R2 - Use to make a 180 degree turn.
 - L1 - Hold to block. Also changes displays in inventory.
 - L2 - not used
 - left analog stick (L3) - not used
 - right analog stick (R3) - Press to display map.


3. Things to Know
-----------------
 - While you can enter the Dark Realm after obtaining the Evil Plate, you may
   want to wait until later in the game, until you are about to enter the last
   area. This way, your weapons and armor will be more powerful, and the Dark
   Realm will be easier to traverse.
 - All this information was obtained on Easy mode, and checked again on Normal
   mode. The number of enemies should stay the same regardless of what mode
   you are playing.
 - On one playthrough, I accidentally skipped a Flourite, only to find it in
   the next treasure box instead of the original item. When obtaining items in
   the Dark Realm, make sure you get every item so that you donít miss out on
   anything.
 - When in a room with reynaldos, the number you see is a base number, and
   does not include any clones that may be produced.
 - If you are shooting for Superior rank, be careful of how much damage you
   take. You canít use any medicines, meaning that you are limited to herbs
   and yellow souls.


4. Knowing Your Weapons
-----------------------
The further you get into the Dark Realm, the more important your swords'
abilities will become. Using the right weapon will determine if you get
through unscathed, or if you'll end up using a valuable herb to heal yourself.
There are three main weapons you can use, each of which you will have by the
time you enter the Dark Realm. Each weapon also comes with an orb, which
provides invaluable magic power. Here are their abilities.

 - Raizen - The first weapon you get is a regular sword. It has average
            abilities, and is a good all-around weapon, useful for all but the
            biggest demons.
 - Shiden - This orb's magic attack unleashes a lightning attack against one
            enemy, and is useful when you want to target a single big enemy.

 - Enryuu - The second weapon is a broadsword. It is heavier than the Raizen,
            so it is slower, making it not as good an all-around weapon.
            However, it can knock enemies down, which combined with its power
            makes it ideal for taking on bigger enemies.
 - Kouen -  This orb's magic attack sends a wave of fire at enemies in a
            straight line. Use lock-on to pick an enemy to aim at, because the
            magic attack is otherwise hard to aim.

 - Shippuu - The final weapon is a double-bladed weapon that Samanosuke spins
             around. Its low damage power is made up by its quickness. It is
             ideal in battles with small enemies and groups of enemies.
 - Arashi -  The Shippuu's usefulness to groups extends to the orb's magic
             attack, in which a whirlwind is created to take out many enemies
             at once. Save this magic power for lower in the realm.

Take advantage of your weapons in respect to each level of the Dark Realm.
When using your magic, you will want to save power for the later levels, so
you can take out enemies quickly. Saving as much energy and as many herbs as
you can is a major requirement for S rank, and is important for the final
battles, so learn each weapon and use it effectively.


5. Monsters
-----------
The names of the monsters in this section were taken from the Bradygames
Onimusha strategy guide, by Dan Birlew. I am using them in order to provide
each monster with an easy description.
These are the monsters that you will encounter in the Dark Realm:

 - zombies - These are your basic enemies. They attack you with swords, and
             are easily defeated.

 - ninjas - These enemies leap around the room, and attack with blades.

 - red knight - These are big demons, with red armor. They attack with big
                swords, and can also grab you and choke you. They are tougher
                to take down.

 - hobgoblins - These spiky demons attack with axes, and can also roll up into
                a ball and roll at you, causing several hits of damage.

 - hecubites - These insect demons are low to the ground and attack your legs.
               They attack in groups.

 - soul stealers - These floating enemies wait until you defeat other enemies,
                   then suck up the available souls. They can also latch onto
                   your arm, sucking up your own souls. Let them suck up
                   souls, then defeat them for a big bonus, but be careful
                   that they donít get away, or youíll lose those souls.

 - orcs - These huge demons attack with equally huge axes. Keep your distance,
          and attack with a magic attack if possible.

 - reynaldos - These strange demons attack you with their tentacles, even
               sending them through the ground to your location to bind you.
               Attack them, but be careful, for sometimes they will split in
               two!

 - moles - These demons burrow through the ground, popping up to deliver
           powerful blows. They can also turn invisible. Blocking is
           essential. Block, wait for them to pop up and attack, then quickly
           unblock and attack before they turn invisible. Also, watch out for
           their long range boomerang attack.

 - shadow ninjas - These are like regular ninjas, except they can leave an
                   image in one spot while they leap to another spot. They can
                   also attack with throwing knives.

 - blue knights - These are more powerful versions of the red knight, and are
                  harder to take down. Consider a magic attack.


6. Items
--------
The Dark Realm is a place where you can find some valuable items. Here is a
rundown of what you can find there:

 - herb - This is the most basic of the healing items. It will refill a small
          amount of vitality. (found: 3)

 - medicine - This is the bigger, more valuable healing item to have. It will
              refill a large amount of vitality. (found: 1)

 - soul absorber - When this is used, a circle appears on the ground. Any
                   enemy that steps inside this circle can have its souls
                   sucked out of it while still alive. This item is somewhat
                   valuable, even in boss fights. (found: 1)

 - Talisman - This item is very valuable. It allows you to be revived after
              being killed, giving you another chance. It is also valuable
              because using one does not affect game ranking. (found: 1)

 - Flourite - These are small pieces of ore that can be found throughout the
              game. Collecting all 20 pieces unlocks the Oni Spirits minigame.
              Three pieces can be found within the Dark Realm. (found: 3)

 - Bishamon O. - The Bishamon Ocarina is the big prize of the Dark Realm. This
                 is used later to unlock a special door and obtain the
                 Bishamon Sword, Samanosukeís ultimate weapon. (found: 1)


7. Walkthrough
--------------
So, youíve fought many monsters, youíve leveled up your weapons, and youíre
ready to delve into the great challenge that is the Dark Realm? Well, then,
let us step into the light and see what awaits us. This section will let you
know what to expect in the Dark Realm, but ultimately your own skills are what
will carry you to the bottom. Good luck!

When exploring the Dark Realm, you will enter each room and fight a number of
enemies in each room. Once you have defeated all enemies for the current room,
two shafts of light will appear. One will lead you down into the next level.
Items found within the Dark Realm can be obtained at any time within that
room. If you ever need to leave the Dark Realm, enter the shaft of light that
goes up. Be aware that if you leave the Dark Realm and then return, you will
have to fight your way back through any previously completed floors.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Location - There are two locations where you can access the Dark Realm. The
           first is in the Keep of Inabayama Castle, in the room near the
           entrance with the magic mirror and magic well (the sentry box). The
           Gatekeeper will just hang there until a certain point later in the
           game.

           The second location is in the West Area of the castle. As you
           traverse the area around the buildings before the archery range,
           you will find a well just off the main path. You can find the
           Gatekeeper there.

           Both locations lead to the same Dark Realm.

Access - You are first able to access the Dark Realm after Samanosuke defeats
         Stylado, his evil clone, in the underground area, and obtains the
         Evil Plate. When you return to the keep, you will see spirits
         floating above some of the fallen warriors if you have the Rosary of
         Communication. This is how youíll know the time is right.

         You will be able to access the Dark Realm at any time, up until you
         open and enter the main door to the Dark Realm with the Great Arrow
         in order to face Marcellus. After you enter that door, you may not
         return to the normal world.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Room 1 - monsters: zombies (10)

         The Dark Realm starts out easy and progresses to the difficult stuff.
         Here you will fight an easy battle against some zombies.
         Note: This room starts off a series of rooms with a red color to
         them.

Room 2 - monsters: ninjas (7)

         Some leaping ninjas will keep you moving, but again, nothing to worry
         about.

Room 3 - monsters: zombies (5)
                   red knights (2)

         This will be your first room with more than one type of enemy. Take
         out the weaker zombies first, so you will have room to dodge around
         the knights.

Room 4 - monsters: red knights (4)

         You should be able to hit and dodge these, as they donít all come out
         at once, but donít be afraid to use some magic to give yourself some
         breathing room.

Room 5 - monsters: ninjas (5)
                   red knights (2)

         Itís getting a little tricky. Take those ninjas out as quickly as you
         can, and donít let them gang up on you. The Shippuuís magic can get
         you out of trouble if you need it.

Room 6 - monsters: hobgoblins (12)

         Donít let these gang up on you, because those spin attacks can be
         really annoying. Ideally, you should be able to critical hit a few of
         them.
         Note: This room starts off a series of rooms with a yellow color to
         them.

Room 7 - monsters: hecubites (8)
         item: Flourite

         Attack fast and hard, but be careful with finishing moves, as these
         things like to swarm around you.

Room 8 - monsters: hobgoblins (9)
                   soul stealers (4)

         This provides a good opportunity for a soul bonus, if you are adept
         at building up souls. Defeat the hobgoblins, let the soul stealers
         suck them up, then defeat them before they get away for a huge soul
         bonus.

Room 9 - monsters: orcs (3)
                   hobgoblins (6)
         item: medicine

         Oh, joy. Keep those hobgoblins away from the orcs. Keep yourself away
         from the orcs. Attack when you have an opening. This is where your
         magic may be coming into normal use.

Room 10 - monsters: orcs (3)
                    soul stealers (3)
          item: Flourite

          Try to get as much of a soul bonus as you can, but if you must
          defeat a soul stealer, by all means do it. Your vitality is becoming
          much more important at this stage.

Room 11 - monsters: reynaldos (5)

          By themselves, these arenít bad, so take them out swiftly. Try not
          to split them up, though, youíll get the same amount of souls
          regardless.
          Note: This room starts off a series of rooms with a green color to
          them.

Room 12 - monsters: reynaldos (4)
                    soul stealers (4)
          item: soul absorber

          Again, try to get the bonus, but if the room becomes infested with
          reynaldos, get what you can and get out.

Room 13 - monsters: reynaldos (3)
                    hecubites (5)

          Slice and dice, but you may want to take out any hecubites first so
          they donít swarm your legs as youíre fighting reynaldos.

Room 14 - monsters: moles (3)
          item: herb

          These things will attack you two at a time. Remember to block, and
          take a shot whenever you see an opening.

Room 15 - monsters: reynaldos (5)
                    moles (2)
          item: Talisman

          This combination of enemies can be frustrating, if you let it. Try
          using the Enryuuís magic attack to take out the reynaldos so you can
          concentrate on the moles. Donít forget the Talisman.

Room 16 - monsters: shadow ninjas (7)
          item: herb

          The thing about shadow ninjas is that their afterimages will confuse
          your target locking system. Still, if you keep slashing, you should
          be able to take them down somewhat easily.
          Note: This room starts off a series of rooms with a blue color to
          them.

Room 17 - monsters: red knights (2)
                    blue knights (3)
          item: Flourite

         This room introduces the blue knights. Consider a magic attack aimed
         to hit multiple targets, because you donít want that much long reach
         around you. Youíll want to thin the herd.

Room 18 - monsters: shadow ninjas (4)
                    moles (2)
          item: herb

          Take out those shadow ninjas quickly, preferably with a blast from
          the Shippuu. You donít want those things bouncing around while moles
          are turning invisible and coming up to you.

Room 19 - monsters: shadow ninjas (6)
                    blue knights (3)

          Use a magic attack or two against the blue knights, hopefully
          hitting the shadow ninjas in the process. Clean up any stragglers.

Room 20 - monsters: orcs (3)
                    moles (3)
          item: Bishamon O.

          Okay, youíve made it this far, so donít let this final gauntlet of
          enemies get you down. Use whatever magic you have left against the
          orcs, take down the moles with the usual tactic of blocking, and
          donít let them gang up on you.

          Using the Bishamon O. - After you defeat Marcellus back in the main
          part of the game, you will come to a room with a magic well, a magic
          mirror, and a strange door that looks like a skeleton hand. Use the
          ocarina in front of this door, and it will open and let you into a
          secret room where you can claim the Bishamon sword, the ultimate
          weapon for Samanosuke, from a hanging skeleton.


8. Superior Ranking - The Effect of the Dark Realm
--------------------------------------------------
When you beat the game, you are given a ranking based on what youíve achieved
throughout your game. The highest ranking is the ďSĒ, or superior ranking. In
order to get this ranking, you are required to do the following (according to
the Bradygames Onimusha guide):

 - finish in less than 3 hours
 - kill at least 600 demons
 - collect at least 55,000 souls

Obviously going into the Dark Realm is going to affect each of these stats.
Here is a breakdown of how going into the Dark Realm will affect your chances
of getting this rank:

 - souls: around 12,610 - This is obviously a variable number, due to bonuses
          and missed souls, but you can expect around this number. Itís a huge
          chunk, and at this stage of the game could put you over the edge, so
          if you havenít been collecting souls, youíll need this, especially
          if your weapons arenít powered up all the way yet.

 - enemies: 147 - This is pretty much an exact number. As you can see, itís
            just about ľ of your total, so if you can make it through fast
            enough, this will be a big help.

 - time: about 25 minutes - Time is a big factor in the race for superior
         ranking. If youíre quick enough, this is about how long it should
         take. You should be at about 2 hours when you enter the Dark Realm if
         you want to meet the requirements, since really the only thing you
         have left are two boss fights. Also, getting the Bishamon Sword will
         help you immensely, so you will want to take the time to go through
         and get the Ocarina.

One thing to remember about the Dark Realm is that completing it does not
factor into your overall ranking. So if you can get enough souls and kills in
the regular areas and donít want to spend time in the Dark Realm, then you can
miss it without fear of losing rank. You will miss out on three herbs, as well
as a soul absorber and Talisman, which can help in the final battle, but you
may end up using the two herbs in the Dark Realm anyway, and you can get a
soul absorber and a Talisman in other places. As always, it comes down to your
own skills, so determine what will help you best.


9. Thanks
---------
CJayC - For running GameFAQs, a place that I spend a lot of time at. This site
        has all the info I could ask for.

Capcom - For making this game.

Dan Birlew - For being the author of many quality strategy guides. I obtained
             some information for this FAQ from his Onimusha guide.


10. Copyright
------------
This walkthrough is copyright 2005 Brian Mills, all rights reserved.  This
guide may be reproduced for personal use, but otherwise cannot be reproduced
in part or whole for any reason.  It may not be sold for any reason, and may
not be posted anywhere other than GameFAQs.  If you have any questions, you
can e-mail me at bmgamfrk22@alltel.net and I will try to answer when I can.
If you see this walkthrough anywhere other than GameFAQs please let me know
by e-mail.