So I started a new playthrough (my first I am up to owl in the memory, so I just have him and the final boss, did all of the optional bosses) that first playthrough was a mess, never felt like I understood the game.
RKG is doing their retry season on sekiro, which made me load it up again and give it a whirl on a new playthrough. I'm not sure if it's just the experience from my first playthrough (which has been months ago) or just how they explain things in retry, but it has become somewhat a breeze. The horse boss killed me 20 times or more first go around. This playthrough I wrecked his face first attempt.
I guess all I'm saying is for people who may have given up due to the difficulty, restart, pay attention to what the game tells you. Learn how to counter each move set, don't be afraid to block. Every new enemy I face I now force myself to learn how to deflect or counter them. Some I get it right away (of they are weak mistakes don't really matter) stronger enemies I am ok with dying, each new battle I learn the move sets better.
This game was made to be trial and error, don't just go ham and be upset when you die, really focus on the enemy movements and get the timings down.
Overall I have fallen in love with this game now, when previously I wasn't a fan.