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Lone Shadow Masanaga the Spear-Bearer (孤影衆 槍足の正長, Lone Shadow Spear Leg Masanaga) is an optional Mini-Boss with two Deathblow counters.



He appears in the Great Serpent Shrine of Ashina Castle, mourning over the corpse of his brother Masanari, killed by the Tengu of Ashina.

He's also found at the end of the Bamboo Thicket Slope in the altered memory of Hirata Estate.

As the Eight Prayer Necklace states, the Lone Shadows are the seventeen sons of Matsuna Oribe and the most trusted agents of the Interior Ministry.


Behaviour and Tactics

  • Perilous Attack.pngSpinning Kick Combo: throws three counter-clockwise kicks, followed by a clockwise kick, which ends with a Perilous Thrust Kick.
  • Perilous Attack.pngPerilous Leg Sweep: leaps forward and delivers a spinning kick, then performs a leg sweep, turning around.
  • Perilous Attack.pngPerilous Thrust Kick: throws a thrusting kick attack.
  • Chasing Slice: dashes forward, slashing his sword twice.
  • Descending Slash: hops up then comes down with a slash, kicking up dust, then rolling away to recover.
  • Kick: kicks forward.
  • Pirouette Kick: turns around in a kick, then follows up with two slashes.
  • Recover: jumps backwards and during the charge becomes engulfed in a bright aura, that will restore his Posture significantly. Being interrupted at any point before the end of this move will prevent any Posture regeneration.
  • Shinobi Dog Whistle: Uses his fingers to whistle and summon shinobi dogs. In the Great Serpent Shrine, he won't use this move if the dogs outside are already dead, in the Hirata Estate every whistle will summon three dogs.

  • Poison Attack.pngConcentrated Poison Strike:(Great Serpent Shrine Only) holds his sword in front of him vertically for a moment then slices in an overhead arc in front of him with his hand, inflicting poison.
  • Poison Attack.pngSnake's Bites:(Great Serpent Shrine Only) enacts in a stance then delivers three medium ranged poisonous strikes, bypassing guards.
  • Poison Attack.pngViper Thrust:(Great Serpent Shrine Only) thrusts forward after a short windup, executing a single poisonous strike.
  • Yashariku's Wrath (Great Serpent Shrine Only): Empowers himself by trading off a bit of health. The buff won't worn out.

Before engaging the actual Mini-Boss, it's best to get rid of the dogs outside the shrine, unless one plans to turn them against their master with the Finger Whistle.

Since some of the moves of this Lone Shadow deal high Poison build-up, it's recommended to carry Antidote Powder.

Firecrackers can stun this Mini-Boss for a short while, creating a valuable opening to heal safely. The Flame Vent will damage his Vitality greatly and can prevent his Posture from regenerating through Burn.

It's possible to start off the fight with a stealth deathblow by simply taking the right from the staircase leading up to him and following the wall to end up behind his back.

If the room appears too cramped, the Mini-Boss can be lured to the courtyard outside.

Before most of his health is depleted, he'll use his Yashariku's Wrath ability to buff his Vitality and Posture damage for the rest of the fight.

After hitting him twice, it's best to be prepared to deflect his counter-offensive.

His Kick and Pirouette Kick can be avoided by crouching under his leg.

It's possible to only deflect the first attack of the Spinning Kick Combo and than dodge the right, waiting to counter the final Thrust Kick, which can also be interrupted by attacking immediately. Despite the speed of his kicks, consecutive deflections are the proper way to parry this combo.

If attacked early, he can be stunned him out of all his Perilous combos.

There's enough time to punish him at the end of every combo, as he never chains two together.

When his Posture Bar is nearly full, he'll dash backward and attempt to peform his Recover ability to restore his Posture, so it's important to always be ready to interrupt him by either catching up to him or by using Shurikens.


In the Hirata Estate, his Shinobi Dog Whistle move is heavily telegraphed by him dashing backward, calling for an opportunity to either interrupt him with Shurikens or the Flame Vent or to prepare the Finger Whistle to turn his dogs against him.

Since the the borders of the arena are on fire, it's important to be mindful about countering the Perilous Leg Sweep with a proper jump-kick or with a katana swing, based on the surroundings.

To perform a stealth Deathblow on him here, it's necessary to bait him out of the area and hide until he loses sight and starts walking back to his original spot, exposing his back.

Eavesdropping Icon.png Eavesdropping (Great Serpent Shrine)

Masanari...
I never would have believed a man of your ability could be slain...
It appear as though a demon lurks within Ashina...

Dialogue
Approaching ...Oh? It's you...

The demon has made his appearance.
That works out quite well. I will take revenge for Masanari!

Notes

  • Immune to Poison.
  • As the final invasion of Ashina Castle and Outskirt by the Central Forces is triggered, this Mini-Boss will disappear for the rest of the playthrough. However, the Prayer Bead that he would have dropped will still be available in the Offering Box next to Hanbei for Sen.png 2200.
  • If the Father's Bell Charm isn't retrieved prior to defeating the Divine Dragon, the Prayer Bead this Mini-Boss would have dropped in Hirata Estate won't become available in the Offering Box and it won't be obtainable for the rest of the playthrough.
  • Killing him first in the Hirata Estate won't have any influence on his presence in Ashina Castle.

Trivia

  • His japanese name compares the power of his kicks to that of spear stabs.
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