The Dragon Of The North DLC For Nioh Will Test Your Skills

After years of development and many design changes, Nioh has become one of the sleeper hits of 2017. It was only a matter of time before the wave of DLC started to drop and while it may not seem like much on the surface – there’s only two new areas to explore – the continuation of Nioh’s story is certainly as challenging and generally as well thought out as the base game.

As far as the bulk of the DLC goes, there is a new region to explore that adds three main missions in the Tohoku region as soon as the main storyline is complete. It’s something of a gripe that the DLC is only truly accessible once you beat the main game, but it does allow for Team Ninja to extend the main story organically rather than retrofit it somewhere earlier on.

Your main adversary this time is Masamune Date, a brutal and formidable adversary, and his army as they sense an opportunity to take over Japan. These are some of the hardest boss battles to date, with Masamune Date being particularly tricky to overcome. In a sense, the areas they populate are more akin to Dark Souls III’s Ringed City DLC as opposed to Ashes of Ariandel, simply because of the length and quality of boss battles.

Some may be disappointed to hear that there are only really two new normal enemy types, the Namahage and the Rokurokubi, who are accompanied by reskins of enemies in the main game. There’s nothing particularly wrong with this, but if you were expecting some new and unusual enemies, they’re reserved primarily for the boss battles.

On top of this, there are a few side missions, as well as a new weapon type: the Odachi – which is essentially a giant two-handed sword. Those used to heavier weapons may find this one a blast to use and come up with new ways to deal lots of damage. The older weapon types also get some new more powerful additions, though compared to the Dark Souls DLC they don’t feel as apparently momentous in their obtainment.

You can also use more skins should you get bored of looking like a Westerner, and there’s a new difficulty mode should it somehow still feel too easy. Finally, PvP is finally here in Nioh via a free update, though you will need PS Plus subscription in order to participate. Accessed via options in the main map screen, it turns Nioh into a fighting game, allowing for characters to wail on each other in small arenas, using rounds to frame the gameplay.

For the price of admission, around £7.99 or your regional equivalent, there seems to be plenty to sink your teeth into, even if on the surface the offering seems light in comparison to the main game. The allure of PvP battles gives you a new way to play, while the other additions expand nicely on established concepts.

If you’ve beaten the main campaign, then you’ll probably have some idea as to whether or not you’ll enjoy Nioh’s Dragon of the North. In fact, the very notion of only being able to access the DLC post-completion is the basis on whether or not I’d recommend playing it. If you’ve beaten it and are looking for a fresh challenge, go for it. If not, beat the main game first before deciding.


  1. Just a couple of points…

    The Odachi is not essentially ‘a blade on a pole’ – it’s a great sword, or a katana with blade over about 36″ long. A blade on a pole weapon is called a Naginata, which I expect we will get in a future DLC.

    PVP is available to all players (with ps+), not just those with the DLC, just to be clear as it reads like you have to have the DLC to access it. We all got it in update 1.07.

    Sorry to be ‘that guy’ :-)

    • Thanks for that. I wasn’t entirely certain about the PVP DLC whether or not it was included. I’ve updated both bits accordingly.

      • No probs, happy to help just didn’t want to sound like a **** lol

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