Ghostwire: Tokyo features an interesting take on first-person combat. Because the game’s enemies are Visitors, a form of evil spirit, encounters aren’t conventional in nature; instead of guns and melee-based weapons, you’ll use hand gestures and magical items to invoke different supernatural skills during battle. Surviving in Ghostwire: Tokyo is all about knowing what skills to use and when.
Some skills offer a means of escape or a way to stave off death. Others, like the game’s Ethereal Weaving attacks, will allow you to subdue, banish or outright destroy enemies. All of them will need to be unlocked and/or upgraded before becoming viable options during encounters. This is especially true during the first few hours of play. To help in that regard, we’ve listed some of the best starting skills and upgrades in Ghostwire: Tokyo below.
One of the best skills to grab first in Ghostwire is the Tatenui. When Visitors are attacking you, it’s possible to block by holding the L1 button on your controller. If you press it right before an attack lands, you’ll perform a perfect block, staggering them while negating any incoming damage. Once you unlock the Tatenui, however, you’ll also be able to gain Ether--the magical material needed to perform Ethereal Weaving attacks--whenever you perform this move.
Running out of ether during a given battle isn’t a huge issue. There are times, however, when the number of enemies will balloon to the point where the managing of this resource becomes important. The last thing you’d want to happen is to completely run out while facing a group of tough opponents. Because of this, adding another means of collecting this vital material early on makes the Tatenui skill a solid investment.
If landing perfect blocks proves to be too difficult, you can always go with the Hakkei instead. This skill produces Ether by doing palm strikes. Just run up to a Visitor and press the right stick to perform the move. Now, you’ll still need to be in close proximity of an enemy spirit and you won’t get as much Ether as you’d get by using the Tatenui, but you won’t have to rely on timing either.
Honestly, I’d grab both the Tatenui and Hakkei skills. The less you have to worry about Ether during combat the better.
As mentioned in our Ghostwire: Tokyo beginner tips, Fudo is a great skill to unlock early. This is because it extends the amount of time an enemy’s core (or heart) is exposed during battle.
When a Visitor takes a certain amount of damage, they’ll be placed in a vulnerable state with an exposed core. The game will then encourage you to forcibly extract the core, destroying the enemy in the process. Unfortunately, this maneuver takes a decent amount of time to complete. It can also be interrupted by incoming attacks. The Fudo skill can mitigate some of that by extending how long you’re able to extract, allowing you to prioritize the surrounding enemies before going back to the weakened opponent.
Going further, the Fudo skill makes it possible to have several enemies in this weakened state at a time. Simultaneously extracting multiple cores is a quick-ish way to clear an area of bad guys. Just make sure that there aren’t any stragglers running around or they might interrupt the process.
The next skill I’d pick up is the Kukurihime. It complements the Fudo skill by speeding up the core extraction rate by 1.5x. This might not seem like much considering it’s only shaving off a few seconds. It doesn’t feel that way in the heat of battle though. Being able to extract a foe’s core right before you’re attacked, giving you enough time to perform a perfect block, showcases the level of crowd control those extra seconds bring.
Several of the major skills in Ghostwire: Tokyo are automatically unlocked over the course of the game. In these instances, the goal shifts from unlocking skills to upgrading them. Take the Takehaya or charge attack for instance. This ability makes it possible to charge up your wind-based power in order to release two strong attacks in quick succession. The problem is that it has to charge fully to be the most effective.
You can improve this stat a little by upgrading the Takehaya to level 2. Doing so will shorten its charge time by 25%, making it less likely to be interrupted by an enemy attack. This is a life saver when surrounded by several Visitors as it tends to either expose their core or, at the very least, knock them off their feet.
Note: The Takehaya performs differently depending on what element you’re using. We’re discussing the effects of the Wind attacks because that’s the element you start with. Things change a bit once you’ve unlocked Fire and Water.
The Takehaya is great against weaker enemies. Tougher variants might require follow up attacks before being subdued. This is where the Shinatsuhiko skill comes in as it increases the number of Wind attacks from 2 to 3.
Unlocking this skill will make facing the larger, umbrella wielding Visitors a little more manageable. It’ll also allow you to split up your attacks, landing two on one foe before striking an enemy trying to get back on their feet.While there are enough skills to for different builds, some abilities are helpful no matter what you want to emphasize.Gallery
So far, the skills we’ve mentioned are mostly used during combat. There are some that can help you avoid a fight though. The Omoigane skill, for example, grants spectral vision--an ability used to find clues, secret areas, and spot enemies through walls. It’s basically Ghostwire: Tokyo's Detective mode or Spidey-sense.
Omoigane is pretty useful. Unlocked automatically over the course of the game, it’s one of the best skills available. Upgrading it to level two offers a significant boost by increasing its range. You won’t accidentally walk into a group of Visitors or lose your way when following a Yokai thanks to this skill.
It isn’t enough to be able to see enemies through walls. You’ll also want to sneak up behind them to perform a silent takedown. Movement while crouching is painfully slow though. There were several times where a Visitor turned in my direction right as I was about to strike.
Thankfully, the Inubashiri skill helps by increasing the movement speed while crouching by 30%. You won’t be zooming all over the place. You will, however, be able to take out multiple enemies within a given area before being spotted.
The last skill you should get early on is the Daikoku. It allows you to carry more consumables than normal (up to five of each item). The first few hours aren’t meant to be really difficult; a lot of the first chapter or so is made up several tutorials. While your mileage may very in this regard, you probably won’t end up using too many of the health items found scattered all over Tokyo.
Because of this, you’re bound to run out of inventory space before long. The Daikoku skill negates this issue somewhat. It won’t outright stop you from filling your pockets but it will cut down on some of the backtracking you’ll do by making sure you can grab most of everything in sight.