After much deserved fanfare for their compelling manga and subsequent anime, Koyoharu Gotouge’s Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba sees a video game adaptation with The Hinokami Chronicles.
Like the Naruto: Ultimate Ninja Storm games, you replay various scenes from the anime through the characters in those scenes, mainly Tanjiro. It is a fighting game that combines regular weapon attacks with breath-based skills, like Tanjiro and Giyu’s Water Breathing techniques. Each character also has an Ultimate Art special ability.
Note that the left and right joysticks are denoted as L and R, with pushing on either indicated with L3 and R3.
Demon Slayer: The Hinokami Chronicles Controls (PS5 and PS4)
- Move: L
- Jump: X
- Dash/Chase Dash: Circle
- Guard: R1
- Light Attack: Square
- Heavy Attack: Tilt L + Square
- Skill 1: Triangle
- Skill 2: Triangle + Tilt L
- Skill 3: Triangle + R1 (hold)
- Boost: L2 (when boost meter is full)
- Ultimate Art: R2 (when Ultimate Art meter is full)
- Forward Step: Circle + Tilt L (toward the opponent)
- Sidestep: Circle + Tilt L (to the side)
- Backstep: Circle + Tilt L (away from the opponent)
- Aerial Chase Dash: Circle (when the opponent is being hit midair)
- Shove: Hold R1 + L
- Parry: Tilt L + R1
- Switch: Hold L1 (consumes 50 percent of support gauge)
- Emergency Escape: L1 (when taking damage; consumes 100 percent of support gauge)
- Quick Recover: X (before hitting the ground)
- Rolling Recovery: L (when on the ground)
- Quick Dodge: X or O (during specific attacks; consumes 20 percent of skill gauge)
- Skill Gauge Recovery: Stand still
- Aerial Attack: Square (while midair)
- Aerial Attack (Plunge): Square, then L (while midair)
- Throw: R1 + Square
- Support Skill 1: L1 (consumes 50 percent of support gauge)
- Support Skill 2: L1 + Tilt L (consumes 50 percent of support gauge)
Demon Slayer: The Hinokami Chronicles Controls (Xbox Series S|X and Xbox One)
- Move: L
- Jump: A
- Dash/Chase Dash: B
- Guard: RB
- Light Attack: X
- Heavy Attack: Tilt L + X
- Skill 1: Y
- Skill 2: Y + Tilt L
- Skill 3: Y + R1 (hold)
- Boost: LT (when boost meter is full)
- Ultimate Art: RT (when Ultimate Art meter is full)
- Forward Step: B + Tilt L (toward the opponent)
- Sidestep: B + Tilt L (to the side)
- Backstep: B + Tilt L (away from the opponent)
- Aerial Chase Dash: B (when the opponent is being hit midair)
- Shove: Hold RB + L
- Parry: Tilt L + RB
- Switch: Hold LB (consumes 50 percent of support gauge)
- Emergency Escape: LB (when taking damage; consumes 100 percent of support gauge)
- Quick Recover: A (before hitting ground)
- Rolling Recovery: L (when on the ground)
- Quick Dodge: A or B (during specific attacks; consumes 20 percent of skill gauge)
- Skill Gauge Recovery: Stand still
- Aerial Attack: X (while midair)
- Aerial Attack (Plunge): X, then L (while midair)
- Throw: RB + X
- Support Skill 1: LB (consumes 50 percent of support gauge)
- Support Skill 2: LB + Tilt L (consumes 50 percent of support gauge)
Tips for Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba – The Hinokami Chronicles
Learning the controls is one thing, but learning how best to apply them is another endeavor. Here are some tips for a better gaming experience.
Learn the characters’ light and skill attacks
This probably is taken-for-granted knowledge at this point, but do not button mash! Ever since the advent of fighting games, button mashing has become a source of ire for many gamers, especially when playing against another person. Button mashing may work early in games, but it is not a strategy for sustained success.
Learn to be judicious and methodical in how you use your characters skills to defeat your opponents, whether human or CPU. There are multiple ways to improve before delving deeper into the game.
Make use of Practice and Training modes
Practice mode is just as it sounds. You will select a character and opponent, though you can control the CPUs rate of action; default seems to be stand still. There are some notifications on the left side of the screen on your combo length, strike damage, and overall combo damage. Particularly after unlocking new characters, use this mode to familiarize yourself with their attacks, skills, and Ultimate Art.
Training mode is a bit different and more difficult. Here, you will select a character to train under – of those unlocked – and engage in increasingly challenging rank battles against your trainer. Each rank battle also comes with tasks that need to be completed. This will help you put into action what you learned in practice mode in a more dynamic fight setting.
You will also earn Kimetsu Points – one of many ways to earn KP – which you can use for unlockables on the Rewards page.
Combine light and skill attacks into long combos
If you solely rely on light attacks for your combo, it will end at five strikes. What you need to do is combine your light attacks with heavy attacks, skills, and possibly aerial attacks for extended combos. For example, one of the tasks in a rank battle under Tanjiro is to land a 25-hit combo. Only by melding your attacks together can this be achieved.
Pay attention to your health, skill, boost, and Ultimate Art meters!
Of course, the issue with using skills in your combos is that it depletes a skill meter, those five light blue bars under your health meter. It is always a good idea to keep at least one skill bar full for emergencies; remember that some advanced controls use the skill and support bars as well.
You also have the boost and Ultimate Art meters at the bottom-left of the screen. Keep an eye on these so you know when you can unleash them. The bars fill with every successive attack dealt and taken, though avoiding the latter would be prudent.
Time your Boost and Ultimate Art to maximize the effect
Speaking of boosts and Ultimate Art, do not trigger them immediately upon filling the meter. It is best to time when you trigger each for best results.
For example, if you boost your character yet still have a boost remaining – you can fill the bar three times – boost them in their already boosted state for faster and stronger attacks. Further, in a boosted boost state (at least two boosts at once), your skill bars will NOT deplete! If you get to this state, unleash skill after skill on your opponent.
It is also best to time your Ultimate Art in the middle of a successful combination as it leaves the opponent virtually no time to block or evade the attack. Like Ultimate Ninja Storm and the My Hero One’s Justice games, each character’s Ultimate Art is different and landed uniquely. Tanjiro will slash at you, but Kimetsu Academy Giyu blows a whistle that expands to a certain radius around him that connects if the opponent is caught within the radius.
Be prepared for Final Clash scenes at climactic moments in the story
Another holdover from the Ultimate Ninja Storm games, dramatic and climactic scenes from the anime/story will result in a Final Clash. These rapid, interactive scenes require you to do a number of things fast and/or precisely. You will use the D-Pad, buttons, and even analog sticks. You might need to mash a certain button, input an order of buttons, or time your button press at a certain moment, among others. These scenes are crucial to obtaining an S-Rank, so be prepared when these happen.
You may also be able to anticipate when these happen if you are familiar with the story. For example, the first Final Clash occurred when fighting Sabito by the big boulder. Not to spoil too many things, but a certain battle during the Selection Exam and another in a spidery forest are probably good bets to have Final Clashes.
The story is linear, one chapter at a time
You cannot skip scenes and chapters, jumping straight to the end or playing only the parts of the story you enjoy. The game sets you on a fairly linear path. You may have slight detours at times, but these detours generally have no bearing or impact on the game’s story or path. You can also replay scenes if you did not obtain S-Rank.
There are eight chapters in all, with a special “Kimetsu Academy” portion with characters in high school attire and roles.
Work toward S-Rank in every playable level and chapter
The reason S-Rank has been repeated so much throughout this guide is that it is the best way to unlock every bit of the game. If you are a completionist, S-Rank on every level is a must.
Beyond S-Rank unlocking the most rewards, S-Rank is also an acknowledgment of your skills to be a Hashira (Pillar) among the Demon Slayers, like Giyu and Shinobu. Everyone likes the feeling of accomplishing tasks and challenges, right?
Lastly, if you want that Platinum Trophy/Achievement Points, S-Rank on all chapters is necessary.
Collect and view Memory Fragments for deeper context
Striving for S-Rank is also the best way to unlock the most Memory Fragments. Memory Fragments are not mandatory, but if you have not read the manga or seen the anime, they are great ways to glean information and context you might not get from just playing the levels. For example, the first few Memory Fragments display Tanjiro seeing the grisly scene at his house.
You may also trigger a Trance Memory during a battle, which intersperses scenes from the anime into your battle, again providing more context to the battle.
Collect Rewards to customize your characters and profile as you wish
While only necessary if you want all trophies/achievements, Rewards are still a fun way to, well, reward yourself for your gameplay.
You can unlock new battle attire, profile photos, and quotes – the latter two for your online Slayer profile – among other rewards.
Each chapter has its own rewards page, almost looking like a calendar, that when fully revealed, displays an image from Demon Slayer. While most can be unlocked through completing Story mode, playing Versus/Training mode, and competing online, a few on each page can only be unlocked through the aforementioned Kimetsu Points.
To apply rewards, including to your Slayer profile, go to Archives and select from battle attire, quotes, and others. Here, you can add quotes and photos to your profile and observe the outfits you have unlocked for your playable characters.
Now you have the controls and tips to help make you a certified Demon Slayer yourself. Can you become an S-Rank Hashira?