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“I left five Daimyo to fight for control of their people. We would see how strong their unity truly was. I gave Seijuro the Palace. The other four survivors of my test, I left in the swamp. It was the Daimyo Ayu who made the first move.

Thinning the Herd is the second mission in the Samurai Story Campaign. After almost successfully driving the Vikings from the Imperial City, The Orochi and their friends find themselves under the reign of a new Warlord, courtesy of Apollyon. Now they must survive in any way possible. The Kensei Ayu makes the first move.

This mission has five Breakables and five Observables.

Events Of

The mission you as Ayu, and will begin with your release by Apollyon into the swamp of the Myre, and the objective is killing the 3 other Daimyo. It is possible to kill all of them in any order, but each one must be found and dealt with differently.

To find Ranja, head north to a shrine guarded by her men. Slay the soldiers and captains standing right in front of the entrance, then the Shugoki right behind. Head up the steps to fight Ranja, who is kneeling in the middle of the open area. Ranja will immediately get revenge upon contact with her, so make sure you are prepared.

You will find Kizan at some docks northeast of your direction. First, kill his soldiers and captains at the gate of the docks. As you enter the docks, archers standing on an arch will proceed to fire upon you. To the left is a shelter with an Arrow Storm pickup in it. Take out the archers and captains on the arch and head down to battle Kizan. He will be protected by 3 captains, making him slightly more difficult to fight. Use any pickup you can find against him such as Poison Traps and Arrow Storms to defeat him and his men. There will also be a Nobushi in the area to fight.

Directly beside Kizan’s location is where you will find Dokuja. Run out of the gates of the docks where you fought Kizan toward Dokuja, who will run off due to your presence. You will be faced with an Orochi and some Nobushi while battling to his whereabouts. Once you find him at a bay, finish him off, along with his minions consisting of soldiers, captains and a Nobushi.

A cutscene will play where you will be surrounded by the samurai of the Daimyo that you have slain, and you will begin uniting them under your persuasion. Okuma will then show up and inform you of the Vikings, and the mission will end with the Samurai heading in the direction of the Vikings.


Scene opens up to Ayu, Apollyon and Apollyon’s Lawbringer in the woods, Ayu tied up by the hands being dragged along by Apollyon on her horse.

Ayu: (voiceover) I was the last Daimyo set free in the Myre.

Apollyon sits on her horse, taking out Ayu’s Nodachi and pointing it at her chest. Suddenly, she slices open Ayu’s bindings and plants her sword blade down into the mud. Ayu gently feels her wrists as she glances back up at Apollyon.

Apollyon: Happy hunting.

Apollyon and the Lawbringer ride off.

Ayu: (voiceover) “Happy hunting”?

Ayu pulls her sword out of the earth.

Ayu: (voiceover) Apollyon thought we would fight each other to claim the emperor’s power.

Mission Objective: DEFEAT all the Daimyo

Ayu: (voiceover) She was right. Every daimyo who had passed her test was a war criminal. We would tear our people apart. Or, I could finish it. Before it had a chance to start.

Defeating Kizan

Ayu heads northeast toward some docks. She finds a collection of samurai at the gate of the docks, taking them all out as she moves closer and closer to Kizan’s location.

Ayu: (voiceover) Kizan was greedy. He would take more than our people could give.

Ayu defeats all of the samurai trying to kill her, then battles Kizan with his men. She successfully kills Kizan.

Defeating Dokuja

Ayu travels toward the area beside the docks.

Ayu: (voiceover) Dokuja was a coward. He had been given everything. He had never learned compassion.

Ayu finds Dokuja walking by his warriors and ambushes them. Dokuja runs off in terror while Ayu battles his Nobushi, Orochi and other men. Eventually she corners him at a bay where she slays him.

Defeating Ranja

Ayu travels north of the place where she started, finding a shrine guarded by soldiers, a captain and a Shugoki. Dispatching all of them, she goes up the steps.

Ayu: (voiceover) Ranja was pious. Piety does not excuse villainy.

Ayu finds Ranja kneeling in the middle of the shrine.

Ranja: Ayu, you dare disrespect this place?!

Ayu and Ranja duel until Ranja is slain.

After killing all of the 3 Daimyo, Ayu walks into the bay where she fought Dokuja.

Ayu: (voiceover) I had done it.

Ayu suddenly turns to see Dokuja’s men approaching her. She then turns around to see Kizan’s warriors prepare their weapons. Lastly, she sees Ranja‘s Samurai pull out their swords. She is now surrounded. One of Kizan’s men attacks her, but she knocks him back.

Ayu: Our emperor is dead!

One of Ranja’s warriors swings his sword at her, but she counters it and hits him in the face. He staggers back into the crowd of smaller soldiers.

Ayu: The Blackstone Legion has done this!

Ayu frantically holds her sword up, rapidly facing every direction.

Ayu: Apollyon wants us to go to war with ourselves!

There is a short pause. Then without warning, Ayu swings her blade around.


All the warriors fall back.

Ayu: We are being forced into a new age...

There is another longer pause, with all the samurai exchanging glances. Then out of Ranja’s men, Okuma appears. He walks up to Ayu.

Okuma: (gesturing backward) Uhh...VIKINGS!

Ayu briefly looks at Kizan’s men for a moment. The samurai of all of the daimyo, particularly the captains in the front sheath their swords and bow. They then all rush off to the Viking threat.

Ayu: (voiceover) Apollyon would regret leaving me alive.


  • Myre Massacre
    • The map can be divided into two parts: inside and outside the compound. You start inside the compound. Look around (slightly to the right) the moment you start the level. There should be a gazebo with dead soldiers a and a kneeling captain to kill.
    • "We left four daimyō in the swamp. Had they been other than those four, they would have joined forces and solved their problems, but I had chosen well."
  • Perpetual War
    • At the start of the level, go to the nearby gazebo. Then look around. There are three things in sight: the docks, a path with a bunch of archways, and a tall wooden structure on the side of a massive tree. Head to that wood structure and take the path going under the tree. You'll find yourself at the closed gates of an outpost. It's on the door.
    • "What the Samurai could not admit to themselves was that they were already at war with each other. All I did was show them that fact."
  • Demon Names
    • After you kill Ranja, turn and look at the statue at the side.
    • "Apollyon is a demon name. I chose it when I took command of the Blackstones. It means 'destroyer.' Holden's demon name is 'Asmodai.' Recently, he has preferred his given name. Strange."
  • Sunken Fortresses
    • The last two observables are on the outside of the compound. You might recognize the level from the Reconnaissance mission. After you exit the gate, go straight. It's at the giant bell.
    • "Our world is filled with buried cities, sunken fortresses and lost ruins. But in the Myre, those crumbled remains are only a few centuries old. Time moves much more quickly there."
  • Shifting Landscape
    • After you exit the gate, make a left. To put things in perspective, Dokuja is to the right. Left is where the Reconnaissance mission starts. You're looking for the guard tower. Climb the tower. It's at the top.
    • "The waters of the Myre rise and fall. Solid ground shifts and moves. Every attempt to build permanent structures there has resulted in disaster."





  • The Nodachi that Apollyon drops for Ayu in the cut scene will be the Tsubame set, but when the game starts, it changes to Ayu's Sasaki set.
  • The Shugoki guarding Ranja (the closest target at the start) will use the Kiai feat (a stun used by the Orochi), and will shout "Fire now!" which is a phrase used when the Shugoki uses Arrow Storm. The Kiai will not stun the player if they get close when he uses it.
Story Campaign
Knights Warlords and CowardsAnd Stay OutThe Blackstone LegionValkenheim In WinterSabotageWolves Among Sheep
Vikings Raiding the RaidersViking DiplomacyWood, Iron, and SteelUp The BeachReconnaissanceThe Great Raid
Samurai DutyThinning the HerdPicking Up the PiecesUnityHonorApollyon