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"Every army needs warriors whose specialty is victory. Kensei-sword saints: the guardians of our people. Every great ruler since the fall has trained as a sword saint... every one. And they are formidable. The nodachi was long thought too long too large for use in real war. They proved them wrong. Their armor is the strongest of our people... as is their will."


Kensei are a playable hero class in For Honor.

OverviewEdit

The living incarnations of Bushidō, the samurai way of the warrior, or as close as one can get. Masters of multiple martial arts, they are trained from infancy to fight and die for their emperor or their fellow samurai without asking why. Kensei wear heavy armor and fight with the nodachi, a longer version of the katana that cleaves enemies in a few elegant and powerful strikes. Kensei spend their lives fighting and training as they strive to attain a level of perfection few other warriors can ever hope to achieve.[1]

ArmorEdit

Over the hakama, the cloth clothing they wear under all their armor, the Kensei wears a lacquered wooden cuirass and a gray sleeveless coat on top of this. A katana and wakizashi can be seen sheathed at his waist under his obi sash, although they are not used in combat in-game.

The Kensei can always be easily identified thanks to their massive sode that hang off their shoulders. Their kabuto has a crescent crest at its forehead. Their face mask is known as Mempo. It is constructed from iron and/or leather, and covers the face from the nose to the chin. The Kensei's Mempo, in particular, is red with a lacquered finish, featuring a mustache, a soul patch and fierce teeth, meant to serve as both protection and an effective method of intimidation against foes.

WeaponEdit

Nodachi - The nodachi is longer than the classic katana. It was initially designed to be used by a foot soldier to kill the horse of cavalry. Kensei samurai of the Dawn Empire have the strength and necessary skills to use them as effectively as the katana.

Nodachi image 1

Nodachi

TriviaEdit

  • Kensei (Kanji: 剣聖) literally translates to "sword saint" or "sword master."
  • The Kensei's armor hails from the earlier Samurai periods, wearing a kozane curiass and massive sode.
    • Though the Kensei's armor is made of wood, historical Samurai never wore wood armor. All accounts of Japanese wood armor predated the Samurai, as by the time of the Samurai, they were using lamellar and plate armor.
  • As battlefield weapons, the nodachi could not be carried on their waists like normal swords as they were too long to be drawn or sheathed and often had to simply be carried by hand.
    • This can be seen with the Kensei when sprinting, as they have no sheath with them and hold their nodachi to the side. This is opposed to the Orochi, who sprints with their swords sheathed.
    • In real life, the nodachi is more often used as anti-cavalry weapons as was the case with many Japanese swords sporting long handles.
  • While the game lists Kensei as an easy character, the website lists him as a medium. This is possibly due to the Kensei being listed as medium during testing, changed for the final game, and the website hasn't been updated.
  • Executions:
    • "Zutsu" is derived from "headache" (頭痛; zutsuu), referring to the headbutt the Kensei performs to finish off their opponent.
    • "Kikashi" may refer to a strategy play-term in the Japanese board game Go. This term, known as "Forcing Move" (利かし), evidently means a move that corners the opponent or forces them to make a move usually in favour of whoever performed the Kikashi.
      • This may be represented in how the Kensei systematically cuts their victim in a sequence that progressively leads to their final victim's execution: the Kensei first cuts at the knee to cause the victim to kneel with one hand on the ground. This is followed by a cut to that arm, causing the victim to kneel further with their head bowed. The last cut aligns to cut at the head, launching the victim away.
    • "Yasuraka" refers to the adjective-phrase "with ease" (安らかに; yasuraka ni) which is commonly used together with either "sleep" (寝なさい) or more bluntly "die" (死なさい). It usually denotes when the user of the phrase is putting their victim to sleep, literally or permanently.

QuotesEdit

  • Japanese: 尋常に勝負 (Jinjyo ni shoubu) - English: "Let's have an honourable showdown!"
    • Male Kensei, Top heavy unblockable finisher
  • Japanese: これで終いだ (Korede shimaida) - English: "This will be the end!"
    • Male Kensei, Side heavy finisher
    • Female Kensei, Top heavy unblockable finisher
  • Japanese: 死ね (Shi-ne) - English: "Die!"
    • Female Kensei, Side heavy finisher
  • Japanese: まだまだ (Mada mada) - English: "Not good enough!"
    • Parrying
  • Japanese: 望みはないぞ (Nozomi wa nai zo) - English: "There isn't any hope (for you)."
    • Yasuraka (Execution)

Fighting StyleEdit

Kensei are balanced samurai armed with nodachi. They are slower than other units but have longer melee range. They provide interesting defensive abilities and deliver devastating attacks.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Adaptable Fighting Style
  • Good Melee Range

Special CapabilitiesEdit

  • High Heavy Attacks are Unblockable
  • Many Maneuvers and Attacks Initiate Chain Attacks

FeatsEdit

Tier 1st 2nd 3rd
1 Fast Recovery

Passive | Stamina regenerates faster.

Unlocked at level 1
1 - Fast recovery
Body Count

Passive | Killing soldier grants you health and stamina.

Unlocked at level 5
1 - Body Count
Iron Lungs

Passive | You can still sprint when out of stamina.

Unlocked at level 13
1 - Iron Lungs-0
2 Inspire

Allies deal more Damage, soldiers fight faster.

Unlocked at level 1
2 - Inspire-0
Smoke Bomb

Throw a smoke bomb on the ground that breaks the lock.

Unlocked at level 7
2 - Smoke Bomb
Chilling Stare

Nearby enemies have lower attack and defense.

Unlocked at level 15

2 - Chilling Stare
3 Second Wind

Recover some of your health.

Unlocked at level 1
3 - Second Wind-0
Long Bow

Fire a long bow for moderate damage.

Unlocked at level 9
3 - Long Bow-0
Steadfast

Gain immunity from throw attempts for a short duration.

Unlocked at level 17
3 - Steadfast
4 Arrow Storm

Aerial attack that deals medium damage in multiple areas.

Unlocked at level 1
4 - Arrow Storm-0
Stalwart Banner

Nearby allies continuously regain health.

Unlocked at level 11
4 - Stalwart Banner
Unblockable

Your attacks can not be blocked for a short duration.

Unlocked at level 19
4 - Unblockable

MovesetEdit

Hero SpecificEdit

  • Renown - Earn more Renown in outnumbered fights, by controlling objectives, and by killing enemy soldiers to unlock your feats in a match.
  • Revenge Mode - Boosts Damage and Health. All Attacks are Uninterruptible. Parry and Throws knock enemies down. Attacks are Auto-Parried on activation.
  • Chain Starters - Helm Splitter, Swift Strike and a Guardbreak can initiate chains.
  • Throw Into a Chain Finisher - Any Throw can be followed up by any Chain Finisher.
  • Top Heavy Finisher Unblockable - Finish any Chain with a Top Heavy for an Unblockable Attack.
  • Top Heavy Opener Cancel - Top Heavy Opener Startup can be cancelled by: A Side Light Opener, a Side Heavy Opener, a Dodge, or an Unblockable Pommel Strike.
  • Second Top Heavy Finisher Cancel - Second Top Heavy Startup can be cancelled by: A Side Light, a Side Heavy, a Dodge, or a Guardbreak. The Side Light or Side Heavy will be the second hit in the chain.
  • Uninterruptable Finisher - Side Heavy Finishers and all Light Finishers have Uninterruptable Stance.
  • Superior Block Dodge - Forward, Left, and Right Dodges have Superior Block property in the direction of the Dodge.
  • Dodge Attack Chain Starters - Swift Strike, Helm Splitter, and Nature's Wrath can initiate chains. These attacks can count as the second in the chain.
  • Zone Attack - Cancel Zone Attack after the first Attack with B (XB1).

MovesEdit

(From Guard Mode)

Icon Legend

Type Name PC XB1 PS4
Chain Attack icon Dawn of the Steel Sun LMB, LMB, LMB RB, RB, RB R1, R1, R1
Chain Attack icon Spirit of the Inevitability LMB, LMB ♦, RMB RB, RB ♦, RT R1, R1♦, R2
Chain Attack icon Form of the Dragon LMB, RMB, RMB RB, RT, RT R1, R2, R2
Chain Attack icon Doom of the Kensei RMB, RMB, RMB RT, RT, RT R2, R2, R2
Chain Attack icon Rising Sun RMB, RMB, LMB RT, RT, RB R2, R2, R1
Chain Attack icon River's Flow RMB, LMB, LMB RT, RB, RB R2, R1, R1
Chain Attack icon Crashing Plates RMB, LMB, RMB RT, RB, RT R2, R1, R2
Chain Attack icon Shifting Ground LMB, RMB, LMB RB, RT, RB R1, R2, R1
Rushing Sweep (Not in Guard Mode) ↑ + RMB LS↑ + RT LS↑+ R2
Helm Splitter W + Space, LMB LS↑ + A, RB LS↑ + X, R1
Nature's Wrath W + Space, RMB LS↑ + A, RT LS↑ + X, R2
Swift Strike A or D + Space, LMB LS← or LS→ + A, RB LS← or LS→ + X, R1
Grasping Pounce W + Space, MMB LS↑ + A, X LS↑ + X, ⬜

Executions Edit

Evisceration

Evisceration

Insert New Spine

Insert New Spine

No Look Kill

No Look Kill

Beheader

Beheader

Ground Stabber

Ground Stabber

Kikashi

Kikashi

Lose Something?

Lose Something?

Gravity's Fall

Gravity's Fall

From Ear To Ear

From Ear To Ear

Zutsu

Zutsu

Yasuraka

Yasuraka

Emotes Edit

Passive Stance Edit

Blessed Glory

Blessed Glory

Witness Me!

Witness Me!

I Quit

I Quit

The Shame

The Shame

Collapse

Collapse

Rally

Rally.

Kensei Coin Toss

Kensei Coin Toss

Kill Card (Kensei)

Kill Card (Kensei)

Recognition (Kensei)

Recognition (Kensei)

Fighting Stance Edit

In The Wind

In The Wind

Wipe Blade

Wipe Blade

Arm and Armed (Kensei)

Arm and Armed (Kensei)

You Die

You Die

You, Come Over Here

You, Come Over Here

Throwdown

Throwdown.

MediaEdit

ImagesEdit

Model

Stills

VideosEdit

External linksEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. https://forhonor.ubisoft.com/game/en-US/game-info/heroes/kensei.aspx

Heroes
Knights Warden - Conqueror - Peacekeeper - Lawbringer - Centurion - Gladiator
Samurai Kensei - Shugoki - Orochi - Nobushi - Shinobi - Aramusha
Vikings Raider - Warlord - Berserker - Valkyrie - Highlander - Shaman
Wu Lin Tiandi - Jiang Jun - Nuxia - Shaolin