Sifu gameplay guide: Tips to defeat The Botanist

The first true boss-fight of the game is all about patience (Image via SloClap)
The first true boss-fight of the game is all about patience (Image via SloClap)

Developer Sloclap’s indie action martial-arts beat-em-up Sifu is finally out on PlayStation and PC, enjoying a lot of love for its subtle nods to iconic scenes from pop culture media, alongside its brilliant gameplay.

But pop-culture references aside, the game itself is pretty challenging, and the boss fights feel particularly overwhelming.

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While the game does a great job in teaching the basics required to beat most of the enemies out in the game, bosses, however, are a whole different affair. Each boss comes with a variety of movesets and quirks completely different from the normal grunts.

Botanist is one such boss that players will encounter in the game.


The Botanist fight in Sifu is all about patience and blocks

otanist fight (Image via Sifu)
otanist fight (Image via Sifu)

Fajar, also known as The Botanist, is the first true boss in the game, with the fight taking place in an old run-down factory.

The first thing to keep in mind is that this boss-fight is pretty straightforward, as whatever a player has learned throughout the level should be sufficient enough to see them through.

The fight takes place in a factory (Image via Sifu)
The fight takes place in a factory (Image via Sifu)

However, it is recommended to bring a weapon such as a pipe, or a stick from previous encounters as that will give some breathing room, and also make the fight easier. Of course, this guide also applies to hand-to-hand fights.

The fight with Fajar takes place in two phases, and he has separate fighting styles in both.


First Phase

In the first phase, Fajar will always jump in the air and come down on the player with a flip kick, so blocking or avoiding it is advisable. Additionally, players should remember the following:

  • Getting hit from a flip kick will do a considerable amount of damage, so make sure to either parry and/or block the attack
  • Players should not be putting distance between Fajar and themselves, as doing so will make him do the flip-kicks frequently
  • Use the weapon to deal damage to Fajar
  • If Fajar does a sweep kick, be sure to low-block
Use a weapon in phase 1 (Image via Sifu)
Use a weapon in phase 1 (Image via Sifu)

The key to phase one is simply blocking and parrying Fajar's attacks, and moving in to deal damage when an opening is available. Doing all of that will raise his structure meter, and once raised completely, players can deal the finishing damage to him, which takes the fight to phase two.

Phase one requires blocking and parrying (Image via Sifu)
Phase one requires blocking and parrying (Image via Sifu)

Phase one is all about the game of defense and patience. Blocking and/or parrying Fajar will determine the player's success, so it is highly suggested to play defensively. Further, players should remember to fight in close quarters against him.


Second Phase

The second phase begins as soon as players perform the finisher on Fajar in phase one, taking the players to a garden with bamboo. The speed of the fight gets much faster and more aggressive as Fajar gets much more serious.

Phase 2 is more dangerous (Image via Sifu)
Phase 2 is more dangerous (Image via Sifu)

For phase two: players should keep the following things in mind:

  • Fajar periodically goes into the bushes of bamboo and lunges out at the player, which is indicated by a flash seconds before his jump.
  • Ignore Fajar and run around the map, as that will make him miss his attacks.
  • Fajar uses a knife in this phase. However, players can block it. Before every attack using the knife, the tip always glows,
  • Players should avoid getting hit by the knife at all costs, as getting hit by the weapon will dole a lot of damage.
The focus meter is important in Phase 2 (Image via Sifu)
The focus meter is important in Phase 2 (Image via Sifu)

The focus meter of the game comes in handy during phase 2, as using the moves gives a confirmed hit to Fajar, opening him up to a beating from the players.

Phase 2 finisher (Image via Sifu)
Phase 2 finisher (Image via Sifu)

Hence, to win phase 2, block and parry Fajar's attacks and run around when he is going inside the bamboo bushes. Whenever the opportunity arises, use the focus attack to raise his structure meter and finish him off with the finisher.


As mentioned before, Fajar is the most straightforward boss-fight in the game, so if a player learns how to block and parry successfully, the boss-fight becomes much easier, as it is all about patience and blocking.

Patience and blocking will win the fight against Fajar (Image via Sifu)
Patience and blocking will win the fight against Fajar (Image via Sifu)

Sifu is currently available to play on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and PC via the Epic Games Store. Our review for the game is currently in progress. Meanwhile, the game apparently can be defeated by sparing the bosses.