Nier Automata Endings guide: How to get the Best Ending

NieR: Automata has quite a lot of different Endings, and getting every ending can be a difficult challenge if you don't know exactly how to trigger them. Luckily for you, this endings guide explains how to get every ending in Nier Automata, allowing you to get all 26 endings, including the 5 main endings to Automata's story.

It might seem overkill that there's 26 different Nier Automata Endings, but in truth most of these endings aren't that important. The majority of them are in-jokes and references, while for the core of the story, there's 5 'main' endings. There's achievements and trophies tied to seeing some endings of both types, however, and seeing all of the different outcomes, even the non-canon jokes, is part of the fun of Nier Automata.

This is a spoiler-free Nier Automata endings guide, meaning it'll help you to find all 26 endings, including the 5 true endings and the final best ending without rksing you seeing any spoilers. If you're going deep on the Nier series, we also have a Nier Replicant Endings guide - if you go off to play this game's predecessor next, be sure to bookmark that page. But for now, let's talk Nier Automata:

Nier Automata Endings guide: How to get the True Ending

Nier Automata has five main endings, depicting different fates of 2B, 9S, and the rest of the cast.

Of the many Nier Automata endings, only five are 'proper' endings to the game's story. These five true endings make up the main 'routes' through the game - Ending A, B and C being the bulk of it, with ending D and E coming off the back of that as optional extras, offering more story insight and minor twists and turns. The 'optimal' ending - the best ending - is arguably ending E, but you need to have seen every previous ending in order to access it.

Basically, think of the main game as being endings A, B, and C - seeing those three, in order, one after the other. Consider Endings D and E as a sort of 'post-game' which leads to the true ending, of a sort. If the Nier developers declare a canon ending in years to come for a sequel, it's overwhelmingly likely that they will choose Ending E to be the canon. 

As well as the core five endings, there are a massive 21 alternative endings that are mostly little in-jokes the developers added. These can be accessed at various points throughout the game through specific actions.

Here, we detail how to get each ending while keeping the details as scant and as spoiler-free as possible. Be warned, however, that some minor spoilers will follow just in our descriptions of how each ending is attained. We've kept it as spoiler-light as possible, however.

How to see each of the Story Endings in Nier Automata

Nier Automata has multiple endings which depict the story from different angles.

These five endings are the 'main', true endings of Nier Automata - the ones that form the game's main story proper. If you continue to play the game, you're likely to discover these for yourself, leading right up to the true, final versions of the game's ending. Some of this might be a little hard to get through.

  • Ending A : Beat the game once in Route A.
  • Ending B : Beat the game once again in Route B after loading the save file that reached Ending A.
  • Ending C : Load the save file that reached Ending A and Ending B to begin Route C. During the final battle in this playthrough, select A2 during the final battle.
  • Ending D : Load the save file that reached Ending A and Ending B to begin Route C. During the final battle in this playthrough, select 9S during the final battle.
  • Ending E : Watch Ending D again after seeing both Ending C and Ending D in Route C. Accept Pod 042's request. 

Alternative Endings to Nier Automata

One of Nier Automata's joke endings can be accessed by unequipping your OS chip, which kills the protagonist.

Alternatively, these endings can be achieved at various points in the game and are all weird, quirky and non-canon ways for the story of Nier: Automata to come to an end. These are definitely less essential, because for the most part they're dumb jokes, like what happens when you choose to Self Destruct. As a result, tehse endings are a little more hidden - but we've got you covered.

The below list deals with endings F through Z, with brief descriptions on how to get each ending. As ever, we try to keep spoilers light, but there will be minor ones. Here y'go:

  • Ending F : Mission Failed - When 9S tries to restore his OS for the first time, simply run out of time.
  • Ending G : HunGry for Knowledge - Leave the mission area when controlling 9S for the first time.
  • Ending H : A Mountain too HigH - When the Goliath appears for the second time, flee from the battlefield.
  • Ending I : No I in Team - After defeating the boss in the Copied City, abandon 9S.
  • Ending J : Bad Judgement - Kill the religious machines in the Abandoned Factory when first meeting them.
  • Ending K : Aji Wo Kutta - Eat the mackerel given by Jackass.
  • Ending L : Lone Wolf - Abandon the battle area in the final battle of either Route A or Route B.
  • Ending M : Break TiMe - Choose to not help Pascal's Village near the end of Route C.
  • Ending N : No Man's Village - Kill every machine in Pascal's Village.
  • Ending O : Just YOu and Me - Abandon the battlefield during the beginning of Route C.
  • Ending P : CorruPtion - Get fully infected by the logic virus in Route C.
  • Ending Q : Questionable Actions - Abandon 2B in Route C when controlling 9S.
  • Ending R : MaveRick - Attack Pascal's villagers with A2 inside the Abandoned Factory.
  • Ending S : City EScape - Abandon Devola and Popola during the Tower sequence.
  • Ending T : FaTal Error - Unequip the OS plug-in chip.
  • Ending U : DebUnked - Self Destruct inside the Bunker.
  • Ending V : Wreckless BraVery - Do not hack into the Tower and wait for the accompanying NPCs to die.
  • Ending W : Broken Wings - Die during the intro level in Route A.
  • Ending X : Time to RelaX - Abandon helping 2B with A2.
  • Ending Y : HeadY Battle - Fight the secret boss and let it Self Destruct.
  • Ending Z : OverZealous: Kill Pascal with A2 in their first encounter.
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