Dark Souls is easily one of the best games of last gen. An action RPG that offered a punishing but still fair difficulty curve, Demon’s Souls set the foundation that Dark Souls would build upon. Where stages were linear and segmented, the world was now interconnected. Where bosses often favored spectacle and gimmicks, Dark Souls’ bosses emphasized mechanical variety.
That’s really where Dark Souls edges out its sister game. There are so many more weapon options available for the player to use. For PvE in particular, just about any weapon can get the job done while being reasonably fun to use, but there’s something special about using the strongest weapons in a game.
10 Black Knight Greataxe
Black Knight weapons are incredibly rare drops, but one of them is bound to drop sooner rather than later. The Black Knight Greataxe may not be the best of the bunch, but it more than pulls its weight in a fight. While slow, the Black Knight Greataxe hits incredibly hard and has surprisingly good reach.
With the right timing, tearing down enemies with the Black Knight Greataxe is no problem. It’s an especially useful weapon for bosses with larger health pools. Of course, its speed is a bit of a problem, but that’s really the only major point against the Black Knight Greataxe.
9 Great Scythe
The Great Scythe is an easy weapon to underestimate. It’s so non-traditional that it almost feels like it’s bound to make a mess in Dark Souls. It even clips through the ground in movement. At the same time, the Great Scythe has a wickedly fun play style that keeps players moving and attacking almost rhythmically.
It’s an incredibly fun weapon to learn how to play, but it’s no slouch in a fight either. It can tackle most of the main game with no major roadblocks. The fact that the weapon has such a unique control scheme really is the main reason to use it, though. Few weapons are as fun.
8 Balder Side Sword
The Balder Side Sword only has a 1% drop rate from Balder Knights, but it’s worth the effort to grind out as early as the Undead Parish. The Balder Side Sword is a fast, reasonably hard hitting weapon with an insanely reliable move set that makes mincemeat out of most enemies. It’s a great weapon to take to the end of the game and beyond.
Of course, grinding for it will be the biggest challenge. That 1% drop rate is particularly cruel and might ensure that most players won’t ever stumble upon the sword on any of their playthroughs. Its thrust attacks are also notoriously difficult to parry, making them fairly useful for PvP.
7 Black Knight Greatsword
The Black Knight Greatsword is one of the slower greatswords in the game, making it difficult to unleash a frenzy of swings like a mad man, but it’s nonetheless a powerful weapon that some lucky few will end up getting as early as the Undead Parish. It hits hard, can smash down shields, and has pretty good range all around.
Its move set is pretty smooth for a greatsword as well. It’s heavy, but not particularly cumbersome. Of course, it’s worth noting that there are better greatsword options in the game so the Black Knight Greatsword might seem redundant, but being outclassed doesn’t make it any less impressive.
The Estoc is going to end up a beast of everyone should a player decide to take the time to experiment with it. As a thrusting weapon, players can use the Estoc while keeping their shield enough. With the right timing, it’s possible to skewer enemies to death while behind the safety of a shield.
Looking for a more involved play style? Just ditch the shield and get into the rhythm of methodically poking the opposition. As the longest ranged thrusting weapon in the game, the Estoc can reach surprisingly far, allowing for fluid movement within combat. Just keep in mind that timing is key.
5 Moonlight Greatsword
The Moonlight Greatsword is basically the definitive weapon of INT builds. It’s not nearly as slow as other greatswords, has magical properties, has a fluid move set, and scales really well its main stats. The only real downside to the weapon is its range and the fact that it can’t be gotten until very late in the game.
On top of that, players need to cut off Seath’s tail before killing him to get the weapon— a task that’s frankly easier said than done. It can be tedious trying to get the Moonlight Greatsword, but it does only need to happen once and getting the weapon is a matter of skill more than anything else.
4 Black Knight Sword
The Black Knight Sword is one of the most reliable weapons in the game, especially when two-handed. Not only does two-handing make the Black Knight Sword stronger, its swings become significantly faster, making the weapon incredibly punishing. Like with all the Black Knight weapons, it has a fun move set to learn how to play.
Surprisingly, the Black Knight Sword doesn’t have range problems. It’s not as long ranged as it perhaps could be, but it has enough range to almost always be useful, especially when two-handed. It doesn’t have the best availability in the game, but it’s an easy enough weapon to farm in the Kiln.
It’s almost unfair how ridiculously useful the Zweihander winds up with no little to no effort. It’s fast, has amazing range, hits incredibly hard, and can comfortably stunlock. It’s a weapon that can be found as soon as players step foot outside the Asylum. Better yet, the Zweihander never falls off in terms of usability.
Most of its upgrade paths are worth putting some effort into, but the weapon itself is strong enough even on its own. Like with most weapons, the Zweihander becomes particularly dangerous when two-handed. It’s arguably the best greatsword in the game, if not the most broken, but there is one weapon that gives it a run for its money.
At first glance, the Claymore might not seem worth the effort. It’s less glamorous than the Zweihander, doesn’t have as good a range, and isn’t nearly as flashy. But it’s a more cohesive and understandable weapon. It lacks the chaotic energy of the Zweihander, but offers a more sensible play style in return.
It’s overall a much smoother weapon in terms of game feel which makes using the Claymore more worthwhile than the Zweihander in many respects. It’s also a strong enough weapon in its own right without being cheap. The Claymore doesn’t need wonky balancing to be a good greatsword.
1 Black Knight Halberd
There really is no other choice for best weapon in Dark Souls. At least no sensible choice. The Black Knight Halberd has every single boone a Dark Souls weapon can have: it’s not hard to get, it can potentially be gotten early, it has amazing range, it’s insanely strong, it only gets stronger, and it’s fast.
The Black Knight Halberd is a monster of a weapon that really has no comparison in-game. It’s the best of the best and can be viable for just about any situation, on or offline. It’s even the weapon of choice for optimal speed runs.