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The 12 best Bloodborne weapons: slay the nightmare with any build

Bloodborne is a challenging masterpiece of carnage. To complete it you’ll need help, so here’s our guide to the very best Bloodborne weapons.

When Bloodborne was released in 2015 it was a challenge for everyone, Souls veterans included. Part of the problem was the huge arsenal of Bloodborne weapons, and how each weapon interacted with different character builds.

Souls players had become accustomed to seeing their favourite tools return in each FromSoftWare title, meaning that their successful strategies were generally transferrable. Bloodborne tore this paradigm to shreds.

Bloodborne forced players to engage in an aggressive style of combat that, while an option in the Dark Souls games, was new to many players. Attacking became the best form of defence, with blocking becoming almost entirely obsolete.

This placed an even greater emphasis on what Bloodborne weapon you choose to build your character around. Because make no mistake; each weapon in the game, while viable, must be utilised correctly to be effective. This is why we have attached relevant attributes to each weapon in our guide, as even the mightiest of hammers will be all but useless in the hands of a snivelling wizard.

Whirligig Saw (Strength)

bloodborne whirligig
Screenshot: Bloodborne / FromSoftware

The Whirligig Saw is an absolute monster. It’s a portable circular saw that has been custom made to shred beasts into sludge. While it can feel a bit slow to use at first, particularly if you are using it in its untricked form, it has real merit once you become comfortable with it.

What you really want to do is start it revving and get in nice and close with your enemy. Because it’s classed as serrated it’s particularly useful against enemies classed as beasts. Therefore, anything that looks like a big wolf is fair game.

Just start your engine, circle your enemy, and watch as pieces of them disappear.

Saw Cleaver (Strength/Skill)

bloodborne weapons

The Saw Cleaver is perhaps the most iconic Bloodborne weapon of them all. It’s also one of the three weapons available to players at the start of the game. Don’t hold that against it though, as it holds its own against almost anything you will find later in the game.

This nasty-looking serrated weapon is far quicker than it appears, and is perfect for a player that wants to focus on strength as their primary damage attribute, but still deal damage in a flurry. The Saw Spear is a similar weapon that has a thrusting attack instead of the Cleaver’s overhanded slam.

Both are effective, with the Cleaver having slightly higher damage output, and it ultimately comes down to player preference regarding which is better.

Hunter Axe (Strength)

hunters axe

Another starting weapon that has more than its fair share of devotees. The Hunter Axe is the slowest of the three starting Bloodborne weapons, but it packs the punch to make up for it. If you are wanting to fully embrace the beefy, hard-hitting nature of a pure strength build, this is a perfect entry-level weapon.

Its swings aren’t as slow as many of the weapons you will likely want to try out later in the game, making it more forgiving to new players. And the truth is that you may find yourself returning to it when you realise many of the late game weapons aren’t all they are cracked up to be. Ye old faithful and all that truth.

Kirkhammer (Strength)

kirkhammer

Kirhammer is a giant mallet for all you heavy hitters, but it’s also a sword when you need it to be. Versatility is a big part of a successful Bloodborne weapon, as certain upgrade materials are extraordinarily rare. Therefore, think of Kirkhammer as an ideal weapon to base a strength character around, as it’s essentially giving you two weapons for the price of one.

It should also be noted that when in its sword form, Kirkhammer deals 50% Righteous damage, which is particularly useful against members of The Healing Church (read: everything in Cainshurst).

The Kirkhammer is also easy to grab early, and can be purchased for the paltry sum of 3000 Blood Echoes from the messengers in the Hunter’s Dream area after beating the game’s first boss (Cleric Beast).

Logarius’ Wheel (Strength/Arcane)

To get the most out of Logarius’ Wheel you probably want to invest some stats into Arcane, as it starts with a respectable scaling rating. Don’t let that turn you off if you can’t be bothered though.

Also, don’t underestimate it because it’s a wheel. I know it doesn’t sound very threatening, but if the Whirligig Saw taught us anything, it’s that circles can be uniquely terrifying in the world of Bloodborne. The Wheel has a unique feature where it can be charged up by being spun around furiously, turning you into a wagon of immense punishment.

Blades of Mercy (Skill)

bloodborne weapons

The Blades of Mercy are a personal favourite of mine. They are possibly the fastest weapon in the game, and consequently can dish out pain (not mercy) at an alarming rate if used effectively. This weapon can be used as a single blade or two twin daggers. However, if you decide to obtain this weapon you will quickly realise that the twin daggers mode is the only way to go.

The playstyle is pretty different to any other Bloodborne weapon, requiring the player to embrace rolling attacks and elegant combos. If you do this, you will feel unstoppable. If you don’t, you will find them very underwhelming.

The Blades of Mercy do dish out a small amount of Arcane damage, which although nice, it isn’t enough to justify investing into that stat. Unless of course you want to get down with some other magical items as well.

Chikage (Bloodtinge)

bloodborne weapons chikage

Until The Old Hunters DLC, the Chikage was the only melee weapon in the game that scaled with Bloodtinge. Since most enemies will have a lower resistance to Blood damage than their physical or magical resistances, this katana can hit like a truck with the right build. However, the power comes at a hefty tradeoff.

When transformed, the Chikage will become drenched in blood, slowly draining the player’s health while dealing Blood damage (in its regular state, damage scales off a player’s Skill and Strength). It will also inflict enemies with a Rapid Poison effect, dealing additional damage over time.

If you’re going for a Bloodtinge build, this weapon is simply a must-have. It’s obtained quite late in the game however – sold by the Bath Messengers for 50,000 Blood Echoes after acquiring the Cainhurst Badge – meaning you’ll need to commit to your build for quite a while before grabbing it.

Once you get used to the Chikage, however, you will be a machine. Learning to properly use transform attacks to switch in and out of the health-draining mode will net you the best results, dealing maximum damage while only transforming the blade when you need to.

Simon’s Bowblade (Skill/Bloodtinge)

bloodborne bowblade

Guns are an important part of how combat works in Bloodborne. Bows are not existent. Until you enter the DLC that is and come across Simon’s Bowblade. This unconventional weapon allows players to alternate between a curved sword and a bow.

The versatility this transformation allows is astounding, and can be really successful against some of the more aggressive bosses that tear you apart as soon as they have you within their grasp. Not for everyone, but if you are looking to try something different this is an unusual power move.

Lugwig’s Holy Blade (Strength/Skill/Arcane)

ludwigs holy blade

Lugwig’s Holy Blade divides opinion, although not because of how good it is. The sword simply slays, and even the haters wouldn’t dream of claiming otherwise. Rather, the reason it’s controversial is that it’s a boring ass sword.

Many feel, this writer included, that it doesn’t really fit in with the nasty, wildly creative world of Bloodborne. It feels like a Dark Souls weapon that was included to appease fans that needed something familiar.

That said, it’s an extraordinarily versatile weapon that can perform well for a variety of builds, largely due to its generous attribute scaling. It can be purchased for 20,000 souls from the Hunter’s Dream messengers after you obtain the Radiant Sword Hunter Badge (found at the very top room of the Healing Church Workshop tower).

Kos Parasite (Arcane)

bloodborne kos parasite

As the only pure Arcane weapon in the vast collection of available Bloodborne weapons, the Kos Parasite turns you into a tentacle-wielding monstrosity that is teeming with the power of the Old Ones. The tentacles themselves are rather disgusting, but a good deal of fun to use.

Because of its unique scaling rating (A in Arcane before it is even upgraded) it is but a minor curiosity to most players. Nonetheless, if you want to approximate a magic build then this weapon simply needs to be tested out.

Unfortunately, it is only obtained by killing the Orphan of Kos (located at the end of the DLC) and you’ll need to acquire the Milkweed Rune to use it effectively, making it a weapon that is only really relevant to NG+ players.

Holy Moonlight Sword (Strength/Arcane)

Bloodborne Holy Moonlight Sword

The Holy Moonlight Sword comes as a great boon to hunters who defeat one of the game’s most crushing bosses: Ludwig, the Accursed. You’ll find Ludwig’s head on the ground of the arena after you defeat him – talk to the head, and you will be given the sword. If you miss the head, return to the arena and look for Simon the Harrowed, who will also give you the sword after a bit of dialogue.

In its normal state, the greatsword deals moderate damage, but gets an added Arcane bonus in its transformed state. All heavy attacks in the transformed state will also fire magical projectiles – or cause the player to explode with arcane damage – meaning you can get some absolutely devastating hits off by hitting enemies with both the sword and the magic effects. Be wary though, these powered-up attacks will drain Quicksilver Bullets.

When paired with an Arcane build, you’ll be slinging spells at a distance while thumping enemies in melee range with this bad boy.

Rakuyo (Skill/Arcane)

Rakuyo can be transformed from a single twin-blade weapon to a sabre and dagger combo for duel wielding. It’s one of the deadliest Skill-based weapons, and consequently, suits players that want to be precise and speedy with their attacks.

The weapon is particularly dangerous because of its unique set of moves, and the way that these attacks can be chained together. In the right hands, Rakuyo can make a player appear unbeatable in a PVP setting.

Rakuyo scales with Skill and, to a lesser extent, Arcane. However like many of the best Bloodborne weapons, it can’t be obtained before you get most of the way through The Old Hunters DLC.

bloodborne weapons

So which is the best Bloodborne weapon for you?

The weapons on this list are nothing but a good starting point. One of the things that makes Bloodborne such a remarkable experience is the different ways that players can approach it. I would never wish to discourage a player for using a weapon, even if to my eyes it appears weak – perhaps I just don’t have enough Insight so see it in its true form.

Therefore, take this guide as a suggestion and do your best to experiment. If something isn’t clicking with you, don’t get down on yourself, just pick up a different weapon and continue down your path. But most importantly fellow hunter, never let the filthy beasts keep you down.

One day you will slay them all with your favourite Bloodborne weapon at your side.