Best Sword & Shield Weapons in MHW

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Have you ever wondered, while stalking your prey through the bushes or pushing through vines in the forest, what weapon other survival experts such as Bear Grylls or Les Stroud would use to hunt down monsters?

Well among the many versatile weapons in Monster Hunter: World, none will make you more prepared for the challenges of the virgin lands in the New World than the Sword and Shield.

Improvise. Adapt. Overcome.

That’s the Sword and Shield in a nutshell. It’s a weapon for the resourceful hunters out there, the item-obsessed that never leave Astera without a plan.

With it you won’t be tied down by long attack animations, and you’ll be ready to take advantage of an opening the moment you see it. Not only that, but you can use items on the fly without sheathing your weapon.

While the Sword and Shield is no doubt a beginner-friendly weapon, there is plenty of ground to cover to achieve true mastery of this hunting multi-tool.

To show our love and appreciation for this often overlooked weapon I’ll be ranking the absolute best sword weaponry that you can get in Monster Hunter: World. No matter your play-style, there’s something for you here.

10. Royal Rose

Royal Rose sword shield MHW weapons

The first contestant for the title of best Sword and Shield in MHW is this beautifully designed classic from the Monster Hunter franchise.

This thorny rapier is made of parts collected from Rathian and Pink Rathian monsters, and maintains the same poisonous potential. Which is great on such a fast weapon.

Other than that this weapon offers decent raw damage, a small decoration slot and a 10% affinity bonus that’ll pair nicely with skills like Critical Status.

Another skill you’ll want to get for this weapon is Handicraft as it can reach a decently durable white sharpness with it.

9. Taroth Slicer “Numb”

Another great ailment sword is the Taroth Slicer “Numb”, a relic weapon from the Kulve Taroth monster.

Its raw damage is nothing amazing, but it provides great Paralysis status build-up and comes with the Critical Status skill built-in.

To help you make the best of said skill it has a 10% affinity bonus and the possibility to reach white sharpness once you get a high level of Handicraft.

It also has a small decoration slot to help you maximize its status build-up or any other relevant stat.

Definitely one of the best weapons to use in a multiplayer setting where your hunter mates can profit from the monster’s downtime once you paralyze them.

8. Eradication Vanguard

Eradication Vanguard from MHW

Many weapons making up the “Sword” part of the sword/shield combo couldn’t be further from this word.

Take this giant, primal-looking cleaver for example.

This “something” and shield can be made from Nergigante parts and, like the Eater of Elders himself, is very effective against most Elder Dragons.

Not only does it have a high level Elderseal, but it also deals pretty decent Dragon elemental damage. And, of course, high raw damage overall.

The only downside to this dangerous-looking weapon is that it can’t reach white sharpness.

That said, its blue sharpness is very durable, which is desirable since it’s a fast weapon that eats through sharpness at an accelerated pace.

7. Taroth Slicer “Mud”

The seventh spot in my list was contested between two very similar weapons: the Barroth Club and the Taroth Slicer “Mud”.

Ultimately this relic weapon is the better version.

Even aesthetically, it’s basically the same weapon, only golden!

Not only does is have massive raw damage for such a fast weapon, but it also has access to the Non-Elemental Boost, which makes it the strongest raw damage sword/shield set in the game.

In addition it provides a sizable Defense boost to keep you healthy and a small decoration slot for further improvement.

However there are several reasons why such a strong hunting tool doesn’t reach the top spots on this list.

On one hand, it has a negative 10% affinity you’ll have to account for in your build.

It also can’t reach white sharpness, which limits how effective it’ll be in a real battle.

There’s also the fact that such a fast weapon type generally achieves more by taking advantage of elemental weaknesses. There are other weapons types that work amazingly with raw damage.

6. Xeno Mabura

Xeno Mabura MHW

Much lower on the raw damage scale we find the Xeno Mabura, a beautiful weapon with Xeno’jiiva’s signature red eyes adorning it.

As most weapons from this majestic beast, this sword & shield has default white sharpness and the potential to make it ultra-durable with Handicraft, and even Protective Polish if you truly don’t ever want to sharpen your weapon again.

It also has a very high Dragon elemental damage output and low level Elderseal to help you manage the ancient Elder beasts.

This weapon can greatly benefit from skills such as Critical Element thanks to its 15% affinity bonus, becoming one of the best Elder-hunting tools in the list.

5. Teostra’s Emblem

Teostras Emblem sword shield combo

One of the most uniquely-designed weapons among the sword and shield line-up is this blade from the Teostra monster.

Why is there a sword inside the shield?

Why is it more pointy than the one you actually hold on your other hand?

We’ll never know the answers.

What we do know about this colorful weapon is how powerful it can be thanks to its amazing Blast build-up.

It also provides pretty good raw damage and has the possibility of reaching white sharpness with the Handicraft skill.

There is no doubt that the Blast status is one of the most powerful for damaging monsters and breaking off their parts. But you really haven’t tapped into its full potential if you haven’t tried it out with a weapon sword/shield combo.

4. Empress Edge “Styx”

MHW Empress Edge sword/shield

This next entry follows the same strategy as the Teostra’s Emblem, making the best of the Blast status on a fast weapon. But takes it to the next level.

While the Blast status build-up on the Empress Edge “Styx” isn’t the highest, it has a lengthy white sharpness bar by default and comes with the Razor Sharp skill built in.

So you can focus less on maintaining its sharpness and more on maximizing damage when planning your build.

One of your best options will be, like on many other sword/shield options, to build Critical Status along with other critical-enhancing skills to profit from its 10% affinity bonus.

It also comes with two decoration slots to help you piece together your build.

3. Grand Barong II

MHW Grand Barong 2

Aren’t you surprised such a humble weapon made it so far up the list?

Well, I kinda am too!

Especially considering this bone weapon competes in exactly the same department as the Taroth Slicer “Numb”, which is inflicting Paralysis on your enemies.

What makes it come out on top, other than being so easy to obtain, is its remarkably high Paralysis status build-up potential.

You do have to spend some resources on unlocking this hidden element but I’m sure that once you try it, you’ll be glad you did.

Regrettably, this curved blade can’t reach white sharpness. But it can get a very lengthy blue sharpness bar if you get a high level of Handicraft, which will be more than enough in most situations.

If you’re just starting out in the game this is the first thing you should focus on getting.

2. Fatal Bite

MHW Fatal Bite

This weapon made from Deviljho parts is another one pushing the envelope for what can be considered a “sword” but I’ll let it pass.

It’s one of the strongest weapons in terms of raw damage, competing with the Taroth Slicer “Mud”. But it also has really high Dragon elemental damage to complement it.

That, along with its high level Elderseal, makes it a great option to hunt most Elder Dragons.

Once you deal with its 20% negative affinity and get it up to white sharpness with Handicraft, you’ll have an amazing weapon on your hands that is considered by many to be the best one overall.

1. Witcher’s Silver Sword +

Witchers Silver Sword MHW

My pick for the best sword and shield in Monster Hunter: World is special because of two things.

First, that it was added to the game as part of a collaboration with The Witcher, another successful fantasy franchise.

The second?

It has no shield!

Your character will use one of Geralt’s magic signs to protect themselves instead. It really doesn’t get any cooler than that.

This weapon doesn’t have the best raw damage but its Dragon elemental damage is excellent, and it has a high level Elderseal.

However, this alone wouldn’t be enough to surpass the Fatal Bite.

What really takes this weapon to the next level is its potential to reach a virtually infinite white sharpness bar with Handicraft, in turn letting you focus on the battle and therefore maximizing your DPS.

Plus it has a small decoration slot its rival lacks.

But really, it’s just too cool not to have it at the top.

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Nelson Chitty

Nelson Chitty is a Venezuelan expat living in Argentina. He’s a writer and translator passionate about history and foreign cultures. His ideal weekend is spent between leisurely games of Civilization VI and looking for the next seinen anime to marathon.