I think they’re mostly in a good spot. Mace and Shield is basically a DPS Weapon now, and is easily picked over any other Shield Weapon imo.
But there’s way more things they can’t do than all of the CC makes up for. So they should be buffed in different ways, imo. Attack Speed is the best place to start.
It would be nice for the others to gain MORE OF a niche.
- Empire MnS: Elite damage, Horde CC with Lights
- Empire SnS: Elite Cleave on Lights, (best Horde Clear)
- Bret SnS: Elite Damage, Boss damage?
- 1H AnS: Elite damage, Horde CC, Boss damage (it has low Horde damage)
Sometimes the first Light attacks are really slow though. This along with their mobility makes them a bit frustrating at times. There was a point where I was running SS and AS with them, because of this.
E.g. M+S has slower Light attacks than a 2 Hander.
On Bosses they’re pretty much useless for anything other than surviving. This isn’t a problem for Boss Spawns (because you can CC Horde), but for Lords it’s too much of a damage loss (e.g. Nurgloth wipe number 100 where we have FK and IB both with Shield Weapons).
My old suggestion to fix this was giving SnS Heavy stab a bleed, which takes a while before it starts ticking, but hits quite high. This stops it deleting Elites, but gives it some damage at all VS lords and Monsters.
Axe and Shield, and Horde Clearing ranged with Shields:
IB usually uses Flamethrower, Drake Guns or Shotgun to make up for low Horde clear, but that’s completely the opposite of what he’s using the Shield for. Obviously you Shield and frontline when the Horde is Elite dense, but it’s just a weird contradiction I’ve noticed, that you take a Melee Weapon that’s good at CCing Hordes, and then instead of using it, you spam with Ranged.
The same applies to Kruber with Shotgun.
My least favourite Shield Weapon is Bretonian SnS, because of the move set. I like he overhead Heavy, but the Lights don’t make a lot of sense to me. I want to be able to deal decent damage to Hordes. The first Light after the slam is waaaay too slow, and it’s followed up by an overhead single target attack, which means it’s less safe.
MnS has been my favourite Shield Weapon since before any buffs, so I tend to use that.
Spear and Shield:
It’s great. HM is pretty much my main, so I use this a lot. It’s good for Elite damage, Horde control and mobility.
It’s weird, because it’s more of a DPS Weapon than a tanking Weapon.
The biggest downside is trying to frontline an Elite dense Horde and all you can really do is Push, because you don’t have the Slam and the H1 (Sweep), stops on the first Elite.
Just a little aside; I really hope their plan with Spear and Shield wasn’t to have you stack BCR and Ult into Hordes, because that would just be silly.