Kruber - Greatsword vs Executioner's sword

Aesthetically, I love the way the greatsword looks! And I really want to use it more often, but as soon as a CW appears, I’m practically useless with it. I’m trying to understand why the Greatsword has really bad armor piercing vs. Executioner’s sword?

I was even thinking of paced strikes being a good pair with greatsword, but executioners sword excels at clearing mobs with Kruber than greatsword as well. So why is greatsword still even in the game? And when can it be used?

Did a video compare to illustrate my point (disclaimer, I play with controller, so don’t judge me :slight_smile: )


Realized I did some hits with exec sword from behind. Here’s another video of both swords from front.

It’s simple. Greatsword in one of the many overshadowed weapons in this game. We need some buff.


Greatsword has ~10% more base damage on its light and heavy attacks, has a slightly higher attack speed (at least it says so in armoury, although it feels more equal or slightly slower than executioner with heavy attacks), 3x more damage cleave and ~40% higher stagger cleave. It has the rare and unique property of Heavy Linesman, which gives it the ability to hit several elites with over heavy strike. It can cleave into 4 Chaos Warriors with Mercenary and do damage to all of them, same with Stormvermin, and can cleave even more maulers. Heavy Linesman also has better modifiers against Chaos Warriors (CW’s will always 100% stop your executioner cleave swings) and other enemies like raiders and shields (Heavy Linesman cleaves them around 10% easier). It also has a push-attack that deals solid armour-piercing damage. It has also quite significantly better dodge, with one extra dodge count (3 is 50% better than 2, and is very noticeable) as well as 10% dodge bonus.

Executioner has significantly better single target elite damage with its heavy attacks, innate crit chance on heavy attacks and a bigger headshot damage multiplier which gives it higher potential and realistic damage. Tank property also makes it so the executioner has a stronger stagger effect.

Greatsword has significantly higher cleave, executioner doesn’t even compare. While executioner has significantly higher single target elite damage, greatsword can hit several elites with one swing, and while individually the damage is not high, the aggregate damage is quite equivalent, not to mention that it has a minor stagger crowd control effect. Greatsword also has the push attack for single target elites which pushes it up into average/below average single target armour DPS. Executioner is good at killing hordes, but in higher difficulties like Cataclysm+, the greatsword begins to shine significantly more, since the executioner is far more likely to stop it’s swing midway through the horde, stopped by a Chaos Warrior or 2 maulers, shields or Stormvermin, while the greatsword will keep going. It is superior to killing hordes, and the bigger they are, the better, while executioner suffers more. Executioner is also a lot worse at dodging, which is quite significant in my opinion.

The test conducted in this thread is absolutely terrible. It specifically portrays a situation where the executioner shines in (single target armoured elite) and the person didn’t even use greatswords push-attack. It doesn’t take into account that greatsword has significantly higher cleave (the highest in the game I do believe), that it can hit and damage several armoured elites, the better dodge stat and the great, reliable and simple heavy attacks.

I personally don’t get where this idea came from that the greatsword is this woefully weak and overshadowed weapon. Apart from the statistics that I’ve shown, I can also from experience say that I’ve used the greatsword a lot. It’s actually mt go-to weapon with Mercenary if I really want to win. I’ve brought it to C3O where it excelled due to the huge horde sizes, while the executioner wouldn’t even cleave a quarter of the hordes. I had several moments where I killed 4 Stormvermin with one heavy swing (of course that doesn’t mean I one shot them, but it still shows that it does damage, and as I mentioned, in total the damage is pretty solid). Now this doesn’t necessarily mean that the executioner isn’t better than greatsword. Maybe it is, and I certainly wouldn’t mind some tweaks to greatsword (the light attacks are not very good, I’d much prefer a fancier and more intricate light attack pattern, and a stab attack to follow the push attack), but I’m just saying that it’s not nearly as overshadowed as people think it is. It’s not cut and dry.


Overall its lacks single hard hit damage like exec, its slow in attack and in movement. Idea that its crowd clearer don’t work because each few targets (no idea how much cleave must be deducted) reduce your damage for cleaved target so even if its have amazing cleave it wont do that much comparing to faster weapons with lower cleave.

Second exec have nearly horizontal attacks 2hd sword have quite high angle for light attacks and little lower angle but still not horizontal for heavies.
2hd sword push attack is joke in term of speed and damage


GS is a lot of fun to use and yes it’s viable but it’s not top tier.

The push attack (hold block > Hold attack) is your main anti-armor move. It’s a vertical slice perfect for removing heads. Consider gearing for extra stamina to give you more “ammo” for this attack.

Aim for as many headshots as possible. It’s needed to make up for the weapons weakness. It’s one of the 2 weapons in the game that can cut multiple armored enemies at once with it’s heavy attacks, use that advantage.

It works best with an attack speed build, like Crit Mercenary + Paced Strikes + Swift Slaying. It needs every advantage you can give it so stack the crap out of attack speed cheesiness.


Another voice of reason on this forum, I thank you!

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It’s important to remember that the game can’t be balanced around mods… into the “base game” Exe goes through the entire horde as well, and it keeps its huge power vs elites.


The GS push attack is literally one of the worst push attacks in the game! At best, it’s terrible! To even mention or hint at it being viable is laughable. Nevertheless, I’ll be practical… I’ll wait for a video of it being used on armored targets like CW…


I couldn’t have said it better. I feel like if you compare the 2 and decide on one or the other to go into any Cata game, Exec is always the better choice! Usually, I’ll only go GS if I know that there is someone else on my tam with higher-armor piercing or single target dmg. in PUG situations, that could vary


Yes. This is what I tthought as well, and this is what I run. But an exec with the same build is just so much better…not to mention you dont have to sacrifice your precious stamina to land quick and powerful headshots.

It’s hard to make the decision to go with GS when it’s counterpart does much better imo

I can’t argue with the stats…true, but to say that the GS is overall better than the exec? I’m gonna have to agree to disagree there.

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Furthermore (and this is just my opinion) the exec sword makes a better horde clearer because it’s swipes are 180 degree-horizontal (hang-on, don’t shoot me yet lol).

Most times, with the exec sword, you can position your crosshair right where the heads of the mob-rats/beastmen would be, and just mash attk, and heads come off.

And with paced-strikes, drill-master, the more the merrier, reikland reaper (or even enhanced training) you’ll not only (usually) build the most temp health in the grp during a horde wave, but still have stamina to block/push attacks, and not need stamina at all to take down elites unlike GS.

I fail to see why I would still opt to go with GS. GS clears mobs very well, I agree. But it lacks in everything else so badly that exec is usually the go-to of the 2

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Sure, but it’s still something worthy of mention.

Not always, not on regular Cataclysm at least. When fighting patrols or ambient enemies mixed in like Chaos Warriors then even on just Legend or Champion it won’t cleave through all of them. Shields also I feel more noticeably affect executioner. That and even if they both go through the entire horde, then greatsword is still superior due to better horde clear, and since it’s a horde without elites then it’s not even really a scenario worth mentioning since any weapon will do fine.

…where did this hate for the push-attack come from? Personally I use it quite often to take out single elites or to pluck out an elite from a horde. It’s not an attack you spam singlehandly, rather something you do after you used a heavy attack. Heavy slash + push-attack can take out a Stormvermin in one combo on Legend, assuming all are headshots (and getting headshots is pretty easy).

Well, personally I’d rather take greatsword over executionr, since the cleave of the greatsword is actually much more noticeable in Cataclysm than it is in just Legend. That’s when you’ll start getting several elites and shielded enemies in your hordes, and that’s when greatsword starts performing beter than executioner in my opinion. Of course, executioner might still be ‘overall’ better, but by how much? Well, I’d say not much at least, and greatsword is certainly at the very least not far behind.

Eh, I personally never struggle with stamina. Heavy attacks are your bread and butter in nearly all situations, the push-attack is not something to be spammed, but rather interwoven with the heavy attacks for the stagger damage bonus. I’d say that greatsword is also quite a bit better at generating tHP with cleave, while with executioner you can go either tHP on kill or on cleave, but will do slightly worse at generating it.

Well, it only lacks in one thing, and that is elite killing power. It’s actually a fair bit better at dodging too. Even then, it’d be more fair to say single target elite killing power, since the fact that it can cleave into several elites means that the damage overall is better than some people give credit to. Even then, you can heavy attack into push-attack to take out a Stormvermin in one combo on Legend, and elites on themselves aren’t really a threat anyways. Elites with hordes are a fair bit harder to deal with, and that’s where greatsword shines more than the executioner in my opinion.


Dude - it’s the entire key to using the weapon. It’s your best single target ability. Learning how to headshot with it is the difference between GS getting the job done and being a slow crappy version of the 1hs.

Exec does more damage- substantially so. GS is more mobile while attacking, is more responsive, and has better dodge range. Maybe you don’t value those things but it’s not as badly outclassed as you think. Yes, it’s underpowered, but not to the degree that you can’t use it if you like it. It just takes a bit more practice to get the most out of it.

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The exec has the same bad “delay” on heavy attack as the flail has. Exec is brought back behind Kruber’s back and the swing forward takes additional time, just like with Sienna’s flail, when the weapon is in the 270 degree of the upswing.
Greatsword push attack is much quicker for the same overhead attack type.

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Below is my subjective opinion that has formed after using the Greatsword for a fair bit on both Mercenary and Foot Knight.
The Greatsword is clearly intended to be able to deal with multiple, varied foes more effectively than the Executioner’s Sword. While I think a small damage boost would help this weapon a lot, further enhancing it’s ability to deal with mixed hordes would give it a stronger niche.

Currently, you can use the Greatsword to kill/stagger chaff infantry between elites, which in a team context makes it easier for everyone else to focus on elites. Where it falls short is that you’ll often get hit by an elite while doing this, because it cannot have the stagger, attack speed or attack movement speed to make this safe (you can spec it into one of these areas, but you’ll end up sacrificing one of the other needed elements). Compare this to the Greathammer, which will do the same thing with slightly less killing power but with complete safety (except against chaos warriors). It’s essentially a support/cc frontline weapon that protects melee damage dealers from stray hits yet requires support itself.

They could give it the ability to stagger multiple cw with it’s heavy attack (it can already do this with crits, but crits are inconsistent and Helborg’s Tutelage does not mesh well with the slow attacks of the Greatsword).


I like the greatsword, but the push stab doesn’t feel much quicker than executioner heavies to me. And when those push stabs do around 1/3rd of the damage a executioner heavy does well… I just feel like there’s a lot of room for improvement.

And that’s not even going into how poorly the greatsword stacks up against the 2h hammer.


I don’t want the greatsword to delete armor/super armor like Ex Sword. I don’t even need the push-attack buffed, I just need the light attack pattern revised to be more versatile.

Give me one overhead or a stab or both on lights and I won’t really need outrageous armor/monster damage because I’ll have a couple of headshot hitting attacks.

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Actually its less mobile, because its has same slow effect and has way slower attacks.

and GS push attack is true garbage, its easier to headshot with heavy swing and it will deal more damage to armored than push that deals pathetically low

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