My Top Video Game Swords
Swords are cool, there is not a person on this planet that can deny that. The sword is a symbolic weapon that conveys power and control. From the Japanese samurai to the generals during the American Civil war the sword has been held in high regard throughout history. They are also featured prominently in our fiction from Conan (the barbarian not the comedian) to Skywalker swords are just about anywhere a badass is. This is true for video games as well as other mediums of fiction. it is with that said that I present my list of the best swords in video game history.
A Quick Quote
Just in case you are still unsure of the epicness of the sword remember the advice Shaftoe gave Reagan in Cryptonomicon:
"Kill the one with the sword."
The Master Sword (Legend of Zelda)
What better sword to start this list with than the Master Sword? Featured in most Legend of Zelda games the master sword is not only a weapon of mass destruction but also the key to unlocking areas in the games. Taking a cue from Arthurian legends the master sword must be pulled from a stone by our intrepid hero. Since fighting your way through hoards of enemies and pulling the sword from the stone is not heroic enough the master sword must also be charged through some means in order to reach its full potential. While all of this may seem like a lot of work ( and it is) once Link has gone through all of this he is treated to one of the most awesome swords in gaming history. As of the design of the Master Sword was not cool enough it is often the weapon needed to kill Ganon and save the world of Hyrule from what ever form of destruction he is cooking up. The Master Sword has gone on to become the icon of the Zelda series and is one of the most recognizable weapons in video game history.
Soul Edge (Soul Caliber)
The Soul Edge is so much more than a weapon in the Soul Calibur games. Soul Edge is actually the main antagonist and is responsible for the events in the story line. Most people recognize the Soul Edge as being Nightmares weapon. The truth is in a lot of the Soul Calibur games most of the characters can use the weapon, at a cost. The Soul Edge will drain the users health slowly throughout the course of the battle. The upside to you losing health is that the Soul Edge will also siphon the health of any character hit by the blade. This ensure that you are constantly aggressive and on the attack. To be fair you are using a sword with a demon entrapped in it so one would think you would want to be hitting something with it. A giant organic sword with an eyeball in it, the power to drain life and corrupt peoples souls. What more could one ask for in a video game sword?
The Buster Sword (Final Fantasy 7)
Cloud Strife may have been one of the most whiny annoying protagonists in JRPG history, but his weapon of choice more than made up for his character flaws. The Buster Sword is big, and not just Highlander two-handed sword big, but "Holy crap how could anyone lift that thing let alone hit something with it?" big. The laws of physics aside this is one kick ass sword. The Buster Sword was passed down from Angeal ( who never used it) to Zack (who used it a little) to Cloud ( who used the hell out of it). Originally a gift from Angeal's father the Buster Sword was a family heirloom until the spiky headed brat got his hands on it and began slaughtering everything from over sized bird to Shinra soldiers with it. Lore aside the Buster Sword has become the symbol of Final Fantasy and has been featured in most games since it made it's first appearance in Final Fantasy VII.
The Katana (Shadow Warrior)
Shadow Warrior was a pretty standard FPS set in a crazy B-rated Kung Fu world. The game was over the top and funny, and since your character was a ninja it was only fitting that you melee weapon be a katana. The katana in Shadow Warrior was a great weapon and it was great to wield a katana from a first person view. With blood flying everywhere and staining the blade the katana could cut down weaker foes in a single slice. Since we are talking about a game from before the ESRB this weapon can get rather gory, try it on a brown ninja and you will see what I mean. You had your trusty katana with you from the start of the game until the very end, and it was always useful. Now that steam has the classic version of Shadow Warrior available to download for free there really is no reason why anyone should not experience the glory of hacking their way through countless foes with this weapon.
Nodachi (Bushido Blade)
Bushido Blade was a weapon fighting game for the Playstation. The game was known for being rather hard. Bushido Blade did not feature life bars like most fighting games but rather one good hit could kill your opponent out right and end the match, At the start of the match players where able to pick from a selection of weapons one of which was the Nodachi. The nodachi is a Japanese two handed sword, while in real life the sword was to long and heavy to be practical of use in combat it is of great effect in Bushido Blade. Having the longest reach of all the sword weapons the nodachi has an immediate advantage in a game that often comes down to one good hit. It is a slower weapon when compared to the katana or saber but the reach cannot be denied. I have many fond memories of sitting around my living room slaughtering friend after friend with this weapon. Aside from being a rather good choice of weapon it also looks really cool. These swords where used by samurai as more of a status symbol than an actual weapon, and it worked.
Nodachi in action in Bushido Blade
Swords are great. That is the conclusion to this little list, nothing more nothing less. They are one of the most iconic recognizable weapons in real life as well as video games, entire gaming franchises have been built on them. No matter how hard game developers may try to come up with new melee weapons like power hammers or impact guns the sword will remain the one and only true weapon of choice for those looking to do a little hacking and or slashing.