“An incredibly sharp katana sword.” —Trader description
The katana is a fast, powerful and light melee weapon for berserkers. It can be used with two different firing modes, a quick slash with the primary fire button, or a slower swing with the alternate fire button. Of the two firing modes the primary has the highest damage per second. The katana is never found at random weapon spawn points in official maps, but can be found on Icebreaker in a katana only spawn point found amidships in front of a dead crew member. There is also a "Golden Katana" available in the "Golden Weapons" DLC. Its statistics are identical to the normal Katana.
The Berserker perk gets bonuses and a discounts for the katana. Strikes to the head cause 10% more damage.
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The base cost of the katana is £2000, this can be reduced by up to £1400 with use of the berserker perk, at intervals of £200 per level. As with all melee weapons there are no maintenance costs for it.
Usage and damage
In terms of damage output, the katana deals approximately a third more damage over time than the axe in primary fire and the same damage in alternate fire, despite its higher rate of fire. Compared to the chainsaw, the katana has up to 40% less damage potential over time, but is five blocks of weight lighter, has a 10% larger headshot multiplier, and allows the player to run faster whilst wielding it.
When playing on lower difficulties (Hard and below), a berserker wielding the Katana can repeatedly flinch a Scrake (attack interrupted but able to move, very short duration) and prevent it from retaliating by continuously attacking with primary attack (headshots are needed for a level 0 Berserker in order to reach the ~150 damage threshold for flinching). Unfortunately, this tactic is not feasible on the higher difficulty levels (Suicidal and HoE) as each Scrake can only be flinched once on these difficulties. However, a high level berserker (level 4+) can still stun a Scrake (unable to move or attack, moderate duration) on any difficulty level by attacking with the Katana's alt-fire from behind (667 or more damage done in a single attack).
Advantages & Disadvantages
- Fast attack rate;
- Reliably decapitates lesser specimens;
- Primary attack has a 'sweep effect', meaning that the player can attack multiple nearby specimens with one swing.
- Best to keep Patriarch busy with hit-and-run while rest of the team focuses on him;
- Alt-fire to the body stuns Husks when used by high-ranked Berserker;
- Moderately powerful.
- Primary fire to the head stun Scrakes when used by a high-ranked Berserker; may require slowly backing up.
- Weak against stronger specimens (like the Fleshpound or Patriarch), or, at higher difficulties, Scrakes.
- At higher difficulties it loses effectiveness against Scrakes, not doing enough damage with secondary attacks to stun-lock it.
- Deals less damage per hit than the Fire Axe, Claymore, Scythe or Dwarfish Axe.
- Short range requires a side-arm to deal with agile zeds like Crawlers in order to avoid damage.
- Requires the user to close into melee range.
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