Fantasy Weapons – Red Queen from Devil May Cry
Red Queen is a very specific sword which first appears in Devil May Cry 4 as a weapon for Nero.
Major qualities of the sword are: balance, reach, hand protection, damage performance and overall versatility. Damage performance involves cutting and stabbing performance. Cutting depends on width and depth of the blade, which control the edge and bevel angle, while stabbing depends on the tip angle as well as distal and profile taper. Both also depend in part on blade rigidity – a more flexible blade will have inferior cutting and stabbing performance.
Balance is not the strong point of the sword. Red Queen has a very thick blade, with very gradual profile taper and no distal taper. As a result, it is almost certainly very unbalanced. This means that it has limited agility and point control. On the other hand, point of balance being very close to the tip (likely close to halfway-point of the blade) means that any strikes will be powerful and result in high cutting capacity. This can actually be seen from Nero’s fighting style which is based on powerful, sweeping attacks – many of which actually seem to unbalance him.
Reach is a big advantage of the Red Queen. It is a greatsword, about as tall as Nero himself, and therefore offers very long reach – especially since Nero is actually able to weild it in one hand. As a result, he does not need to come close to many enemies or monsters which often have more limited reach. While reach does make a sword heavier, Nero being a quarter-demon makes weight much less of an issue.
Hand protection is lacking on surface, as the Red Queen has no classical hand guard. But the way the base of the blade is shaped makes it very good at deflecting any attacks away from the user’s hand, making it into an impromptu hand guard.
Damage performance is questionable. While Red Queen may be sharpened, width of its blade means that it would be very difficult to get it through flesh. It is also unknown of what type of steel the blade is made. Likewise, its edge angle is relatively large, which limits its ability to cut. In fact, the edge only takes up around a third of the blade’s width, thus giving up one of main advantages of the single-edged swords. This also affects is piercing ability: despite a very pointy tip, thickness of the blade and the fact that the edge only goes so far mean that its ability to pierce targets is very limited. It is very much a cutting sword.
In terms of versatility, the Red Queen is very much a one-trick pony. Or two-trick pony: it can be used to cut and thrust. But it only has an edge on one side, and has no crossguard or a pommel. While it has a sort-of hand guard, its shape prevents it from being used in a bind. Lack of a pommel also means that any strikes with the handle will be far less effective, and of course, ending the enemy rightly is impossible without a pommel to unscrew and throw.
Red Queen is also very heavy, which helps improve its cutting capacity and also the ability to perform blunt attacks. Its thickness also means it will be very rigid, allowing for a good performance in cutting even if the edge alignment is not perfect. Yet its rigidity also means it will be more prone to battle damage.