The Empire is filled with mercenaries, ranging from hard-headed coin-hoarders to nobler folk seeking out a better living by exchanging good deeds for bad. The mercenary life isn’t glorious, but it has its perks. Those who grow old in a profession where the young die become some of the Empire’s finest soldiers; one such soldier is Markus Kruber.
Every character in Vermintide 2 has access to three career paths and one DLC path, representing the heroes’ potential paths after the events of Vermintide 1. Today, we will focus on the Mercenary, the best horde-clearing melee class in Vermintide 2; they cleave through hordes of Skaven, Beastmen, or Chaos worshipers like a hot knife through butter.
Mercenary Skills and Traits
Career Skill: Morale Boost
- Kruber grants all allies 25 temporary health and staggers back nearby enemies.
Morale Boost is a simple yet effective tool for bolstering your teammates or creating space against the horde. Morale Boost has a staggering effect that knocks back nearby enemies, staggering monsters and bosses and interrupting their attacks, leaving them open to damage.
- Paced Strikes: Hitting three enemies in one swing gives Markus a 10% increase in attack speed for 6 seconds.
“Pace Strikes” is why the Mercenary is the best horde-clearing class in the game. “Pace Strikes” negates the downside of using heavy, two-handed weapons by increasing their attack speed for hitting multiple targets.
This passive makes weapons such as the Greatsword and Halberd significantly better for a Mercenary than other Carriers available to Kruber. When combined with “Hitting the Sweet Spot,” Kruber becomes a cleaving powerhouse.
- Hitting the Sweet Spot: Attacks cleave through more enemies.
- No More Laughin’ Now!: +5% critical hit chance.
All Mercenary Melee Weapons You Can Use on Your Mercenary Build in Vermintide 2
- Executioner Sword
- Great Hammer
- Sword and Shield
- Mace and Shield
- Mace and Sword (Requires Back to Ubersreik DLC)
- Tuskgor Spear (Requires Winds of Magic DLC)
- Bretonnian Longsword (Requires Grail Knight Career DLC)
Best Melee Weapons for Your Mercenary Build in Vermintide 2
Kruber has many options for melee weapons, but for the Mercenary, we prioritize weapons that synergize with his specialty of cleaving. We think the Executioner Sword is the best overall option for him. The Executioner Sword has great wide-sweeping light attacks that can be utilized to deliver Paced Strikes. Its heavy attacks are massive overhead slams that can one-shot almost every Elite or Special enemy in the game.
The Executioner Sword is extremely slow when Paced Strikes are not available, and its heavy attack has an excessively long wind-up. However, this improves once Paced Strikes are activated.
Related Guide: All Elite Enemies in Warhammer: Vermintide 2 and How to Defeat Them
Honorable Mentions for Melee Weapons
For great melee weapons, you can use the Greatsword or the Halberd. The Greatsword is a simple weapon that is ideal for cleaving hordes, but has limited utility elsewhere. The Halberd is versatile but has one of the most complex move sets in Vermintide 2 to master.
Usually, we recommend the Bretonnian Longsword for Mercenary builds in Vermintide 2 since it is Krubers’ best weapon. Yet, it doesn’t have fantastic cleaving potential, so it is best suited for the Grail Knight class.
All Ranged Weapons for Mercenary
- Repeater Handgun
The Best Ranged Weapon for Mercenary
Mercenaries have a meager amount of guns to choose from. The Blunderbuss, Handgun, and Repeater Handgun are all viable, but we enjoy the Repeater Handgun the most. The Repeater Handgun has great versatility for long-range and close-range combat, plus holding down the secondary fire allows you to fire the weapon significantly faster at the cost of accuracy.
The Repeater Handgun is the best option for all situations, and if you enjoy using a well-rounded weapon, look no further.
Honorable Mentions for Ranged Weapons
Both the blunderbuss and handgun are great options, but each has its downsides. The blunderbuss is great for dealing hefty damage to bosses or any up-close target, but it lacks range and ammunition.
The handgun is excellent for long ranges and allows one to easily pick off gunners or blight stormers, but it has a lengthy reload time and limited ammo. Between the blunderbuss and the handgun, we prefer the latter, as the mercenary is already lethal in melee; thus, having a good long-ranged rifle at one’s side is a better pairing.
Best Mercenary Talents
Level 5 Talents for Your Mercenary Build in Vermintide 2
|Drillmaster||Mercenary’s Pride||Captain’s Command|
|Striking multiple enemies in one swing grants temporary health based on the number of targets hit. Max 5 enemies.||Melee killing blows grants temporary health based on the health of the slain enemy.||Healing yourself with a First Aid Kit or a Healing Draught also heals nearby allies for 20% of their maximum health, also removing any Wounds.|
Drillmaster is the clear-cut answer because it ties exceptionally well with the Mercenary’s playstyle. Drillmaster is one of the easiest talents to build temp health with and only becomes a
struggle during boss fights or situations with limited enemies.
Level 10 Talents
|The More The Merrier!||Limb-Splitter||Helborg’s Tutelage|
|Increases Power by 5% for every nearby enemy and stacks up to 5 times.||Increases cleave power by 50%.||Every 5 hits grants a guaranteed critical strike. Critical strikes can no longer occur randomly.|
For this row, we are taking The More The Merrier! Gaining up to 25% additional Power during hordes or almost every confrontation is unbeatable. Power scales everything, thus making it a top priority to boost in any situation.
Limb-Splitter only increases the number of targets you can hit with your strikes and doesn’t increase damage, and Helborg’s Tutelage has too many downsides to be helpful.
Related Article: Vermintide 2 Waystalker Build & Guide
Level 15 Talents
|Deal 40% more damage to staggered enemies. Each hit against a staggered enemy adds another count of stagger. Bonus damage is increased to 60% against enemies afflicted by more than one stagger effect.||The first enemy hit always counts as Staggered.|
Deal 20% more damage to staggered enemies. Each hit against a staggered enemy adds another count of stagger. Bonus damage is increased to 40% against enemies afflicted by more than one stagger effect.
|Increases total Power Level by 7.5%.|
Smitier is our best option here since we aren’t using a high-stagger weapon, and our priority is cleaving through as many targets as possible.
Level 20 Talents
|Reikland Reaper||Enhanced Training||Strike Together|
|Increases Power by 15% when Paced Strikes is active.||Paced Strikes increases attack speed by 20%. Now requires hitting 4 targets with a single attack to trigger.||Paced Strikes spreads to nearby allies.|
Reikland Reaper is easily the best choice in this talent row. Increasing your power by 15% every time you activate Paced Strikes is insane and is undoubtedly the best option. Combining Reikland Reaper with The More The Merrier! puts you up to 40% additional Power, which is amazing.
However, if you want to be a more supportive player and provide some buffs for your teammates, choose Strike Together to grant your nearby allies 10% attack speed.
Level 25 Talents
|Stand Clear||Blade Barrier||Black Market Supplies|
|Increases Dodge range by 20%.||Reduces damage taken by 25% when Paced Strikes is active.||Increases ammunition amount by 40%.|
For the defensive talent, row choose Blade Barrier or Stand Clear. Blade Barrier is our favorite because it provides you with 25% damage reduction for simply swinging your blade and cutting down hordes of enemies. However, Stand Clear is an amazing choice, and increasing your dodge range can save you from lots of sticky situations, especially since larger weapons have a smaller dodge range.
Level 30 Talents to Use in Your Vermintide 2 Mercenary Build
|Walk it Off||Ready for Action||On Yer Feet, Mates!|
|Morale Boost also reduces damage taken by affected allies by 25% for 10 seconds.||Reduces the cooldown of Morale Boost by 20%.||Morale Boost also Revives knocked-down allies.|
For our final talent, we recommend Ready for Action. Having a lower cooldown for your Morale Boost provides a lot of support for yourself and your team. Having the ability to grant your team temp health in a pinch or having a knockback ability up more often provides a ton of crowd control.
However, Walk it Off is also pretty good since giving your allies 25% damage reduction for ten seconds is very powerful. On Yet Feet, Mates does have some utility, but obtaining a lower cooldown on Morale Boost to prevent damage is better than taking a talent to revive.
Conclusion for our Vermintide 2 Mercenary Build & Guide
That’s our build and guide for the Mercenary in Vermintide 2. Mercenary’s simplistic yet addicting gameplay is one of the few reasons why they are one of the best classes in Vermintide 2. No one can paint a tight corridor red like the Mercenary can.
If you enjoyed our guide and want to learn more about the many careers in Vermintide 2, check out our Ironbreaker build and guide.
For now, Good Hunting!