I wrote a big guide on Steam that basically goes through each weapon, strengths, weaknesses, etc. I feel like the most recent balance changes with tradeoffs between recovery time and general weapon size are pretty good, and most of the balance steps were in the right direction. Here's how it could perhaps keep going in the right direction IMO:
Now for the actual weapons specifically:
Held Block Shields (Heater and Kite)
That's a nice detailed feedback for once. I wanna appreciate that first. Then I'm surprised how much I agree at most points, however I disagree with you about the dagger, I think it's annoying enough already.
Cleaver could indeed use a small damage nerf, but only vs t2 and t3 please. I'm playing it with my trapper. I admit it's a little broken. But please don't ruin it completely. It already has no real stab and low range. The toe to toe playstyle is not always favourable. Nerfing cleaver also means nerfing default archer class.
I think heater and kite shield were just nerfed to death and buckler and targe are the way to go now.
Shields with held block are still good for beginners though, I see quite a couple of shields in frontline and they're playable, not really great though.
I also agree on heavy handaxe and maul stab nerf. You didn't mention the war axe, which was already nerfed but is still a weird weapon has illogical accels or insiders, that aren't 100% in sync with the animation. Also the Messer is still somewhat broken in that regard.
I grew a beard, found a woman, raised three kids and watched seven grandchildren grow before I finished reading.
I've lived a full life, and now ready to rest.
In light of the recent shield rebalances:
So my suggestions surrounding all that boil down to:
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