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Hammer is does damage and stuns your surrounding, only problem is it has windup time. If you just wanna stun enemies for awhile tornado rod, or ice rod is nice. Too bad you can't pick up frozen enemies in this one though.
Enemies upon top of walls throwing bombs down below at you? Enemies on top of trees or arches just waiting to swoop down at you? Enemies on top of stairs or edges making them on an elevation above your sword and causing you to get hurt if you get near them? Enemies on grates above you? Enemies is a few distances away that won't stop running away? Spinning spike traps got you down? Enemies on a lower elevation than you blocking your way down or just trying to hit you with attacks that can't actually hit you?
The Ice Rod will hit, hurt, and freeze all of these. When upgraded to the nice ice rod it's range is a lot better and it just becomes the go to weapon for anything that is not on your elevation. Most useful weapon along side the bow.
I've got a quote that embodies you perfectly, but it's seventy-three posts long, has a few massive flowcharts, and lots of Xion-KMA to Me
On Hero Mode right now, the Bow has been keeping me alive the longest for the most part. Fire Rod is probably one of the best though, because it can hit enemies from under platforms and pretty much destroys anyone using a shield.