Dual sabres is definetely an option. Especially if you choose thick armor because dual wielding itself negates the recovery penalty of heavy armor like plate and brigandine.
Estocs will indeed be slow but is best against enemies with high DR.
Most "common" ciphers tend to be pretty useless if they can't target enemies with low DR in order to gain focus. With such a cipher you always want to hit the target with the lowest defletion and DR in order to
a) kill ist fast
and more important
b) to get as much focus per hit as you can
Enemies with high DR will only get MIN damage from you if you don't have any DR bypass and/or high base damage and that means a very laughable focus gain.
This is especially bad if you use small, fast weapons like daggers or Hunting Bows and then run out of soft targets. Against a dragon, animats or beetles those ciphers can't generate any focus - against ghouls and such they can be great. A sabre however can punch through pretty much anything, but it's much slower than fast weapons of course. You can take Vulnerable Attack and only switch it on if you feel the enemies' DR in certain fights is too high. You will be free in the choice of your targets you and can get good focus out of any enemy - but in 75% of most fights you won't need it.
Novice's Suffering combines that high base damage with higher speed and therefore can also be a good option - but you can't enchant your fists which is a disadvantage on higher levels, but it's good in early and mid game.
An Estoc can be great if you want to focus on the really sturdy enemies with the thickest of armors. You can then stack as much DR bypass as you want (+5 Vuln. Attack, +5 Estoc, +3 rending (there's an Estoc named "Drake's Bell" with that enchantment), +3 Ryona's Vembraces, +7 Body Attunement spell) for a crazy DR bypass of 20 (23 with that special estoc "Drake's Bell"). That means that against nearly all enemies you will just punch through their DR as if it wasn't there (Ryona's Vembraces also work with certain spells by the way - like Mind Blades and Mind Lance for example). You could skip Vuln. Attack and lose not much. Most of the time the -20% speed will be worse than having 15 DR bypass instead of 20.
Estocs have a unique representative named "The Blade of the Endless Paths", which has speed. This is a great enchantment for a two hander. It the main reason (besides the 5 DR bypass) that estocs are popular.
There is one big disadvantage that sabres and estocs share though: they only have one damage type. This can be superbad if you meet foes who are immune to slash or pierce. You will have to switch to a different weapon then - like from sabres to clubs. But there's a nice sabre that renders this fuzz needless: name's Bittercut. This sabre does corrode/slash damage and also profits from Spirit of Decay (giving you +20% damage on top of your soul whip's 40% and also working with Antipathetic Field which you should use as a frontliner all the time). You won't have to switch weapons again once you pick up this special sabre.
With estocs it's a bit more complicated (but also doable without losing the benefits of your weapon style). They all do pierce damage only - so you would have to switch to a pollaxe if you meet immune enemies.
If you make yourself sturdy enough (for example with plate armor, blunting belt, Shod-In-Faith boots and/or Veteran's Recovery) then an estoc can also be a good choice - if you want to focus on the really turtlelike enemies as I said. Against all others using dual sabres will result in better focus gain.
Edited by Boeroer, 03 June 2016 - 02:28 AM.