Our Favourite Weapons In Monster Hunter: World

Our Favourite Weapons In Monster Hunter: World

Mick Dundee would be proud.

One of the toughest choices you’ll face early in Monster Hunter: World is which weapon to pick. There are so many options, and anything can be viable if you know what you’re doing. Decisions, decisions…

I am fully obsessed with World, but my limited time with Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate on 3DS hadn’t really prepared me to make an informed decision about which weapon to use. I decided to ask my more Monster Hunter-literate colleagues Keza MacDonald, Heather Alexandra, and Paul Tamayo to weigh in.

Kirk Hamilton: Hello, fellow monster hunters. I’ve been playing this game nonstop since it came out on Friday, and I know you’ve all been playing, too. I want to ask everyone about weapons, since picking a weapon has definitely been the most intimidating choice I’ve had to consider so far. What have you all been using?

Paul Tamayo: I’m using a Charge Blade. I’ve used the Switch Axe in previous Monster Hunter games, so I’m trying something new!

Heather Alexandra: I’ve been a proud Dual Blades gal for a few games now and can’t find it in my heart to switch to anything else. They’re perfect!

Keza MacDonald: I use the mighty morphin’ Switch Axe, which makes me feel like a prehistoric Transformer; the Gunlance, my faithful main weapon for many years; and the glaive, because I really like spinning around like a Jedi and landing on monsters’ flanks. This time around, I want to finally learn the bagpipe, as the Hunting Horn is affectionately known in my players’ squad.

Kirk: Nice. Such variety! I started out with a Long Sword and liked it quite a bit, then tried Dual Blades on Heather’s recommendation. Liked those too. Then I decided to try the Charge Blade on a whim, and I had to Google how the heck it worked because it’s so much more complicated.

But now that I know how it works, I think I love it? Seems like it will be really fun to master.

I’m curious, given how you all have played this series more than I have: what do you all look for in a MH weapon? Keza, you mentioned the Gunlance, which is at least partly a ranged weapon — do the rest of you ever consider ranged weapons?

Keza: The Gunlance only works up close actually; the “gun” part is an explosive burst that is only effective if you’re right up in a monster’s grill. I’ve never loved Bowgun play because I have limited patience for fiddling with ammunition types. Monster Hunter: World does make that much easier than before, though.

Kirk: Yeah, I feel totally overwhelmed by ammo types and thankful that I don’t have to worry about any of that.

Keza: For me, I need one weapon that hits VERY hard, and one weapon that’s faster and more mobile for the monsters that just won’t stay still. No matter what your weapon, you will find one mission that just flummoxes your combat style if you stick to just the one technique.

Heather: It’s about having the right balance of mobility versus power. With ranged weapons, the Light Bowgun can be nice since you still have some mobility. I think a lot of people will want to use the Heavy Bowgun because it’s so chunky but I don’t find it practical. For me, I need to get in close. Dual Blades when ever I can, Long Sword for something heavier. They’re similar enough in mechanics that it works out.

Paul: Like Keza, I too enjoy when my weapon gets its Optimus Prime on when switching between forms. I love playing as tanks, mainly, so the Charge Blade allows me a nice mix of offence and defence. Especially when I have the monster’s attention and can easily block one big hit with my shield and get right back into the action.

I also love the range that I get when the weapon is in axe mode. Nothing like delivering a perfectly-timed haymaker to an Anjanath.

Kirk: I just don’t think of this game as a ranged game. It’s similar to how I don’t think about magic or ranged weapons in Dark Souls. You’re supposed to go and hit the dinosaur in the face with a huge hammer, right?

Keza: That’s the fun way! Ranged weapons are much less crucial now that you have the Slinger to shoot traps and bombs with. Though bowguns are excellent support weapons — you can shoot your buds with healing or buff ammo.

Kirk: Yeah, that’s a whole other thing, huh? Considering what weapon to use if you’re playing as part of a team.

Keza: That’s why I want to learn the hunting horn. Horn players are the most beloved in multiplayer, because their weapon is a hammer that plays tunes to buff the rest of the team. It is also BY FAR the funniest weapon.

Kirk: Is it a good idea to upgrade multiple weapons? It seems easy enough to upgrade my bone stuff here in the early goings, but it already feels like I’m about to have to commit to one or maaaaybe two weapon types once I start crafting out of rarer parts. It’s making me anxious.

Keza: Don’t worry, Kirk. All your hard-won monster parts will become immediately worthless once you hit High Rank. Use ’em up!

Kirk: I keep sweating that I won’t have enough parts to make multiple weapons. So that’s good to know!

Heather: It’s always good to have a small smattering of options. That’s doubly true if you want to play with friends. Having the ability to flex and fill out some roles is nice for higher-tier hunts.

Paul: Especially with elemental weapons to target certain monsters weaknesses.

Keza: Have you guys met Odogaron yet?

Kirk: I have not.

Paul: I don’t think so.

Heather: I’ve not.

Keza: Put it this way, you’re getting nowhere with a Gunlance on that guy.

Kirk: Ha. I can’t wait.

I have a feeling that many of you will have your own weapon preferences, so I hope you’ll share your own thoughts and tips in the comments. I’ll be over here getting better nailing Charge Blade combos under pressure.


  • I’ve been enjoying the hammer a lot. The changes to the moveset make it a really good all-rounder, and airborne cartwheel attacks are a whole load of fun.

  • I’ve been playing this game nonstop since it came out on Friday
    Have you guys met Odogaron yet?
    I have not.

    • In fairness, there’s a lot to do. I’ve been more or less playing it nonstop since Friday and haven’t seen ogdaron. But I’ve also slowed down doing story missions and started helping randoms and doing secondary objectives too. I want some of those nice armors. Big fluffy white bat thing armor is cold as hell.

      As for me, long sword. I like katanas in games. I like the whole mystique of weapons like that. I like its speed and mobility. I’d like to try more weapons though.

      • I wrote that comment and had to think about it. We first met Odogaron fighting either the ‘big fluffy white bat thing’ for the first time or the monster before it. It was definitely Coral Highlands because it has to be, but we did bump into Odogaron on the second(?) hunt in the Highlands.

        If the question in the article was “Have you hunted Odogaron?” then that is later on, but you can ‘meet’ him a fair bit sooner

        • Like Stretch, I only just fought him last night, in Rotten Vale. I think, second monster? It was either after the bone armor boar thing or the flying tapejara type thing.

          If he was introduced through a scripted scene in Coral, I either missed it or wasn’t paying close enough attention.

          • He’s a roaming monster, it kinda seemed he was the somewhat equivalent to Anjanath and Diablos in that he is the ‘apex monster’ of that area and his job is to show up and wreck the other monsters. His hunt (and scripted-scene) is Rotten Vale, but he stalks around the Highlands. Odogaron showed up in most of our low-rank hunts in the Highlands that didn’t end badly (and quickly) for the monster we were hunting. He has a pretty fantastic turf war with Paolumu.

          • Ah, I might just not have bumped into him.

            I was hunting I think it was Anjanath solo and he bumped into the Rathian or Rathalos and it picked him up and dropped him from the sky.

            Then I was playing the same mission with a buddy, and told him to keep getting excited for the epic throwdown but it never happened. Missions can be pretty dynamic.

          • Yeah, in defense of my original comment Odogaron showed up (however briefly) in almost all of our Coral Highlands hunts and I interpreted the ‘been playing nonstop since launch’ but not having met Odogaron meant that he had not reached Coral Highlands yet.

            Evidently we got (un)lucky that Odogaron interrupted so many of our hunts.

  • Been a switch axe main since tri but this game I’m mixing it up with the bow and really enjoying it. I have a whole new level of appreciation for dash juice now

  • Though bowguns are excellent support weapons

    Heavy Bowgun has some of the highest DPS in the game, and Bow and Light Bowgun do crazy elemental damage if specced correctly, those healing and buff bullets are pretty damn useless as you should be focusing on damage, play hunting horn if you want to buff people (but don’t sit back and buff people, HH still can do really good damage).

    I usually main HBG but went with Switch Axe for world to try something different, but ended up falling in love with the lance, they basically give you a super parry now that can do major damage.

    however i hit high rank now and will be looking for a nice HBG armour set and go back to my original love.

  • I’ve always loved the Long Sword.
    Seems to be a bit easier and accessible than earlier versions, but that’s fine.

  • I’m loving the Insect Glaive at the moment. Between the aerial mobility and ability to spawn insect clouds with different effects when struck it’s really keeping fights fun and interesting. I still haven’t decided if I’ll use my alt weapon preference of the Gunlance for monsters that require blunt weapons or a blunt type kinsect yet though since the glaive isn’t great against them.

    Either way I’m having a lot of fun in the game. Just last night I was on an Expedition and fighting a Great Jagras when behind me there was a roar and an Anjanath charged out and started attacking it. At that moment, who should come wandering in but old mate “I have a rock” Kulu-Ya-Ku to join the fray. Turned out to be quite the fun tussle.

    • The other day my mate was fighting a Baroth who got into a rustle with a Raithan in the sandpit of the Wildlands, only for the both of them to fall though the sinkhole, right on top of the Diablos below.
      Utter carnage.

  • I was pretty interested in the Heavy Bowgun when flicking through all the preview videos in the training room when choosing a weapon.

    Then I actually used the Heavy Bowgun’s special: the motherfucking heavy machinegun.
    My God. The power. The noise. The carnage. Monster bodies for days.
    This is what true love looks like.

    My girlfriend is now thoroughly proficient with the aerobatics of the glaive and mounting, which leaves major monsters well tied-up long enough for me to plant feet and pound rounds into the hapless fuckers. Broken parts everywhere.

    Ammo was interesting but a bit cumbersome to juggle until I discovered item-pouch loadouts. Life-changing shit.

  • Never thought I’d use a ranged weapon in a game like this but here I am with a Light Bowgun, tho I mostly use it as a shotgun.
    Great versatility with different ammo types, nice and mobile and nothing likes eating a facefull of explosives when it tries to attack you.

  • I’m currently favouring the feather duster. Deadly serious – the Buon Fiore, the pukei-pukei hammer, looks like a giant feather duster. I love the versatility – it’s more mobile than the other hard-hitting weapons, but still hits really hard. And the sliding attack…

    Occasionally swapping to Insect Glaive when I need tail cuts, but need a bit more practice with it before I’m truly comfortable with it. I still reckon if I need to keep “sharpening” my hammer, I should be able to *cut* things with it. 😛

  • I always start with greatsword and then start branching into Lance and Sword and Shield. Fingers crossed it comes out on PC early September,

  • Gunlance all day ‘erry day!
    The stab-stab-boom is so satisfying!
    And toppling a monster after a successful mount… So good!

  • Insect Glaive for me. Basically get to be a Dragoon from the Final Fantasy series. Have been giving the bow a try as well, I can see the potential for good damage, kind of feel like it should have more range considering the size of the thing.

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