We’ve written about numerous Monster Hunter weapons so far. Each of them has their own ‘feel’ or description that we find best suits them; the Lance is a stoic professional, the Long Sword a parrying Samurai. After some deep consideration we’ve decided that the Charge Blade is the weapon of choice for huge Monster Hunter fans, that’s all. It’s a one stop shop for all of your hunting desires. It can block, guard point, KO monsters, attack from close range or further back, apply elemental or raw damage and it can achieve all of this whilst looking cool as hell. It’s the Swiss army knife of Monster Hunter weapons. When it was introduced in MH4U there’s no denying it was slightly too powerful, as is often the case with new weapons in the series. Here in MHGU it has been pared back slightly, but this is offset by the new options available to you, in the form of arts and hunting styles. It’s the latter we’re talking about today, so join us as we summarise the two hunting styles that we feel best fills your hunting vials.
In practice, the Striker Style Charge Blade won’t look too different to a regular Guild version. Most of it’s abilities are in tact and it’s still capable of ultra-slamming monsters to death. There are a few key differences however, which makes it stand out in the crowd.
Firstly you no longer get a yellow shield. For those unaware, if you cancel out of certain big attacks with the Charge Blade you will instead charge up your shield, because an already complex weapon needed more depth. Anyway, previous Monster Hunter versions and indeed other styles in MHGU will require you to charge it up twice – yellow, then red – in order to get the full effect. With Striker, it’s just one charge into red mode, and they’ve even been kind enough to buff to damage to +20% for axe mode abilities whilst it’s active, up from 15%.
The second change is something that was almost a deal breaker for us: The shield thrust is gone. Yes we’re aware that this is a tiny change, but there’s always been something almost iconic about that little shield stab, and it often acts like a nice ‘book end’ for your current string of sword attacks. For us the shield buff, both in speed of application and damage buff, are enough to encourage us to use this style over most others.
- Quickly powers up to red shield mode.
- Red shield mode is more powerful (20% damage in Axe rather than 15%)
- Still feels like a Charge Blade should.
- Shield thrust was a nice combo ending ability that is sorely missed at times.
- Maybe you really like yellow shields, or being slow to power up?
…Or maybe you like blue shields?
Yes the Valor mode for weapons continues to lather a blue glow on everything, not that we’re complaining here, the blue shield does look achingly cool. It does so at a cost however… Outside of Valor mode the Charge Blade is completely ruined. Of course, most weapons are before you reach Valor mode, but with the Charge Blade it somehow manages to feel even worse. There is no charging your sword attacks and you can’t even morph into it, so you’re resigned to slapping ineffectually at the monster until your bar fills up. Again, we know this is always the case, but the CB really suffers outside of Valor.
Once you’re there however, a whole plethora of options become available to you. More specifically, the weapon becomes and lean, moving guard point machine. Whilst in sword mode and unsheathed, your usual hop is replaced with a Valor version, which features a guard point. Should you connect the guard point, you can immediately follow this up with a shield thrust, then a charged slash which powers up your phials. What about Axe mode you ask? Well you can chain your AED together with it’s stronger version well, basically infinitely, phials permitting. All of this adds up to a Valor mode that goes looking for guard points on the front foot, then punishes the monster like no other. The sheer amount of damage on offer here is incredible, should you have the patience to master it.
- Huge damage potential.
- Blue shield is nicely powerful and doesn’t lose it’s charge.
- Blue shield is also blue.
- Non Valor mode is super bad.
- Can feel reductive, spamming 4 or 5 main moves forever.
- Blue shield is not Red.
- Red vs Blue just reminded us of Blood Gulch and sent us down a YouTube hole. It’s a whole day since we started writing this article, dammit. Did either of them ever actually capture the flag?
Categories: Monster Hunter