For a beginner, the right weapon can make or break the Monster Hunter series. No doubt some players will already be familiar with what is considered an ‘action’ game from their past experiences, but none of this matters when faced with the complexities of a title such as this. It’s bad enough that you’ll soon have huge, ferocious beasts nipping at your heels, but you’re also expected to pick a weapon from what is undoubtedly the most complicated selection ever created. Thus we reach the point of our article today, which is to recommend those that we feel would be easiest for a newcomer to the series. Grabbing one of the following four will stand you in good stead going forth; we can’t guarantee you’ll be slaying the biggest of beasts with the greatest of ease, but we can at least give you a fighting chance.
Weapon 4: Long Sword
Our first choice is one that, we feel at least, is most familiar to players coming from other action games: The Long Sword. By all accounts, this is controlled somewhat similarly to others; a heavy, light and special attack. Initial combinations of these are also quite easy to identify, like the light stab into downward slash, or even the reverse, meaning a new player will very quickly be able to take in the very basics of the weapon. It’s helpful too that the downward slash in particular does quite a bit of damage, to the point where entire hunts can be taken down through it’s usage alone.
The Long Sword is also quite easy to scale up. There are complicated skills of course, but single button press additions to basic combos will produce the expected results, and learning to incorporate a Fade Slash into your repertoire alone will provide excellent benefits. It’s also an ideal way to learn the Gaijin Hunter method of ‘Turn Based’ hunting, whereby you allow the target to attack whilst remaining at a safe distance, head in for a single attack, then back out, perhaps with the assistance of the Fade Slash. Overall this is a great place to start your journey. It’s safe, powerful and above all, relatable.
- This particular type of weapon is likely to be familiar to those coming across from other games.
- Hit zone length provides a little more safety than other melee choices.
- Simple additions to your basic combos, like the Fade Slash, are easy to integrate and can make a great difference to the course of a hunt.
- Whilst all different types can be useful, this particular weapon will do just fine with increasing raw damage models, removing some complexities during the early learning portion of Rise.
Weapon 3: Sword and Shield
As much as our previous choice allows you safety in the form of distance, some of you might not chime with it’s wide and arcing slashes, and you may find yourself looking for something a little more instant, more reactive. For those we absolutely must recommend the Sword and Shield. No doubt some members of the audience will be shouting from the rooftops about the Dual Blades at this point in time, but it really should not be underestimated just how useful it can be to have a shield when you’re starting out. It’s nowhere near as powerful as those owned by the Lance duo, nor is it quite as good as the Charge Blade, but it’s block is still powerful enough to mean the difference between life and death.
Expect to take some time to learn it’s myriad combinations, after all it does have quite a significant amount of options once you get going, but in a way similar to our first choice, basic button presses can get you far enough. Don’t be fooled by it’s diminutive stature either, the right Sword and Shield model will easily keep up with flashier, more complex weapons, and you’d be hard pressed to find anything more well equipped to apply statuses to a target.
- Excellent choice for learning whilst in closer proximity to your target.
- Has the obvious benefit of being able to block incoming attacks, which is especially useful when you don’t actually know what attacks are coming.
- Like all 13 other Monster Hunter variants, it’s actually very powerful. The right status or elemental option will do huge amounts of damage.
Weapon 2: Great Sword
It could be argued that the Great Sword might feel familiar to those coming from other titles, after all it does share some small similarities with the slower weapons in something like a Dark Souls game, but we should preface our recommendation by saying… It’s nothing like any other weapon from any other title, at all. Yes, it might look like the large and lumbering beasts that you’ve seen elsewhere, but in truth it’s a complicated monster of a thing. That said, at least at first, it can be a rather simple affair; your immediate draw attack is a rather looping heavy slam, and you’re not required to follow this up with anything even remotely fancy. It even does a good chunk of damage, which allows the new player to use the draw attack, roll away, sheathe and repeat.
Such a process may sound basic and boring, but when you consider that skills such as Crit Draw can be used, it actually becomes very powerful. In fact, when we were first learning and playing our trade through both MH3U and MH4U, this was our ‘old faithful’ method of taking down difficult targets. It can even be optimised further by the Quick Sheathe skill, making your hunter even more evasive in the process. Once you do get used to the game, it’s worth delving deeper into the complex, shoulder tackling beast that is the Great Sword, but it’s a testament to the developers that it can be adapted to perfectly suit the newer hunter.
- Ability to deal large chunks in one swing, followed by a roll away, means a beginner can take things one hit at a time.
- Per the above point, it works well with the ‘turn based’ method of hunting, since one turn is a single draw attack, followed by escaping to safety.
- It may seem basic, but the Crit Draw and Quick Sheathe skills can actually make this a viable way of hunting, whilst still supporting your journey should you decide to dig deeper into the weapon.
Weapon 1: Light Bowgun
Supposing we trace it all the way back to it’s genesis, we’d have to blame either Quake or Doom for the popularity of FPS titles. There were titles prior to this of course, and indeed there are a plethora of popular FPS games appearing almost monthly these days, but the point we’re trying to make is that you’ve likely tried or played one to some extent. That being the case, the most obvious and natural progression into the Monster Hunter universe is the Light Bowgun, or LBG for short. Once a short period of familiarity has been undertaken, mainly button layouts and how to load/reload, you’ll soon find that it slots into place like any other FPS or over the shoulder, third person game. You’ll have a reticle on the shoulder button, firing on another, a reload on the face buttons and the ability to roll away from danger, all of which likely sounds familiar.
There is of course a lot more to it, like ammo types, ideal skills and silkbind abilities, but it’s absolutely possible to go through entire hunts, even entire difficulty levels by just aiming and shooting. In many ways the LBG is as complex as you want it to be; you can delve into the world of improving certain ammo types and optimising your way to perfect builds, but it’s really not that necessary. Grab yourself the LBG with the biggest number on it, make sure you have enough ammo and shoot a thing right in it’s squishy parts. It really doesn’t have to be any more complicated than that.
- Has inbuilt familiarity from FPS & third person, over the shoulder games. Think Destiny and Uncharted.
- Very simple weapon to start with. Just grab some ammo and go. They even all come with inbuilt ammo, so running out isn’t the end of the world, and you can buy plenty from the shop.
- You’ll keep a good distance from the target when using this, which will allow you plenty of time to react to incoming danger.
- Upgrading items and don’t know what you’re looking for? Find one with the ammo you like and aim for the highest damage number!