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Understanding Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate Weapons, Best Weapons, Tips and Strategy
The Monster Hunter series has always been known well for its over-the-top, stylish, and sophisticated weapons. Monster Hunter 4 continues this trend, but adds to it a few additional weapons types for characters to explore.
The game doesn’t have a concrete leveling or development system, so in Monster Hunter 4, you are what you equip. This makes your weapon(s) of choice extremely important, and more often than not you’ll be looking at multiple weapons to aid you in even a single battle.
However, each weapon type is vastly different from the other, with unique move-sets, unique special attacks, and other special triggers and mechanics that can be daunting for any newbie to get a grasp of.
For this reason, we’ve compiled a guide for you to help you get familiarized with all the weapon types.
Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate Weapons
There are hundreds of weapons in Monster Hunter 4, but they are primarily classified into types, and weapons within a specific type behave in the same manner, with the same basic move-sets and special attacks.
Greatsword is probably the most used weapons type in Monster Hunter, and it’s because they are relatively simpler to master because of the basic attacking move-sets. These massive swords are hefty in size and weight, and require some careful timing, but after a few slashes and hits you’ll quickly grasp on to the move-sets and method of use.
The obvious downside to the Greatswords is their heavy weight, which will greatly reduce your mobility when they are unsheathed.
For this reason, you’ll have to get used to equipping/unequipping the swords regularly in a fight, which can be a daunting task on its own. However, when they hit, they hit hard.
X – Downward Slashes / Charge (when held)
X + A – Upward Slash
A – Side/Spin Slashes
R – Block
The Special Attack for Greatswords is initiated by holding down the X button. This will put your character in a charge stance, with a flash indicating boost in offensive power. There are up to three flashes that you can charge to, but you should always charge according to the time a monster gives you.
Sword and Shield
The sword and shield combination is a commonly found weapon set in most classic action/adventure games, but in Monster Hunter 4 it is somewhat of a rarity. This is primarily because unlike most of the weapon types in the game, Sword and Shield offers a means of protection other than your armor.
Though the Sword doesn’t have the same reach or damage as a Longsword or a Greatsword, it does have added speed, which can allow you to chain together certain combos in quick succession with relatively less stamina consumption.
X – Basic Attack
A – Side Attack / Shield Bash
X + A – Forward Slash
R – Block / Defensive Stance
The forward slash is a great way to start up an attack combination with the Sword and Shield, followed by basic and side attacks. This is a pretty primitive method of damage, but it works surprisingly well.
Holding the directional keypad and then pressing A will make your character perform a shield bash in that direction. Hold down back + A while in the defensive stance (R) will create a backwards dodge, after which you can press A again to perform a powerful lunge.
Unfortunately, the Sword and Shield combo has no real special attack. However, this is fairly acceptable, since the weapon type allows you to block and stay in a defense stance.
While you can’t really move during the stance, you can actually consume items, which is an excellent way to stand your ground and heal without having to run away from a monster.
The Longsword is quite similar to the Greatsword, except that it is much faster and slightly weaker. Like the Greatsword, it will require precision and timing in execution of the moveset.
Additionally, Longswords have no guard like Greatswords, which means you’ll have to rely a bit more on your armor for sole protection.
The added advantage of possessing a Long sword is evident through the Spirit mechanism. This mechanism is closely tied to your special attack, which will allow you to unleash tons of damage on to your foe.
X – Basic Attack
A – Thrust
X + A – Fade Slash
R – Spirit Blade
The quick strikes of the Longsword allow you to pull off some simple yet very effective combos, especially when using the Fade Slash strike that can send your foe leaping backwards. A simple combo can be A, X, X, then X+A, which will allow you to deal great damage and give you enough room towards the end of the combo to recuperate.
The main feature of Longswords is the Spirit Meter, located below your weapon quality icon. With each successful strike on an enemy, your Spirit Meter will charge up. Once this meter is filled, it will glow, and your character will emit an aura.
At this point, you can press R to unleash a powerful series of slash attacks. If your final attack connects with the enemy, your sword will change color, giving a boost in power. You can do this two additional times, changing your color from white to gold to red.
However, you have to make sure that your attacks connect properly. If they don’t, simply use the Fade Slash at the end of the Spirit Blade to cancel out and regain control.
If you’re finding Monster Hunter’s combat a little slow and sluggish for your taste, then perhaps the Dual Blades will be your weapon of choice.
These speedy twin-blades are ideal for those who like a little flair and aggression, and though they don’t do as much isolated damage as some of the bigger weapon types, their speed, wide variety of attacks, and little use of stamina makes them great close-quarter weapons.
X – Basic Attack
A – Roundslash
R – Demon Mode
X + A – Thrust Attack / Demon Combo
All the attacks are pretty fast, so there’s plenty of room for experimentation, and you should quickly find your own preferred combo. A nice starter is X + A, X,A, A.
What makes the Dual Blades so good is the special attack. When pressing R, you will enter into Demon Mode. This will make your attacks faster and stronger, but will constantly drain your stamina while you are in this mode.
When you perform the X + A attack in this mode, you will unleash a powerful set of attacks in quick succession. However, the animation takes some time to play out, so you should only consider doing this as a finishing move or when you’re certain that you have enough time to land the hits.
Successful attacks in the Demon Mode fills up the Demon Gauge underneath the weapon quality icon. When you exit Demon Mode once the Gauge is filled, you will enter Archdemon mode, which will give you massive offensive and defensive buffs.
Sometimes sharp weapons simply won’t cut it, which is when you should look at the more blunt side of things. Hammers are big, brutal, clumsy, and pack quite a punch. If you love stunning your foes, then the conventional hammer would suit you well.
The weapons are extremely slow though – even slower than Greatswords, but the advantage you have here is that unlike the Greatswords, you can charge your Hammer while you’re moving about. These means that you won’t be relying too much on combos, and will only look to perform isolated attacks here and there to chip away you enemy’s health.
X – Ground Smash
A – Side Smash
R – Charge
Much like the Greatswords, Hammers have the charging ability, except you can perform it while moving about. Hold R to charge the Hammer, and then release to perform a strike. Again, like the Greatsword’s charge, it has 3 strikes, each with a different kind of attack-set.
Hunting Horns are weird weapons that would really fuel the fetishes of a hipster Monster Hunter. These are some of the more complex weapons in the game. Generally, Hunting Horns feel and act a lot like Hammers – they’re heavy, bulky, blunt, and can pack quite a punch.
Unlike Hammers though, these rely on a special ‘musical’ mechanism – every time you dish out an attack, a musical note appears on the screen. As you deal different kinds of attacks, you play different kinds of tunes.
So yeah, Hunting Horns are basically massive instruments.
X – Note 1 Attack
A – Note 2 Attack
X + A – Note 3 Attack
R – Perform (twice for encore)
Each of the above mentioned attacks will throw a musical note on an onscreen musical staff. Each attack is linked to a particular color. Now, with these three or so notes, you can choose to play certain ‘music’ with your attacks.
In order to know the various tunes for your specific Hunting Horn, head to Equipment Screen and check out the Melody Effects page of information. This will list out a handful of songs that your ‘instrument’ can play.
Once you complete this ‘song’ on the on-screen musical staff by performing the attacks, you can press R for the special attack. If your character manages to pull the song off uninterrupted, they’ll be granted a temporary boost or special effect.
After the song is played, you can even press R again to hold your Hunting Horn upright and perform an encore. All this can take a hell lot of time, so make sure that you’ve got your foe stunned nice to perform all these shenanigans.
The Lance is somewhat like the sword and shield, except that instead of a sword you have a long, fat stick that you poke enemies with, and instead of a shield you have a beefy greatshield.
This does greatly restrict your mobility, but it gives you a massive advantage as well: Lances have insane reach, and the defense from the greatshield can be a life-saver.
Lances are one of the most complex weapons in the game, with a steep learning curve, but once mastered, they are extremely reliable. Also, if you want to build an absolute tank of a hunter, then Lances really are a great option.
X – Mid Thrust
A – High Thrust
X + A – Sweep Attack
B – Backstep
R – Raise Shield