So you just started out on your path to slaying monsters and already there are so many things that you have to consider. This guide is focused on the things you can do at most if not all situations but doesn’t mean it’s the end-all and be all to monster hunting. Without further ado, here’s number one:
1. Slinger Ammo is your Bread and Butter
A good hunt always starts off with a good first impression and nothing says “awesome!” than starting off for a flinch shot to the wall. Taking a bit of time to gather slinger ammo before initiating a full-frontal attack gives you that window of opportunity from the get-go to initiate some much-needed hurt and a safe opportunity to soften a monster’s hide whether or not you’re using a weapon that can drop slinger ammo upon successful weapon attacks while grappled and this goes hand in hand with number two on this list.
2. Lure Monsters to your Advantage
With slinger ammo in hand, there’s a lot of ways at which you can start off your hunts. But one of the more common but oftentimes overlooked opportunities is staying outside of a monster’s vision then luring a monster to a nearby wall, ledge or trap by shooting slinger ammo in the ground you want it to go to. This not only gives you a higher chance of flinching a monster to a wall to slam into or a ledge they can fall off to but also gives you a higher chance that monsters won’t be able to roar while it’s still distracted or running towards where the sound came from. And the best part about meticulously calculating how and when to do this is you can do two flinch shots in a row should you only use your claw attack once to reposition the monster’s face into a wall or ledge and at most two claw attacks once it gets back up. This tip is also not limited to the initial encounter but simply whenever monsters (except elder dragons) are not enraged and can be flinched shot to something like a wall, ledge or a nearby monster.
3. Flinch shot when the Opportunity Arises
There’s a lot of intricacies with flinch shots and slinger ammo. A monster cannot be enraged or agitated before you can slam it to a wall and thus it requires waiting for that specific timing when it goes back to its calm state. However there are still certain situations where a flinch shot opportunity arises, this could be when monsters get forced to sleep by bowgun ammo, an ailment from melee hunters or the ever-so-useful-but-more-often-annoying gajalakas and their sleep darts that oftentimes would hit you as well in the process. Forcing a monster to sleep takes them out of their agitated state and thus leaving them free to be slammed into a wall or get initiated on by traps like a dragonator in the arena or boulders in certain areas. Another way at toppling monsters down is when another monster enters the area, as long as it’s not agitated, you can force it to headbutt with your target and knocking them both down in the process which is extra useful in situations where your target monster is still agitated.
As a little side note, if a monster can be slammed to a wall but you can’t find an opportunity due to its relentless attacks, blinding a monster or using slinger ammo that can cause it to flinch like pierce pods or crystal bursts is a nice way to stop a monster in its tracks for a while in order for other hunters to safely slam it to a wall aside from using a temporal or rocksteady mantle.
4. Take Advantage of the Environmental Hazards
There’s a lot of environmental hazards both minimal and large scale within the game’s many areas. There’s the falling boulders in areas like the Rotten Vale or Hoarfrost Reach, the pitfall and Cactuars in Wildspire Waste or lava spitting out of the ground every now and then like a mini volcano in the Elder’s Recess. Similarly, there are certain plants when hit can scatter a toxic goo that can inflict poison, frogs that inflict sleep or paralysis and flash bugs that can blind monsters and some of these are something that can only be accessed by having slinger ammo so learning where they are and when to activate them is part of being a successful hunter both solo and coop.
5. Glider Mantle is your Mounting Buddy
With Capcom’s inclusion of the clutch claw system, there is a lot more stuff that hunters can do within their own hunts. One of which is having your Glider Mantle act as a mounting tool by grappling a monster’s body part, letting go and while gliding in the air, initiating a mount attack. This is extremely useful in specific areas where there is no ledge to jump on or wall to climb upon for hunters that don’t have access to a mounting attack like the Insect Glaive.
6. A Great Palico comes with Great Equipment
While this is not something that would normally be necessary if you’re playing with a group or joining in SOS, there are still certain quests and investigations that is limited to two players or people that just prefer to play alone and as such a well-equipped palico for every situation is a hundred times better than nothing at all. Unlike hunters, your pet companion has an unlimited stock of gadgets that can be used each and every time it’s ready. There’s my favourite Flashfly Cage gadget that gives you access to a flash bug in a cage for blinding monsters when you activate or shoot it from a distance, the shock trap that immobilizes a monster for a short duration and a boombug cage that can knock down a monster and deal damage when it gets into its effective range. Although, it’s not that useful against elder dragons that are not affected by traps so in other cases, a Shieldspire gadget set that can divert a monster’s attention or the Meowlotov gadgets is a better alternative.
7. Balance Utility with Damage Skills
The game’s skill-building is a balancing act. Hunters can go full ham on damage for a quick but risky hunt while others can opt for a fully defensive build that takes longer but a safer route. However, the comfiest of runs is having both damage skills and utility skills to make a decently timed hunt with a higher chance of success. The most basic of damage boosting skills are going for max Critical Eye, Critical Boost and Weakness Exploit however to certain weapon playstyles that don’t do critical hits like a sticky bowgun playstyle or gunlance shells, they often go for artillery, agitator, attack boost or peak performance. Meanwhile, basic utility skills that let you survive on a hunt is going for health and divine blessing and in certain occasions, a max effluvial resistance against a Vaal Hazak and a level 5 windproof or three pieces of Kushala Daora’s armour pieces against a Lunastra.
8. Communication is Da Wae
Whether you have access to a microphone or not during your hunts, communicating with other people through stickers and custom shoutouts from your radial menu is one way to let players know what you’re up to or if you need a pick-me-up. You could use a sleeping jagras sticker to let people know you’re going to put a monster to sleep, shout for dust of life when you’re low on health or simply call out that you’re going to flinch shot a monster so no one else would fight over the monster’s head that often leads to an agitated monster after getting clawed left and right.
And that’s it for my beginner’s guide on how to become a more efficient hunter in Monster Hunter World: Iceborne. If you feel like I missed something that needs to be in the list of things you could do while out on a hunt, feel free to let me know in the comment section down below.
Good Luck Monster Hunters, and we hope these tips help you along the way.
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This tips article was created by Paul, so a massive thanks to him, spending his time to help follow Monster Hunters.
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