The best Monster Hunter World weapons for every playstyle

Between one-tricking the Switch Axe or being a support gunner, make sure you play what’s best for you.

Image via Capcom

One of the most enjoyable aspects of the Monster Hunter franchise is its weapons system. Like every other title in the series, the most recent Monster Hunter: World’s weapon system is very diverse. Whether you’re using the Hunting Horn or the Insect Glaive, each weapon is fun and unique in its own right, and unlike other fantasy RPGs, there is no such thing as an overpowered weapon class.

As long as it’s played correctly, any weapon can be an offensive arsenal, which opens up many doors for the players. That being said, choosing between all 14 weapon types in World can be a daunting task, so we’re here to help you choose what’s best for you, depending on your preferred playstyle.

Melee

Dual Blades

dual blades vs monster in monster hunter world
Screenshot via Capcom YouTube

For: DPS Players, Rogues, Quick-Hitters

Like the SnS, the Dual Blades (DB) are one of the fast weapon classes in the World. It’s the fastest class of them all. Thanks to the Archdemon Form, you can get higher DPS with the DB than almost any other weapons, allowing you to unleash a whirlwind of strikes accompanied by increased damage.

You probably avoid playing as the support or the tank when you play other RPGs. No, you always go for the damage because you love the feeling of deleting enemies. The Dual Blades offer no defense, faster movements, and a ton of damage, so you’ll feel right at home.

Great Sword and Hammer

greatsword vs monster in monster hunter world
Image via Capcom

For: The “Tank,” Heavy-Hitters, Fans of Dark Souls

We’ve grouped the Great Sword (GS) and Hammer because they play very similarly. Both weapon types attack very slowly yet hit very hard. The GS has more extended reach, can guard, and is good at slicing off monster parts, like tails.

The Hammer, on the other hand, is a blunt instrument best used for smashing parts such as crowns, shells, and spikes. It can’t be used to block, but it has more repeatable combos, like turning into a whirling top that can smack your targets repeatedly.

Depending on which parts you need to farm from monsters, you can choose to play both. Need to cut off a tail? Run your GS. If you need to smash a skull, head to your equipment box and pull out the Hammer. Both weapons have a speed similar to Dark Souls weapons, so if you’re into the franchise, then try these out.

Hunting Horn

Screenshot via Capcom YouTube

For: Supports, bards

The Hunting Horn (HH) is much more niche than the other weapon classes because it caters to a particular audience. You can play tunes through the weapon to provide buffs to your allies, making it powerful in the hands of a premade group, but it’s much less effective in solo play. Even though the song-based buffs are effective, they’re quickly overshadowed by raw damage and ailments.

If you’re used to playing support-type classes in other games, however, and there’s a song in your heart, the horn may be for you.

Lance and Gunlance

Screenshot via Capcom YouTube

For: Defenders, Strategists, Tanks

Lance and Gunlance players are the toughest, beefiest players in the game. Their massive shields allow them to stand steady through the strongest attacks and are both remarkably similar. Both can be used while guarding, and both work best when their wielder has mastered counter-attacking and sidestepping.

The difference between the two is in the names. One is a lance, also known as a big pokey stick, and one is a lance fused with a gun. The Gunlance doesn’t allow you to shoot from a great distance, like the bow-themed weapons, but it does add a little range and explosive, shattering wombo combos. The regular Lance is slightly easier to use and is a little more mobile to compensate.

Long Sword

Long sword vs monster in monster hunter world
Screenshot via Capcom YouTube

For: Weebs, Samurais, Combo fighters, Heavy-Hitters that want something a bit faster

The Long Sword (LS) in World is the weeb’s best friend. If you love action-packed anime, play action RPGs, or have a katana mounted on your wall, the LS will catch your eye. It’s less powerful than the Great Sword and the Hammer, but it can perform anime-like combos that are beautiful to the eye.

On top of all that, the LS looks fantastic, no matter which model you’re using. You can also force the sword to attack vertically or horizontally to hit specific monsters right where you need to—perfect for chopping off limbs.

Switch Axe

Screenshot via Capcom YouTube

For: Heavy-Hitters, Challenge Seekers, Combo Lovers, Flashy Fighters

Like the Hammer and the GS, the Switch Axe is a slow, deliberate, heavy-hitting weapon. It has a few differences, such as allowing players to weave intricate combos and seamlessly swap between its axe and sword forms mid-swing. It can output insane damage, however, it has a very high learning curve.

Once mastered, these kickass-looking combos can out-damage almost any weapon in the game, but you must time your attacks to execute them flawlessly. Because of that, you may need to stun the monster or knock them down to create an opportunity for a combo.

Sword/Shield

Sword and shield against monster in Monster hunter world
Image via Capcom

For: Beginners, Quick-Hitters, Hybrid Offense, and Defense Players

The Sword and Shield (SnS) is one of the few extremely lightweight weapon classes in the game, and as such, you’re afforded a ton of mobility and range in motion. Unfortunately, its attacks are much weaker than any bigger, heftier weapons, but that’s the trade-off to attacking much more frequently.

The SnS also has some of the easiest, most straightforward combos in the game, making it perfect for beginners to the franchise. It’s also the only weapon type in the game that allows you to use items while blocking with the shield. It also blocks, which allows players to be more aggressive with their attacking patterns.

Ranged

Bow

Screenshot via Capcom YouTube

For: Archers, Sharpshooters, Snipers

The Bow is similar to the Light Bowgun in that it fires quickly and provides much more mobility than the game’s heavy weapons. It also doesn’t use ammo, making it the most accessible ranged weapon to learn and master.

Unfortunately, it is weaker than the Heavy Bowgun, but you can always use elemental effects to take advantage of its quick attacks. The Bow also has a unique ability — a kneeling sniper shot that explodes on impact. If you want a ranged class but are more of the ranger type, this weapon should catch your eye.

Heavy Bowgun

Screenshot via Capcom YouTube

For: Cannoneers, Explosion-Lovers

The Heavy Bowgun may as well be the cannon of the game because it hits much harder than any other ranged weapon, and each explosive, screen-shaking shot is hugely satisfying to land. This weapon type is more unwieldy than the lighter variation, crippled by slower movements, reload times, and shooting, but its raw damage is at the top of the charts.

Like the Light Bowgun, you must manage numerous ammo types depending on your target, but if you’re okay with mastering that ammo system, you can put out insane levels of damage.

Light Bowgun

bowgun vs monster in monster hunter world
Image via Capcom

For: Ranged Lovers, FPS Players, Wizards

There are two types of bowguns, and the first, the Light Bowgun, is the lighter of the two. It allows you to strafe rather quickly while shooting and reloading, and you can attack much faster. Unfortunately, it doesn’t hit nearly as hard as the Heavy Bowgun, but its fast attacks make great use of elemental ammo, making this the “wizard” class of the Monster Hunter franchise.

Both bowguns require the management of an ammo system, adding a degree of difficulty that other weapon types do not have. If that doesn’t scare you, give one of them a try.