Being the last installment in a longtime franchise, Monster Hunter World successfully takes the series to a whole new level, welcoming new players as well as bringing back veterans, constantly improving its content and adding new layers of difficulty to the gameplay. With the vast amount of mechanics this game has to offer, a guide about the foundations for a better playstyle can be really useful, since the focus in guides tend to rely on achieving the highest damage possible or armor set numbers, rather than explaining other more intuitive aspects, such as the best behavior within a team and against a monster, and ways to react in different opportunities.
In a game like this, a new player could feel overwhelmed at the numerous features within, or a more experienced hunter might not be aware of the room for improvement in their playstyle. Fear not, we got your back! Here are five ways to build and improve your hunting foundation.
1. Look at the map.
For starters, you must check your surroundings. The environment is a critical element in this game, presenting a variety of ecosystems filled with interactive elements and collectible resources that could be useful in the middle of a hunt. Be aware of this and explore the map at its fullest, as it can have different height levels with all kinds of paths, tunnels, caves, ledges, vines to climb, and sometimes even cliffs to jump. If you have a better knowledge of the terrain you’re in, you can use that to your advantage. Examples of some useful special surfaces are the climbable trees which, after being used as a high jump point, give you the possibility to land a flurry of hits or a very heavy charged blow on the monster head. Another good example is the vines on Ancient Forest help hunters gain momentum while the monster is trapped, or the breakable boulders and stalactites on some stage roofs that can inflict serious amounts of damage if they strike the monster’s body.
2. Sort your items.
The next thing to do is to get your items in order, which can be easily done by creating item loadouts. The loadouts are extremely useful because you can have different groups of dedicated items. Unfortunately, there’s no item bag that can carry every useful item, so you have to be correctly prepared. If you are going to a capture mission, you must carry Sleep bombs and Shock/Pitfall Traps. Large or Mega Large Bombs are good for breaking horns while the monster is asleep, and, if you want to heal your team, the Lifepowders are your thing. Every item in your loadout must be there for multiple reasons. Depending on the quest, it’s better to have several combinations so you can be prepared for every occasion.
And remember, since you have a harvest box, you must never stop to multiply your materials for future combinations, like Honey, Herbs, Blue Mushrooms, etc. Look out for items you lack, and dedicate some time to do expedition resource farming so you never get caught unprepared. Also remember that items like Flash, Thorn, Dragon, Bomb, and Screamer Pods are life savers since they can immobilize, stagger, and even make the monster get out from underground allowing you to get a better position in the battlefield, attack aggressively or use a healing item. A little side note: If a teammate is mounting the monster don’t Flash it. The monster loses mobility when it’s mounted, and your team can inflict damage in a more consistent way.
3. Know your equipment.
Crafting your equipment seems like a very easy and basic thing to do, but it’s truly important since it’s easy to overlook the armor and weapon you are using. Doing so can make the game very difficult, so you’ll have to invest time there. Since Monster Hunter World has so many armors with many levels of enhancing, you must pay some attention to the stats because as your raw or elemental defense raises, the chances of being one-shot get lower. In addition, your attack makes the hunts shorter and easier for you, as well for your fellow hunters online.
At the moment of creating armor sets, you must be clear on what you want to do with that specific equipment. For example, if you want to play in a supportive healing role, then you must have skills like Recovery Up, Wide Range, and Mushroomancer, which are very useful to keep your teammates healthy. You will also need a Sword and Shield that allows you to use items without sheathing, or a hunting horn that boosts your party stats. Your play-style depends on how comfortable you are, and I recommend that you try new builds constantly. This makes you become a very versatile player, and you will be prepared for every hunt, no matter how your party goes.
Remember that in the worst case, you can go to the Camp tent and change your equipment as you like, nothing’s carved in stone. Every armor set comes with a good amount of different skill points and slots to put Decorations in and boost those skills. If your intention is to unlock the full potential of it, you have to learn how to maximize them, which requires obtaining the correct decorations (which sadly are RNG-related) and deciding which ones are useful. Don’t be afraid of looking silly. Monster Hunter World has an awesome mechanic called “Layered armors,” so you can be comfy with your fashion while you prioritize the efficiency of your armor assembling.
4. Prepare for combat.
The most beneficial thing for you to do is getting used to hunting with every weapon type in the roster. That sounds extremely annoying, but I can assure you it will give you versatility in online hunts and comfort in every situation. You must always upgrade your equipment until you can’t anymore, always maintain the weapons sharp in the quests, learn all the possible weapons on every tree, and prepare those that fit you better and the monster you are going to hunt, as different elements and damage type affect them in different ways.
Of course, there’s always a first time hunting a monster, so, after the violent introductions, you have to watch and learn the monster movements and behavior in order to learn how to best improve your offensive approach. The combat can be very intuitive but also very technical. Every monster has a different strategy to kill you and a different behavior, which only becomes harder in the higher ranks, and later with the Elder Dragons and Tempered Monsters. The same goes for the elements and status blights they provoke and the element or damage type on your weapon since every monster has different weaknesses to different damage types.
But even if you grow comfortable with those concepts, there’s a good chance that the monster keeps being hard to beat. When that happens, you must change your mindset and try a different strategy and approach in the fight. For example, if you are facing a Diablos, you can use screamer pods to make it emerge from the ground, and then use a flash pod to make it fall to the floor. If your weapon can’t knock out the monster, you must never face it from the front but the sides. The monster takes time turning around and you can spend more time attacking. Besides, the frontal attacks can be very lethal for you if your health isn’t full and your defense is not enough. But remember that there is always a way around an enemy who appears to be unbeatable. If you fail, the next time you will remember why, and thus you won’t again.
5. Enjoy the online experience!
Since not everyone can hunt with their friends, a lot of people hunt online with random people. This can be very difficult if those dudes are strangers to the game mechanics, or if they use the same weapon, and you better be prepared for scenarios like that. A very good example is that if your party uses a hammer, a greatsword, and a bow, you can go with a glaive to hit the monster from the air without knocking your own team to the floor. If you don’t use a glaive, the hammer in the party can launch you into the air where you can hit/mount the monster, creating momentum for your team to hit repeatedly the enemy. If you allow yourself to be versatile and adapt to the party that you got, they’ll be grateful and the hunt will be easier for all.
This installment brings a very comfortable voice chat, which compared to the prior Monster Hunter games is extremely beneficial to the players. I strongly recommend you to use it for every mission, as being able to shout a warning or asking for healing could mean the difference between losing and winning the mission. Don’t be afraid to talk. We are lucky to have an amazing community, and you will always find people willing to help you. After all, this is a co-op game, and we are all in the same side. When the time comes and you feel comfortable enough, I urge you to start or join a squad, since having friends to hunt along with you is a serious advantage. Hunts will be easier and if you grow closer to the people you play with, your play-style will get better as you gain confidence in your skills and your teammates.
So, after you get a grasp of these basic yet pivotal points, you will be able to gain finesse on your hunts. Never forget that the best way to get better is hunting, hunting, and hunting. No pain no gain fellas, and believe me, this beautiful game can be very frustrating but also very rewarding. The most important point of all this is to simply try to have fun. Not a single advice about stats, hunting or strategies really matter if you aren’t enjoying the stunning and fast-paced combat and action sequences Monster Hunter World has to offer. With an amazing online experience and the supporting community of players it has, it’s a pleasure to immerse yourself in every mission and the challenges they bring. So get out there and hunt!