Have you thought the Bowgun was a complicated, clumsy weapon that only people with wickedly fast reflexes could use? It's not that way, though(You probably shouldn't us it if you are indecisive, though). At first glance, managing all the Shells in the inventory seems complicated, but in practice, that is a different story. For all the non-believers, they give the following excuse: The armor sucks and the melee is terrible. While guilty on both charges, Bowgunner's armor is more resistant to elemental attacks. And besides, if you were to hit someone with a gun in real life (which I'm not recommending you do) rather than shooting the freaking guy, you've done a lot less damage anyway. Let's stop beating around the bush, now, and get right to what you're waiting for: the tactics. As you may know, there are two types of Bowguns: Light, and Heavy. I will explain the types and the tactics you should employ. First, the Light Bowgun is light enough that you can run while it is drawn. That means that you can attempt to flank the beast, but only if you have a melee-oriented Felyne. While it is light, you don't have the range or firepower that a heavy bowgun brings with it. However, You CAN NOT run with a Heavy Bowgun drawn, so I heartily recommend that you spring for the shield instead of that power barrel. Balanced Felynes are also helpful, because they equally divide their time making bombs and melee, providing an excellent distraction for you to unload a clip into the monster. The shield is not foolproof, however, and should only be used for un-evadable attacks. I do believe I have forgotten one benefit of the bowgun: Its elemental versatility. While a few bowguns can only use one or even no elemental shell, many, many more will let you load all the elements. For Blademasters, you have to kill many of a single monster to have the elemental weapon that they want(which, by the way, has only a single elemental attribute). But with a bowgun, you can simply pack multiple elemental shell types to have all the elements(imagine how many monsters you would have to kill to get that kind of versatility). Want a list of the shell types? Whether or not you want it, I'm providing it.
Normal: Standard, one hit shell. max 99
Paint: Marks monster for tracking. max 99
Tranq: Capture trapped monster. max 8
Pellet: Turns bowgun into shotgun. max 60
Pierce: Multiple hit round effective if monster is facing you. max 60
Crag: Cause one hit and explode. max 9
Cluster: Multi-bomblet shell(Big boom) max 3
(maxumum varies by level)
Poison: Causis poison after several shots.
Paralysis: stuns monter after several shots.
Sleep: Causes sleep after several shots.
(all with max 60)
While it is not a new weapon to the series, this guide is the first of its kind. I certainly hope I've cleared up a few things about the Bowgun and if not, oh well.