Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list

Monster Hunter Rise best weapon
(Image credit: Capcom)

The Monster Hunter Rise best weapons factor in a lot of variables like damage, versatility, speed, elemental effect, sharpness, range, ammo, control and loads more.  There's a lot of player discussion about what the tier list should be, and it often depends on how you want to play - some things favor a heavy tank style, others are build for speed and mobility, and everyone will be sure theirs is the 'right' answer. 

But while there's a lot of variation, there are some clearly better options. Many of the best weapons in Monster Hunter Rise have been series staples for years. With new options and changes from Rise, and it's Sunbreak expansion, there's a lot to consider so let's take a look at what we consider to be the best Monster Hunter Rise weapons.

Monster Hunter Rise weapon tier list

  1. Longsword
  2. Dual Blades
  3. Light Bowgun

These are the best weapons in Monster Hunter Rise. The focus here is really on ease of use and versatility. There's obviously going to be differences of opinion, so always go with whatever you think is best. However, we think these are the tier choices for new players and pros alike. 

Below we'll look more generally across the range of weapons in Monster Hunter 

1. Longsword

Best Longsword Build: Right now the best endgame Longsword build we've seen (post Sunbreak), is based around the Phantom Mirage and boosting affinity with armor and Decorations, as well as adding the Hellfire Cloak damage effect with the Sinister Gauntlets S, and boosting speed of attacks with Quick Sheathe.

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Longsword

(Image credit: Capcom)

The Longsword IS the best weapon in Monster Hunter Rise full stop and Sunbreak didn't change that. It's not the easiest for new players but is devastating once you master it. The tricky element is in learning when to trigger longswords attacks, as its combos and counters are often slow, weighty swings that can leave players vulnerable. 

To start with, basic combos do good damage but leave you vulnerable if you're too close. However, you can connect this to a bunch of other attacks like a Fade Slash (hold a direction on the analog stick to execute a Lateral Fade Slash) which dodges in the same motion as the attack.

Attacking with the Longsword will fill up the Spirit Gauge, which is necessary for some of the most powerful attacks, like a Spirit Blade combo, for way more damage than the standard variant. It's definitely worth going to the training area to practice the Special Sheathe Combo which is utterly lethal. Follow up the Special Sheathe with either Iai Slash or Iai Spirit Slash, again, for even more damage.

The Soaring Kick silkbind attack is also a simple but powerful attack to pull off. It isn't the kick that's the important part; it's the automatic Plunging Thrust afterwards that does the heavy lifting. Andm, finally, if you know an enemy attack is coming at you, Serene Pose is the move for you, as you'll anticipate it and counter attack swiftly.

2. Dual Blades

Best Dual Blades Build: Dual Blades thrive on Raw Affinity, boosting critical hit chances. There's no shortage of options for good blades in this regard - try the Night Wings in particular, as well as the Zakun Twins+ from Sunbreak. Then put on the Kaiser Crown X, Zinogre Mail X, Kaiser Vambraces X, Rathalos Coil X and Ingot Greaves, a Talisman with an attack boost, and generally make sure your Critical Eye, Critical Boost and Weakness Exploit are all pretty high.

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Dual Blades

(Image credit: Capcom)

If you're new to the series, or if it's just been a while, the Dual Blades are a great option. They allow for fast strikes and evasion, and are fairly simple compared to other weapons in MH Rise. Since there's no blocking with two small blades in each hand, dodging is of the utmost importance here.

The key here is speed and agility - individual strikes won't do much damage, but that doesn't matter when you can land dozens of attacks in seconds. The basic tactic with these is to get into a monster's face and never stop hitting them. Then there's Demon Mode, which unlocks moves like Demon Fangs and Demon Flight, the latter of which enables you to jump atop the monster you're fighting and ride it from top to bottom while slashing away. To maintain Demon Mode, keep an eye on your stamina as Demon Mode will constantly deplete it. 

The silkbind attacks, Shrouded Vault and Piercing Bind, are incredibly powerful too. The former essentially dashes you forward – perfect for a bit of range with this extremely close range weapon – and if you get hit in the motion, you'll enact a counter-hit. The Piercing Bind attack throws a kunai that will detonate after a short time inflicting damage that increases the more you hit the enemy with the kunai embedded.

The other thing worth noting is that no weapon does elemental application like the Dual Blades - because of the speed at which they land, you can set any blight on an enemy in a rapid series of strikes, far faster than any other weapon. This makes them superb for specialised builds based around affliction and status effects.

3. Light Bowgun

Best Light Bowgun Build: For the late game, the best Light Bowgun builds are centred on the Gale Bowgun+, with Pierce ammo that can be enhanced by perks like Pierce Up, Attack Boost and Normal/Rapid Up. Once you're pouring out damage, get some general ranged perks like Recoil Down, Spare Shot and Ballistics.

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Light Bowgun

(Image credit: Capcom)

Ranged weapons in Monster Hunter Rise are a little tricky but can be deadly if you know how to handle them. They're good for caution, especially with monsters that primarily deal close-ranged attacks. They also work well for support players, as they allow you to hang around the back and heal as needed. For the most part, the Light Bowgun works like a standard ranged weapon. You can load different ammo types and if an enemy gets too close, you can melee attack.

We put this one forward over the Heavy Bowgun and the Bow itself because the speed at which it can be used helps emphasise safety and make it less risky. When it comes to actual attacks, the Light Bowgun is as simple as they comes: it offers more maneuverability than the Heavy Bowgun so while you sacrifice some damage, it means you've a much higher chance of staying alive.

You can also equip a Wyvernblast, which is essentially a land mine. These are worth putting down whenever possible because they'll do some serious damage

There aren't too many combos available for the Light Bowgun, but pressing dodge and a direction immediately after firing allows you to take a quick step then fire again. You can also perform a Silkbind Glide which gets you up close and personal with the monster, or an evasive attack over the top.

Monster Hunter Rise all weapons list

Below are the rest of the weapons in Monster Hunter Rise, in no particular order. Still very worthy choices, but a little harder to master.

Great Sword

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Great Sword

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The Great Sword is the weapon everyone thinks of in Monster Hunter. It can deal a massive amount of damage if you know how to use it but that's countered by its slow, heavy swings and charging time. Because it's so slow and deliberate to use,  your knowledge of the monster you're attacking is almost more useful than your knowledge of the weapon – the better you understand a creatures motion, the more likely you are to time and deploy the Great Sword's moveset to connect all that high damage. One bonus of Rise's wirebug addition is that you do have a little extra mobility to close gaps faster, which almost feels more important than the extra moves the mechanic unlocks.

Sword & Shield

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Sword & Shield

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The Sword and Shield is one of Monster Hunter's more dependable weapons. It might not excel at anything but it's got a decent combination of mobility, combos, and damage making it a good option both for beginners and to master overall. Because you're so mobile, the shield is best used for stunning bashes, as you can easily move and evade, and overall it gives up on big flashy surprises in favor of just getting the job done. You only have to master a few simple combos to get the most out of it and because most of its moves are faster, you won't miss quick monsters with slow wind-ups. Its backstep charge move is also great for both making space, closing gaps, and landing a good run of damage if you can connect all the blows it unleashes. One of its wirebug moves, Windmill, is also a useful trick to have, slashing your attacks 360 degrees, which is great for crowd control or dealing damage at almost any angle.


Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Lance

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The Lance really is a tank weapon and probably not one one to start with. It's big, slow, and heavy, making it hard to wield without skill. It dishes out good damage, however, and has some protective counter and guard potential, that helps you take it as much as you dish it out. Most of its moves are very direct ahead attacks which, with slow movement, can make landing blows a challenge - if you mash and hope for the best you'll likely be prodding empty air half the time. However, master evades for positioning, and moves like Counter Thrust - which takes you from a guard position to a counter thrust attack - and you can hurt monsters a lot. The Twin Vine wirebug move is also very powerful, letting you attach yourself to a monster and reel yourself to them if they start getting too far away.


Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Gunlance

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Like the Lance, the Gunlance is powerful but requires skill to use. Its key ability is that it can inflict damage via blank shells that ignore a monster's resistances and inflict fixed damage on parts you might not normally reach. You're not actually firing bullets here, just using the explosions to amplify the damage. Again, like the Lance, this is a tank option with a powerful blocks and low mobility. It's not a weapon to wave around wildly as its high damage really needs a user who can land their blows. Its Wyvern's Fire and Wyrmstake Cannon moves, for example, are two of the hardest hitting attacks in the game but have a big cooldown/recharge to deal with once used.


Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Hammer

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The Hammer is in interesting compromise if you want high damage and mobility. It's a real heavy hitter and focuses on blunt damage to stun monsters, but despite its size you're still pretty mobile while carrying it. Its various moves have a fairly decent speed, although it lacks reach and guard options. To get the best from it you need to charge its attacks, which you can do while moving, and unleash them to pound a monster's head or body to exhaust and stun it quickly.

Hunting Horn

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Hunting Horn

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The Hunting Horn is a support weapon best used in teams. It deals blunt damage and works well enough as a weapon, although it's not got the best attack stats, amount of moves, or speed. However, its real strength comes from the buffs you can use by playing notes as you attack. In Rise this process has been simplified to a few simple attacks that can boost abilities like defense, attack, moment and open up combos for more powerful buffs. It definitely is a weapon that works best as part of a larger team strategy. 

Switch Axe

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Switch Axe

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The Switch Axe is definitely not a beginner weapon as it uses two unique, interchangeable forms and involves the ability to add elemental effects using phials. It has an axe mode that has good range and damage, while the sword mode is faster and can use phials. These phials add explosive elemental damage options to attacks. There's a lot to take on and you'll only get the most out of this if you take the time to master managing and switching between three distinct opportunities.

Charge Blade

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Charge Blade

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The Charge Blade is another complex weapon that takes time to learn if you really want to maximise its potential. Like the Switch Axe it has two forms, along with a phial system to add in elemental damage. This time the options are a sword and shield configuration that has good movement and protective guard options, and an axe option which is slower, more powerful, and dishes out elemental damage. Again, not a good choice for a beginner because of the various combinations to switch between and master.

Insect Glaive

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Insect Glaive

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This is another weapon best left alone unless you know what it's doing. That's mainly because its chief power comes from its ability to launch and recall special insects, called kinsects, that gather extracts from monsters to boost attack, speed, and knockback protection. In terms of raw weapon abilities the Glaive is an incredibly mobile weapon, using vaults and dashes to move through the air with great fluidity. Its attacks, however, are best used on the ground with slashing combos to deal damage. The insect part sees you launching kinsects at monsters to harvest stat boosting extracts, as well deal damage and leave powders that deal elemental damage. Given that there's a lot to make use of here, and there are numerous kinsects with their own properties and nuances to choose between, this isn't really a beginners button mashing option.  

Heavy Bowgun

Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Heavy Bowgun

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If you like the idea of ranged damage with a sprinkling of support then the Heavy Bowgun is great. Probably its biggest sell is the ability to use a range of special ammo for different effects. These largely control 'how' you inflict damage - so piercing, blunt and so on, as well as things like sticky and cluster bombs. It gives you a great deal of flexibility across different situations if you have the ammo. It also packs a few options to buff teammates which can make all the difference in a tricky hunt. Rise also adds a few new tricks like the ability to charge shots to inflict more damage, and improved mobility via a side step move limited by your stamina.


Monster Hunter Rise best weapons tier list: Bow

(Image credit: Capcom)

The Bow is about highly mobile ranged damage and status effects. You're able to apply coating to your arrows that can boost damage, or inflict things like poison, paralysis stun, and so on. It's a fast weapon but you can also charge shots not only by holding fire but by dashing, meaning you can both reposition or avoid attacks while building damage. There's also the arc shot, which applies an effect over an area. In Rise these are all support arrows that can buff health, prevent knockbacks and increase affinity (critical chance).

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Ford James

Give me a game and I will write every "how to" I possibly can or die trying. When I'm not knee-deep in a game to write guides on, you'll find me hurtling round the track in F1, flinging balls on my phone in Pokemon Go, pretending to know what I'm doing in Football Manager, or clicking on heads in Valorant.

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