MHW: Iceborne - Walkthrough & Guide
All Weapon Types & Categories - Abilities & Characteristics
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All Weapon Types & Categories - Abilities & Characteristics

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Check this Monster Hunter World: Iceborne guide on all the weapon types in the game. Know each of their unique abilities & characteristics, skills, and more!!!

Table of Contents

Best Playing Guides & Tips For Beginner Hunters

Weapon Type Overview

Wield A Variety Of Weapons With Unique Play Styles

Wield A Variety Of Weapons With Unique Play Styles

Choose from any of the 14 weapon types to wield when out hunting in Monster Hunter World. Each one offers a unique play style, different ranges, and strengths & weaknesses.

Close-Range (Melee) Weapons

Close-Range (Melee) Weapons

These types of weapons are basically melee weapons that lets you deal damage when up close & personal! Each weapon type under this category has a unique play style featuring a wide variety of attacks. Melee weapons also lose sharpness, and should be sharpened with a whetstone.

Ranged Weapons

Ranged Weapons

Ranged weapons on the other hand lets you dish out damage from afar, but consumes ammunition. Each type of ammunition also has different effects & power.

Weapons Determine Defensive Characteristic

Your weapon of choice determines your defensive characteristic, either as "Blademaster" for melee weapons or "Gunner" for ranged weapons. Blademasters receive less physical damage, while Gunners receive less elemental damage.

Close-Range (Melee) Weapons

Great Sword

Great Sword

Slow and powerful, the Greatsword is a big deadly weapon that deals a huge amount of damage up close!

Deal Maximum Damage With Charged Slash

The Greatsword also features a Charged Slash that requires precise timing to deal maximum damage.

Resist Knockbacks With Tackle

Time the tackle attack to prevent knockback from attacking monsters to let you perform uninterrupted combos.

Great Sword Summary

Unique Features Charged Slash
Leaping Wide Slash
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ・

Long Sword

Long Sword

This weapon type is characterized by fast fluid slashes & combos.

Charge Up Your Spirit Gauge

Unique to this weapon is the ability to accumulate Spirit Gauge to boost your attack power. This can be increased up to three levels. Perform a Spirit Roundslash to charge up the Spirit Gauge.

Consume Spirit Levels

Consume Spirit Levels to perform high powered attacks like the Spirit Thrust. The higher the Spirit Level, the higher the damage!

Long Sword Summary

Unique Features Spirit Roundslash
Spirit Thrust
Foresight Slash
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ★

Sword & Shield

Sword & Shield

A mix of offense & defense, this weapon type features good attack speed which makes up for its low attack power.

Use Items While Weapon Is Drawn

Unique and the ability to use items even while the weapon is drawn without having to sheathe them.

Trigger Combo Chains With Advancing Slash

Depending on the terrain you are at, you can trigger different kinds of combo strings from the Advancing Slash attack.

Sword & Shield Summary

Unique Features Action With Weapon Drawn
Advancing Slash
Elemental Swords
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ★

Dual Blades

Dual Blades

Dual Blades feature fast flurry of combos, compensating for its low attack power.

Unleash The Demon Mode

Unique to this type is the Demon Mode, which changes its entire moveset, at the cost of constant stamina drain.

Activate Archdemon Mode

When landing attacks in Demon Mode, you fill up your Demon Gauge. When this gauge is full, you can activate Archdemon Mode, which allows you to perform other special attacks!

Dual Blades Summary

Unique Features Demon Mode
Archdemon Mode
Heavenly Blade Dance
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ★



A powerful, massive weapon that can stun monsters and break hard monster parts! Despite its size, it features decent mobility.

Charge Up Your Damage With Power Charge

You can charge up your hammer with the Power Charge to boost its attack power. The effect will only be removed once you sheathe your weapon, or when taking damage.

Stun Monsters By Hitting Them On The Head

You can stun monsters with the hammer by hitting them on the head with a Charged Upswing attack, or Charged Brutal Upswing.

Hammer Summary

Unique Features Power Charge
Stun Monsters
Charged Slide
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ・

Hunting Horn

Hunter Horn

For players who love to play support role, the Hunting Horn is recommended! It is a versatile weapon that allows you to deal blunt damage, while being able to buff the party with various positive status effects!

Use Performances to Boost Party

Hunting Horn melodies are called "Performances" which are used to buff up the party.

Casting Performances Can Also Damage

The first performance emits a shockwave with high attack and stunning power, which is a viable attack starter.

Hunting Horn Summary

Unique Features Stock Performances
Use Performance To Attack
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ・ ・



A great defensive weapon, the Lance features thrust attacks while being able to take on minimal damage.

Use Power Guard to Minimize Push Back

Power Guard diminishes pushback during a guard reaction, and allows you to peform a quick counterattack.

Perform Dash Steps & Guard Dashes

Combine and mix up your Dash Steps & Guard Dashes to be able to keep a close range to the monster while maintaining offense!

Lance Summary

Unique Features Power Guard
Dash Stepping & Guard Dashing
Dash Attacks
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ・ ・



Similar to the lance, but more focused on offense, thanks to the addition of of powerful shelling attacks.

Deal Fixed Damage With Shelling

You can negate a monster's resistance and deal fixed damage using the Gunlance's shelling attack.Just make sure you have enough sharpness to perform this attack!

Does Not Consume Ammo

Unlike Bowguns, the Gunlance does not use up ammo when performing Shelling attacks. Each Gunlance uses a different type of Shelling so experiment with the different options!

Gunlance Summary

Unique Features Shelling Attacks
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ・

Switch Axe

Switch Axe

The Switch Axe is a versatile weapon that can change between axe and sword mode, allowing you to change your approach on the fly!

Axe Mode for Powerful & Long Range Attacks

Switch to the Axe Mode to deal powerful attacks at long range. This also charges up your Switch Gauge.

Use Sword Mode To Utilize Phial

Attacking in Sword Mode utilizes the effect of the Switch Axe's phial, making it valuable for targeting tough monster parts.

Unleash Amped State On Sword Mode

Land enough attacks on Sword Mode to use Amped State, which boosts your attack power greatly.

Switch Axe Summary

Unique Features Axe & Sword Mode
Phial Status Effects
Amped State
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ・

Charge Blade

Charge Blade

The Charge Blade is a versatile weapon that allows you to switch between a sword & shield, and a powerful axe. You can store up energy into phials and unleash them for a powerful finisher!

Unleash Stored Energy With Axe Mode

As you wield the weapon in sword mode, you charge up your phial to charge either your shield or sword. Charging the Axe will allow you to unleash a powerful Axe attack.

Use Phial Effects To Negate Attack Deflection

Attacks when phial effects are active are harder to deflect, which is useful to target tough body parts.

Perform Guard Reaction Combos

When guarding through a monster attack, the guard reaction can be chained to a counter attack.

Charge Blade Summary

Unique Features Axe & Sword Mode
Phial Effects
Amped Element Discharge
Guard Reaction Combo
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ・

Insect Glaive

Insect Glaive

A versatile weapon that allows you to vault & perform jumping attacks at any time. This weapon also allows you to control a Kinsect which harvests extracts from monsters to give you a boost.

Kinsects Are Upgraded Separately

Kinsects are small insects that come with your Insect Glaive. These are upgraded separately at the Smithy. Consider the combination of your Insect Glaive & your Kinsect to maximize its effect.

Perform Midair Attacks & Evasion

The Insect Glaive also allows you to perform midair attacks and evasive maneuvers. While mounting a monster, you can jump off and perform another attack.

Check Out How To Mount A Monster

Insect Glaive Summary

Unique Features Kinsects
Midair Attacks & Evasion
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ・

Ranged Weapons

Light Bowgun

Light Bowgun

The light bowgun features great mobility and evasive capabilities, and fast shooting. However, unlike the Heavy Bowgun, it has a smaller ammo capacity.

Equip Custom Mods For Various Passive Boosts

Both Light and Heavy Bowgun can be equipped with custom mods, that can enable automatic blocking, shorter reload times and more. Same mods can be applied multiple times for an even better boost.

Set Wyvernblast Traps For Powerful Damage

Unique to the light bowgun is the ability to use Wyvernblast, which are basically landmines. These can be set off by monsters, or shot at to trigger an explosion.

Light Bowgun Summary

Unique Features Wyvernblast
Custom Mods
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ★

Heavy Bowgun

Heavy Bowgun

The Heavy Bowgun can fire more powerful ammo compared to the light bowgun, has reduced recoil and larger ammo capacity. However, this weapon has a slower reload and movement.

Equip Custom Mods At The Smithy

As with the light bowgun, you can also boost its traits with custom mods.

Use Wyvernheart To Dish Out A Continuous Barrage

Unique to certain Heavy Bowguns is the ability to use Wyvernheart, which basically turns your Heavy Bowgun to a machine gun. Use this to deal continuous massive damage on a monster!

Shoot Wyvernsnipe To Target Specific Parts

As with Wyvernheart, certain Heavy Bowguns can use Wyvernsnipe which turns your weapon into a sniper rifle. Use this for powerful precise shots!

Heavy Bowgun Summary

Unique Features Wyvernsnipe
Custom Mods
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ・


All Weapon Types & Categories & Characteristics

The Bow is a powerful mid-ranged weapon that can target specific monster parts. It can use Ammo Coatings to increase raw attack power or inflict status effects. It can also deal more damage with Charged Steps & Shots.

Apply Arrow Coating To Change Attack Effects

You can also coat your arrows with different coatings to increase attack power to abnormal status on monsters.

Use Dragon Piercer To Unleash Big Damage

The Bow's Dragon Piercer move is incredibly powerful. It has the capacity to unleash an extreme amount of damage to its target as long as all of its shots connect.

Bow Summary

Unique Features Arrow Coating
Charged Step
Charged Shots
Dragon Piercer
Accessibility to Beginners ★ ★ ・

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