Monster Hunter World Weapons Tier List

Use the best weapons in Monster Hunter to slay monsters with ease. We've created Monster Hunter: World tier lists for both solo and multiplayer gameplay.

Monster Hunter has always been a franchise celebrated for its exciting monster-slaying combat system.

Enabling all this is the deep crafting and weapon system that rewards players who take the time to master them.

This time, we shine the spotlight on the weapons of Monster Hunter World, ranking them from best to worst to use in solo and cooperative mode.

Note: Both lists are consistent with Monster Hunter World’s latest patch.

Table of ContentsShow

S-Tier (Cooperative)

WeaponThe ProsThe ConsDescription
Hammer• Great KO damage for stuns
• Good damage when charged
• Less utility due to it being a blunt weaponEven though monster heads are a bit harder to target in multiplayer, Hammer excels at what it does when played correctly. Every party will look for someone experienced with this weapon.
Heavy Bowgun• Excellent damage output
• Ease of use
• Safe distance
• Great utility for your team
• Limited ammoYes, we can safely consider the heavy bowgun as the best weapon in Monster Hunter World overall. It’s already powerful for solo play, and it’s another type of beast in multiplayer.

With other players taking the attention from you, you can focus on your maximum damage output and inflicting status effects. If the monster does target you, the heavy bowgun has a good defensive fallback in its shield. It truly has no weaknesses regardless of how you play.
Hunting Horn• Heals allies
• Gives buffs to the party
• Can deal KO damage to target
• Songs have long animationsThe hunting horn is an excellent addition to your squad in multiplayer. Its primary focus is buffing and healing your allies, but it also has utility outside of this thanks to its KO and exhaust damage.

A-Tier (Cooperative)

WeaponThe ProsThe ConsDescription
Charge Blade• Great burst damage• Axe mode can hit party membersWith its sweeping attacks in axe mode, the charge blade is a nuisance to other players in your party. Skilled parties still look for charge blade players mainly because of the insane damage potential that is useful for speed-running content.
Bow• Extremely good range
• Decent damage
• High mobility
• Stamina management can get in the way of momentumThe bow provides great utility in multiplayer by inflicting status effects. Be careful though, as precise aiming is needed to avoid hitting your teammates.
Gunlance• Explosions can deal good damage• Explosions can hit allies as wellBecause of the size of the explosions, the gun lance is a nuisance in multiplayer mode. Its upside is the huge amount of damage it deals when played correctly.
Great Sword• Excellent single-target damage
• Good defensive options
Doesn’t add much to the team except for damageGreatsword in Multiplayer brings a lot of raw damage. The only reason it’s not higher on the tier list is the linearity of the gameplay and not bringing anything else to the table.
Lance• Good reach
• Great defensive options
• Unintrusive to other party members
Slow multi-directional movementThe lance gives good utility to your party because of its ability to cut tails and charge the target. Other players prefer a lance main to a hammer one because its thrusts don’t hit party members as often.  

B-Tier (Cooperative)

WeaponThe ProsThe ConsDescription
Long Sword• Great damage potential• Counter opportunities are few in multiplayer modeThe things that make the long sword great in solo play are unfortunately what drags it down in multiplayer. Counters aren’t a good source of damage anymore because the enemy does not focus on you as much.
Light Bowgun• Good mobility
• Adds party utility through status effects
• Mines add to its damage potential
• Limited ammo  The light bowgun performs better in multiplayer than in solos. Heavy Bowgun does far better trading off mobility for more damage.

C-Tier (Cooperative)

WeaponThe ProsThe ConsDescription
Insect Glaive• Easy mounting
• Maneuverability in the air
• Poor damage
• Heavy essence management  
With other hunters beside you, the insect glaive becomes a more potent weapon. You can use it to get the drop on enemies, essentially giving your team a quick advantage.
Dual Blades• Easy to use and focus in multiplayer• No utility whatsoeverThe dual blades are only used in multiplayer to deal focus damage on an enemy’s flank or rear.

D-Tier (Cooperative)

WeaponThe ProsThe ConsDescription
Switch Axe• Wide variety of playstyles• Long attack animations
• Difficult learning curve
This weapon is good for an all-melee party. Due to its poor evasive options, however, it struggles when it’s the only short-ranged weapon in the squad.
Sword and Shield• Fast use of items when unsheathed• Poor damageThis weapon is good, but there are better options out there to swap it with. Getting more damage for the party will be better in the long run.

S-Tier (Solo)

WeaponThe ProsThe Cons
Great Sword• Excellent damage potential because of the charge mechanic
• Stun utility because of Shoulder Charge
• Guard and dodge animations are easy to acclimate to
• Slow attack rateThe great sword boasts a ridiculous range due to its length.

This weapon is perfect for those who just want to face monsters head-on and decimate them with a variety of hard-hitting strikes. The great sword is useful in solo play because it also gives emergency defensive fallbacks that could save the player’s life when the hunt goes awry.
Charge Blade• Excellent burst damage
• Large variety of moves and attack animations  
• Defensive options are lackingThe charge blade is similar to the switch axe in a lot of ways. It also needs to stack up damage in one phase to unload more in the other. The charge blade offers more damage in its burst mode but suffers a bit from the lack of defensive options.

Learning this weapon will give you a lot of advantages and massive amounts of damage. The only downside it had is negated in Solo play.

A-Tier (Solo)

WeaponThe ProsThe Cons
Long Sword• Huge damage potential
• Counter is a decent defensive and offensive threat
• Whiffing counters can be very punishing for the player
• Needs precise placement to be effective
The long sword has pretty good mechanics with its counter and Swordsman Spirit bars. You can charge this bar up to pad onto the already great damage output of the weapon.   The challenge to all this is a playstyle that relies heavily on precise movements with minimal errors.

Don’t expect to be good at countering enemy attacks when you start. Note, however, that it is worth practicing because the long sword is one of the most satisfying weapons to use.
Hammer• Undisputed KO damage king
• Great gap closers
• Weapon hitbox is quite small, considering you need to hit with the head
• Poor defense
• Can’t cut enemy body parts
Hammer strategies are simple enough. You hit enemies to build up KO damage, then do raw damage when you knock the enemy down.

While the damage output is high, the hammer needs to land on a monster’s head most times to be effective. This often puts the player in a vulnerable spot. This problem is amplified because of the hammer’s poor evade animations. Nonetheless, the hammer is a great choice if you want to run through the game’s content on your own.

B-Tier (Solo)

WeaponThe ProsThe Cons
Dual Blades• Very fast attack animations
• Best dodge maneuvers out of all the weapons
• The ability to inflict status effects gives it more utility  
• Needs precise stamina management
• Extremely short range
• No defensive moves except for dodging
If you want a fast playstyle, look no further than the dual blades. As the fastest weapons on this list, they allow you to move in and out of combat quickly to chip your opponents’ health. Another great aspect of the dual blades is Demon Mode, where you charge up a meter to further boost your damage output.

The dual blades have a high skill cap, however — forcing you to manage your stamina resource every second. You have to be precise with your movement as dual blades don’t have good defensive plays to fall back on.
Switch Axe• Great damage with decent reach
• Provides good utility with several options
• Long animations make you vulnerable
• Difficult to learn and master
On paper, the Switch Axe is a straightforward weapon. You build up energy in axe mode, then unleash it all when you switch to the sword. It should be easy — but the slow animations partnered with the clunky evasive maneuvers make this a difficult weapon to work with.

On top of this, the Switch Axe’s damage output is reliant on knocking down enemies first, which is quite a task if you don’t know what you’re doing.
Insect Glaive• Aerial combat
• Easier mounting of large monsters
• Great mobility
• Low damage
• Stamina-dependent, especially during aerial combat
Nobody could argue that the insect glaive is one of the most graceful weapons in Monster Hunter World. There’s plenty of ways you can approach a battle because of its aerial mechanics. With its high maneuverability, it’s also easy to fall back and reset if you’ve made a mistake.

Even in Iceborne, the glaive does still feel a little gimmicky at times. There’s little incentive to take to the skies because of the nerfed damage. Collecting essence is also an added layer of resource management that you have to look out for.

C-Tier (Solo)

WeaponThe ProsThe Cons
Gunlance• Good damage
• Great shield
• Explosions  
• Very poor mobility
• Explosions take a huge hit on the weapon’s sharpness
This weapon sets itself apart from the lance through its explosions that can deal a ton of damage to the right monsters. It still has a good defense and proper shielding mechanics, but evasion is a chore with this thing.
Lance• Long reach
• Excellent defensive options
• Slow change of direction/dodge
• Slow attack animations
The lance is useful for those who value strategic play. It forces you to keep attacking the enemy’s weak point throughout the fight.

The lance also has several defensive options and counters that protect the player in tough fights. It’s a safe weapon, but don’t expect too much damage from it.
Bow• Good mobility for a ranged weapon  • Raw attack power lacking without exploiting elemental weaknesses
• A lot of stamina needed to perform successive shots
The bow relies on elemental coatings and trap arrows to damage opponents. The problem with the bow is that certain monsters nullify the bow’s effectiveness (yes, we’re looking at you, Elder Dragon).

D-Tier (Solo)

WeaponThe ProsThe Cons
Hunting Horn• Deals KO and Exhaust damage
• Good utility
• Slow attack speed
• Poor defensive options
• Poor damage
The horn seems like it was made with only multiplayer mode in mind. There are far more efficient weapons in a solo playthrough that you can try. Its redeeming quality for solo play is its KO damage, which racks up the longer you stay in a fight. 
Light Bowgun• Good for quickly inflicting status effects on enemies• Limited ammo
• Only decent damage
• Damage relies heavily on exploiting weak spots
Unlike its heavier counterpart, the light bowgun relies on quick pot shots to accumulate damage over time. This is a beginner-friendly weapon that makes sure the player survives each encounter.
Heavy Bowgun• Safe to use as it is ranged  • Limited ammo
• Reduces mobility  
Where light bowgun brings in mobility, this one brings in raw damage. Sadly the mobility and/or the damage of the bowguns gets negated once a fast target approaches.
Sword and Shield• Versatile weapon
• Good mobility
Low damage
Average on everything, excellent in nothing
This weapon combo severely lacks in the damage department for solo play. You can’t speed run anything while using this. Fights will always seem longer, albeit a bit safer. Multiplayer is where this weapon truly shines.

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