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  1. Introduction
  2.  
  3. When it comes to Armor in Monster Hunter, defenses and resistances are nice, but what you really want are the armor skills.
  4.  
  5. This guide series is going to focus on a progression path you can easily follow for a reasonable build to get you through low rank, and high rank. In Low Rank, progression is fairly linear, and there isn’t a lot of need to deviate. High Rank is much more open ended, and will have many more options for you to explore.
  6.  
  7. High Rank builds will focus on decorationless and charmless setups as those require rare materials, and a lot of luck for decorations. You will have to make a choice between Alpha and Beta gear. Alpha gear has more skills, but sometimes has skills that aren’t particularly useful on them. The beta versions usually give up skills for decoration slots. If you don’t have decorations, the alpha sets are always better. If you have powerful decorations, the beta pieces are usually the superior option as it will allow for further customization.
  8.  
  9. These builds are reasonably effective and will be sufficient for getting through the game. You may have skills that you favor on certain weapons that aren’t listed, and you should experiment to learn your playstyle.
  10.  
  11. Basic Armor Setup - All Weapons.
  12.  
  13. Your default armor is terrible, and you’ll want to upgrade it right away.
  14.  
  15. The easiest thing you can do is just build the entire bone set. This will mostly be beneficial for the headpieces Health Boost, granting you +15 Maximum HP, and the Bone Chests Attack Up, granting you +3 attack power.
  16.  
  17. The remaining bone pieces will benefit certain weapon types, and not others. The gloves will give Slugger, which is good for blunt weapons like Hammer, Hunting Horn, phial attacks from the Charge Blade and Switch Axe.
  18.  
  19. Bone Coil is only for Hunting Horn, but it will extend the length of your songs. The Bone Greaves grant entomologist, which helps prevent you from destroying vespoids and hornetaurs so you can carve them.
  20.  
  21. Regardless of skills, this set is extremely easy to build, and represents a good armor value spike that you should take starting out.
  22.  
  23. Early on you’ll be given an Assignment to hunt Kestodons. After carving some, you’ll unlock the ability to build Kestodon gloves. Build these for Affinity Sliding, which gives you a temporary boost to your critical hit rate after sliding for a short period of time. They also have a strong defense boost over the Bone gauntlets, and should be picked up for most of the weapon types.
  24.  
  25. This set will be enough to tide you over until you hunt Great Jagras. Afterwards, you’ll want to look into picking up the Jagras Coil. This provides Fortify, which gives you an attack and defense bonus if your HP reaches 0 and you’re carted back to camp.
  26.  
  27. Fortify is a nice bonus for new players, and even veterans will cart occasionally. It’s a good pickup for all weapon types.
  28.  
  29. Then you’ll have to hunt Kulu Ya Ku. You’ll want to build both it’s Kulu Mail Chest armor, and the Kulu Greaves leg armor. The chest grants Stamina Surge, which increases your stamina recovery rate. This is excellent as a skill for every weapon type, but certain weapons will benefit much more from it. The Kulu Greaves grant Critical Eye, which increases your affinity, or critical hit rate, by 3%. This isn’t huge, but going from 0 to 3% affinity will allow you to actually perform critical hits, and will be a significant damage increase.
  30.  
  31. This will be an acceptable set of baseline armor for the next mandatory fights. From here on though, things will be handled on a weapon by weapon basis.
  32.  
  33. Armor so far:
  34. Bone Helm
  35. Kulu Chest
  36. Kestodon Gloves
  37. Jagras Waist
  38. Kulu Greaves
  39.  
  40. Bow - Low Rank
  41.  
  42. There are really two ways to use a Bow, but they won’t really emerge until High Rank. One is Critical Element Bow and other is spamming Dragon Piercer. Elemental Bow really wants constitution since every bow shot uses stamina. Dragon Piercer spamming wants things like Critical Draw and Focus. Through Low Rank you’ll be using a mix of both of these styles. Bow shots all use stamina, so our main goals through low rank is to focus on stamina management before the more specialized skills become available. The main skills for this guide will be Constitution, and Stamina Surge, until more desirable skills emerge in high rank.
  43.  
  44. The base armor set will have to tide you over to take on Pukei-Pukei and Barroth.
  45.  
  46. Barroth’s gloves grant Marathon Runner. This is a stamina management skill that bow can use, but it isn’t the best option. It will reduce your stamina drain as you charge your bow and there isn’t anything else available right now, so make sure to pick these up.
  47.  
  48. After hunting Jyuratodus there’s an upgrade you should take take. Jyuratodus’ Greaves grant Focus. Focus decreases the amount of time required to charge your Bow, as well as your Dragon Piercer.
  49.  
  50. Then you’ll have to hunt Tobi-Kadachi.
  51.  
  52. The Kadachi Helm grants Constitution. It will reduce the amount of stamina both your bow shots, and dodging will consume. This should be considered a must build for Bow, and you want to stack as much constitution as possible. If you’re using the Kadachi Bow, also pick up the Kadachi Coil for the bonus to Thunder attack.
  53.  
  54. Anjanath is next. This will be optional depending on your playstyle, but you can pick up a few upgrades. The Anja chest grants Marathon Runner. This will be a nice pickup, if you like to run around charging your bow, but you will get a chest that gives constitution very soon. You can also upgrade your gloves to the Anja Gloves for Special Ammo boost, which will increase your Dragon Piercer’s damage by 10%. This is probably worth picking up over Marathon Runner.
  55.  
  56. Set so far:
  57. Head: Kadachi Helm
  58. Chest: Anja Chest or Kulu Chest
  59. Arms: Barroth Vambraces or Anja Vambraces
  60. Waist: Kadachi Coil or Jagras Coil
  61. Legs: Jyuratodus
  62.  
  63. Once you’re in the Coral Highlands you’ll have to hunt Paolumu, but you should deviate and hunt Tzitzi-Ya Ku. Tzitzi Chest grants constitution. This should be considered a must build.
  64.  
  65. Then hunt Paolumu as part of the story. You can switch the Kadachi Helm for Paolumu’s hat to trade Constitution for Stamina Surge. Both will have similar performance, but the Lumu Hat will have superior defenses.
  66.  
  67. Set so far:
  68. Head: Kadachi Helm or Lumu Hat
  69. Chest: Tzitzi Chest
  70. Arms: Anja Vambraces
  71. Waist: Kadachi or Lumu
  72. Legs: Jyuratodus
  73.  
  74. Head down to the Rotten Vale, finish off Radobaan, then Legiana. Neither of these monsters have much offerings for us.
  75.  
  76. Next is Odogaron, and it’s set is reasonable. The 3 piece set bonus of Punishing Draw can actually be utilized reasonably on Bow with the Dragon Piercer style. You won’t have to sacrifice much to get it. The best pieces are the Gloves for Constitution, which should be picked up regardless of if you pick up the other pieces. Then pick up the Odogaron Coil for Critical Eye, which again, should be mandatory for both styles,  and finally, the boots for Quick Sheathe. There is a bit of anti-synergy because you’ll want to use Punishing Draw Dragon Piercer and you’ll lose the 10% from Anja Gloves, but you’ll lose too much by dropping the Lumu hat or Tzitzi Chest.
  77.  
  78. Armor so far:
  79. Lumu Hat
  80. Tzitzi Chest
  81. Odogaron Gloves
  82. Odogaron Waist
  83. Odogaron Greaves (grants punishing draw)
  84.  
  85. Afterwards you’ll want to hunt Rathalos and Diablos. Both of these monsters have great upgrades, but you are so close to high rank you may want to skip them as High Rank armor is universally better. Of course, this is an idealized armor guide. You’ll finally be able to get the two different styles of bow skills here.
  86.  
  87. Rathalos Chest is the most desired for Weakness Exploit. It does require a plate, but will be used for a huge chunk of High Rank because Weakness exploit is that good. You may also want to consider the 3 piece Rathalos set for Critical Element. It’s a nice pickup but the rest of the Rathalos gear isn’t fantastic. You’ll want to grab the boots, and head, and tie the rest with Odogaron gear for more critical eye, and some constitution.
  88.  
  89. Critical Element Set:
  90. Rathalos Helm
  91. Rathalos Chest
  92. Odogaron Gloves
  93. Odogaron Waist
  94. Rathalos Greaves (Grants Critical Element)
  95.  
  96. Attack - 1
  97. Weakness Exploit - 1
  98. Constitution - 1
  99. Critical Eye - 1
  100. Jump Master - 1
  101. 3 piece Rathalos set = Critical Element
  102.  
  103.  
  104. You’ll want to pick up the Diablos Helm for Critical Draw. This has nice synergy with the Odogaron set for Critical Punishing Draw Dragon Piercers, say that 3 times fast. It’s a fun playstyle that’s easy to use and moderately effective, and can be a good baseline to use if you’re struggling against monsters. This style only works really well on large monsters, so avoid trying it on things like Pukei-Pukei and Kulu Ya Ku.
  105.  
  106. Keep in mind, Dragonpiercers will often be hitting non-weakpoint areas of monsters, so Weakness Exploit isn’t your strongest bet here. Critical Draw will outperform Weakness Exploit with this style.
  107.  
  108. But pick up the Rathalos Chest for Weakness Exploit anyways, since there will be some overlap until you can max out Critical Draw.
  109.  
  110. Draw-style Set.
  111. Diablos Helm
  112. Rathalos Chest
  113. Odogaron Gloves
  114. Odogaron Waist
  115. Odogaron Greaves
  116.  
  117. Weakness Exploit - 1
  118. Critical Draw - 1
  119. Constitution - 1
  120. Critical Eye - 1
  121. Quick Sheathe - 1
  122. 3 piece Odogaron set = Punishing Draw.
  123.  
  124. Build these sets if you want, but it’s time to move onto High Rank.
  125.  
  126. High Rank
  127.  
  128. High Rank finally introduces to us some options.
  129.  
  130. There’s a lot of upgrades available now, and you can immediately go and hunt high rank versions of everything in Low Rank. The easy answer is that anything that worked for you in Low Rank will work here while providing additional skills and high rank defenses.
  131.  
  132. This guide assumes you have no useful decorations, as such the Beta gear is simply worse than the Alpha Gear as it loses skills for decoration slots. If you have decorations, consider the beta versions of some pieces, otherwise, stick with Alpha.
  133.  
  134. If you’re using the Critical Element style of bow which is the recommended style, consider getting the Elemental Damage decorations specific for your bows. Ice for Legiana’s Bow, Thunder for Tobi-Kadachi’s bow, and Fire for the Anjanath Bow. These can be bought from the Melder.
  135.  
  136. The same goes for Charms, and this armor guide is Charmless. Go ahead and pick up whatever charms you see fit, like Attack, or Constitution (Fitness Charm). Constitution is insanely hard to stack high in Monster Hunter World, so the Fitness Charm, which gives constitution, is most definitely recommended.
  137.  
  138. Unfortunately, you’re going to have to lose all your set bonuses, and kind of start back from square one. Depending on your preferred style, you have some options.
  139.  
  140. The Kulu Headpiece Alpha is usually the go-to but it’s not so black and white here. If you’re using the Dragonpiercer style, then critical draw’s +30% affinity from the Diablos helm will beat out the +15% from Weakness Exploit on the Kulu Headpiece Alpha. If you’re using the Elemental Bow style, then pick this up, even though you’ll lose the 3 piece Rathalos set bonus.
  141.  
  142. Then you’ll want to hunt Tobi Kadachi. The Kadachi Helm has 2 stacks of constitution, but you’ll lose out on Weakness Exploit. It’s your call, 2 stacks of Constitution may be worth losing Weakness Exploit based on your playstyle. Then pick up the Kadachi Greaves Alpha for pretty worthless thunder resistance, and some very valuable constitution. There isn’t a lot of options for waist armor at this point, so also pick up the Kadachi Coil if you’re using the Kadachi Strikebow, but you can also stick with the Low Rank Odogaron Coil.
  143.  
  144. Elemental Bow Style:
  145. Kulu Headpiece Alpha
  146. Low Rank Rathalos Chest
  147. Low Rank Odogaron Gloves
  148. Kadachi Coil Alpha OR Low Rank Odogaron Coil
  149. Kadachi Greaves Alpha
  150.  
  151. For Dragonpiercer style, you’ll want to pick up the Anjanath Chest Alpha, which will give you special ammo boost and marathon runnner. Then pick up the Anja Vambraces Alpha or Beta for a second stack of Special Ammo boost, and fire attack or a slot. You’ll also want to pick up Jyuratodus’ greaves for 2 stacks of Focus.
  152.  
  153. You can pick up the King Beetle Coil Alpha for Quick Sheathe, which will make it faster to get back and ready to use the Critical Draw Dragonpiercer.
  154.  
  155. Dragonpiercer Style:
  156. Diablos Helm (Low Rank)
  157. Anja Chest Alpha
  158. Anja Vambraces Alpha
  159. King Beetle Alpha
  160. Jyura Greaves Alpha
  161.  
  162. That should make you adequately prepared to take on the higher tier monsters of High Rank.
  163.  
  164. Odogaron’s set is a reasonable choice. Punishing Draw now only requires 2 pieces. There are good pickups for both styles. Pick up the gloves alpha for critical eye and constitution. Pick up the waist beta for Critical Eye and a decoration slot, since you won’t be using speed sharpening on a bow.
  165.  
  166. For the Dragonpiercer style, we want to keep the Anja gloves for now, so we can maintain Special Ammo boost, so trade the Jyuratodus’ greaves Focus for Odogaron’s Quick Sheathe and Critical Eye.
  167.  
  168. Then you’ll want to hunt either Lavasioth, or Black Diablos to pick up the boots. Lavasioth has an upgrade to Power Shots, which are the spread arrows. Diablos Nero Greaves are a bonus to Normal Shots. In an ideal world, you’d be able to pick up both, and eventually you will through decorations, but you’ll have to make a judgement call here, pick one, and stick with it.
  169.  
  170. Set so far:
  171. Elemental Bow Style:
  172. Kulu Headpiece Alpha or Kadachi Helm Alpha (Weakness Exploit vs. Constitution)
  173. Low Rank Rathalos Chest
  174. Odogaron Gloves Alpha
  175. Odogaron Waist Alpha (unlocks Punishing Draw)
  176. Lavasioth Greaves Alpha OR Diablos Nero Greaves Alpha (Power Shots vs. Normal Shots)
  177.  
  178. Dragonpiercer Style:
  179. Diablos Helm (Low Rank)
  180. Anja Chest Alpha
  181. Anja Gloves Alpha
  182. Odogaron Coil Beta
  183. Odogaron Greaves Alpha (unlocks Punishing Draw)
  184.  
  185. The next big set is the Rathalos Set. Rathalos has 2 great set bonuses for Bow which are Critical Element, and Ballistics. Ballistics can be a nice pickup, but you give up a lot to get it. You’ll be able to stand closer to monsters before arrows reach their sweet spot damage, which could be extremely valuable based on your playstyle and other choices.
  186.  
  187. This set is not easy to build, and the ideal setup requires multiple gems, but it will be a great set for the remainder of the game.
  188.  
  189. The two piece set is extremely easy to get. Pick up the Mail Beta. The alpha set has Fire Attack, which is only useful if you’re using the Anjanath bow, and the slot is more valuable because you can customize the elemental damage on it. Then upgrade your head piece to the Rathalos Helm Beta for attack level 2, and unlocking Critical Element.
  190.  
  191. Recommended Elemental Bow Set at this point:
  192. Rathalos Helm Beta
  193. Rathalos Mail Beta (Unlocks Critical Element)
  194. Odogaron Gloves Alpha
  195. Odogaron Waist Beta (unlocks Punishing Draw)
  196. Lavasioth Alpha or Diablos Nero Alpha
  197.  
  198. If you’re using the Dragon Piercer style:
  199.  
  200. You can now reasonably hunt Diablos and Black Diablos. You’ll want to pick up the Diablos Helm Beta for Critical Draw. You’ll also want to hunt Legiana for it’s Greaves Alpha for a third and final stack of Critical Draw, giving you 100% affinity on Draw attacks.
  201.  
  202. Legiana’s 4 Piece set bonus is extremely powerful for Elemental Crit Bow, but it isn’t worth losing Critical Element, and Weakness Exploit to get. You can get Mighty Bow via a decoration later down the line, and should incorporate it into this set once you do.
  203.  
  204. With this you will be extremely well prepared to take on the remaining Monsters in the game.
  205.  
  206. You can hunt Azure Rathalos to upgrade further.
  207.  
  208. If you’re using the Draw Attack style, you’ll want to pick up Azure Rathalos’ Waist for Piercing Shots, which will upgrade the damage on your dragon piercer. It will be worth losing Punishing Draw from the Odogaron Coil for this bonus.
  209.  
  210. You can also optionally build the Azure Rathalos Helm Beta for elemental bow. It’s your call, you’ll be trading attack 2 for extra critical damage and 1 extra slot.
  211.  
  212. Recommended Set at this point:
  213. Elemental Bow Set:
  214. Azure Rathalos Helm Beta OR Rathalos Helm Beta
  215. Rathalos Mail Beta (unlocks Critical Element)
  216. Odogaron Gloves Alpha
  217. Odogaron Coil Beta (unlocks Punishing Draw)
  218. Diablos Nero Greaves Alpha or Lavasioth Greaves Beta
  219.  
  220. Critical Draw Dragonpiercer Style:
  221. Diablos Helm Beta
  222. Anja Chest Alpha
  223. Anja Gloves Alpha
  224. Azure Rathalos Waist Alpha
  225. Legiana Greaves Alpha
  226.  
  227. This set will be adequate for everything else in the game. Everything after this is just a matter of customization and preference.
  228.  
  229. The Elder Dragon sets are usually safe bets, but won’t necessarily be better or worse than this, just different.
  230.  
  231. Nergigante’s Dragonking Eyepatch has Weakness Exploit 2 and a tier-3 decoration slot, making it a good pickup. If you get a Tenderizer Decoration you can get Weakness Exploit 3 on one armor slot which is great. The Nergigante Coil Alpha or Beta is also a great pickup for Elemental Bow.
  232.  
  233. If you’re using the Dragon Piercer style, the Kaiser Mail beta is something you should definitely look at picking up as it gives you maxed out Special Ammo Boost on one piece of gear.
  234.  
  235. The Kaiser Vambraces Beta also give 1 point of Weakness Exploit which when tied with the Rathalos Mail Beta will max it out.
  236.  
  237. Bazelgeuse’ Vambraces Beta and Greaves Alpha or Beta will give you more Critical Draw options as well.
  238.  
  239. Your final builds will probably look something like this. Now it’s only a matter of getting better decorations and charms. You’ll want to get a Normal Shots, and Power Shots decoration to compliment your boot choice. You’ll also want to get Critical Boost decorations. Getting a fitness charm to level 3 will also give you minimized stamina drain when combined with Dash Juices making it a great supplement to the set.
  240.  
  241. Elemental Bow set:
  242. Azure Rathalos Head Beta OR Rathalos Helm Beta (-1 level 1 slot if using Red Rath Helm)
  243. Rathalos Mail Beta (unlocks Critical Element)
  244. Kaiser Vambraces Beta
  245. Nergigante Coil Alpha OR Beta
  246. Diablos Nero Greaves Beta OR Lavasioth Greaves Beta (Normal Shots vs. Spread Shots)
  247.  
  248. Critical Boost 1 vs. Attack 2
  249. Weakness Exploit - 3
  250. Attack - 2
  251. Stamina Surge - 1 (or a level 2 slot)
  252. Power Shots - 1 vs. Normal Shots - 1
  253.  
  254. 3 level 1 slots
  255. 1 level 2 slots (or 2, if using NERG Coil Beta)
  256. 1 level 3 slot
  257.  
  258. Dragonpiercer Style:
  259. Rath Soul Helm Beta OR Rath Helm Beta
  260. Teostra Chest Beta
  261. Bazel Vambraces Beta
  262. Azure Rathalos Waist Alpha (unlocks Critical Element, but you should be using the Diablos Bow, which has no elemental damage)
  263. Bazel Greaves Alpha OR Legiana Greaves Alpha
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