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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. Charge Blade - Low Rank
  41.  
  42. Charge Blade has a lot of versatility in it’s build options. You can pick up guarding skills, but Charge Blade is definitely a more offensive oriented weapon. You’ll want to pick up Artillery, and Capacity boost, and stack as much attack power and affinity as possible.
  43.  
  44. The base armor set will have to tide you over for longer than I’d like. Take out Pukei-Pukei and Barroth. You can pick up the Barroth Helm for Guard. You can also optionally pick up the Barroth Mail for Stamina Thief. This won’t be a great pickup, since you’ll only get benefit out of the Impact Phial attacks but you can pick it up if you choose.
  45.  
  46. Hunt Jyuratodus, the Jyura Greaves grant Focus, which does slightly reduce the charge times on your attacks, but it’s so marginal that it’s probably not worth picking up. Then you’ll have to hunt Tobi-Kadachi, and finally there are some reasonable offerings.
  47.  
  48. The Kadachi Helm grants Constitution. This will be comparable to guard, but have the added utility of reducing your consumption while dodging. You should also consider the Kadachi Vambraces for Evade Extender before moving on.
  49.  
  50. Anjanath is next, and has some good options. You’ll want to pick up the Anja Greaves for Artillery. This will increase the damage of your phial attacks.
  51.  
  52. Recommended Set so far:
  53. Head: Kadachi Helm OR Barroth Helm
  54. Chest: Barroth Mail OR Kulu Mail
  55. Arms: Kadachi Vambraces
  56. Waist: Jagras Coil
  57. Legs: Anja Greaves
  58.  
  59. Once you’re in the Coral Highlands you’ll have to hunt Paolumu, but you can deviate and hunt Tzitzi-Ya Ku. Tzitzi Chest grants Constitution, reducing your stamina drain while dodging, and guarding as well as giving a reasonable defense increase.
  60.  
  61. You’ll also gain access to the High Metal set in the Coral Highlands. Pick up the High Metal Coil for Capacity Boost. This will give you an extra phial to give you more attacks, or increase your burst from your Super Amped Elemental Discharge.
  62.  
  63. 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.
  64.  
  65. You can then pick up the Lumu Vambraces for a second stack of Artillery. This will boost the power of your phial attacks further when combined with the Anja Greaves.
  66.  
  67. Recommended Set so far:
  68. Head: Kadachi Helm OR Lumu Hat OR Barroth Helm
  69. Chest: Tzitzi Mail
  70. Arms: Lumu Vambraces OR Kadachi Vambraces
  71. Waist: High Metal Coil OR Lumu Coil
  72. Legs: Anja Greaves
  73.  
  74. Then head down to the Rotten Vale, and finish off Radobaan. There are some options for you here. You can pick up the Baan Coil for Guard, but you’ll be trading Capacity Boost from the High Metal Coil to do so.
  75.  
  76. Then head back to the Coral Highlands, and hunt Legiana.
  77.  
  78. Normally the Death Stench gear would be a good pickup, but you’ll be trading level 2 Artillery for Focus and Handicraft. It’s your call, but Artillery level 2 feels more impactful.
  79.  
  80. Next is Odogaron, you can pick up it’s coil for Critical Eye, but you’ll be losing the very valuable Capacity Boost from the High Metal Coil.
  81.  
  82. Then move on to hunt Rathalos and Diablos.
  83.  
  84. You’re so close to High Rank here that you may want to avoid farming and just move on. Of course this is an idealized armor guide.
  85.  
  86. Rathalos has good gear. Pick up Rathalos Helm for attack up. Then build the Mail for Weakness Exploit giving you a massive affinity bonus while attacking weak points.
  87.  
  88. The 3 piece bonus of Critical Element can be won’t be useful if you’re using a Raw Charge Blade. It can be a reasonable pickup if you’re using an elemental Charge Blade. You’ll have to choose to give up your hand or leg armor, neither of which are great options.
  89.  
  90. Recommended Set so far:
  91. Rathalos Helm
  92. Rathalos Chest
  93. Lumu Vambraces OR Rathalos Vambraces (unlocks Critical Element)
  94. High Metal Coil
  95. Anja Greaves OR Death Stench Heel
  96.  
  97. Build these pieces if you want, but it’s time to move onto High Rank.
  98.  
  99. High Rank
  100.  
  101. High Rank finally introduces to us some options.
  102.  
  103. 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.
  104.  
  105. 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. The same goes for Charms, and this armor guide is Charmless. Go ahead and pick up whatever charms you see fit. Attack, Handicraft, or Artillery will be good pickups.
  106.  
  107. The Kulu Headpiece Alpha should be picked up immediately for a second stack of Weakness Exploit. It’s an easy build that represents a strong damage spike. As an alternative, if you like Guard, you can pick up the Barroth Helm Alpha.
  108.  
  109. Since your Super Amped Elemental Discharge, and other phial attacks cannot critically hit, you may want to consider the Bone Mail Alpha over the low rank Rathalos Chest. This will give you more damage on your SAED and other phial attacks, but you will lose out on the critical hits of all your non-phial attacks. It’s your call.
  110.  
  111. For gloves, you can pick up the Bone Vambraces Alpha for Slugger and Attack.
  112.  
  113. Then you’ll want to hunt Anjanath. Pick up the Anja Coil Alpha and the Anja Greaves Alpha for maxed out Artillery. You’ll also gain the 2 piece Anjanath set bonus of Adrenaline as a bit of a bonus. It’s not a great pickup, but may be able to save you in a pinch. You will lose capacity boost, but you’ll have an opportunity to regain it shortly.
  114.  
  115. That should make you adequately prepared to take on the higher tier monsters of High Rank.
  116.  
  117. Recommended Set so far:
  118. Kulu Headpiece Alpha
  119. Low Rank Rathalos Chest OR Bone Mail Alpha
  120. Bone Vambraces Alpha
  121. Anja Coil Alpha OR Low Rank High Metal Coil
  122. Anja Greaves Alpha
  123.  
  124. You’ll now have access to the Elder’s Recess and can hunt Dodogama. This opens up your Capacity Boost and Artillery options further.
  125.  
  126. You can pick up the Dodogama Coil and Dodogama Greaves to regain Capacity Boost and level 2 Artillery as well as high rank defenses. You’ll lose one stack of Artillery, but the extra phial will be worthwhile here.
  127.  
  128. If you’ve upgraded the Anja Greaves, you can pick up the High Metal Coil Alpha for Capacity Boost and Defense Boost. Anja Greaves with High Metal Coil and Dodogama Greaves with Dodogama Coil will yield the same skills, and similar defenses. It’s you call what you prefer. The High Metal Coil will provide Defense boost as a bonus if you have no decorations so consider that.
  129.  
  130. Now move onto Rathalos.,
  131.  
  132. The two piece Rathalos set is Critical Element which will represent a reasonable damage upgrade for Elemental Charge Blades. Even with a raw charge blade, you’ll pick it up regardless, since the Helmet and Chest are so good.
  133.  
  134. You’ll want to pick up the Rathalos Helm Beta for Attack Up. Then the Rathalos Mail Beta for level 2 Weakness Exploit.
  135.  
  136. The Rathalos Vambraces Alpha have Attack and Fire Attack. If you’re using an Impact Phial Charge Blade then you’re better off with the Bone Vambraces Alpha for slugger, since it can actually help a bit.
  137.  
  138. Recommended Set so far:
  139. Rathalos Helm Beta
  140. Rathalos Mail Beta (unlocks Critical Element, which you probably won’t use)
  141. Bone Vambraces Alpha
  142. Dodogama Coil Beta
  143. Dodogama Greaves Alpha
  144.  
  145. Alternative 1: Use this if you upgraded your Anja Greaves, and have no Decorations.
  146. Rathalos Helm Beta
  147. Rathalos Mail Beta
  148. Bone Vambraces Alpha
  149. High Metal Coil Alpha OR Beta
  150. Anja Greaves Alpha
  151.  
  152. Alternative 2: This finishes off weakness exploit, but you lose Attack and Slugger from Bone Vambraces to maintain Artillery 2.
  153. Rathalos Helm Beta
  154. Rathalos Mail Beta
  155. Lumu Vambraces Alpha
  156. High Metal Coil
  157. Rathalos Greaves Alpha
  158.  
  159. This sets will be adequate for everything else in the game. Everything after this is just a matter of customization and preference once you get access to better charms and decorations.
  160.  
  161. The Elder Dragon sets are usually safe bets, but won’t necessarily be better or worse than this, just different.
  162.  
  163. Nergigante’s set is a great general purpose set. It has Maximum Might which gives you a 30% affinity increase while at maximum stamina. Maximum Might works really well on Charge Blade, but you won’t be able to utilize it for a short time after dodging or blocking It’s a very consistent affinity increase on all monster parts, not just their weakpoints. It also has Agitator, which has a very high up time of increased attack and affinity. Then it has attack and stamina surge to round it out. It’s a good general purpose set that’s easy to build.
  164.  
  165. Nergigante’s Dragonking Eyepatch has Weakness Exploit 2 and a tier-3 decoration slot, making it an excellent pick up.
  166.  
  167. You’ll be able to build the Dober gear with Elder Dragon Bones and Blood after Nergigante. Pick up the Dober Mail Beta, and the Dober Greaves Beta for more attack up options.
  168.  
  169. Teostra’s vambraces beta are a great pickup and tie nicely with the Dragon King Eyepatch to max out weakness exploit, while providing some very valuable decoration slots.
  170.  
  171. Vaal Hazak’s gear isn’t the best, but the materials can be used for the Death Stench set. You can use the Death Stench Heels Beta for Handicraft
  172.  
  173. Your final build will ideally incorporate Capacity Boost, and level 3 artillery, with as much Handicraft, and damage boosting skills as you can muster. Once you get access to a Capacity Boost decoration, and 3 Artillery decorations and or a level 3 Artillery Charm you open up your gear options significantly.
  174.  
  175. Your final build may look something like this, but keep in mind, you’ll have to adjust based on your own luck with Decorations and Charm materials. You’ll definitely want to incorporate a protective polish decoration, and non-elemental boost decorations for Raw Charge Blades.
  176.  
  177. Dragon King Eyepatch
  178. Dober Mail Beta
  179. Teostra Vambraces Beta
  180. Nergigante Coil Beta
  181. Death Stench Heel Beta
  182.  
  183. Artillery Charm - 3
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