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  1. Introduction
  2.  
  3. When it comes to Armor, defenses and resistances are nice, but what you really want are the armor skills. Each weapon type favors certain 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 decoration 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. 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. 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 Sticky Ammo from bow guns. You should skip these as they require Kestodon Shells, and you should save those for the Kestodon gloves. 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.
  14.  
  15. Regardless of skills, this set is extremely easy to build, and represents a good armor value spike that you should take starting out.
  16.  
  17. 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 all the weapon types.
  18.  
  19. 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. Fortify is a nice bonus for new players, and even veterans will cart occasionally. It’s a good pickup for all weapon types.
  20.  
  21. After Great Jagras, 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.
  22.  
  23. 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.
  24.  
  25. Gun Lance - Low Rank
  26.  
  27. Gun Lance has a few play styles.
  28.  
  29. The easiest to use is the Burst Fire Combo, and the easiest way to up your damage numbers is through skills like Artillery. Guard may seem extremely useful for Gun Lance, but it’s actually not the best. You can pick up some Guard along the way, but it’s usually better to reposition rather than Guard, so Evade Extender is favored. The favored skills for this guide are Artillery, Capacity Boost, and Evade Extender.
  30.  
  31. The base armor set will have to tide you over to take on Pukei-Pukei and Barroth. Unfortunately, there’s not a lot of Gun Lance specific gear for awhile. The Barroth Head grants Guard. Guard isn’t the most useful skill for Gun Lance, but it will be a more useful option over the Bone Helm’s +15 HP.
  32.  
  33. Then you’ll have to hunt Jyuratodus, and then Tobi-Kadachi.
  34.  
  35. There are a few upgrades you can pick up from Tobi-Kadachi. The Kadachi Helm gives the skill Constitution. This reduces your stamina drain while dodging and guarding. The Kadachi Gloves grant Evade Extender. Evade Extender is great for Gun Lance as it will allow you to close distances easier to monsters, and reposition more quickly. It’s a nice skill, especially when combined with Constitution for reduced stamina consumption while dodging. It’s your call whether you prefer Guard, or Constitution on the head slot, but I believe Constitution is the better pick.
  36.  
  37. Ideal Set:
  38. Head: Kadachi Helm
  39. Chest: Kulu Chest
  40. Hands: Kadachi Gloves
  41. Waist: Jagras
  42. Legs: Kulu
  43.  
  44. Your next hunt is Anjanath. Anjanath’s Boots grant Artillery, and this should be considered a must build. Your shells can’t crit from affinity so losing the Kulu boots isnt a huge deal. You’ll get a power spike on your burst fire and reduced cooldown on Wyvern Fire. Pick these up as soon as possible.
  45.  
  46. After you’re in the Coral Highlands you’ll have to hunt Paolumu as part of the story, but you can deviate.
  47.  
  48. There are a lot of good upgrades here for Gun Lance. You should mine for Dragonite Ore as soon as possible to build the High Metal Coil. This gives you Capacity Boost, increasing your number of Shells by 1, and it has excellent synergy with Artillery. This should be considered a must build.
  49.  
  50. Then you should hunt Tzitzi-Ya Ku and pick up it’s Chest armor for Constitution. You can also build the King Beetle Chest for Quick Sheathe if you prefer, but Constitution is probably the better pickup.
  51.  
  52. Now hunt Paolumu, and you’ll want some of it’s gear.
  53.  
  54. If you swap out the Kadachi Hat for Paolumu’s Hat. You’re trading Constitution for Stamina Surge, it’s a toss up, but Paolumu’s hat will have better natural defense. You’ll also want to replace Tobi’s gloves for Paolumu’s Gloves as they grant Artillery. This will give you level 2 Artillery.
  55.  
  56. This current set will be more than adequate for taking on the rest of Low Rank.
  57.  
  58. Ideal Set:
  59. Head: Lumu Hat OR Kadachi Hat
  60. Chest: Tzitzi Chest
  61. Hands: Lumu Gloves
  62. Waist: High Metal Coil
  63. Legs: Anjanath
  64.  
  65. Hunt Legiana, and Odogaron, followed by Rathalos and Diablos.
  66.  
  67. Rathalos Chest is a great option for Weakness Exploit, but requires a plate. It’s a nice pickup, but since your shells can’t critical, and you’re so close to high rank at this point that it’s probably not worth farming.
  68.  
  69. Rathalos’ Head Gear is also a reasonable option, but again, we have more choices in High Rank.
  70.  
  71. Ideal Set:
  72. Head: Rathalos
  73. Chest: Rathalos
  74. Arms: Lumu
  75. Waist: High Metal
  76. Boots: Anjanath
  77.  
  78. Build these if you want, but it’s time to move onto High Rank
  79.  
  80. High Rank
  81.  
  82. High Rank finally introduces to us some options.
  83.  
  84. 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.
  85.  
  86. 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.
  87.  
  88. The big upgrades will be to upgrade your headgear to the Kulu Headpiece Alpha. This gives Fire Resistance, and Weakness Exploit, one of the best skills in the game. It’s an easy build, and should be your first priority.
  89.  
  90.  
  91. There are a ton of options for Artillery in High Rank. You’ll want to stack to 3 as soon as possible. There are really 2 reasonable build options for you here, Paolumu Style, and Anja style.
  92.  
  93. For Paolumu style:
  94. Start by hunting Hornetaurs in the Rotten Vale to build the Hornetaur Greaves. Consider the Beta set for the socket, as you won’t be able to reasonably utilize the Alpha’s dragon attack until after Nergigante.
  95.  
  96. Next hunt Paolumu and build it’s Vambraces and it’s chest.
  97.  
  98. This is what the Paolumu set will look liked
  99. Paolumu Set:
  100. Head: Kulu Head Alpha
  101. Chest: Paolumu Chest Alpha
  102. Hands: Paolumu Gloves Alpha
  103. Waist: High Metal Coil (low rank)
  104. Legs: Hornetaur Greaves Alpha or Beta
  105.  
  106. If you want to hunt Anjanath, you can pair it’s set with Tobi Kadachi’s for maxed out Evade Extender.
  107.  
  108. You can hunt Tobi Kadachi in High Rank for the Kadachi Gloves, which grant 2 stacks of Evade Extender, as well as the chest, which will max out Evade Extender.
  109.  
  110. Then hunt Anjanath to build it’s boots for 2 stacks of Artillery. You now have a choice to make, you can max out artillery by upgrading your coil to the Anja Coil Alpha, but you’ll lose Capacity Boost. Capacity Boost adds a lot of burst damage so it’s probably worth hanging onto. You’ll be able to regain it later. That being said, you’ll get the 2 Piece Anjanath set bonus of Adrenaline. Adrenaline isn’t a great skill, but it can save you in a pinch if you’re cornered and forced to block a combo since it negates stamina depletion while under 40% health.
  111.  
  112. Anja Style:
  113. Kadachi/Anjanath Mixed Set
  114. Head: Kulu Head Alpha
  115. Chest: Kadachi Chest Alpha
  116. Hands: Kadachi Gloves Alpha
  117. Waist: Anja Coil Alpha OR High Metal Coil (Low Rank)
  118. Legs: Anja Greaves Alpha
  119.  
  120. With this you’ll lose out on Capacity Boost, but a ton of fire resistance, max Evade Extender, Adrenaline, and higher defenses. This would be my recommended path.
  121.  
  122. These sets will be great options for taking out the Pink Rathian, and other medium tier High Rank Monsters.
  123.  
  124. If you don’t like the Kulu Head Alpha on the Lumu style,  you can pick up the Rath Heart Helm Alpha for Evade Extender and Poison Attack, which will have reasonable synergy with the Pink Rathian’s Rose Burst Gun Lance. Unfortunately, losing out on Weakness Exploit is a tough sell.
  125.  
  126. After reaching the Elder’s Recess you can hunt Dodogama for more artillery options. The boots grant Capacity boost, and the Coil gives Artillery 2. You can also build a High Metal Coil Alpha for Capacity Boost as well, it requires Fucium Ore from the Elder’s Recess.
  127.  
  128. If you’re using the Lumu style, swap your waist armor for the Pink Rathian Coil, and your boots for the Dodogama boots and you’ll maintain the same skills, but gain high rank defenses, and poison resistance.
  129.  
  130. If you’re using the Anja style, upgrade your waist and legs to Dodogama’s set to lose 1 artillery for capacity boost. Unfortunately you’ll also lose Adrenaline, but it’s not the end of the world.
  131.  
  132. Lumu Set so far:
  133. Head: Kulu Head Alpha OR Pink Rathian Head Alpha
  134. Chest: Paolumu Chest Alpha
  135. Hands: Paolumu Gloves Alpha
  136. Waist: Pink Rathian Alpha
  137. Legs: Dodogama Beta (only use Alpha if you have a blast weapon)
  138.  
  139. Anja > Dodogama/Tobi mix set
  140. Head: Kulu Head Alpha
  141. Chest: Kadachi Chest Alpha
  142. Hands: Kadachi Gloves Alpha
  143. Waist: Dodogama Coil Alpha
  144. Legs: Dodogama Coil Beta (only use Beta if you have a blast weapon)
  145.  
  146. You have another option but you’ll lose a lot of damage and utility for the ability to not lose sharpness. If you’re struggling with your sharpness, hunt Odogaron to build it’s set. You’ll want to build the Head, Chest, Arms and boots for the 4 piece bonus of Protective Polish. Protective Polish prevents your weapons sharpness from degrading for 1 minute after sharpening. It’s a great skill, but you lose a lot to get it at this point. If you go for this, pair it with Dodogama’s Coil to maintain some artillery.
  147.  
  148. Protective Polish Set:
  149. Head: Odogaron Alpha
  150. Chest: Odogaron Alpha
  151. Hands: Odogaron Alpha
  152. Waist: Dodogama Alpha
  153. Legs: Odogaron Alpha
  154.  
  155. Protective Polish Set 2:
  156. Head: Odogaron Alpha
  157. Chest: Rathalos Mail Beta
  158. Hands: Odogaron Alpha
  159. Waist: Odogaron Alpha
  160. Legs: Odogaron Alpha
  161. (Lose Artillery 2 for Weakness Exploit 2)
  162.  
  163. If you’re using the other sets, hunt Rathalos to pick up the Rathalos Mail Beta for Weakness Exploit, you’ll lose some evade extender, or Artillery, but the 2 points of weakness exploit and a decoration slot will be well worth it.
  164.  
  165. Ideal Set:
  166. Kulu Headpeice Alpha OR Pink Rathian Head Alpha
  167. Rathalos Mail Beta
  168. Kadachi Gloves Alpha
  169. Dodogama Coil Alpha OR Anja Coil Alpha
  170. Dodogama Greaves Alpha OR Anja Greaves Alpha (if you want Adrenaline and Fire Resistance at the expense of Capacity boost)
  171.  
  172. This will have to tide you over until you’ve beaten the Elder Dragons. There isn’t a lot of Gun Lance specific equipment here. The Elder Dragon’s sets aren’t necessarily better or worse than this set, just different.
  173.  
  174. Again, Nergigante’s Dragon King Eye Patch is a safe pick up for Weakness Exploit 2 and a Tier 3 Decoration slot.
  175.  
  176. After Teostra you can actually upgrade to the third tier of the Artillery Charm. This guide is meant to be Charm and Decorationless, but you will be severely limited in your build options until you can get alternative sources of Artillery and Capacity Boost through Decorations or Charms. The easiest way to achieve that is through the Artillery Charm.
  177.  
  178. You will need a Teostra Gem, and an Anjanath Gem to upgrade the Artillery Charm to level 3, but it will give you a lot of options.
  179.  
  180. This will be an easy way to free up your gloves, waist and boot options for superior equipment and get some much needed handicraft.
  181.  
  182. The next interesting gear mostly comes from Kushala Daora for Handicraft.
  183.  
  184. You should look out for the Kushala Crus Alpha for boots which gives us extremely valuable handicraft as well as evade extender, the Chest Beta for Handicraft and a slot, since Focus is worthless for Gun Lance. Then it’s just a matter of filling things in as you go.
  185.  
  186. End game stuff might look like:
  187. Head: Dragonking Eyepatch
  188. Chest: Kushala Daora Alpha
  189. Hands: Xenojiiva Alpha
  190. Waist: High Metal Coil Alpha
  191. Legs: Kushala Daora Alpha
  192.  
  193. Your final targets will definitely want to include a Protective Polish decoration, which will negate the one glaring weakness of Gun Lance. Then ideally you’ll be able to pick up Artillery and Capacity Boost decorations to free up more of your set for more options.
  194.  
  195. Of course Decoration Farming completely luck based, so I wish you luck and hope you get what you want.
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