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Discussion of the Week: Greatswords

Welcome to Discussion of the Week: Great Swords!

This is a new weekly feature I'm starting on the Wiki, following the completion of MAD (last week was White and Crimson Fatalis; check out the blog here. You can still post on those blogs after their week of glory, you know).

Anyway, this new feature is designed to be a slightly more indepth-than-usual look at one particular facet of the Monster Hunter series. Weapons, areas, generations, Frontier... even other spin-offs and merchandise might get a look-in.

This week we'll be covering Greatswords, one of the definitive weapons in the MH series as a whole. The discussion in the comments can take any direction, but I'll be posing some questions to try and get the ball rolling.

3rdGen-Great Sword Equipment Render 001


Great Swords, also known as GS are large, slow weapons that were first introduced in Monster Hunter. Originally they had three main attacks: the sideswipe, the upswing, and the downstrike. Hitting a monster with the middle of the blade, as opposed to the tip, or hilt, causes a damage bonus.
Greatswords have a charge attack, first introduced in Monster Hunter 2. There are three levels of charge, and the Level 3 charge is one of the most damaging single attacks in any game. Whilst charging an attack, Hunters are hard to knock over with low-damage monster attacks. Greatswords are also able to block monster attacks, although doing so caused them to loose sharpness.
In the third Generation games, Greatswords gained the ability to K.O monsters with a side-slap attack, and then follow up with a slightly more powerful curled charge attack.

Specific Games

Monster Hunter: ?
Monster Hunter Freedom: ?
Monster Hunter 2: Well, the Greatsword charge was introduced, I imagine that would push them up the weapon tiers a bit.
Monster Hunter Freedom Unite: Greatswords seemed to be very effective in this game. The new Art of Unsheathing Skill was a god-send (Critical hit with a Unsheathing level 3 charge? Yes please!)

I seem to recall at the end-game using King Atillart Sword sword a great deal; huge raw, Purple with Sharpness+1.

2ndGen-Great Sword Render 016

What did people think of the Nargacuga GS? I mean, natural Purple is nice, and wonderful affinity... but wasn't the Raw a bit of a let-down?

2ndGen-Great Sword Render 005

Now, the Ukanlos Greatsword was interesting. Only managed white with Sharpness+1, and it had terrible Affinity, but that raw power... What would be the ideal set of armor skills to use this weapon with?

2ndGen-Great Sword Render 006

Monster Hunter 3: Greatswords underwater for the first time! And of course they could KO for the first time with the new side-slap attack. But do you think they got better and smoother in this game, or was it a step back? Of course, you had to time level 3 charges in this game as well, rather than just leaving it.

Monster Hunter Portable 3rd: Erm, anything new here? Did anyone use much other than the final Alatreon Greatsword?

Monster Hunter 3 G: I hear rumours (mostly from Pink Fatalis) that for the first time a Greatswords elemental damage increases with the charge level. That'd make a nice change, right? Finally have a use for Elemental Greatswords.

Monster Hunter Frontier: There are lots of people who understand better than me how Greatswords work in Frontier. Artemis, help?

Video Tutorial

Monster Hunter Tri - Great Sword Tutorial11:00

Monster Hunter Tri - Great Sword Tutorial

Title MH3: Greatsword Tutorial
by SocialDissonance


  • What monsters do you find Greatswords work well against?
    • Have you ever tried them against something on a whim, and found it to work surprisingly well?
  • What monsters do Greatswords really not work on? (I'm thinking Nargacuga and Brachydios, they don't seem like they'd stand still long enough for a full charge to connect).
  • What game do you most enjoy using Greatswords in?
  • What's your favourite Greatsword to use, for any reason?
  • Which would you say the best-looking Greatsword from any game is? Suggest it, and I'll upload the image to this blog.
  • How do you feel Greatswords compare to other weapons? Do you enjoy using them?
  • Finally, should it be spelt 'Great Swords' or 'Greatswords'? I don't have my PSP on me to check, lol.

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