Monster Hunter Wiki


Ultimate Guide to Bows

SilkyZ March 31, 2013 User blog:SilkyZ

Bows are a very flexible ranged weapon, useful in group hunts as well as soloing. They possess the range to break off various parts on a monster otherwise unreachable to the melee hunter and, with charged attacks, the power to exploit any weakpoint the monster might have. Coatings, especially the Power Coating, is critical to the success of a bow-user. Like bowguns, distance also plays an important role on the damage caused to a monster.


Controls are stated from the bow being in ready position, unless stated otherwise.

X (bow not in ready position): Ready bow

X: Fire arrow

X (hold): Charge shot 

A: Horizontal melee attack

A + A: Horizontal melee attack (2 times, swing left and right) 

X + A (after 2 charge levels): Fire arcing shot 

X + A: Apply selected coating 

B (While standing still): Hop backwards

X + (any direction but back): Roll in selected direction

Y: Put away bow 

R + (analog stick): Move around with arrow trajectory guide on. 

R + D-Pad: Aim the trajectory guide without moving yourself. 

R + X: Shoot arrow while aiming R + X (hold): Charge shot while aiming 

L: Camera aims at the hunters back 

L (with monster targeted): Camera aims at monster 

The Basics

Using the bow is very intuitive but beginner hunters may become discouraged of it because they do not understand the damage mechanics or how to keep that optimum distance. Below are a few points to remember when using the Bow. 

  • Stay a few "hops" away from the enemy, the magic number of hops to do maximum damage is 3 or 4
  • Try to memorize each monster and what they are capable of, then find the "safe point", the place you will not get hit and can still do the most damage
  • "Circling" a monster may be the safest option, use the camera (L Button) to always see what the monster is doing
  • The "roll" (B button) is your best friend, shoot that arrow and roll out of the way
  • Running too slow for you? Rolling is faster when your bow is drawn
  • Think about this, charging a bow then running to a monster or running to the monster and charging your bow. Both has its pros and cons
  • Coatings are your friends, shooting a wyvern with 5 or more poison arrows will likely poison them!
  • Stand behind rock pillars, those clumsy wyverns will never get close enough to hit you. Large mosnters can break them so always be on guard!
  • Remember what charge shot does what (i.e. Lv1-Sctr, Lv2-Rapd...)
  • The Arc Shot has a chance to KO a monster and/or drain its stamina, but they take more time to reach the target
  • Know your enemy! Shooting the right parts of a monster can mean the difference between victory or defeat.
  • Don't forget the melee attack, it is pretty strong! It can even cut tails if you learn how to use it well!
  • To reach Level 4 Charge, you'll need the Loading skill, not Load Up or Load
  • Learning how effective each shot type is against a certain monster is vital to making your hunting easier.(e.g. Barroth may be much weaker against pierce arrows than scatter arrows to reach his weak spot, which is his arms)
  • When it comes to pierce arrows, think of the imaginary line as like a crosshair for more precise, long range shots if you don't like getting "up close and personal" to your targets.

Importance of Charging

Charging your bow is a tricky thing here are some things to note:

  • Charge Level 1 will inflict 50% of your bow's Attack Power
  • Charge Level 2 will not modify your Attack Power
  • Charge Level 3 will multiply your Attack Power by 1.5
  • Charge Level 4 will multiply your Attack Power by 2.0
  • Shooting from a different charge may cause a different attack Just like elemental damage is good against certain monsters, so too do Scatter/Rapid/Pierce shots have specialized functions.

Pierce shots are good against large monsters or monster with an internal weakness (Lagiacurs and Nibelsnarf)

Rapid shots are good against monster with a single exposed weakness as well as concentrating damage on a breakable part (Barioth and Rathian)

Scatter shots are good at close range and usually against smaller monsters and groups of monsters (Jaggi, Baggi, Wroggi) 

It is important for one to take note of this when planning before a quest. Using the correct shot is crucial and could mean the difference between getting stunned by a Gobel's flash or shooting off the source right from the start.

Types of Shots

Scatter Shots: Shoots a horizontal wave of arrows, strongest in the middle and weakest at the ends.

SctrLvl1 Fires 3 arrows
SctrLvl2 Fires 3 arrows (flank arrows are stronger)
SctrLvl3 Fires 5 arrows
SctrLvl4 Fires 5 arrows (flank arrows are stronger)

Rapid Shots = Shoots a vertical stack of arrows strongest at the top and weakest at the bottom.

RapdLvl1 Fires 1 arrow
RapdLvl2 Fires 2 arrows
RapdLvl3 Fires 3 arrows
RapdLvl4 Fires 4 arrows

Pierce Shots = Shoots a piercing arrow that hits a target multiple times. Good against large targets and to hit hidden weak points. Actual arrow flight range increased slightly.

PrceLvl1 Fires 1 arrow; hits 3 times
PrceLvl2 Fires 1 arrow; hits 4 times
PrceLvl3 Fires 1 arrow; hits 5 times
PrceLvl4 Fires 1 arrow; hits 6 times

Arc Shots = The special attack for bows, it fires a payload up high in the air and then drops it on the target (the red circles while aiming is the marker for Arc Shots).


Drops rocks from above in a 10m circle

Focus Drops rocks from above in a 3m circle
Blast Drops a small bomb from above

Arc Shots gives an archer the ability to KO monsters but hitting thier heads. This can be done with any Arc Shot, but Focus is the best as the rocks drop in a mush smaller radius and can be focused on a monster's head 


Bows have unlimited arrows, but they can apply Coatings to thier arrows to make them perform different actions. Like with Bowgun ammo, Coatings can be crafted in the field to give a hunter more then the item limits would allow.

Coating Item Capacity Effect
Power 50 Increases attack power by x1.5
Close Range 20 Increases attack power by x1.3 if closer then 2 hops and melee attacks
Poison 20 Poisons monster
Paralysis 20 Paralizes monster


20 Puts monster to sleep
Exaust 20 Reduces monsters stamina
Slime 20 Causes an explosion after repeated strikes
Paint 99

Paints the monster like a Paintball

Many Bows come with a coating boost for one or two coatings. This will increase the poatancy of status effects and increase the damage of Power and C.Range. It is assumed that a Boost will add 10% to the coating's effect.

Getting Started

After you get through the Moga Tutorial, you will be able to select the bow as your weapon and begin working on upgrades. Go gathering and mining and you should have materials to make Chainmail Armor. This will up your health and give you better defence aginst most early monsters. Once you beat the Great Jaggi, you should work on upgrading your Hunter's Bow to 2 and crafting Hunter Armor. This will give you Detect with an easy option of AutoTracker by adding Jewels once you beat a Qurpeco.

Once you get to the 3Star Village Quests you have an option of 2 armors, Wroggi and Qurpeco. Wroggi improves your Rapid Shot's damage, negates Poison, and enables Shakalaka Rally. You also get the added benifit of looking like a cowboy. Qurpeco on the other hand ups Spread Shot's damage, makes you risitant to Wind, and has more defence. Depending on the armor you choose, you should focus on either the Hunter's Bow 3 or the Peckish Peco as your new defult weapon.  

Belive it or not, you now have enough power to fight the Lagiacurs or any other monster before him, but if you are feeling lacking and have the option to fight Rathian, grab yourself a Queen Blaster 1. While this bow lacks the ability to use Power Coatings, it boosts Poison and has 180 attack, making up for its defincancy. Once you Fell the Lagiacurs, work on obtaining Ingot Armor and BoltSender 1 as it ups Spread and Thunder attacks. You should now have an Armor set and a Bow stong enough to compleat the rest of the Low-Village missions. 

After that you should pretty much know what you are doing. 

Useful Skills

While general skills like Attack, Defence, and Expert will be helpful to any hunter, Bow users would also benifit from skills that effect staminia and charging.

Skill Effect
NormalS Up Increaces power of Rapid shots
PelletS Up Increaces power of Spread shots
PierceS Up Increaces power of Pierce shots
AutoReload Automaticlly changes to slected Coating
Reload Shortens Coating changing time
Capacity Unlocks 4th charge level
Short Charge Reduces time between charge levels
Hunger Slows stamina degreation
PCoat+ Adds Power Coating to Bow
Consitition Lowers staminia cost for dodging
Stamina Lowers staminia cost of all actions

Monster Guides

These are basic overviews of common monsters and how to approch them. Look for Ultimate Guide to Bows: Advanced Tactics (UG2B:AT) guides for expanded info.

Great Jaggi

The Great Jaggi is the first "Big" monster you face. A good stratagy is to take out the smaller Jaggia and Jaggi first as this will prevent you from getting swarmed. Aim for his ears and face to break them in addition to them being his weak spots. He does a hip-check that covers quite a distance so keep your range to about 4-5 "hops".

Great Baggi

Basically the same as the Jaggi, but has a sleep attabute. Stay away from the mouth to avoid dozing off.

Great Wroggi

Basicly the same as the Jaggi and Baggi, but poisionous. It has an ability to cough up a poison cloud that lingers for quite some time. to prevent him from making one of these traps, break the poison sac under his neck and future clouds will vanish instantly.


The main thing to watch for is his swipping claw attack. The attack covers some distance and tracks you. Keep circling him until you are behind him to aviod being swipped.


This guy likes to slide around and really knock up an unsuspecting hunter. Stay to either side of him and be ready to roll and the bunny shouldn't be that troublesome.


By the time you reach Volvidon in the village quests, he should be little to no threat to you. The big thing to watch for is his ball bounce, not that it will harm you, but it will leave him open for attack after he comes down.


The first real wyvern you face, Qurupeco is tricky as he can call in other monster to fight for him. Reguardless of the monster that he calls, which could range from a Great Jaggi to a Rathian, remember your goal; Kill The Bird. Focus your attacks on Qurupeco while being aware of the other mosnter. the two main things to watch for are his Fire Jump and whenever he makes a call.

UG2B:AT Crimson Qurupeco


Barroth can be a pain if you are fond of elemntal bows. With mud he is strong aginst Fire and weak to Water, but when the mud is removed, he becomes strong to Water and weak to Fire. Thier are only a few places he can get the mud back so go with a Fire bow. Stay to his sides and aim for his arms as they are his weak point.


Uragaan will challange your skills with a bow. He has a thick hide for strong defence and posesses a large amount of health and staminia. They can also roll up into a wheel and run over an unsuspecting hunter. Tripping him wil give you an open shot at his weakspot (his belly). Using Pierce shots will allow you to hit his stomach easily.


This guy is trouble for archers. Going in you my feel that becaus he is big, it would mean he's slow; and then you will get killed. Duramboros' main weapon is his tail, which he uses as a flail. The major attack that he will do, often, is his tail-spin. This attack covers a large area and is usually followed by him leaping and flying through the air in your direction. He can be tripped in this state which will expose his weakpoint (his humps) for attack


The Queen of the Land can be a true challange to a novice hunter, and for veterans of older Monster Hunter games, she has a few new tricks to watch for. The main attition is her new abilty to hover above the ground. While up in the air she can shoot a single fireball, poison flip, or dive at the hunter, trampaling them. Aim for her head and use spread shots to break her wings.


The King of the Skys likes to be in the air. He hovers more often and can perform the same moves as Rathian with the addition of a 3 fireball attack. Use flash bomb to bring him down and treat him the same as his Queen

UG2B:AT Rathalos


A classic monster from the early games, Diablos has always been the bane of Gunners; and now, with the lack of ledges, he is even more of a threat. 'Blos has two main attacks that can seriously hurt you. The first is a simple charge, which can start from a distance and easily dodged, or could start at point blank and throw you in the air. The other is his dig attack, he will dive under the sand and burst forth right from under you. If you see him digging, you better start running.


This monster can be a pain to the unsuspecting hunter. His head and his tail can both lundge out at you like a whip if you are too close. Because of this, stay to his sides and attack his wings. 'Nox can lay eggsacs that spawn in Giggis or lay poison traps much like the Wroggi. It can also climb walls and the ceiling. It can move quickly on the ceiling but won't stay there very long. Its best to just wait for it to come back down.


He is quick. He jumps all over. But as an archer you can be quicker. Be ready to roll and aim for its wings, once broken he will trip after jumping more often leaving you more oppertunities to attack. Stay away from his head as his bites and snow vortex can put you in a difficult situation.

Royal Ludroth

Aiming for his sponge is key as he will then tire more quickly and it reduces the effective ness of his water attacks. Just watch for his rolls and you should be alright. Underwater he becomes more difficult as his charges become quicker. Use the target cam to always face him and to stay relitivly at his level.


This river monster is a mix between an angler and a puffer fish. he can puff out the spikes on his back and roll over the hunter and use the flashbulb on his head to KO the hunter. He can also create a powerful vortex with his mouth underwater to draw in the hunter for a chomp. Stay behing him or in front on land and to the sides underwater. His lantern and spikes are weak so attack them, and breaking his lamp will prevent him from KOing you.


His mouth is huge and can suck up a large amount of sand and shoot it back out either to the front or back of him. But in his mouth is his greatest weakness, the uvula. Use sonic bombs to bring him up and to stun him. also bring along a few large barrle bombs for him to eat, they will go off in his mouth and do a large amount of damage.


Breaking his spikes should be your primary focus. This will limit his electric attacks and are also his weakpoint. Stay to his sides and be on the watch for hip checks and his coiling. He will try to distance himself from you and charge or blast you. Roll out of the way and towards him to reduce the chance of getting hit.


Agnaktor is a tricky fight. He can drill into the ground and the celing and can fire a sweeping fire beam. He also has armor made of rock the gets soft when he dives in lava, but over time it will harden. His head and stomach will remain soft longer as he uses fire attacks. His long, snakelike body makes Pierce shots a great choice and Rapid shots are good for breaking his armor.

OTHER MONSTERS (high rank and above)

UG2B:Advanced Tactics - Plesioth

Quest Guides

The following are user suggested guides for how to take on spacific Quests in the game. Please add your own notes as a comment as you wish!

User Armor/Bow Sets

Tell us about any Armor/Bow sets that you have come across that you thought were helpful. Please add your own notes as a comment as you wish!

A set I use for bows is the ludroth U armour, gemmed out to power coat add. (2 slot talisman needed for this). Seeing as this is my only gunner set, i may be biased, but it is very easy to get with good resistances and gemming potential.  -Dax the Hunter

For other low rank armors, I would suggest either royal ludroth or lagiacrus. Their low rank armors carry Runner and Focus respectively, helping to slightly alleviate for the stamina cost associated with charging. Their other skills are not bad either, with it being easy to gem in the Endless Air skill on the royal ludroth armor. Just remember to gem out status attack down on the lagi armor, that skill is one of the worst for bows due to the reliance on status coatings.

I often read that the Kelbi-Bow combined with the G-nox X set (status up +2; Awaken; element down, capacity) is a good choice, as it unlocks a large slime element with scatter-shots unique to the kelbi's bow. Having many slots, its easy (after farming LR peco) to slot bombardier (boosts slime damage, but also helps when partly sleepbombing monsters, as kelbi bow is capable of using sleep coatings) and, with a good charm, evasion/distance into it.

Also on Fandom

Random Wiki