Monster Hunter Hammer Strategy Guide
Monster Hunter Hammer Strategy Guide by MoteOfLust
A Brief Introduction
I was inspired by all the other weapon guides and decided to throw my hat in the ring. To give you an idea of my credentials, I have about 60 hours played with 59 hours spent using the hammer. Regretfully, an entire hour was wasted experimenting with inferior weaponry. I’ve cleared all of the assigned missions alone with just my trusty hammer, and this guide will give you tips and tricks on what I’ve found to be the most effective way to use the hammer. Let’s get started.
Now you might be asking, “But Mote, why should I use that silly hunk of metal instead of 6 feet of glorious nippon steel?”
It comes down to three distinguishing characteristics: Power, Mobility, and Blunt Force Trauma Induced Seizures.
Very few weapons can compete with the raw damage output of the hammer on a stationary target. Conveniently, the hammer deals KO damage which, when correctly applied to the head, causes the target to lie on the ground in agony for a substantial amount of time. If you like knocking things on their back and methodically grinding the contents of their skull into a fine paste, then this is the weapon you. Additionally, the hammer boasts surprising mobility along with it’s heavy hits. You can move around at normal speed with your weapon drawn and even charge the power attack while running albeit at a cost to stamina. This allows you to position in just the right spot and get out of bad situations without having to sheath your weapon constantly.
Alas, the hammer does have its weaknesses. What it has in power, it lacks in range. Most of it’s attacks have an incredibly short range and very few of its moves extend vertically, which makes it difficult to hit anything off the ground. Another disadvantage is although the attacks are powerful, many have substantial end-lag leaving you very vulnerable hit or miss. Mastering the hammer means mastering spacing and knowing when to commit to a heavy move.
Also the Lavasioth, who is nigh on invulnerable to blunt damage on it’s entire body and decides to just LEAVE THE AREA after 40 minutes of fighting when you finally got it limping.
- The Standard Boop (Triangle)
This is your fastest and most basic attack/combo and comes in two variants.
If you’re standing still it does two weak hits into a third heavy. The third hit hits harder than the first two combined, so it’s usually only worthwhile to do if you are confident you can hit all three. This requires a medium length opening to achieve, but tacks on a good chunk of damage and a ton KO damage.
If you are running when you start it or do a drawing attack, it does 4 weak moves into a heavy finisher. This is almost never worthwhile to do. If you have an opening where you can get all 5 hits, there are better options to do. If you only have a very small opening then using the running/drawing attack for chip damage is acceptable, but the full combo is subpar. The one exception is after a successful mount when approaching the boop zone with your weapon sheathed, the first draw attack combos into the 5 big boop combo, which is faster and does more damage than running up, drawing your weapon and then doing the 5 boops.
- The Big Boop (Circle)
This is the heavy hitter and how you hit them while their down. 5 button presses gives you 5 increasingly hard hitting overhead slam attacks with the 5th being a massive 3 hitter which deals massive damage. The only time you should really use this move is when something is stunned, tripped or paralyzed. The first couple hits are comparatively weak and have a ton of end-lag, so it’s dangerous to use if you don’t have all 5 guaranteed, but boy does it hurt when you do.
- The Power Boop (R2)
Now this is where things get more interesting. Holding down R2 allows you to begin charging your weapon. Every half a second or so, you reach a new charge level corresponding to a different attack:
This is a fairly low damage side swipe, which is about equivalent to a running standard boop. Pretty Underwhelming, but can combo into a 5 hit standard boop combo.
It launches you surprisingly far forward into an upswing and does a respectable amount of damage. Timing this correctly is your primary method of punishing short openings because it has relatively low-endlag, decent damage, good reach and fantastic KO damage. The big drawback of this move is it will launch nearby allies into the next time zone. With some coordination though, you can launch an ally up into the air to mount.
Third and Final Charge:
The standing variant is a 3 hit power swing just like the last hit of the big boop. Crazy damage, relatively quick, lots of KO damage. This is how you stun things and punish medium-long openings. You want to be close to the head with your weapon fully charged up so you can stop, slam, and punish with this move. This is how you will generally KO bosses. This should also be your wake-up move if there isn’t a greatsword user in the group, but you want to space so the first two hits miss and the last one connects for maximum damage.
The moving variant will be the bane of your existence. It’s a moving spin move with a ton of weak hits. You can cancel it into a medium hit with triangle after the first and second swing, but this move will largely be done by accident because it is incredibly slow and has 3-5 business days of end-lag. The damage isn’t bad, but the standing variant is almost always a better option.
The Power Boop has one more interesting property. If you press circle, you get a modest damage buff and your hammer starts to glow white until you get hit/staggered. This is useful not only for the damage, but because it also resets the charges back to zero. This means if you are fully charged up, but need a 2 charge lunge, you can just press circle to reset the count into a lunge. Mostly, you’ll just press r2 quickly followed by circle for the damage buff, but the reset can come in handy too.
- The Falling Boop (Triangle in the air)
This is your typical falling attack that acts exactly as you’d expect it. You get better damage if you time the swing with contact. You will never use this move because…
- The Atomic Dive Boop (R2 in the air)
What makes this different from the standard falling boop? Well there are two important differences. The first, is it completely cancels your downward momentum and causes you to rise back up about half a foot. This lets you do shenanigans like jumping off a ledge, turning around in the air and landing back on the ledge with a falling attack against a boss on the same level as you. It also lets you completely turn in the air both when you initiate the falling attack AND when you release it, giving you a surprising amount of control in the air for placing your plunging attacks. You’ll also want to time your swing so it hits right as you make contact for maximum damage. This gives hammers the little known honor of having the best aerial mobility outside of the insect glaive. Both falling attacks combo into a viscous upswing with triangle after landing, almost guaranteeing a KO if you can solidly land both on the head.
- The Hurricane of Boop (Holding and Releasing R2 while sliding down a slop, or Holding R2 and running up special walls)
This is the most famous hammer move of all. It allows you to jump in the air, and bring a spinning ball of death upon anything that dares enter your trajectory. This move is incredibly satisfying, does amazing damage, and you can actually mount with it. Everything that you can ask for. One small caveat is there is one very strong hit right when you land which does close to as much damage as 4-5 of the aerial hits. This means aiming yourself so your last hit will land on something squishy is very important if you want to deal significant damage. One good last hit is usually better than a handful of satisfying aerial ones.
In Summary: 2 charge Power Boop lunges for short-medium openings, 3 charge standing Power Boops for medium-long openings, 3 standing standard boops for medium openings when you don’t have a charge ready or are going for a KO, and 5 big boops on the noggin when they get knocked down for maximum damage.
Hit them in the head until they fall down. 5 more boops on the head. Repeat process until it stops moving.
That’s about it. A lot of your time will be spent running around with power boop fully charged and buffed looking for an opening. You’re relatively fast, so try to get into position and evade attacks without rolling so you have that sweet 3 charge ready to rip.
This is mostly aimed at longsword/dual blade users, but it applies to everyone. If a hammer bro goes through the effort of kindly stunning an enemy for you, have some common courtesy and let them do their head boops. “B-b-but muh spirit gauge” you cry as you stun lock the hammer at the head with the intact tail swinging mere feet away. I’m sure it will survive the half a second you take to reposition. There are plenty of monster bits to go around, and the hammer bro is just trying to break the horns for you. If you keep it up, we might accidentally 2 charge power boop you into low earth orbit.
Well, that’s all I have for now! I might add on more later about armor skills and such. Thanks for reading and happy hunting!