Monster Hunter Rise Best Heavy Bowgun – HBG Tier List (May 2021)

Heavy Bowguns aren't in the best shape just now... Perhaps it's penance for Monster Hunter World.

In Monster Hunter Rise, the best Heavy Bowgun is a little tricky to decide. The weapon archetype went sicko mode in Monster Hunter World — an absolute powerhouse at multiple ranges, but particularly as an immortal shotgun machine. Now it’s lost a bit of its identity. Light Bowguns get a bunch of fancy, flashy new moves and retain their different ammo modifiers (like rapid-fire). That gets even better when you include the skill Rapid Fire Up. Whereas Heavy Bowguns… lost their close-range damage mod. So what’s there to look forward to now? Well, let’s find out as we track down the best HBG in Monster Hunter Rise!

More Monster Hunter Rise:

1. Tigrex Howl II – The Best Heavy Bowgun in Monster Hunter Rise

This is the current big kid on the block among Heavy Bowguns. The Tigrex HBG has 230 raw with just 10 negative Affinity — a better tradeoff than it often seems. Especially since ranged weapons can’t rely on Master’s Touch as a comfort skill. The real lethality on this weapon comes from its combination of Sticky Ammo and Cluster Bombs. You can use the first ammo type to stun monsters (make sure to include the skill Slugger somewhere in your build). Then go to town with a slow-firing Cluster Bomb or five. The Cluster Effect II Ramp-Up skill will add more ammunition to the mix on that follow-up. Meanwhile, the stun itself is good for online play, since it sets up any beast for your allies. The Wyvernheart Special Ammo is then a great alternative too clustering whenever it’s available.

2. Sinister Dreadvolley – MH Rise Best HBG Tier List

If you want to relive the shotgun days of HBG, this will get you close. Five rounds of Sticky Ammo 3 is nothing to sneeze at, even without the close-range mods of yore. Spread Ammo is also easier to buff with decorations after to the Monster Hunter Rise 2.0 update. Meanwhile Sticky Ammo 3 and Cluster Bomb 3 function just the same here as they do on the Tigrex Howl. Only with different numbers. That means you can still drop and bomb your foes if you so choose. In either case, you can slot a shield to protect you from incoming foes and even use Diversion to turn yourself in a walking tank for friendly players. The Spread Ammo 3 works well here as it won’t knock friends away when you take aim (unlike a Cluster Bomb).

3. Felyne Cannon – MH Rise Best HBG Tier List

This Bowgun gets special mention for its special interaction with Cluster Bombs. Specifically, it fires “level” with the ground, allowing you to use the superpowered ammunition pretty much freely. The rest of the weapon still isn’t that great, but it’s better than the only other HBG in Monster Hunter Rise (at the moment) with this unique style. Some players are finding a use for it here and there — and you can certainly complete hunts with it — but I suspect we’re still waiting for this mechanic to see its true potential on a future weapon. Still, it’s an interesting option to try, if only just for fun.

Here’s hoping the next update will give the Heavy Bowgun some love! The Level Shot clusters are an interesting idea Capcom may develop then. In the meantime, the HBG is still a perfectly viable weapon type like everything else in the game. It just feels a bit “lost” if you’re not strictly playing into that ranged tank mindset. If that’s your speed, this update hasn’t changed that! If not, you may be better served with a Light Bowgun.

Until then we’ll make sure to watch the updates as they come and include any changes in our list. Happy hunting!