Monster Hunter Rise Best Sword & Shield – Weapon Tier List (May 2021)

You'd better get good at fighting Anjanath (and several other monsters) if you want the best SnS in the game.

The best Sword & Shield in Monster Hunter Rise is fairly cut and dry. But there are some other alternatives to consider as well! Not to mention you might not want to deal with some of the trickier factors at play in the latest entry in the series. The best Sword & Shield for you might be different than the one with the biggest numbers. So let’s go over the specifics in another weapon guide!

More Monster Hunter:

1. Flash in the Night – The Best Sword & Shield in Monster Hunter Rise

If you really, really want something simple, there’s always the Nargacuga route. This Sword & Shield is no different. It doesn’t have the highest Affinity or raw damage compared to other Nargacuga weapons. But 30 percent natural Affinity is still plenty. Plus you get a Level 2 decoration slot to add nearly anything you could want, unlike on the venomous Rathian weapon. Master Rider is also an interesting Rampage skill. Riding multiple monsters into battle and triggering Wyvern Riding with Turf Wars is tremendously easy. Adding more damage to the effect shouldn’t be overlooked. You just might want to use Razor Sharp or Protective Polish. Nargacuga weapons have no room for Handicraft.

2. Hi Ninja Sword – MH Rise Best SnS Tier List

This SnS drops white sharpness in exchange for better raw damage and Affinity. By “better,” I of course mean 100 percent Affinity. It’s a silly number that almost seems too good to be true at first. The truth is it’s… not! This is a damn good weapon for general play combined with Master’s Touch. At Level 3, that skill will make 80 percent of your crits immune to sharpness loss. All hits on the Hi Ninja Sword are crits. That frees your build up considerably. Though the sharpness is a big blow. Even with Level 5 Handicraft, you only get so much blue, and sharpness levels provide invisible damage buffs that really make a difference. Guaranteed criticals and three Level 1 slots gives you a ton of space to experiment, though. Not to mention your combat uptime (with Master’s Touch) will have a huge impact on how quick the average player’s hunts go.

3. Queen Rapier – MH Rise Best SnS Tier List

This Rathian design is another solid all-rounder with a bonus against some monsters. You get some poison out of the deal, which actually makes it outpace most other SnS types if you can pull it off. Just like elemental damage, status effects work well on fast-hitting weapons like the Sword & Shield. Ten percent Affinity isn’t much to write home about. Especially when the weapon lacks any decoration slots at all. But it’s better than nothing if you want to focus on standard critical hits.

This weapon is actually a perfect example of a “meta” weapon not being the same as the best weapon. The Queen Rapier is getting colossal clear times in speedruns. Within a certain (i.e. miniscule) section of the Monster Hunter Rise community, that is. You simply need to never get hit and never miss a weak point and accurately predict every single monster attack. Easy! Not really… The lack of decoration slots, sharpness, status reliability make this tough to recommend over other options.

4. Tigrex Sword – MH Rise Best SnS Tier List

This Tigrex SnS doesn’t keep up as well as its cousins. The weapon technically gets to white sharpness, but only barely, looking you into Protective Polish to maintain damage. Otherwise it’s nothing special beyond its fairly high raw — which is matched by a Rathian weapon that also brings Poison. Granted, the Queen Rapier needs Handicraft to get white sharpness, but it also has positive Affinity instead of negative. So long as your opponent isn’t immune to Poison you’re better off with the previous choice. Even then you’ve got other “true” raw weapons that aren’t so fiddly. That being said, the Tigrex Sword can outpace its counterparts for short windows, keeping it on this list.

5. Sinister Shadekeeper – MH Rise Best SnS Tier List

As ever, the Magnamalo weapon here is an interesting, potentially powerful choice. It’s just a pain to acquire and build around. You’ll need two Magna Purple Orbs to take full advantage of the weapon and its Magnamalo Soul Rampage skill. That’s not one but two items with a three percent drop rate. The upside is strong sharpness, good raw damage, powerful blast buildup, and the utility to Hellfire Cloak. That’s if you decide to use the Magnamalo armor, of course. It’s not mandatory. Though it does give you a free, guaranteed knockdown on every monster each fight. That’s in addition to dealing bonus damage by setting hellfire “mines” around the battlefield. And whenever you’re affected by Hellfire Cloak, you’ll get better damage out of the Sinister Shadekeeper. Again: assuming you select the Magnamalo Soul skill.

Hopefully this helped you on your way to finding the best Sword & Shield in Monster Hunter Rise for you! We’ll be sure to update this guide as new monsters and weapons appear. Until then, happy hunting!