Greetings, hunters! It’s been 3 weeks since you arrived in the new land. Although hardcore gamers must be challenging themselves with Tempered Monsters following the main story ending, most people would be confronting Xeno’jiiva or setting their gear with Elder Dragon materials.
Gear and Skill settings are some of the best features of the Monster Hunter franchise. However, they are also the most troublesome element. That’s why we are here to recommend you gear and skill settings by weapon class.
The recommended weapon settings we would like to provide you with today is the Cluster Bomb Heavy Bowgun, the most popular Heavy Bowgun setting in the current meta. This is the most powerful solo hunting build in the PC version and is also mainly used against Behemoth, the highest-ranked monster in the PC version.
The Cluster Bomb originally deals massive AoE damage to the enemy but knocks away any nearby allies at the same time, thus it is not a wise choice when you play in a party. However, it is relatively useful against massive monsters such as Behemoth or Kulve Taroth. In this article, we’ll be talking about the appropriate gear comp and settings depending on the version of the patch. First off, let us have a look at the Magda Gemitus ll settings of the most basic PC version.
The fundamental and core Cluster Bomb Heavy Bowgun setting - Magda Gemitus ll
The currently used Magda Gemitus ll Cluster Bomb setting on PC is the most basic build, but it can also be used as an end-game setup. In fact, it is still used by many players on PS as well.
In order to maximize its effectiveness, you need to understand the features of the Cluster Bomb first. The Cluster Bomb is very powerful, thus its capacity is quite limited, and only a few items and elements can affect the damage of the bomb; weapon damage, level of the bomb, Attack, Peak Performance, Meal Effects, Mega Demondrug, and Might Seed.
Therefore, you must upgrade the Free Elem/Ammo Up to the maximum level of 3 in order to increase the capacity. Equipping 3 pieces of Xeno’jiiva is also a recommended choice for its Set Bonus Skill called Xeno’jiiva Divinity. These two together will allow players to deal fixed damage to the monster regardless of physiology, making hunting much easier.
In order to get these skills, you need more gear apart from the 3 pieces of Xeno’jiiva that provide the Free Elem/Ammo Up skill, and they are Kirin Leg Guardsβ and Rath Soul Mail β.
After that, all you need to do is get skills that increase the damage of Cluster Bomb: Attack and Peak Performance. In regards to the Attack skill, you are originally given one Attack Jewel which can easily be enhanced up to Lv.4 with the Attack Charm. Peak Performance needs to be obtained with Jewels, but they are not easy to come by in the early-mid game, so you will have to farm a bit to get it.
The reason why we choose the Magda Gemitus ll weapon is also to increase the damage of Cluster Bomb. The Magda Gemitus ll’s damage is considerably high. Even though its Affinity is -20%, the Cluster Bomb is not affected by critical hits. It also allows you to use Lv.2 and Lv.3 Cluster Bombs which makes it superior to the others. In regards to the Custom Mods, players mostly have two Recoil Suppressors as they generally use the Sleep Ammo or Sticky Ammo together.
The Rocksteady Mantle is also an essential item. Without it, solo hunting with the Cluster Bomb becomes impossible. Although attacks do not push you back when you’re using the Rocksteady Mantle, you still take damage, so it is best that you have the Health Booster.
That is the end of the general gear settings. You probably won’t have high-quality Jewels in the beginning, in which case the KO Jewel or Vitality Jewel can be quite useful. The KO Jewel is reasonably easy to come by and it can also randomly stun the monster, providing you a good window to deal damage safely. Also, if you have a Release Jewel by chance, you can then equip some damage-increasing armor instead of Rath Soul Mailβ.
Item settings are as important as gear settings for Cluster Bombs. As described before, the number of Cluster Bombs is very limited and you’ll need a fair amount to take down the more difficult Elder Dragons. Thus, Cluster Bomb crafting should be set in your Radial Menu, and you should have the max amount of Bomberries and Gunpowder Lv.3 on hand.
In a nutshell, this build involves bombarding monsters Cluster Bombs while you stay healthy and secure using the Rocksteady Mantle and Health Booster. The Cluster Bombs deal a tremendous amount of damage and also have Stun Power, which gives you opportunities to deal even more damage. Add in Mega Demondrug and Might Seed for some extra kick, and you’re essentially a siege tank.
Now, let’s have a look at how powerful this build is. Below footage of a hunt on Tempered Kushala Daora, the most difficult monster on PC.
The footage was taken by me, so controls might look clunky. I’m sorry about that.
It took just 3 minutes and 2 seconds. However, that hunt actually was quite an unlucky one. The starting point wasn’t even at the camp, and Kushala flew into the air right after he was released from the stun, so I wasted 3 to 4 Cluster Bombs in the air. Even so, I succeeded by using additional Wyvern Ammo in the end. It would’ve been much quicker had I used all my Cluster Bombs on him.
As you can see, you need to withstand all the damage coming from the monster if you use this build. The High-Rank armor can still get the job done if the monster is also High Rank, but armor enhancements are mandatory against Tempered monsters. My defense was 451 and 421 at Astera at that time.
In addition, I forgot to add these details as part of the footage, but Attack and Recovery are recommended for Augmentations.
Deviljho and Lunastra on the list? - Dark Devourer
The most basic and fundamental elements of the Cluster Bomb Heavy Bowgun build are basically complete with what I’ve described here. However, the gear standards become more advanced as more monsters appear, and the type of gear also changes when you acquire more Jewels.
Eventually, you will be able to make the Dark Devourer, the new Heavy Bowgun with materials from Deviljho. Although it is quite similar to Magda Gemitus ll in many aspects, the damage is more powerful, so it is recommended in the later game.
As mentioned before, you can equip any type of chest armor when you acquire the Release Jewel, in which case the Empress Mail β which is made from Lunastra is a wise choice. This has Peak Performance Lv.2 which is a very rare effect that increases the Cluster Bomb damage, along with 3 Lv.1 Jewel slots. This is a must-have piece if you are going for the Cluster Bomb build. This leads to the currently-used Cluster Bomb build against Behemoth on PS.
However, you’ll probably have to wait for quite some time for Lunastra if you play on PC; it’ll be available in 4 months based on the PS updates. If you have a Release Jewel but Lunastra is still not available, gear that increases your damage such as Dober Mail β can be an alternative.