MHW Iceborne Best Gunlance Builds [Top 5]

Monster Hunter, World, Iceborne, Gunlance
Monster Hunter World: Iceborne's best Gunlances! Time for a big boom!

The boomstick of Iceborne is one of the most complex and varied weapons in the game. Finding the right style for you will be just as important as the build.  

Unlike other weapons, this weapon has 3 different ways of playing it: Burst Swinglance, Wide Poke Shell, and Long Chargeshell. 

If you want more information on these styles, then please visit this video. Be aware however, it’s a bit outdated. Iceborne has buffed Gunlance by adding Shelling Level 6 (7 for Normal), Artillery level 5, and buffed damage mods on Normal and Long shelling. Yes, Long Shelling was awful in base game, but damn is it good in Iceborne.

If you want to know more, then read on to the top 5 Gunlance Builds!

Disclaimer: With the release of Safi’ Jiiva, there are a bunch of new builds coming out that will be more streamlined versions of the builds covered in this article. While these builds are being refined and will be covered in another article, I’ve decided to focus on the builds that don’t use Safi weapons just yet.

5. Infinite Burst

MHWI: Gunlance Build - RE:Burst (infinite burst combos with 800 - 1000 damage each)

I like to start these lists off with off-meta, comfy builds since not everyone wants to run with damage heavy builds. 

This first build is a mix between some comfort skills like Divine Blessing, Recovery Up, and Partbreaker, with some traditional Gunlance damage skills like Artillery 5 and Capacity Boost.

What's Awesome About Infinite Burst

  • Despite the comfort skills, it’s still very damaging thanks to Artillery.
  • A build that focuses on bursts for most of its damage
  • Plenty of survivability if you need it.

Build Details

  • Stygian Gunlance brings Normal Level 7 which enables some disgustingly high burst damage.
  • For shelling heavy builds, it’s usually advised to eat for Felyne Bombadier, which will further increase your damage. 
  • You want to aim for Wyrmstake Blast with each of your burst hits. Wyrmstake Blast will trigger for each exploded shell, and burst will make it trigger multiple times in one swing. 
  • With partbreaker in the build and increased shelling damage, you can break parts pretty easily with this build, which can help all of your farming runs.
  • Every build on this list will be running either Evade up or Evade Distance up. The reason for this is, unlike the Lance, you can’t cancel any of your animations into a block. Instead, you want to dodge more often than you want to guard since this will also reposition you to your Wyrmstake Blast and avoid damage.

4. Healing and Tanky Rajang Gunlance

Monster Hunter: World Iceborne Great Demon Immortal Gunlance build Wide Lv 6 shelling

If you’re looking for even more comfort then I have just the build for you. 

This build is great since it focuses on just survival. If you wanted to get a feel for positioning and playing as a Gunlance, then this is a great build to get yourself started with. Since it also uses Wide instead of Burst, you’ll have less animation commitment in your attacks than any of the burst builds which in turn gives you more chances to dodge/guard.

If you’re looking for more optimized Gunlance builds for damage, then stay tuned since this will be the last comfort build on this list.

What's Awesome About Healing and Tanky Rajang Gunlance

  • Survival focused Wide-shelling.
  • Lots of healing, you can recover from any mistakes by just attacking/shelling.
  • Lots of defensive mechanics, while evade up and guard/guard up are a bit redundant, they can at least help you understand what defensive abilities the Gunlance has.
  • This build focuses on shelling to deal most of its damage. This can be pretty nice since it will trigger Wyrmstake Blast, and has no chance of bouncing off a monster.

Build Details

  • Vaal Hazaak’s set bonus paired with a healing augment will keep you alive through practically any mistake. 
  • Earplugs, Evade up, and Guard are all used to ignore screams. Most Gunlance builds will use Earplugs since they want to keep swinging, but it’s not a bad idea to use Evade up as a way to get around most screams if you plan on using more shelling builds.
  • Medicine affects how much health you get back from your health augment. 
  • Artillery 5 is important since it brings your shelling damage up to competitive levels. 
  • Since this build runs so many comfort abilities, you can easily change out some comfort abilities for more damage. A good skill that can make the most of your constant HP gain is Peak Performance which will increase your damage when you’re at full health.

3. Long Deathlance Vaal

《MHW Iceborne》銃槍 單挑 金獅子!!Gunlance solo Rajang

Our first damage build (and speedrun) will feature a Long shelling lance. If you played the base game, then you know that Long shelling used to be terrible. With the many buffs it received in Iceborne however, Long shelling has become one of the competitive forms of damage for Gunlances. 

Long lances are known for spending the entire hunt shelling the monster to death. You want to position yourself so you can reach the Wyrmstake Blast, and then unload full charged shells.

Since you’re focusing on shelling, it’s much easier to hit monsters in places where other weapons will either have no range or just bounce. This means, right next to Wide shelling, you will have a pretty consistent amount of uptime on your damage compared to the other styles of Gunlancing.

What's Awesome About Long Deathlance Vaal

  • Long builds focus on shelling and just shelling. If you like mashing out explosions, then this build is for you.
  • Wyrmstake Blast will help make up a large chunk of your damage. While all Gunlance builds benefit from Wyrmstake Blast, Long benefits from both the increased damage and the ease it has with activating it. 
  • Of the damage heavy builds, this build can be pretty comfy since you are shelling from pretty safe distances.

Build Details

  • Unlike other builds, Long shelling builds rely on Focus since it decreases the amount of time it takes to charge up each shell. 
  • You want to shell as much as possible. If you do use another move, it should be done so you can go into a quick reload and then continue shelling. 
  • The only skills that will increase shelling damage are Artillery 5, Focus 3, and Capacity up.
  • Evade Distance isn’t as important in this build since you can hold attack and forward so your Hunter does a running lunge, and then cancel that into a charged shot. Since that move exists, you can close distances more comfortably like that than with Wide builds that may want evade distance.

2. Wide Shelling Protective Polish Speed Run

Rajang Wide 6 Gunlance vs Brachydios. Item prolonger build

Wide Shelling plays to the unique strengths brought by the Gunlance. If you like poking and shelling in equal parts, then you want to run with a wide shelling build since it will have you do both in equal parts. 
If you want a damage focused build, then I recommend the Wide build found here.

What's Awesome About Wide Shelling Protective Polish?

  • Protective Polish and Handicraft can help you make the most of your white sharpness
  • Flexible. The build can have some skills swapped out for comfort. You can also switch between poking or shelling depending on which is more effective against the monster you’re hunting.
  • Evade WIndow and Evade Distance work as both defensive actions and additional mobility to help close the gap faster in case the monster gets away from you.

Build Details

  • Item Prolonger extends the effects of Protective Polish by 30 seconds. This means you can use more shelling while this ability is active since you won’t lose sharpness. 
  • Evasion can be useful to keep yourself safe. Since this playstyle relies on low commitment animations, you should have more time to fit in a dodge than the other styles of Gunlance.
  • Rajang’s Gunlance is used here since it has a huge amount of raw. The downside is that the Rajang Gunlance lacks a comfortable amount of sharpness. As a result, it is always recommended to use Handicraft and Protective Polish with this Gunlance to give yourself more breathing room. 
  • As always, Artillery 5 and Capacity up are necessary to almost every Gunlance build you’ll find. Artillery 5 increases the damage of your shells, while Capacity up increases how many shells you have to blast with.
  • Just like with other builds, Earplugs are great since you want to keep attacking and, if you need to avoid a hit, you can just evade instead of blocking. Earplugs also work wonders here since it will give you fewer interruptions when you try to take advantage of Protective Polish.

1. Normal Shelling Optimized Burst Damage

【MHWI】ジンオウガ亜種 0分針 03'33"26 通常Lv7ガンス

This build takes first since it can crank out some of the highest DPS for Gunlances. While the Silver Sol armor pieces are used here to increase the time of Wyrmstake Blast, you can also replace those pieces with Ruiner Nergigante gauntlets and Yian Garuga legs. If you did the latter, then you would increase your overall damage per attack and but have a shorter Wyrmstake Blast. 

As with any speedrunning build, since these builds are so optimized for damage, you can switch out some damage skills for more comfy skills like Divine Protection and Vitality. 

What's Awesome About Normal Optimized Burst Damage?

  • Optimized for high damage
  • One of the better Burst Swing Lance builds
  • This build does best when you get to swing uninterrupted for a long period of time.

Build Details

  • Since this build is looking for ways to keep looping its attacks (so it can get as many Full Bursts as it can), the build in the video runs evasion, earplugs, and Rocksteady Mantle. This way, you’ll have an answer to help you deal with whatever the monster can throw at you.
  • Slinger Capacity adds about 40 seconds to Wyrmstake Blast. While 40 seconds may not sound like much, think of it as 40 more seconds where each burst will deal 20 damage per shell. In effect, this can lead to a large DPS increase.
  • Razor Sharp and Handicraft are great for this and most shelling builds since shelling will eat sharpness extremely quickly. 
  • While the video uses a Stygian Zinogre Gunlance for its Dragon Element, you can replace this Gunlance with a Gunlance that has an element that is strong against whatever you’re hunting against. The bulk of your damage will come from the Full Burst which doesn’t care about elements, but the other parts of the combo also have fantastic motion values that can benefit from elemental damage.   
  • Just like with our first build, the Stygian ZInogre Gunlance is used here because of its Normal Level 7 shelling.

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As a coffee-powered typist, Chris is an expert at playing through caffeine-powered binges and writing about what happens during those binges.
Gamer Since: 1995
Favorite Genre: FPS
Currently Playing: Monster Hunter World: Iceborne
Top 3 Favorite Games:Titanfall, Mass Effect 3, Megaman Legacy Collection
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