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How to use a Special Skill in Monster Hunter Now

Overgrade your way to new abilities

A hunter holding a Great Sword next to an icon of a weapon improving Image: Niantic / Capcom via Polygon

Special Skills in Monster Hunter Now are powerful attacks you can deploy in battle.

You need to use one to progress through the main story, with it being the first task as you complete the Prologue and enter Chapter 1.

The earlier you learn how to unlock and use a Special Skill, the sooner you can progress through the narrative and expand your monster list — not to mention understanding how useful they can be to turn the tide in battle.

How to unlock a Special Skill in Monster Hunter Now

To unlock a Special Skill in Monster Hunter Now, you must improve a weapon to grade 2 through overgrading — the game’s terminology for increasing the strength of a piece of equipment; after reaching the max level within level 1, you can then overgrade to level 2, then level up within level 2 until you can overgrade to level 3, and so on.

To get started, visit your equipment screen (it’s in the lower left corner of the map, represented by your current weapon), then browse the weapons. Select the weapon you wish to improve, and you’ll see stats, the level and grade progress, and most importantly, the Special Skill (which always unlocks at grade 2).

The weapon upgrade screen in Monster Hunter Now, showing grades, stats and the Special Skill Image: Niantic / Capcom via Polygon

When ready, tap the Level Up button and keep improving the weapon until you unlock grade 2. All of this requires resources, such as monster parts and Zenny, so depending on the equipment in question, you might need to hunt a specific monster multiple times first to fullfil the leveling requirements.

Upgrading a weapon in Monster Hunter Now from Grade 1 to Grade 2 Image: Niantic / Capcom via Polygon

Note that each weapon type will have a Special Skill unique to that weapon — so it’s worth experimenting with a variety of weapons (you’ll unlock more as you progress your Hunter Rank) to see which suits you best.

How to use a Special Skill in Monster Hunter Now

Once you have a Special Skill unlocked, equip that weapon and enter battle. You’ll now see a gauge appear in the lower half of the screen (above your health) which increases the more damage you dish out.

When full, you can tap the gauge to unleash the Special Skill. For the Sword and Shield, this is the Perfect Rush Combo, which deals out a series of powerful attacks.

A tutorial showing a Special Skill in Monster Hunter Now Image: Niantic / Capcom via Polygon

Not only that, but for the duration of the Special Skill, you are invulnerable to damage, meaning you don’t have to worry about dodging attacks for a short period.

Something worth considering is that you don’t have to use a Special Skill right away. This means besides saving the Special Skill to enter a period of invincibility for when the fight becomes difficult, it can be banked for another monster entirely. Our recommendation, if you know you have a tricky battle coming up, is to build up a full gauge from fighting lesser monsters before deploying it for the more challenging fight.

This is especially useful if you have a powerful monster ready and waiting in a Paintball that requires some preparation first.

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