Mushroomancer is an ability that lets you consume raw Mushrooms as opposed to using them to craft items, or using items that give each mushroom's consumed effects. It doesn't do anything better than the regular items, but they're so easy to find and pick up that abundance becomes the name of the game. This is a skill that lets you keep going, and going, and going, without needing to stop every couple of hunts to gather items to craft the items you need, and by proxy allowing you to stockpile on the items you'd replace to use on other items to complement your loadouts. All you need to do then is add a couple more skills, detailed inside, and you'll have a build that puts any other supporting build (and weapon, Hunting Horn), to shame with how many buffs and heals you dish out. Satisfaction not guaranteed because I don't know how you operate.
Guide to Mushroomancer
This guide is made in mind that the person following it has beaten the Main Story Quests of the base game of World, and are either starting Iceborne content, in the middle of it, or have reached the end of the game and can farm the monsters and resources needed.
For everything before then, just barrel through the story and any optional quests beforehand with Defender Weapons and Defender/Guardian armor. My only recommendations for you are as follows:
- Try the Sword & Shield or Hunting Horn, as you see fit, to familiarize yourself with the movesets you'll want to use with this build.
- Keep an eye out for Mushrooms to collect, save yourself some time with farming later down the road.
- Upgrade your Botanical Research Station and get all your Palico Gadgets/Tailraiders/Raider Rides to alleviate some farming and maximize your solo/duo play with Palicos.
[Mushroomancer] Otherwise, Why Are You Here?
Mushroomancer, first and foremost, can be considered the most essential skill in any Mushroomancer build because without it you'd just be a regular Joe who can't digest mushrooms because they'll "poison me" and "draw the life out of me". Fortunately, you're not an average Joe because you have this skill. With this skill at Rank 3, you can eat the following Mushrooms for the following effects:
- Blue Mushroom: Restores a small amount of Health. Same as a regular Potion, but with no drink time.
- Toadstool: Increases Health Recovery rate for 5 minutes. Also cures bleeding. Same as an Immunizer. Comparable to an Astera Jerky but you can carry double of them.
- Nitroshroom: Increases Attack Power. Same effect as a Demondrug, doesn't stack with it.
- Parashroom: Increases Defense. Same effect as an Armordrug, doesn't stack with it.
- Mandragora: Maximizes your Health Gauge and fully heals you. Same as a Max Potion, but you can carry ten. Not affected by Wide-Range.
- Devil's Blight: Reduces dodging, jumping, and evading stamina costs by half for four minutes. Also maximizes your Stamina Gauge. Same as Dash Juice with double the carry capacity.
- Exciteshroom: Performs one of the above effects at random. No effects are affected by Wide-Range.
[Essential Skills] Mushroomancer's Best Friends
These two skills are the only ones I'd absolutely 100% say are essential to the Mushroomancer playstyle. Every other one I detail are strongly recommended on top of these, but if for some reason you just want to half-♥♥♥ it and just take what's essential, these are what I always say to pick up.
- Speed Eating 3 increases your consumption speed of food and drink items by 64%, and quick use items, like Mushrooms, by 38%. You want to be shoving these items down your gullet fast so you can get right back into the action, and no animations should be able to stop you from that.
- Wide-Range 5 makes items you use affect nearby allies in a very large radius with full efficiency. There is no alterations or substitutions to this. While yes, you can drop this skill if you just hate playing with people, even your Palico, but without it what's the point of having such an item-centric build? Besides, as far as you know the only items your party brought with them are what they take out of the supply box and leave you nothing but the Empty Phials and Ammo you're not using. Nobody likes to play support, but everybody likes to win. If you like to win, you're going to want to take this so those Long Sword weeaboos don't cart every five minutes. Maybe only every ten if you're lucky.
[Strongly Recommended Skill(s)] What Makes This Build Shine
Technically, this makes two skills, but really there's only one skill I can give my full support to as something I wouldn't be caught without, and that's Free Meal.
- Free Meal has a 25% chance to proc at Level 1, allowing you to just not consume any food or drink item you use. Think of it as a freebie item every once in a while which keeps you from having to jump back to camp to restock because either you're too trigger happy with the heals and buffs, or your other three hunters are eating Nergigante divebombs for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
- However, with three pieces of Brute Tigrex/Tigrex gear, you unlock Free Meal Secret in which you unlock two more ranks to Free Meal which increases the proc chance to 50% and 75% respectively. This takes Free Meal into levels of absurdity in how many times it will proc over a whole hunt. It's not uncommon to see some Mega Potions or Blue Mushrooms leftover even though you've been spamming it when someone even takes the smallest pittance of damage. This gives you an absurd amount of staying power before you're absolutely out of toys in your utility belt. Get this skill when you can, it's real good.
[Weapons] Make The Man
There are only two weapons I could really endorse with this kind of power, and I'm pretty sure you know their names well enough for they fit a support build like a glove.
- Sword & Shield's claim to fame is it's fast attacks, well rounded damage, the low skill floor moveset, and the fact that you can use items while the weapon is unsheathed. This removes the need for Quick Sheath to be added to get access to your item wheel and radial menu. Also, with how fast this weapon attacks, you'll be able to proc any status you bring to the party with relative ease. Sleep to drop Mega Barrel Bombs, Paralysis with a full group to capitalize on a large damage window, Blast to still deal a respectable amount of damage every once in a while, and Poison if you like the cool purple drool.
- If you're going support, why not go the whole extra mile to bring the Hunting Horn? Just cobble together some Horn Maestro and stack buffs on top of the buffs you're already giving. Hunting Horn is basically a diet Hammer and you're a blunt weapon all the way through. Aim for the head and maintain your melodies while laying down the mother of all beatdowns and downbeats as you play every monster's funeral march.
In the next section, I detail the weapons I like to bring to hunts, but don't think that means these are the only weapons you should bring. For Sword & Shield, I'd say collect a few with different Status Ailments/Elements and keep an eye on weaknesses for each hunt. For Hunting Horn, maybe you prefer a different set of melodies. Or maybe you want to use a whole different class of weapon because it's what you can play well. Just pick the ones you like, and everything should shake out fine.
[Weapon Recommendations] My Personal Favorites
Ideally, the weapon and charms should be the most flexible parts of this build. Since that is the case, your options of weapons are pretty wide as long as you can pick up a charm to match with it. These are just my personal favorites that I've found in Sword & Shield and Hunting Horn, in case you just want something to look at or work toward.
- For Sword & Shield, I like to bring Blast Damage since even though you're playing support, your damage output still matters for successful hunts. More damage = Faster kills/captures = Less chance of carting = Less healing you have to do. That being the case, the only S&S weapon without Hidden Blast worth talking about is the Pukei-Pukei > Brachydios line of weapons, ending in Booming Barrage. I pair this with a Demolition Charm to maximize my blast proc generation which not only deals damage, but does Part Damage as well. While you don't have Partbreaker, unless you take it's charm or swap some gems around, it's still going to be very helpful to have if you're, say, farming mantles.
- For Hunting Horn, it's less about bringing the right status but bringing the right melodies. And in the case for some builds, having a Level 4 Gem slot or 2 Level 1+ Gem slots to add Horn Maestro into your build overall. That being the case, The Rasping Ballad from the Anjanath > Fulgur Anjanath > Acidic Glavenus line fits the bill for all of these cases. With it, you're bringing Attack Up (L/XL) and Knockbacks Negated to the group alongside your other plethora of buffs, and you bring Impact Echo Wave and Echo Wave "Dragon" to output some creamy damage. You also bring All Melody Effects Extended so you can focus more on dealing that Impact Echo Wave damage. This is also increased by an Adamantine Charm which you can pick up from the Optional Quest: A Purr-fect Room: Stone, which gives Non-elemental Boost to pair with it's Hidden Paralysis, and Bludgeoner, which can pair well with it's normally sub-par Low Blue Sharpness to deal some more bonus damage as your sharpness goes down.
[Early MR Build] Fresh Off The Bus: Banbaro Alpha
Not even three monsters in and you already have access to a fresh new set of armor that complements your choice of skills. All the main skills are here, and you have access to slightly more damage potential than the Defender/Guardian sets. Of course, choose a weapon as you see fit, I'm just using Defender Warhatchet V as a baseline.
- Features all the main skills to get you started and acclimated to the build, and as long as you keep up in weapons you'll make it to where you need to be to reach the next stage of the build path.
- Offensive Guard 3 and Resentment 2 give you some very situational damage boosting, but it's nothing to hold your breath for.
- Health Boost 3 gives you a great amount of survivability to keep you going, along with the Rarity 9 armor with Iceborne-tier defenses
[Midgame MR Build 1] Tigrex Armor The Best
So you've slain your first Tigrex, and I know you're looking at that Free Meal Secret and you want it more than anything. Well, this should sate your endless appetite for the time being until you dig a little deeper.
- Saves the core skills, but adds Free Meal Secret to increase item efficiency. This should make up more than enough for the loss of Health Boost 3. Don't worry, it'll come back later once we can afford the slots.
- Replaces Offensive Guard and Resentment for straight Attack Up 6, which gives you a more tangible and accessible damage boost to keep up with monsters. It's not a crit build's level of damage output, but it's definitely better than you've been doing so far.
- Earplugs 3... I guess?
At this point, you've also taken care of Nargacuga and now should have access to the Nargacuga Special Arena Quest. With Black Belt Coins and Nargacuga Coins, you're able to create a Black Belt Mail Alpha+ which comes with Mushroomancer 2 and Wide-Range 1. Use this if you can get it by this point, and mix and match Tigrex gear as you can get it to free up your charm slot to get some more offensive skills in, like the second build you'll find here for this point.
[Midgame MR Build 2] Getting Close to Perfection
Now here's where we enter the realm of our budding offensive strategy! With the Black Belt Mail Alpha+, we're able to free up our charm slot and switch out our belt to give us some better skills.
- Attack Up 7 is the apex of our damage output as far as this build is concerned. We're leagues away from the highest DPS, but we're not wet-noodling the monster anymore.
- Use your Charm Slot to play off of your weapon choices. Status Attack Charms to maximize your proc build rate to help your group in a myriad of ways, or any Offensive Charms to output more damage. This slot is designed to be flexible with this build. so just pick the best one for any situation you might find yourself in.
- The Sharp Jewel gives us Protective Polish, which is more of a utility to keep our weapons at maximum sharpness longer since we don't have the space for Speed Sharpening or Handicraft. Replaceable if you don't have any of the specific decos.
- A single Brace Jewel keeps you from getting interrupted by other hunters so you can get all up in the monsters toes as much as you please. Replaceable if you don't have any of the specific decos.
- A weapon decoration slot can turn Stun Resistance 2 from the Dober Coil Alpha+ into Stun Resistance 3 which keeps you from being stunned so you can much more easily stabilize yourself or your party. Or, if you play alone, slot in a Fortify gem to maximize the buff if you're prone to carting.
From right here, you've basically perfected the build. You have your support and offensive skills, and you even have some room for utility to keep your modest damage on the board. You're pretty much able to stop here if you want and have this to go through the Guiding Lands and any endgame content you see fit. But, Brute Tigrex exists, and his gear is the apex of the artform that is Free Meal Secret.
[Endgame MR Build] Brute Tigrex: The Endgame
I don't have a proper build image for this just yet, but for now I do have this for you to look at:
And here we are, one of many final setups that include Brute Tigrex gear. The core is pretty much the same between variations:
- Brute Tigrex Head Alpha+.
- Black Belt Mail Alpha+.
- Brute Tigrex Arms Alpha/Beta+.
From here, swap between regular Tigrex Belt and Legs to finish your 3-piece set, and your belt/legs of choice with skills or deco slots that you want. It really makes no meaningful difference, but Blackveil Vaal Hazak's belt gives Peak Performance 1, which is pretty much your best bet in terms of eking out a tiny amount of damage. Brute Tigrex Arms gives you back your precious Health Boost into the build, making its mighty return giving you a health bar larger than most folk. Survival is important so you're not eating all the carts when you're the one keeping everyone alive after all.
Currently not out for PC yet, but Rajang can give you Resentment 2 back instead of Peak Performance 1, for a nice little nostalgia trip back to the days of Banbaro:
[Palico] Your Right-Hand Cat
For Solo/Duo play, your Palico is a definitive boon to your hunts. This goes without saying, but if you're one to bring your furry friends along, then this is what I can tell you:
- For Palico Gadgets, Coral Orchestra functions as a mini-Hunting Horn that will give you a plethora of buffs for you and your friends that make your life generally easier. Meowlotov Cocktail is your best option to increase your Palico's damage to supplement your own. They'll even drop some bombs with you if you put the monster to sleep. Finally, the Plunderblade is a staple classic that not only alleviates some of your farming woes, but also gives you a very reliable source of income through trade-in items.
- The Tailraider Signal you get for helping the Boaboa in Hoarfrost Reach lets you summon an entourage of Lynian helper and Small Monster to aid you in your solo ventures. Your Palico and Lynian can receive your damage and defense buffs, and everyone can be effected by your healing. Your Lynian and Small Monster aren't very tanky, so you'll definitely flex your healing bones even while you're alone.
- For Palico Weapons, you can either double-up on whatever status you're bringing, or bring a second, different status weapon to play off of yourself. High recommendations go to Paralysis in general.
- Finally, Palico Armor doesn't really make too much of a difference. So go as wild and wacky as you like with your little furball friend's fashion.
[Item Loadout] What You Bring To The Table
Speaking of variation, your item loadout can go through a lot of iterations before you find what you like. This is just what I like and can recommend you bring to your hunts for a general catch-all loadout.
- Always bring Mega Potions! Extra healing never hurt nobody, and it especially won't hurt you. Mega Potions are just a staple of anyone's item pouch because it heals for a lot of HP very efficiently, and Speed Eating 3 lets you chug one of these down so fast it's near-instant. Your friends won't feel the same speed, but it's still a decent health regen effect.
- Every mushroom is essential, except for Exciteshroom. I just like bringing Exciteshrooms because it finishes the set, and for those very fringe cases where you run out of healing for yourself and you're the only thing keeping yourself from the Quest Failed screen. An Exciteshroom Max Potion could save your ♥♥♥. Also you need them for Farcasters,
- Mushrooms can't cure all things, but Nulberries and Antidotes definitely bring that home. Energy Drinks also stave off the sleep effect for monsters like Nightshade Paolumu and Radobaan.
- You definitely don't need to bring Hot Drinks and Cool Drinks to every hunt, but as this is just a lazy catch-all loadout, you're free to fix it however you wish.
- Flash Pods to interrupt monsters, Dung Pods to keep other monsters out of your business so you don't have to heal for three monster beatings at once.
- There's no reason to not capture a monster nowadays unless they're an Elder Dragon, so always keep a Shock Trap and Tranq Bombs with you.
- Mega Barrel Bombs to place on sleeping monsters if you or someone brings a sleep weapon. Use Devil's Blight and Large Barrel Bombs to craft more Mega Barrel Bombs in the field.
- Power/Armor Charms/Talons just to get a small amount of damage and defense into your build, you'll need as much as you can get here.
Of course, if you like, you can bring Demon Powders, Might Seeds, and Might Pills with all the extra Might Seeds you're saving to help your group output even more damage, but unless you're doing 20 Minute Investigations, I don't see a need.
[Gameplay Tips] Eating Mushrooms 101
If you've gotten this far in the game, I can assume you know how to swing around whatever weapon you see fit, so I can't tell you what you don't already know about that. However, if you've never stepped foot into support builds I can sure tell you what I know:
- Free Meal Secret makes it so the chances of actually consuming an item are very low. You'd actually have to try to burn through a stack of your consumables in order to actually do so. Be as liberal as you want to with item usage. If you can queue a heal or cleanse a blight faster than other hunters can react, then by all means keep clearing their statuses and keep their health high so they can keep putting out more damage. Same goes for healing and cleansing yourself even though everyone else doesn't need it. Take care of yourself first before other people, don't be a martyr.
- That being said, keep an eye on everyone's health bars, including your own. Any debuffs your squad might have show up separately from the rotating queue of buffs that they do have so you should be able to drop Antidotes and Nulberries on them at a moment's notice. Say for example you're fighting Acidic Glavenus, you can remove the Defense Down effect from the people that get hit by it by reapplying your Parashroom armor buff.
- You can see when you need to reapply buffs from Devil's Blight, Toadstools and Hot/Cool Drinks by looking at your own health bar and seeing if they're missing. As long as everyone is in the same zone as you, everyone should get the buffs when you reapply it to yourself.
- Rearrange your Item Bar. I can't tell you enough how helpful this was to me, and for an item-centric playstyle it's going to be a lifesaver for you. Open your Item Pouch from your start menu and Rearrange your loadout. You can even hide some more useless items like the BBQ Spit, Fishing Rod, and Camera to save a couple rotations through your item pouch. How you do it is up to preference but as a general rule of thumb, keep similar items together. Same goes for your Radial Menu if you like to use it.
- Use the Clutch Claw to tenderize easy to access spots on the monster if you're struggling to hit weakpoints. Especially on a shorter range weapon like Sword & Shield, maybe the only part of a huge monster you can hit safely are the legs (or back legs, when applicable). Using the Clutch Claw, assisted by mantles to prevent getting immediately knocked off like Temporal Mantle or Rocksteady Mantle, you can use Claw Attacks to easily tenderize spots and hack away at them uninterrupted. You might just make the lives of your other hunters easier as well, if they notice.
[Canteen] Pre-Hunt Gains
The Chef's Choice Platter is always a well and good option if you're lazy, but you're carrying around 10+ Max Potions and Dash Juices, so there's no reason you're not already at Maximum Health and Stamina. In that case, you might as well pile on some extra damage, which means you want to get some Meat on your bones with the Meat Platter.
If you're one to make their own custom meals, I can recommend you two or three things:
- If you have access to the six Resilience meats, make a platter with those to get a chance of getting Felyne Moxie, which helps you survive the regular one-shot suspects.
- If you have access to the six Preparation alcohols, you can forego an Attack boost for a chance at Felyne Safeguard, which basically gives you a whole other faint to eat through before a quest up and fails.
- Of course, if you feel like you're dying too easily, you can swap for Vegetables and Fish to get Elemental Defense and Defense buffs respectively.
[Botanical Research Center] Grow Your Own 'Shrooms
As a miscellaneous benefit to opting for a Mushroomancer build, you can stop using your Botanical Research Center as a pure Honey farm, and opt instead to farm Mushrooms that you'll definitely want to create a stockpile of. Especially early on when you don't have as much or even any Free Meal at all. More likely than not, you'll be munching Blue Mushrooms, Mandragoras, Devil's Blight, and Toadstools, so keep a healthy amount of those, and remember to swap in Nitroshrooms and Parashrooms every once in a while.
Just as well, you may also find yourself running low on items that you just can't buy from the Stockpile Vendor or get sustainably from the Steamworks, such as Mega Barrel Bombs, Shock Traps, Farcasters, etc. You can swap out Mushrooms for things like Smokenuts and Exciteshrooms, Thunderbugs, Devil's Blight, etc. Or just go on a good old fashioned Gathering run in your preferred zone of choice.