Monster Hunter: World features a plethora of big scaly beasties to challenge young greenhorns and old hands alike, if you’ve been following this series of articles you’ll have seen that much. Nergigante is a mean ol’ sonuvabitch and makes sure you know it, first making an appearance during the Assigned quest “One for the History Books” and again during “A Colossal Task”. The version of Nergigante you encounter during these two quests is massively weakened compared to the version you battle later on in “A Wound and a Thirst”, and a good thing too as the later version will quite often one-shot an ill-equipped hunter.
Nergigante’s early appearances involve doing enough damage to drive it away before continuing to hunt Zorah Magdaros. These are undoubtedly the easiest encounters with the beast you’re going to get, so learn from them and learn well. Nergigante will flee after sustaining enough damage, usually involving breaking a collection of its regenerating quills a couple times.
Once you’ve progressed a little further and discovered the true nature of Nergigante it’s time to face the full-powered version and DAMN is he a doozy, on to the sub-sections!
Know Thy Enemy
“To know thy enemy is to know thyself” or some such profound and meaningful speech, but knowing how this guy moves and attacks will certainly help. Nerg’s repertoire of attacks is formidable. Focusing on charges and quick dash attacks akin to that of the Odogaron. Nerg is deceptively mobile for a monster its size, but then again they all are. This critter isn’t just quick but tough too, however its harder hitting attacks have plenty of windup making them easy to spot but by no means easy to dodge.
The most lethal of these attacks is the Dive Bomb Quill Charge. No idea if that’s its real name, but it sums up the move perfectly. Spikey Joe will pull back a ways and take to the air before dive bombing a stretch of ground in front of it, anything caught in the path is going to get hit HARD and anyone caught at the end of it will take a faceful of quills, killing most hunters in one hit.
Nergigante will grow spines in various locations on his body throughout the fight, keeping the number of these quills to a minimum will massively decrease Nerg’s range and damage output. Quills in the different locations will enhance different attacks; Head and wings will project quills outwards during charge attacks, clusters on his legs allow for quill blasts during stomping rage attacks.
The quills will begin to blacken over the course of the fight, as Nergigante’s rage builds. Once they are fully blackened you need to get the hell out of the way as they will deal massive damage to anyone caught in subsequent attacks.
Your first encounter with the REAL Nergigante has you pretty massively outclassed. All the Elder Dragons have serious stopping power but you don’t get to face them until after you’ve been introduced to the hell that is Elder Dragon culling at the end of Nerg’s claws. Hopefully you’ve been doing bounties throughout your game and have built up a healthy stock of armour spheres and zenny. Upping your equipment’s defence rating as high as possible is definitely necessary before this fight.
What armour set you use is entirely up to your own preference, use what ever works for your weapon and playstyle of choice. Equipping a bow/gunner armour because it gives more kill rewards isn’t all that useful if you plan on using a Great Sword or Switch Axe.
Mantles are your friend here. Fighting the real Nerg for the first time you will only be able to bring one tool with you into combat and I suggest you bring the Vitality Mantle. For those of you who haven’t used the Tools much and are unfamiliar with this particular mantle, allow me:
The vitality mantle is able to absorb a set amount of damage or last or a given period of time before its effect wears off and becomes useless until removed and allowed to recharge. Throwing the mantle on just before you engage Nerg is the best way to maximise its use. The mantle makes you invulnerable to a point, not invincible. A charging Nergigante will still mess up your day as much as any other first-time hunter, so stay on the move where possible. Take advantage but know the mantle’s limits.
Save Our Ship
Of course this has the con of allowing complete strangers into your game and experience has shown about a 50/50 chance of recruiting some lemming with a gamepad. Use the flare but it’s by no means a flawless system and results may vary.
Shoot to Thrill
For the first time Nerg-hunters, maintain distance and pack a ranged weapon with plenty of thunder damage. The Kadachi Strikebow or Flying Kadachi Strikebow allows for a great blend of damage and mobility, two things you can’t live without when dealing with Nergigante. Be wary of pulling aggro from melee focused hunters and try to maintain enough stamina to evade when he turns on you.
Nergigante is susceptible to poison, paralysis and sleep effects from weapons and ammo, allowing you to take full advantage of a couple moments respite. Putting Nerg to sleep and then planting some Mega Barrel Bombs on his head is a great tactic, however co-ordination with your teammates is key if you mean to take full advantage of it.
Less of a status ailment but Flash Pods can be life savers, if you aren’t carrying them as part of your standard kit then how you’ve made it this far is beyond me. Flash pods not only stun and blind Nergigante but they can also be used to interrupt his attacks.
Nergigante is one tough customer, probably the second hardest fight you’re likely to encounter in the base game due to his high mobility, lethal moveset and massive range. Heed these words and you should stand a fairer chance of defeating the beast than you have done otherwise.