Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak Title Update 2 Review

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Title Update 2 for Monster Hunter Rise is here and it brings lots of new stuff for hunters to play around with — from 3 new Monster variants to the long-awaited Layered Weapons system. Let’s break it down in detail and see what makes this update so great.

New Monsters

Flaming Espinas

Flaming Espinas is a monster that was previously seen in Monster Hunter Frontier and is the second Frontier monster to be added to Sunbreak, after its original species.

Flaming Espinas features a much darker color palette with its orange-brownish scales and horns and spikes glowing with bright flaming yellows. If looks could kill – it’d be a formidable weapon at Flaming Espinas’s arsenal, but that doesn’t mean he ain’t got an absolute powerhouse of attacks up his sleeve. This Espinas takes its fire control to the next level, and he does not lose his poison attributes. He masterfully mixes his elements, creating lingering poisonous clouds after all his breath attacks, due to poison evaporating from his flames. He even mixes up this effect to some of his bite attacks. Even more so, his flames also subject hunters to Defense down status, making surviving a combo at the fires of Flaming Espinas nearly impossible. Just like the regular Espinas, Flaming also puts his massive horn to good use by charging at hunters, and his other physical attack, the tackle, now also has a twist: Flaming will wait out until fully committing to a tackle in hopes to make hunter roll preemptively catching them off-guard. And of course, when speaking about Flaming’s attack one can not forget to mention his ultimate super-nova move. When executing it, Flaming will charge his flame gland for a few seconds before unleashing a giant explosion of fire and deadly poison that is almost guaranteed to cart a hunter caught in it. When Flaming feels especially lethal he might even follow up his nova with another poisonous fireball of immense force.

Overall it’s a great fight, especially if you liked original Espinas, but it’s easy to see how he might not be everyone’s cup of tea.

Flaming Espinas Equipment

Unfortunately Flaming’s equipment is simply recolored versions of normal Espi gear, however, both weapons and armor have a uniqueness to them when it comes to their skills. Here is the skills rundown of Flaming Espinas Armor

Skill Name Skill Level
Attack Boost Lv6
Razor Sharp Lv3
Spare Shot Lv3
Charge Master Lv3
Marathon Runner Lv3
Intrepid Heart Lv2
Burst* Lv3

* — Burst is the new name given to the Chain Crit skill in TU2.

Intrepid Heart is a new skill, only available on this armor. Its effect gives you a fillable bar. You fill this bar by continuously landing attacks, and when the bar is filled you will negate damage reaction, receive less damage, and won’t get knocked back by a single attack. At level 2 this skill reduces damage taken even more and triggers an explosion on the effect triggered.

Here is Flaming Espinas armor deco slots disposition:

Armor Piece Slots
Head x1 Lv3, x1 Lv2
Chest x2 Lv2
Arms x1 Lv4, x1 Lv2
Waist x1 Lv4, x2 Lv1
Legs x1 Lv4, x1 Lv1

Flaming Espinas’s weapons have a unique feature in that although being fire element weapons they have a chance to inflict poison status on hits.

Violet Mizutsune

Violet Mizutsune is the brand new Rare Species of Mizutsune making a debut in Sunbreak. Even though fire element Mizutsune might seem like a lame concept at first, you’ll lose this feeling after fighting it once, because this fight is an absolute treat, and generally the most favorated within the community of the three fights of Title Update 2. Instead of soapy water Violet Mizu produces a flammable, oily, almost gasoline-like substance from its body and is able to use it to glide around a battlefield. Violet is able to make its bubbles hone in on hunters and explode in a fire burst. Violet’s agility allows it to quickly trap hunters in a circle of flaming puddles and if a hunter was to have their wirebugs on cooldown when that happens — they’d be having a really bad time. Even though the fight is quite intense as it is, it all changes when Mizu starts readying its ultimate attack. It forms a giant bubble filled with gas, that lingers in the air for quite a long time, that works as an intimidation tactic because you never know when Mizu will decide to pop it. But when it does, Violet spins around creating a vortex that sucks players in and drops the giant bubble right in the center of the vortex creating a violet explosion. Surviving this move requires you to constantly be running away from the vortex and wiredash away as soon as Violet Mizu finishes spinning and readies the bubble.

In conclusion, Violet Mizutsune turned out to be much more than people expected from “fire Mizutsune”. It is a great fight that keeps you on your toes the whole time. The pure spectacle of it is incredible, truly worth of “Rare Species” fight.

Violet Mizutsune Equipment

Once again, the armor is a recolor of normal Mizu armor, however, it boasts a new selection of skills

Skill Name Skill Level
Adrenaline Rush Lv2
Evade Extender Lv3
Embolden Lv3
Weakness Exploit Lv3
Stamina Surge Lv3
Agitator Lv5
Flinch Free Lv3
Offensive Guard Lv2

Thematically fitting to the agile fox monster that Mizu is, this set provides multiple skills focused on evading and punishing.

Embolden is the new skill seen on this armor for the first time. Its effect makes it easier for monsters to get enraged when targeting a player sporting this skill, but in return, it boosts your defense, adds i-frames to your dodge-roll, and lowers impact when guarding.

And here is the deco slots disposition:

Armor Piece Slots
Head x1 Lv4, x2 Lv1
Chest x1 Lv4, x1 Lv2, x1 Lv1
Arms x3 Lv2
Waist x2 Lv2, x1 Lv1
Legs x1 Lv4

And while Violet Mizutsune’s weapons don’t have any special features like Flaming Espinas’s, they are still completely viable endgame armaments nonetheless. Sporting a nice chunk of purple sharpness, a little bit of fire element, and x3 Lv2 decoration slots on most of them.

Risen Chameleos

Risen Chameleos is a new variant of one of The Elder Trio. It is also the first variant of Chameleos introduced in the series as a whole. Risen is the state the monsters enter when they overcome Qurio infection, similar (but not the same) to Malzeno and Giasmagorm. Risen Chameleos gets a few new moves, an overall stat increase, and a special state.

Risen State

In Risen state, Chameleos glows bright orange at the tips of his extremities and gets a huge speed increase. Entering this state is also accompanied by a burst of energy, but it is far less deadly than the affliction burst. He starts attacking way faster and deadlier, showering hunters in poison at every opportunity he gets. You might want to bring both Herbal Medicine and Antidotes to this fight, even more so if you are going to do it solo. Similar to the afflicted state, Chameleos can be toppled from Risen state, but the difference is that he will go back to normal Chameleos levels of speed and damage, instead of the huge slowdown the affliction topple provides.

Risen Chameleos Equipment

Risen Chameleos actually gets unique-looking armor but has no weapons to his name. One could argue that there is one decoration that should be considered Risen Chameleos equipment, but we’ll cover it when we get there. Anyway, here is the skills rundown:

Skill Name Skill Level
Peak Performance Lv3
Evade Window Lv3
Buildup Boost Lv3
Chameleos Blessing Lv4
Wirebug Whisperer Lv3
Foray Lv2

The new skills are Buildup Boost and Chameleos Blessing, and here are the effects:

Buildup Boost increases attack power when landed attacks build poison, sleep, blast or exhaust (exhaust on ranged weapons only) by 20% at Lv3.

Chameleos Blessing thematically copies Chameleos’s abilities by giving you an extended duration of poison effect, sometimes increasing the effectiveness of Spiribirds and giving full negation of wind pressure at Lv4. This skill, however, is also found on the new decoration that requires Chameleos Risegem to craft.

Here is the deco slots disposition on the Risen Mizuha armor:

Armor Piece Slots
Head x1 Lv4, x1 Lv3
Chest x1 Lv4,
Arms x1 Lv4, x1 Lv2, x1 Lv1
Waist x2 Lv4
Legs x1 Lv4, x2 Lv1

Interestingly, if you mix Risen Mizuha with Gold Rathian armors you can actually get Buildup Boost, Foray, and Status Trigger maxed as well as Evade Window Lv4 for ease of triggering this combo. This is not a meta mix-set, but from personal testing, I can vouch for this set being really fun to play.

Layered Weapons System

Layered weapons are back and better than ever. From its initial rendition in Iceborne, the Layered Weapons System has undergone some QoL improvements, and the generally big amount of weapons with unique models in MHR:S only made it even better.

So, what’s changed from Iceborne’s LW? It is no longer considered an augment for the weapon, but more akin to layered armor. You pick a weapon you like the looks of; get the required materials; craft it and now you are able to apply that look to any other weapon of the same class with no additional costs.

We can finally use those Royal Order and Antique Machina Weapons without sacrificing DPS, isn’t that great?

Other new additions

Now to go over some other noteworthy additions in a quick and nice list!

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