We will talk about the most MISUNDERSTOOD armor skill in Monster Hunter World – Critical Boost.  Here’s a summary of what I’ll talking about here:

  • In-game description
  • FAQ / Actual Mechanics
    • How does Critical Boost work? Like, TRULY?
    • Is Critical Boost good? How GOOD is it, if it is!?!?
    • Critical Boost worth it? Versus other skills?
  • Summary and Discussion

Critical Boost Armor Skill: In-game Description

Critical Boost
Increases the damage of critical hits.
Skill Level Effects
1 Increases damage dealt by critical hits by 30%
2 Increases damage dealt by critical hits by 35%
3 Increases damage dealt by critical hits by 40%
Decoration? ? (Haven’t found it yet) S? M? B?

Before you say “OMFG THIS IS DEEZNUTS” read on…


Critical Boost – FAQ & Mechanics

How does Critical Boost even work!? TRULY?

OKAY LISTEN UP. THIS DOESN’T ADD +30 “CRIT SEVERITY”
IT ADDS 5. FIVE. CINCO.

The default “critical hit severity” in this game is 25% BONUS damage. “1.25x Multiplier”. Does 25% more damage. Increases hits by 1/4th. However you wanna put it – that’s that.

CRITICAL BOOST ADDS A LINEAR PLUS FIVE PERCENT TO THIS. So…

With Critical Boost 1 added – “critical hit severity” now becomes 30% BONUS DAMAGE. “1.3x Multiplier”. Does 30% more damage. Increases hits by… you get the idea.

Do I need to rewrite it for Critical Boost II (35%)? Critical Boost III (40%)?


Is Critical Boost good? How good is it?

This one is hard to answer. So let’s use something that doesn’t lie. Math. To summarize it:

Every point of affinity ABOVE POSITIVE equates to
Critical Boost giving a 0.04~% DPS INCREASE.

CB Raw Aff Severity Crit Bonus Average Diff Gain %
0 1000 1% 25% 1250 250 1002.5 BASE <
1 1000 1% 30% 1300 300 1003 0.5 0.05
2 1000 1% 35% 1350 350 1003.5 1.0 0.10
3 1000 1% 40% 1400 400 1004 1.5 0.15
0 1000 5% 25% 1250 250 1012.5 BASE  <
1 1000 5% 30% 1300 300 1015 2.5 0.25
2 1000 5% 35% 1350 350 1017.5 5.0 0.49
3 1000 5% 40% 1400 400 1020 7.5 0.74
0 1000 50% 25% 1250 250 1125 BASE  <
1 1000 50% 30% 1300 300 1150 25.0 2.22
2 1000 50% 35% 1350 350 1175 50.0 4.44
3 1000 50% 40% 1400 400 1200 75.0 6.67
0 1000 100% 25% 1250 250 1250 BASE  <
1 1000 100% 30% 1300 300 1300 50.0 4.00
2 1000 100% 35% 1350 350 1350 100.0 8.00
3 1000 100% 40% 1400 400 1400 150.0 12.00

(Rounding errors make this look weird, but you get the message)

So here’s the “estimated DPS increases per affinity, per Critical Boost invested“.

Critical Boost Affinity % DPS Inc
L1 1 0.05
L2 1 0.10
L3 1 0.15
L1 5 0.25
L2 5 0.49
L3 5 0.74
L1 50 2.22
L2 50 4.44
L3 50 6.67
L1 100 4
L2 100 8
L3 100 12

I “feel” like I missed something small in there because there’s an odd semi-bellcurve (is that intended? or due to rounding??) … But the numbers at 100% vs 1% DO NOT LIE, and it revealed what was already quite obvious. More Affinity = better Critical Boost.

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How does Critical Boost stack up versus other offensive armor skills?

There’s no quick answer for this. Given the above info, we can assume “The more affinity you have the better it is” – while that’s already proven… How does it stack up versus other skills? Let’s look at the other armor skills first.

Non Elemental Boost gives a 10% increase to base damage, but likely after all dilutions (on average) when in consideration of complete builds it should give maybe 7%. This is of course an outlier, whose effect is extremely powerful for 1 medium gem slot.

Attack Boost is different per weapon, and different per weapon tree. But lets just put the ballpark on 1.5%. Likely higher for many weapons. The fourth node gives A LOT MORE THAN THAT, THOUGH.

Agitator is worth a little more than attack boost when it’s on… Maximum Might, Peak Performance… Weakness Exploit. There are many “situational” skill better than AB when they’re triggered. BUT we can assume 1.5% to 2% DPS increase per node is “a reasonable benchmark”.

YOU WOULD NEED 30%~ AFFINITY FOR CRITICAL BOOST
TO LET ITS FOOT INTO THE DOOR OF THE “VIABILITY REALM”.

So while it’s pretty bad for those popular “non ele negative aff” weapon builds, this kinda opens up the gates to “High affinity base weapons with decent raw stats”. Critical Boost becomes very very difficult to beat at 75+!


Critical Boost – Summary & Discussion

While at first people were raving about this skill (who wouldn’t… +30% linear bonus for one skill is dumb), it’s actual effects were misunderstood and vastly bloated.

Then, to further this – people COMPLETELY discounted this skill as “trash tier” upon discovery of the “truth”. But is it really trash?

The answer is, like all things, dependent on your entire stack. Hmmm… like builds with weapons that “happen to have” high affinity. For example I dislike all the other non-elemental Lances save for the Odogaron Lance. It has a high affinity so I might as well try squeezing in some crit boost.

However, if you start off with a massive -30% affinity, you’re gonna want to look elsewhere for more DPS.

Elemental Damage? Rathalos 2 set and Critical Boost? Listen up. this has too many variables for me to answer. But theoretically a sky-high affinity CB3 elemental damage build will wreck. That’s the short answer.


Increasing DPS is far more than just “the best offensive skill” stacking. Personal skill, and hell, even DEFENSIVE skills play a part into increasing DPS AND UPTIME. But, for the purposes of the Critical Boost skill ALONE, I hope this guide help you clarify on some things.

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