In this guide we talk about the one, the only, the godlike Monster Hunter World skill – Weakness Exploit.  Here’s a summary of what we will be tackling here:

  • In-game description
  • FAQ / Actual Mechanics
    • How does Weakness Exploit work?
    • Just how good is Weakness Exploit?
    • Is Weakness Exploit worth it, compared to other skills?
  • Summary and Discussion

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Weakness Exploit skill: in-game description

Weakness Exploit
Increase the affinity of attacks that hit a monster weak spot.
Skill Level Effects
1 Attacks that his weak spots gain +15% affinity.
2 Attacks that his weak spots gain +30% affinity.
3 Attacks that his weak spots gain +50% affinity.
Decoration? Tenderizer Jewel L2 medium

Aye, it’s as good as it sounds.

Weakness Exploit – FAQ & Mechanics

How does Weakness Exploit work? Surprisingly simple. Given the confusion surrounding a lot of the other skills, Weakness Exploit is refreshingly transparent. “You gain 15/30/50% extra affinity on hits against weakpoints”.

This bonus is a LINEAR ADDITION. For clarity, if you had an original affinity of:
5%, Weakness Exploit will give you a total of 20/35/55% against weakpoints.
20%, Weakness Exploit will give you a total of 45/50/70% against weakpoints.

Naturally, hitting normal or hardened monster hitzones will yield no benefit from it.

Just how good is Weakness Exploit? The short answer: Really damn good.

The long answer? About as good as you make it out to be. Obviously, the more you hit weakpoints, the more you get the bonus. In any given hunt, a vast majority of your strikes SHOULD connect to weakpoints anyway!

Think of it this way – it gives a 50% affinity bonus on your attacks THAT MATTER. But to truly understand “how good” it is, we have to know the value of Affinity (or Critical Eye). As we determined in that guide, it’s roughly .25% damage increase per point of Affinity. This table reflects the correlation to DPS with theoretical 100% uptime.

Skill Level Affbonus DPS%
Weakness Exploit 1 15 3.75
Weakness Exploit 2 15 3.75
Weakness Exploit 3 20 5
 –  – Total: 12.5
 –  – Avg: 4.17

The first and second point give 3.75% each, the third gives 5%. The total investment of 3 points gives 12.5% with an average of 4.17%. That’s damn good.

Here’s a table comparing Weakness Exploit versus various percentages of uptime.

WE Uptime DPS% Avg
100% 12.5 4.17
90% 11.25 3.75
80% 10 3.33
70% 8.75 2.92
60% 7.5 2.50
50% 6.25 2.08
40% 5 1.67
30% 3.75 1.25
20% 2.5 0.83
10% 1.25 0.42

This table actually surprised me. How to read this? Let’s say at 50% Weakness Exploit uptime, we get a DPS% increase of 6.25%, with an average per point gain of 2.08%.

All calculations prove the one thing we all already know…

Weakness Exploit is beyond godlike.

Is Weakness Exploit worth it compared to other skills? Yes. In fact it’s the very first offensive skill on my list when thinking of builds (behind “build enabling” or “weapon must haves”).

Let’s directly compare it to the other skills quickly.

Attack Boost is the basic of the basic. Most builds would be happy to have it. Attack Boost L4 is roughly as efficient as Weakness Exploit at 55% uptime. Even missing half your hits, it’s still equal to or better than AB4.

Critical Boost, even with its best case scenario of 100% crit (4% boost) loses to WE at 100% uptime (4.17%). Interestingly, Weakness Exploit is one of the few ways to get to that magical 100% critical anyway.

Critical Eye is obviously inferior. It would take missing weakspots 90% of the time for Critical Eye to be better than Weakness Exploit. If this is happening to you, I’ve got some bad news.

Only Agitator and Maximum Might are in this tier of “greatness”.

You’d need to have a very very good excuse NOT to use Weakness Exploit.

What armor has Weakness Exploit?

Separated by “good” and “not so good” sources.

Tree Slot Skill 1 Skill 2 Slots
Better options
Dragonking a Head Weakness Exploit II B
Rathalos B Chest Weakness Exploit II S
Teostra a Hands Weakness Exploit II S
Teostra B Hands Weakness Exploit B
Worse options
Rathalos a Boots Weakness Exploit Jump Master x
Rathalos B Chest Weakness Exploit Fire Attack x
Teostra a Legs Weakness Exploit Blast Attack II x
Kulu a Head Weakness Exploit Fire Resistance x

In case you missed it the decoration is “Tenderizer Jewel L2“, Medium slot.

Weakness Exploit – Summary & Discussion

What’s more to be said? It’s one of, if not, the best DPS increasing skills. It’s that simple. Most builds would find ways and means to cram this in their build. Here’s what your thought pattern should look like:

My thought flowchart on skills for a build:

    • Build enabling skills
    • Weapon “Must haves”?
    • Weakness Exploit 3
    • Did I feed my family?
    • Defensive “Must haves” for certain fights.
  • MM / Agit / AB 4, whatever best I can fit in.

Well, if you were on the fence about Weakness Exploit in Monster Hunter World – don’t. It’s so good its ALMOST MANDATORY. While I would like to call this a “guide”, you would TRULY have to be LOST to find validation for this god tier skill.

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    • 1% affinity is equal to an average DPS increase of 0.25% (1% of a 25% increased critical hit), .35 and .4 respectively with CB. So multiply WE’s 15/30/50 with that. I should add a table of WE+CB…

  1. You should add, that “weak point” is defined as damage weakness of 45% or above for your weapon type. That hasn’t changed since the games before, it seems. Strangely it isn’t mentioned anywhere but a few reddit posts.


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