Monster Hunter World: Using the Handicraft skill to extend your sharpness gauge

While it doesn't have the more traditional RPG character level up mechanics, Monster Hunter World is still absolutely full of character progression that can be used to create wildly different character builds. Skills are one major way of doing this, and one of the most useful skills going is the Handicraft Skill. 

Handicraft is one of the armor skills we'd most recommend in Monster Hunter World, and alongside the Earplugs skill it can make some of the late-game, high-end, lengthy fights a little easier. It increases the length of the weapon sharpness gauge up to a maximum point (but not beyond it), essentially making weapons that go blunt more quickly more usable by ensuring you don't need to stop battles as often to sharpen them. On this page, we detail the skill and how to obtain it.

If you need help with other areas of Monster Hunter World, check out some more of our guide pages...


How to get the Handicraft Skill in Monster Hunter World

Like all of the armor skills in Monster Hunter World, the Handicraft buff is a skill that's granted by specific pieces of armor in the game. When you're wearing that armor, you'll naturally gain access to the skill and in turn recieve that lovely buff to your sharpness gauge.

Despite the fact that one piece of armor is enough to give you the skill, each piece you wear can help up its effectiveness, and some armor pieces count for double in this sense. This is the skill 'level', and we'll talk more about that in just a moment. 

  • First, however, here's the items you can equip to get the Handicraft skill, including pieces from the Hornetaur and Death Stench sets:
  • Kushala Glare Alpha
  • Kushala Cista Alpha (Skill x2)
  • Kushala Cista Beta (Skill x2)
  • Kushala Grip Alpha
  • Kushala Crus Alpha
  • Damascus Vambraces Alpha
  • Damascus Vambraces Beta
  • Rath Heart Coil Alpha
  • Rath Heart Coil Beta
  • Hornetaur Greaves 
  • Hornetaur Greaves Alpha
  • Hornetaur Greaves Beta
  • Death Stench Heels
  • Death Stench Heels Alpha (Skill x2)
  • Death Stench Heels Beta (Skill x2)
  • Zorah Headgear Alpha
  • Zorah Headgear Beta
  • Skull Mask Alpha
  • Handicraft Charm I

Monster Hunter World Handicraft Skill Levels

As we explained briefly above, a few of the gear above feature a 'level two' version of the Handicraft skill. This all folds into the 'level' system, where the level of the skill is determined by how many pieces are equipped. Here's an example:

With just the Skull Mask Alpha equipped, you'll have level 1 Handicraft. With the Skull Mask Alpha and the Hornetaur Greaves, both level 1 skill, the total will rise to level 2. If you were to add the Death Stench Heels Alpha to that, its two levels would add on for a level 4 skill.

Here's how the Handicraft skill grows as it levels up based on your gear:

  • Handicraft Level 1: Weapon Sharpness Gauge +10
  • Handicraft Level 2: Weapon Sharpness Gauge +20
  • Handicraft Level 3: Weapon Sharpness Gauge +30
  • Handicraft Level 4: Weapon Sharpness Gauge +40
  • Handicraft Level 5: Weapon Sharpness Gauge +50

For the maximum bonus to your weapon sharpness, choose your gear carefully and balance this skill out with other must-have armor skills like earplugs, plus a good choice of weapon, a decent affinity stat and a useful mantle. Level 5 Handicraft might not always be the best - so shoot for as high as you can while balancing out your other needs. This is what the late-game Monster Hunter World character builds are all about.