Charge Blade (チャージアックス Chājiakkusu) is a weapon first introduced in Monster Hunter 4. This weapon is somewhat similar to the Switch Axe, with the ability to switch between two different weapon modes: the Sword Mode and the Axe Mode. Unlike the Switch Axe however, the user starts in a sword mode by default and each mode functions very different from the Switch Axe. In Sword mode it functions similarly to Sword and Shield, wielding a sword and a large shield for blocking that is relatively quick. This mode is primarily used for charging up energy. Once enough energy has been charged, it can be stored in the shield, and the hunter can use powerful explosive attacks in the slower but stronger Axe Mode. In MH4U, the shield itself can also be charged for a damage bonus, and enables the destructive Super Amped Element Discharge (colloquially referred to as the "Ultra Burst").
The Charge Blade is well known for its versatility and high skill ceiling, being well applicable to a myriad of situations via its two modes.
The weapon is unsheathed in this mode by default.
Sword Mode is primarily used for building up energy.
The weapon will automatically block at the end of a Roundslash attack, and at the beginning of a morph-to-axe attack.
The player can attack with a morph-to-axe attack immediately after blocking.
Enough attacks will cause the Phial Meter next to the player's Sharpness Meter to glow yellow, then red. Charging the axe (R+A) when this meter is yellow will fill three (3) phials, and charging while red will fill five (5) phials.
Overfilling the Phial Meter without charging the axe will cause it to display a message that says "CHARGE," and will cause all attacks in sword to bounce regardless of sharpness.
The easiest way to fill the Phial Meter is to use the charged double-slash attack (Hold A for a moment, then release) and the Roundslash.
Press R+X to morph to Axe Mode and attack.
The player can unsheathe and immediately morph to Axe Mode with R+X+A.
Axe mode is to be used when the player has charged energy phials.
Pressing the A button while in Axe Mode will perform attacks that consume these phials, typically one per attack. The player can also press X+A to immediately use the slow but powerful Amped Element Discharge, colloquially known as a "Super Burst." The weapon will automatically morph back to Sword Mode after this attack.
Charge Blades can have Impact phials, which deal explosive damage and can stun a monster, or Element phials, which deal a heavy dose of the weapon's elemental damage.
Introduced in MH4U, pressing the R button during the initial "charging" animation of a Super Burst will instead charge the shield and perform a Roundslash, causing the shield to glow red, or making the entire weapon glow red in Axe Mode. This gives a 20% damage bonus and causes shield-bash attacks to deal Phial damage. A charged shield will last 30 seconds per phial consumed, and must be replenished to maintain the damage bonus.
A charged shield while in Axe Mode grants access to the powerful Ultra Burst attack in place of a Super Burst. The Ultra Burst consumes the shield's charge and all available charged Phials in exchange for a powerful shockwave attack. Be sure not to miss! If you wish to use the Super Burst instead and keep your shield's charge, hold BACK on the analog stick (that is, the opposite direction your character is facing relative to the camera) and press X during the "charge" animation before the Burst.
In Sword Mode:
X = Diagonal Slash
X, X = Slash and Uppercut Slash
X, X, X = Finishes with Roundhouse Slash
X+A = Lunge Attack similar to Sword and Shield
X+A = Shield Bash similar to Sword and Shield (only after any Sword Mode move excluding itself) Note: If the shield is charged it will also release a weaker version of the weapons phial effect
X+A after Shield Bash = Instant Super/Ultra Burst Note: Instant Ultra Burst works just like the normal Ultra Burst, but requires less time to combo into
A = Uppercut Slash with slight angle
Hold A, release when sword glows = Fast two-hit combo which also charges phials much faster.
A, X = Uppercut slash and roundhouse slash
X, A = Side Slash and Diagonal Uppercut Slash
R = Block
R+A = Charge Weapon Note: If used without yellow or red phial charge ready leaves you open to getattacked with no benefit. Pressing A while charging the weapon will automatically transform the weapon into Axe Mode and consume one phial charge (This only works if shield and axe has a yellow or red charge). Note: Pressing X while charging the weapon will perform an uppercut slash
R+X to Change into Axe Mode, doing a Overhead Downwards Chop
R+X+A to bypass Sword Mode and enter Axe Mode (While weapon is sheathed) Note: This also works when jumping off cliffs, which allows for hunters to hit monsters slightly farther away
In Axe Mode:
X = Uppercut Slash similar to Switch Axe
X, X = Uppercut + Overhead Downwards Chop
A = Side Chop
X, A = Uppercut Slash and Roundhouse Slash
X+A = Shortcut to Charged Slash/Super Burst/Ultra Burst (depending on if you have phials and/or charged shield)
R during Burst animation = Charge shield and Axe (only if at least 1 phial is filled)
A, A = Side Chop and Roundhouse Slash
A, A, A = Side Chop, Roundhouse Slash and Charged Slash.
R = Change into Sword Mode, doing a Side Slash Note: Can cancel Charged Slash/Super/Ultra Burst if used during the initial part of the animation
To get to a Red Phial easily: X, X, X, A (hold then release), X, R+A
Full Combo: X, X, X, A (hold then release), X R+A, A, A, A, R (to charge the Shield/Axe Mode), X, X, X, A (hold then release), X, R+A, A, A, A Note: This combo ends with a Super Burst and is only recommended when a monster is stunned, tripped, or in a trap.