So I really like the concept of the Switch Axe — a swiss army weapon that can be either an elementally charged sword OR a giant axeblade.
However, in practice, I'm finding it a hard weapon to slay beasties with, compared to my go-to weapon, the Sword & Shield.
But I want to learn a longer weapon to make certain things (like tail cutting) easier on the taller monsters.
Some things that are throwing me for a loop:
Speed – When I have the axe out, my hunter moves more slowly. When I have the sword out, my hunter can barely stagger around. A big problem (for me) when fighting large monsters is keeping up with the buggers! They don't like to stand still and let you wail on them!
Combos – Pretty much any combination of X and A gives me a nice combo with the Sword & Shield, and assuming I'm close enough to my target, things die pretty quick. Switch axe has these combos in sword mode, but I'm trying to find uses for Axe mode. Most of what I end up mashing stops after 1 or 2 hits.
Specials – I really like the Sword / Shield jumping attack; it moves you forward, essentially allowing you a longer reach (I can even hit tails swinging above my head). The Switch Axe's specials are less obvious, both in how and when to use them. Axe Mode gives me a sort of "Helicoptor Effect" that depletes stamina for continuous attack. Seems pretty nifty, but see "Speed" above. Sword mode gives me some sort of… gassy explosion? And then I have to reload my sword afterwards? Eh? Not really understanding what's going on here.
Anyone have hints, tips, or useful gameplay videos to demonstrate how to properly use one of these big, badass weapons?