Monster Hunter World: How to Slay Vaal Hazak – Tips and Tricks
In the deepest cavern of the Rotten Vale Vaal Hazak rests on its throne of bones. This elder dragon is responsible for the effluvium gas that covers the caves of the vale, constantly spilling the toxic gas from its body. Vaal Hazak is not the heaviest hitters of the elder dragons, but the debuffs and damage over time that this monster can deal out will quickly take out any hunter who is not readily equipped to handle it. Here are some tips and tricks on how to prepare for and take down this skeletal beast.
1 – Effluvium
Vaal Hazak uses the same effluvia gas that covers the lower caverns of the Rotten Vale to its advantage being able to produce the substance itself. There are two different effects that this gas has on hunters. While surrounded by the gas, it will slowly tick down damage on the hunter’s health bar over time, and the effect will begin to stack up. Get an item or charm, such as the Girros Coil, with the Effluvia Expert skill. At level three this skill specifically nullifies the damage-over-time effect of the gas, allowing hunters to stay close to the monster without taking damage from the cloud.
Once the effluvia effect has built up significantly, or the hunter is hit directly with an effluvia attack from Vaal Hazak, the hunter will take a massive debuff that will cut their health bar in half, nullifying any previous buffs or meals the hunter has stacked. Taking a nullberry will return the health bar to normal but not fill the health back back to where it was. The best way to avoid this is with the Effluvia Resistance. Unfortunately, this skill is only obtained through charms and armor that are dropped by Vaal Hazak itself, so it will not be available until the monster has been farmed a few times.
2 – Attacks
Vaal Hazak does not have a wide range of basic attacks, since the majority of its damage is done through the use of effluvia. The monster has a basic charge, a bite, and a tail whip attack. Avoid the charge by dodging out of the way of the monster’s trajectory as it runs, and stick to the monster’s sides while attacking it up close to avoid the damage areas for both the bite and tail whip.
The most devastating damage this elder dragon deals out are with its three different effluvia attacks. Watch for the monster to be seeping out effluvia gas at a high rate, which will tell the hunter that one of these attacks is about to occur. First, the monster will lean up off the ground slightly breathing in the gas, then collapse onto its stomach in a belly flop shooting gas 360 degrees in a ring around it that will stay in the specific area for a while. Get rid of this by using slinger torches to burn away the latent gas.
Next, Vaal Hazak will stand up on its hind legs and look straight up while breathing in effluvia. The monster will remain on its hind legs while it points its head down and breaths out a massive cloud of gas which will do a ton of damage and immediately cut the hunter’s health in half permanently if they do not have the Effluvia Resistance skill. This attack takes a couple of seconds to charge. So while the monster is getting it ready, clear as much distance from it as possible to avoid the massive cloud. Enough distance might not be enough, the cloud has a much larger range than it seems.
Last, the monster will once again breath in effluvia while on all fours, pulling its head back. It will then move its head to the right and shoot out a beam of effluvia in a straight line that will cover a massive distance, shooting it in an arc from right to left. When you see the monster charging this attack, get behind the monster’s head as quickly as possible, or, if at a distance, find cover quickly to get behind. This attack has the same effect as the previous one, immediately cutting the hunter’s health and dealing a massive damage blow.
3 – Weaknesses
Vaal Hazak’s three major weak areas are its head and chest, while the tail can be severed. Having the Effluvia Expert skill is very useful to maintain a close distance to the monster’s chest area to attack while avoiding attacks from its bite and tail whip. The monster is highly weak to both fire and dragon elemental damage and takes medium-level damage from the ice element, but is completely resistant to water elemental damage. Being an elder dragon, Vaal Hazak can not be trapped or captured so bringing shock or pitfall traps along will not have any effect. The monster is susceptible to both the stun and blast type ailments, however, so bringing in some barrel or flash bombs will give the hunter a bit of an edge during the fight.
Vaal Hazak is very difficult to navigate without the proper skill resistances active, so make sure to always have a stack of nullberries on hand during this fight to negate effluvia buildup. Grabbing a Girros Coil and leveling it up to have equipped for the fight will pay off big during this hunt, so sacrificing that armor set belt slot is a good idea. Take your time and heal often, and before long Vaal Hazak will be taken down for good.