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Disambiguous This article is about the power in Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3's single-player and multiplayer modes. For the similarly named combat talent in Mass Effect, see Assault Training#Adrenaline Burst.

Adrenaline Rush is a combat power available to Soldier classes in Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3's single-player and multiplayer modes. It provides a limited duration damage boost to weapons which in single-player is accompanied by a time-slowing effect making it easier to line up shots.

Note: The Mass Effect 2 in-game description does not list the damage bonus. See the discussion page for more information on this bonus.

Mass Effect 2[]

Adrenaline Rush ME2 Icon Hyper-accelerate your reflexes, giving you time to line up the perfect shot.

Power Ranks[]

  • Rank 1 - Boosts your combat awareness for a brief time, slowing your enemies by comparison.
    • Recharge Time: 5.00 seconds
    • Duration: 5.00 seconds
    • Time Dilation: +50.00%
    • Damage Bonus: +100.00%
  • Rank 2 - Boosts your combat awareness for a brief time, slowing your enemies by comparison.
    • Recharge Time: 4.00 seconds
    • Duration: 5.00 seconds
    • Time Dilation: +50.00%
    • Damage Bonus: +100.00%
  • Rank 3 - Boosts your combat awareness for a brief time, slowing your enemies by comparison.
    • Recharge Time: 3.00 seconds
    • Duration: 5.00 seconds
    • Time Dilation: +50.00%
    • Damage Bonus: +100.00%


Rank 4

Evolves Adrenaline Rush into one of the following:

Hardened Adrenaline Rush[]

  • Your endorphins block out pain and trauma in addition to speeding your reaction time. Health damage is reduced for the power's duration.
    • Recharge Time: 3.00 seconds
    • Duration: 5.00 seconds
    • Time Dilation: +50.00%
    • Damage Bonus: +100.00%
    • Health Damage Taken: -50.00%

Heightened Adrenaline Rush[]

  • Your reaction time is the stuff of legends. When you are "on," enemies seem to stand still.
    • Recharge Time: 3.00 seconds
    • Duration: 5.00 seconds
    • Time Dilation: +70.00%
    • Damage Bonus: +140.00%


Player Notes[]

Mechanics
  • The cooldown period for Adrenaline Rush doesn't begin until after its effect has worn off.
  • Adrenaline Rush does not affect the recoil of firing weapons, but it does negate the "muzzle climb" of fully automatic weapons fired continuously such as the M-8 Avenger or the M-76 Revenant.
  • Adrenaline Rush is one of the few powers in Mass Effect 2 that can be used without interrupting Shepard when storming.
  • In contrast to most other powers/upgrades that boost damage, the damage bonus from Adrenaline Rush is multiplicative and not only applies to weapon base damage but to upgrades and increased rag-doll/frozen damage as well.[1]
  • Damage from ammo powers is not increased.[2]
  • The damage bonus is not applied to heavy weapons.
  • The damage bonus is not applied to melee attacks, though the speed at which Shepard can melee is unchanged during Adrenaline Rush, meaning it's possible to get more melee attacks off during a shorter amount of time thus doing more overall damage.
  • The firing rates of weapons do not speed up to match the time dilation of Adrenaline Rush. Because of this, you might actually do less damage depending on the weapon you are using.
  • The 40% damage difference between Heightened and Hardened Adrenaline Rush seems a big advantage; however, they also have different time dilation relationships with the various weapons. For example, soldier with Heightened Adrenaline Rush will be able to fire 2 bursts from the M-15 Vindicator or 1 round from the Widow or M-5 Phalanx. On the other hand, a soldier with Hardened Adrenaline Rush (or lower ranks) will be able to fire 3 bursts from the Vindicator or 2 rounds from the Phalanx HP, but only 1 round from the Widow. Essentially, weapons which have firing animations slowed by time dilation will have those animations slowed further in the Heightened evolution, and this must be considered with regard to DPS potential.
    • The M-96 Mattock's semi-automatic firing rate is unaffected by time dilation, so it receives a much greater boost in damage potential from the Heightened evolution.
  • Like Concussive Shot, Adrenaline Rush is not a tech or biotic power and does not benefit from any upgrades enhancing the damage, duration, or recharge speed of such powers.
Strategies
  • Ranks 2 and 3 improve nothing about Adrenaline Rush other than its recharge time. It may be better to leave Adrenaline Rush at base level while other powers are leveled up early on. Reaching max rank is the real benefit of leveling Adrenaline Rush.
  • Hardened Adrenaline Rush only improves the damage resistance of health, not shields; therefore it's best to focus on boosting your health with the appropriate armor choices. A health-based Soldier build is perfectly viable given the class's higher base health, and it has the advantage of not suffering as much from the higher damage multipliers that many weapons gain against shields.
  • The time dilation of Adrenaline Rush does not stack with the similar effect provided by the Soldier's Combat Mastery. If points have been invested in Combat Mastery, there is little to be gained by using Adrenaline Rush just to cover ground faster.

Availability[]

Mass Effect 3[]

ME3 Adrenaline Rush

Power Ranks[]

Rank 1: Adrenaline Rush[]

Be the fastest fighter on the battlefield.

Slow down combat, allowing time to line up the perfect shot.
More weapon damage.

  • Recharge Speed: 10 sec (6 sec multiplayer)
  • Duration: 4 sec
  • Time Dilation: 30% (N/A multiplayer)
  • Weapon Damage Bonus: 50%


Rank 2: Recharge Speed[]

Increase recharge speed by 25%.

  • Recharge Speed: 8 sec (4.80 sec multiplayer)
  • Duration: 4 sec
  • Time Dilation: 30% (N/A multiplayer)
  • Weapon Damage Bonus: 50%


Rank 3: Duration[]

Increase power duration by 30%.

  • Recharge Speed: 8 sec (4.80 sec multiplayer)
  • Duration: 5.20 sec
  • Time Dilation: 30% (N/A multiplayer)
  • Weapon Damage Bonus: 50%


Rank 4: Hardening/Dilation & Damage[]

Hardening

Decrease health and shield damage taken by 25% (40% multiplayer).

Dilation & Damage

Increase time dilation by 15%.
Increase weapon damage bonus by 25% (20% multiplayer).

  • Recharge Speed: 8 sec (4.80 sec multiplayer)
  • Duration: 5.20 sec
  • Time Dilation: 45% (N/A multiplayer)
  • Weapon Damage Bonus: 75% (70% multiplayer)


Rank 5: Duration/Melee Damage[]

Duration

Increase power duration by 40%.

  • Recharge Speed: 8 sec (4.80 sec multiplayer)
  • Duration: 6.80 sec
  • Time Dilation: 30% (N/A multiplayer) [Hardening], 45% (N/A multiplayer) [Dilation & Damage]
  • Weapon Damage Bonus: 50% [Hardening], 75% (70% multiplayer) [Dilation & Damage]

Melee Damage

Increase melee damage by 50%.


Rank 6: Shield Boost/Power Use[]

Shield Boost

Increase shield strength by 50% (100% multiplayer).

Power Use

Use 1 offensive power while Adrenaline Rush is active.


Player Notes[]

Mechanics
  • There is no time dilation in multiplayer.
  • Adrenaline Rush's damage bonus only boosts weapon damage by default.
  • If the current weapon has spent any part of their clip but the player still has spare ammunition, the clip is instantly reloaded upon activating Adrenaline Rush. If used when the magazine is emptied, this doubles a Soldier's ammunition output before they need to reload. This is particularly useful with long reload weapons like the Black Widow and M-76 Revenant or small clip size weapons such as the M-98 Widow or M-300 Claymore.
    • With a light enough loadout or large enough clip size, it may be possible to never need reloading as Adrenaline Rush is available before the magazine is empty.
    • If activated when a self-cooling weapon (such as the Particle Rifle or M-7 Lancer) overheats, the magazine will not be refilled instantly, but the venting animation is interrupted and the recharging starts immediately.
  • While many powers can be used with the Power Use evolution, Marksman is an exception and cannot be used. Barrier, Defense Matrix, and Fortification likewise can't be activated, purged, or detonated.
    • Grenades can still be thrown while Adrenaline Rush is active, with or without the Power Use evolution.
  • Adrenaline Rush has no animation and can be performed while running or firing a weapon.
  • If the Shield Strength evolution is chosen, it will restore some of your shields (the base shield value in MP or half of it in SP) when Adrenaline Rush is activated. Doing so will help to mitigate any damage-over-time effects (e.g. Swarmers, Banshees' Warp) that delay normal shield recharge.
  • Adrenaline Rush's time slowdown can cause certain audiovisual effects to behave wonkily, with the effects either being delayed or sometimes not occurring at all. This can include certain enemy projectiles with a travel time (e.g. a Harvester's attacks) not being visible or with the actual hit and damage applied being disjointed from the sound effect and/or the animation. Another example is enemy grenade warnings on the HUD may not show up or appear only briefly. The time dilation effect itself causes sounds to be distorted which, even when it's not glitchy, can make audio cues harder to pick up on, such as the sound of an enemy grenade landing near you or beeping.
Strategies
  • While it isn't ideal against tougher enemies that can destroy shields in one or two hits, the rank 6 Shield Boost evolution can provide an opportunity to get away from a bad scenario, e.g. being surrounded or being cornered by a powerful enemy.
  • If the Power Use evolution is chosen, Power Combos can be set off by first firing on an enemy with special ammo activated (e.g. Incendiary Ammo), then using a detonation power. In multiplayer, this is limited to Concussive Shot (Human Soldier) and Carnage (Battlefield 3 Soldier).
  • In multiplayer, the Hardening and Shield Boost evolutions are useful especially when enabling/disabling devices while under fire.
  • When using Adrenaline Rush to instantly reload weapons, power duration often proves detrimental. For this reason, it is a valid (if unique) strategy to leave the power on rank 2, or to pick the melee evolution of rank 5 despite never planning to use it.

Availability[]

References[]

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