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The Dragoon is a Cerberus unit encountered in Mass Effect 3. Dragoons are heavily armored combatants capable of lunging with biotic lashes toward their enemies with considerable speed.

Capabilities[]

Offensive

Cerberus Dragoons are equipped with the M-25 Hornet SMG and biotic lashes, which they can use to lunge toward the player or slam the ground with them for an omni-directional melee attack. They can instantly kill downed players with a stomp execution.

Defensive

While they possess powerful armour, Dragoons are devoid of any shields or barriers whatsoever. Given their nature as an armored enemy, Dragoons cannot be grabbed over-cover for instant-kills. They are also immune to the physics-based effects of powers like Pull, Throw, Concussive Shot and Singularity, as well as Stasis. Headshots deal 40% more damage to them.

Dragoons can be stunned by the electrical shocks of tech powers such as Overload, Energy Drain, and Disruptor Ammo. Dragoons are immune to these stuns during their melee animations, however.


Tactics[]

  • Dragoons are geared towards close-quarters-combat; their biotic lashes ignore cover, and they lunge considerable distances in order to engage the player while performing their Smash attack. They tend to avoid taking cover, instead opting to charge directly into close range, pushing players out of their cover. Most players should maintain their distance and only engage them from afar.
  • One should take care to consider the fact that Dragoons move extremely quickly, much quicker than any other Cerberus type opponent. This makes them somewhat deceptive due to the fact that they may seem far enough away to dispatch before they come into range, however their natural speed combined with their lunge allows them to cover large amounts of terrain quite quickly.
  • With a timing precise enough, one can easily dodge the Dragoon's lunge attacks using combat rolls or even side-stepping. However, it should be noted that player attacks can end up hitting the space behind a Dragoon. For example, when using Biotic Charge against a Dragoon who is already initiated in a lunge, the player will most likely phase through the target and end up behind them, dealing no damage.
  • Using a mixture of Armor-Piercing Rounds, Carnage, Flamer, Incinerate, Homing Grenades, Reave and Warp can help immensely against them. Annihilation Field and Dark Channel can also be very useful in conjunction with the latter.
  • Dragoons totally ignore Combat Drones, Decoys, Sentry Turrets, and Geth Turrets, making these powers very effective at stunning and damaging Dragoons with impunity, though they won't be useful as distractions. Dragoon whip attacks will quickly destroy them if they are caught in the path of attack, though this can be advantageous with the Combat Drone and Decoy detonate-on-destruction evolutions for additional stunning.
  • Weapons that fire non-standard projectiles capable of stunning enemies such the Graal Spike Thrower can be very effective against Dragoons, especially those that fire explosive projectiles such as the M-37 Falcon as they can stun multiple Dragoons with a single shot.
  • The following weapons deal 150% more damage vs. armored foes: Krysae Sniper Rifle, N7 Typhoon, and Collector SMG.
  • On harder difficulties, Dragoons can be a serious threat, since they can flush you out of cover. This can be especially fatal on Gold or Platinum difficulties where foes will be harder to kill, hit harder, and all its allies will stack on damage extremely quickly. If an Assault Trooper throws a grenade while the player sees an approaching Dragoon coming their way, chances are it's time to get out of there, otherwise the player may end up dropped by the sheer damage.
  • Dragoons almost always travel in groups of 2 or 3. On higher difficulties, it's not uncommon to find them lunging at isolated players in coordinated assaults that down the player almost instantly. Try not to get separated from your squad, as Dragoons have deceptive range with their lashes and are much quicker than their playable defector counterparts.
  • In addition to their viciousness in higher difficulties, Dragoons tend to act in conjunction with Phantoms, easily surrounding players and flanking them. Unlike Phantoms, Dragoons do not possess a sync kill attack, but in multiplayer they will immediately move to stomp on downed players, so it's important not to go down when fighting them. Even if you are revived before being stomped, you're completely vulnerable to Phantom sword stabs while getting up.
  • Rather than hopping over low cover, Dragoons will futilely attempt to hit you with their whips. You can use this to your advantage and have your teammates sideswipe the Dragoon in question while you sit back and relax. Watch out for other enemies, though, as the Dragoons can pin you down while allies flank you if you are not careful.
  • A high-powered sniper rifle, pistol (e.g. M-6 Carnifex or M-77 Paladin), or shotgun (e.g. M-300 Claymore) combined with an effective class build, mods, equipment, ammo, or powers is perfect for taking down Dragoons.
  • Inferno Grenades are particularly useful against Dragoons.
  • It should be noted that Dragoons are partially immune to being staggered while in their lash animations and completely immune in their lunging animations. This can be especially troublesome with classes that rely on staggering enemies (ex. classes that use tech powers over firearms).
  • Despite being built as melee enemies, their ranged capabilities are not to be underestimated. Their Hornets are immensely powerful, and on Gold difficulty two quick bursts are enough to take down almost every class's shields. Combined with their aggressive nature, their guns can actually become more of a threat than their biotic whips, especially if they attack in groups or flank the player.
  • Ironically, some classes may actually benefit from fighting Dragoons in close range. Their whip animations are lengthy, and subsequently can be quite easy to dodge with a simple side-step/dodge-roll.
  • Using Flamer with the Rank 6 Armor damage evolution could easily knock them out.
  • Smash is very effective against Dragoons.
    • Subsequently, comparing the attack speed of a Dragoon and a Phoenix operative, the Phoenix attacks are slightly quicker than their Cerberus counterparts. If one uses Smash and the Dragoon tries to use it at the same time, the player will always hit first, and this can stagger a Dragoon, opening it up for a further attack. Versus the melee animation though, and the Dragoon will hit first. Also, the standard melee attack does less damage than if the Dragoon was to lunge at their targets or go for their slower attack. Being able to adapt to whatever the Dragoon throws at you will pay dividends to avoiding damage, or finding attacks of opportunity to exploit.
  • Dragoons are highly vulnerable to headshots during the windup and cooldown of their smash/whip lunge animations, as their heads stay relatively still. Any reasonably skilled marksman should have no trouble lining up a shot during this time.

Trivia[]

  • The term dragoon originally referred to mounted infantry with training in both regular infantry fighting skills as well as in horseback riding.
  • Dragoons may have been the end-result of Project Phoenix, since both ex-Cerberus Phoenix operatives and Dragoons share the similar Smash biotic armament, but colored yellow instead of blue, and the same armor design.
  • Dragoons wear armor that closely resembles that of the default armor worn by Randall Ezno, protagonist of Mass Effect: Infiltrator.

References[]


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