Disambiguous.png This article is about the tech power in Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3. For the talent in Mass Effect, see Electronics. For the Overload skill in Mass Effect: Andromeda, see Overload (skill).

Overload is a tech power in Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3's single-player and multiplayer modes.

Note: This power travels in a straight line from the user to the target, hitting instantly.

Mass Effect 2[edit | edit source]

Overload ME2 Icon.png

Power Ranks[edit | edit source]

  • Rank 1
    • Recharge Time: 6.00 seconds (Shepard) 12.00 seconds (Others)
    • Impact Radius: 1.20 meters
    • Shield and Synthetic Damage: 120.00 points
  • Rank 2
    • Recharge Time: 6.00 seconds (Shepard) 12.00 seconds (Others)
    • Impact Radius: 1.20 meters
    • Shield and Synthetic Damage: 140.00 points
    • Synthetic Stun Length: 3.00 seconds
  • Rank 3
    • Recharge Time: 6.00 seconds (Shepard) 12.00 seconds (Others)
    • Impact Radius: 1.20 meters
    • Shield and Synthetic Damage: 160.00 points
    • Synthetic Stun Length: 3.00 seconds
    • Weapon Overheat Length: 6.00 seconds

Rank 4

Choose to evolve the power into one of the following,

Heavy Overload[edit | edit source]

  • Your pulse now damages synthetic enemies so brutally that they explode on "death".
    • Recharge Time: 6.00 seconds (Shepard) 12.00 seconds (Others)
    • Impact Radius: 1.20 meters
    • Shield and Synthetic Damage: 200.00 points
    • Synthetic Stun Length: 3.00 seconds
    • Weapon Overheat Length: 6.00 seconds

Area Overload[edit | edit source]

  • You have increased your pulse's strength to cover a wide area, making it easy to hit multiple targets.
    • Recharge Time: 6.00 seconds (Shepard) 12.00 seconds (Others)
    • Impact Radius: 3.00 meters
    • Shield and Synthetic Damage: 160.00 points
    • Synthetic Stun Length: 3.00 seconds
    • Weapon Overheat Length: 6.00 seconds

Player Notes[edit | edit source]

  • Overload is typically used to take down shields or synthetics, doing twice as much damage to shields as it does to synthetics.
    • Overload does double the listed damage to shields (not counting any other positive or negative modifiers such as difficulty setting, upgrades, or armor pieces). The in-game text "Shield and Synthetic Damage" is therefore somewhat misleading, as only the listed damage is done to unprotected synthetic targets, i.e. the red health bar.
    • Overload does the listed damage to synthetic health (red bar), barriers, and armor (of any enemy type). It does no damage to the health of non-synthetic (organic) enemies.
  • Overload will cause any unshielded enemies using flamethrowers to explode. The explosion is usually instant but it can be delayed if the target is frozen or momentarily stunned by another power or effect.
  • Starting at rank 2, Overload can stun synthetic enemies. This effect only works on unprotected synthetic enemies without shields or armor, and certain synthetic targets are immune to the stun effect even then, such as YMIR Mechs.
  • Starting at rank 3, Overload will cause the firearms of most unprotected infantry enemies to overheat, making them unable to fire for a brief period. Affected enemies can be seen repeatedly performing reload animations and the weapons will be visibly smoking. Many tougher enemy types are immune or highly resistant to the overheat effects such as shotgun-wielding krogan/Vanguards, or YMIR Mechs.
  • It can also be used on explosive containers to make them detonate more violently for added damage.

Availability[edit | edit source]

Mass Effect 3[edit | edit source]

ME3 Overload.png

Power Ranks[edit | edit source]

Rank 1: Overload[edit | edit source]

Overload electronics with this power surge, stunning your enemy.

Effective against shields, barriers, and synthetics.
Not as effective against organics.

  • Recharge Speed: 8 sec
  • Damage: 220


Rank 2: Recharge Speed[edit | edit source]

Increases recharge speed by 25%.

  • Recharge Speed: 6.40 sec
  • Damage: 220


Rank 3: Damage[edit | edit source]

Increase damage by 20%.

  • Recharge Speed: 6.40 sec
  • Damage: 264


Rank 4: Chain Overload/Damage[edit | edit source]

Chain Overload

Hit 1 additional target within 8 meters with 60% less damage.

Damage

Increase damage by 30%.

  • Recharge Speed: 6.40 sec
  • Damage: 330


Rank 5: Neural Shock/Recharge Speed[edit | edit source]

Neural Shock

Incapacitate weaker organic enemies for a short duration.

Recharge Speed

Increase recharge speed by 25%.

  • Recharge Speed: 5.33 sec
  • Damage: 330


Rank 6: Chain Overload/Shield Damage[edit | edit source]

Chain Overload

Increase damage by 15%.
Hit 1 additional target within 8 meters with 60% less damage.

  • Recharge Speed: 6.40 sec (Neural Shock), 5.33 sec (Recharge Speed)
  • Damage: 297 (Chain Overload), 363 (Damage)

Shield Damage

Increase damage to barriers and shields by an additional 100%.


Player Notes[edit | edit source]

  • Overload does differing amounts of damage to health, armor, and shields based upon rank evolutions and the enemies being impacted by Overload.[1]
    • Overload does half damage to organic health and armor, normal damage to synthetic health and armor, and triple damage to all barriers/shields.
    • Rank 5 Neural Shock evolution has an undocumented feature of striking organic enemies twice. This secondary hit always uses base damage multipliers (0.5x vs health/armor, 3x vs barriers/shields) regardless of Shield Damage evolution.
    • Rank 6 Shield Damage evolution increases damage multipliers to 5x vs organics' barriers/shields and 6x vs synthetics' barriers/shields.
    • With both Rank 5 Neural Shock and Rank 6 Shield Damage, Overload will do 8x damage to organics' barriers/shields (5x primary hit + 3x secondary hit).


Neural Shock Shield Damage Organic
Health & Armor
Organic
Barriers/Shields
Synthetic
Health & Armor
Synthetic
Barriers/Shields
0.5x 3x 1x 3x
5x 6x
1x 6x 3x
8x 6x
Mechanics
  • Overload suffers a damage penalty against organic health and organic armor.
  • Overload will briefly stun (stagger) weaker infantry-type enemies in most cases even if they have shields or barriers. This works against both organics and synthetics, and the Neural Shock evolution is not required.
  • The incapacitation effect from Neural Shock will completely knock over all lesser unprotected (red bar) organic enemies hit, including those hit by the chaining effect. This disable lasts significantly longer than the normal "stagger" stun.
  • Overload is able to electrically shock and stun almost all types of lesser unprotected (red bar) enemies. This stun can take two forms: the default causes unprotected targets to double over briefly. The second stun is an electrocution effect that causes the target to spasm violently while standing; this effect lasts noticeably longer than the default stun but occurs less frequently. If multiple unprotected targets are hit, each individual target hit can suffer a different stun effect. Other tech powers can also cause these stuns such as Energy Drain and the backfire effect of Sabotage. This shock stun is more severe than the brief "stagger" effect that Overload (and many other powers) cause even on most protected targets. It is also separate from the incapacitation knockdown caused by Neural Shock and that evolution is not required to cause these electrical stuns.
  • Overload has no effect whatsoever on Cerberus Guardians with their riot shields up, and even chain hits will not occur if a shielded Guardian is the primary target. Overload will however destroy the shield of a CAT6 Heavy and stun it.
  • Overload is one of the few powers in Mass Effect 3 that can both prime and detonate Power Combos (though you must use a different power from Overload to prime or detonate any combo).
    • Overload will prime its primary target for a Tech Burst for several seconds, but chain hits will not prime.
    • If Overload is given one or both chain evolutions, each additional Overload chain is capable of detonating a separate Tech Burst, Fire Explosion or Cryo Explosion, which makes Overload relatively unique, as normally powers with Area-of-Effect (AoE) can only detonate one combo at a time.[2]
  • Chain hits will not jump back to targets that were already hit by Overload if there is no additional enemy in range—the chain hit(s) will simply not occur.
  • If both chain evolutions are chosen, the third hit will only do 16% of the original hit damage (an additional 60% reduction of the second hit's 60% damage reduction, not a 60% reduction of the original hit).[3] In addition, it may "forget" to do normal damage to synthetics (instead doing half damage) or do extra damage to shields/barriers (instead doing normal damage).[4]
Strategies
  • Overload is more effective against biotic barriers than it was in Mass Effect 2, and also now affects non-synthetic enemies health, though with a penalty. This allows characters with the power to be effective against a wider range of enemies.
    • However, it has also lost most of the other effects it had in the previous game, such as weapon overheating, and no longer has an impact area, hitting just one target.
  • Because the Neural Shock evolution mitigates a major weakness of Overload (reduced effectiveness against organics) in addition to providing a powerful incapacitating effect, it is almost always a better choice than the Recharge Speed evolution.
  • Overload is better at stripping barriers than Warp alone is, especially with the Rank 6 Shield Damage evolution which doubles its damage against shields and barriers. This makes the Turian Sentinel (who has both Warp and Overload) and the Human Engineer (who has Overload and Incinerate) very good multiplayer classes for stripping away defenses and dealing with hardened targets.
  • Overload is highly effective as a crowd control power against unprotected organics when fully upgraded with the Chain Overload/Neural Shock evolutions.
  • Geth Engineers can use power evolutions in Hunter Mode to increase recharge speed and damage of Overload. Used correctly, Overload can become both fast and extremely powerful.
  • Because each chain of an Overload can detonate a Tech Burst, Fire Explosion or Cryo Explosion, partnering with someone (either as a single-player squadmate or a multi-player teammate) who can quickly prime multiple opponents with an area-of-effect power can drastically increase the total damage potential for a team (notorious multi-player examples of pairings include Snap Freeze or Flamer as primer).[5]

Availability[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

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