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Disambiguous This article is about the combat technique in Mass Effect 3. For the combat technique in Mass Effect: Andromeda, see Combos (Mass Effect: Andromeda).

Power Combos are a combat mechanic introduced in Mass Effect 3, expanding on the Warp detonations of Mass Effect 2. By attacking an enemy with two powers in sequence, the combined effects of each power can result in an explosion that causes major damage in an area.


There are four types of Power Combo: fire, cryo, tech, and biotic. Fire, cryo, and tech combos are sometimes all referred to with the umbrella term "tech combos." All Power Combos require two different powers: a source, or "primer," and a detonator. The source power determines which of the four types of Power Combos will be set up ("primed"), and the detonator triggers the primed combo causing an explosion that deals damage in a wide area, along with other secondary effects depending on the combo type. Combo explosions damage up to 4 enemy targets within their radius, ignoring shield gate protections.[1] The enemy that triggers a combo when hit with a power is not guaranteed to be one of the 4 targets damaged by the combo if there are more than 4 targets in the area.

An enemy is visibly primed for a combo when they display a distinctive colored effect that corresponds to what combo type they have been primed for: a coruscating violet sheen for biotic, red flames for fire, blue-tinged electric sparks for tech, and a white frost for cryo. Not all enemies display this texture for whatever reason; for example an Atlas primed for a Fire Explosion will not actually glow red. Also, enemies can be primed for more than one type of Power Combo simultaneously without this being visually apparent (more on this below).

A Power Combo can be executed by a single character combining different abilities, or by groups of allied characters working together. Except for biotic combos, the detonator power does not necessarily have to be of the same damage type as the combo itself; for example, Throw, a biotic power, can detonate a primed Fire Explosion. The order in which different abilities are applied matters depending on whether a particular ability either primes or detonates a combo type. Some powers can be both sources and detonators, but any combo must be composed of a different source and detonator. For example, Warp cannot detonate another Warp but Reave and Warp will detonate each other in any order.

Priming & Detonating[]


Combo priming duration varies depending on the source power. Some powers prime for only a short period of time (such as Overload or a Sabotage backfire), some powers prime for an extended period of time (such as Warp). Powers with durations may prime for their full duration (such as enemies lifted by Singularity) or a fixed subset (Sabotage's Tech Vulnerability evolution will not extend the priming duration to 10 seconds, for example). It should be noted that the passive class powers which increase power duration do not affect the priming duration of powers which do not prime for their full duration such as Incinerate with rank 5 Burning Damage, or powers with no duration such as Overload.

In multiplayer, credit for enemies killed by Power Combos is given to the player who primed the combo.


Most combos detonate at an "anchor point" of the power hit that triggered them. For example, if Reave is evolved for area of effect, it is anchored at the enemy that was in the crosshair at the moment of casting, thus triggering a biotic combo centered on that enemy, even if the enemy that was actually primed for the Biotic Explosion was a different enemy within the area of effect. The effect area of grenade and mine powers is anchored around the place the grenade or mine exploded, and that will also be the origin point of any combo detonations. The conical area of effect of Snap Freeze is anchored at the casting player and any combos will be detonated at the player. This mechanic allows the detonation of combos away from the actually primed target(s), provided that the detonator power's radius is sufficiently high and the primed enemy is still within the radius. A power with a very large radius like Arc Grenade can make this effect very pronounced.

Occasionally, if a power that would normally detonate a combo on a primed target deals enough damage on its own to be fatal to that target, no combo will be produced.

Special Conditions[]

Some powers have caveats for successfully priming or detonating:

  • Specific evolutions of several powers may enable them to prime or detonate combos when they otherwise would not be able to do so. For example, the Detonate evolution of Combat Drone allows it to detonate fire, cryo, and tech combos, and the Warp Effect evolution of a rank 6 Biotic Sphere enables it to prime enemies for Biotic Explosions.
  • Energy Drain cannot be used to detonate organic targets that lack shields/barriers.
  • In single-player, Singularity will not prime enemies that are not lifted.
  • In multiplayer, Lash will not prime or detonate an armored target.
  • Incendiary Ammo/Rounds cannot apply a priming effect to enemies protected by shields or barriers, but they can apply a hidden damage effect which in turn can begin doing damage and apply a priming effect once the shield or barrier is destroyed by other means.
  • Once detonated, Incendiary Ammo/Rounds (unlike Disruptor Ammo/Rounds) cannot re-prime the same enemy immediately; there is a short "cooldown" period before it works again.
  • Sabotage will only prime organic enemies.
  • Cryo powers and ammunition upgrades (except for Snap Freeze and the N7 Paladin Sentinel's shield) can only prime unarmored enemies with no active shields or barriers and the target must be completely frozen solid for the priming to occur. Enemies that can't be frozen such as Seeker Swarms can only be primed for a Cryo Explosion by Snap Freeze or the Cryo Shield evolution of Shield Mastery.
  • Pull, Shockwave, Stasis, Lift Grenade, Slam and the deactivation of Barrier can only prime on targets that can be ragdolled.
  • Lift Grenade and Slam can only detonate on unprotected (health only) targets.

Combo Chaining[]

Generally speaking, powers with areas of effect can prime multiple enemies for separate combos with a single use. However, aside from a small number of exceptions, only one enemy can be detonated to create one combo per use of any power. Powers that can detonate multiple combos with a single use include Biotic Sphere, Biotic Slash, Cluster Grenade, Electric Slash, Homing Grenade (with the Split Grenade evolution), Overload (if evolved for chain hits), Poison Strike, Shockwave, Smash, and Throw (with the Double Throw evolution in single-player).

Combo detonations themselves will never set off other combos[2], and in almost all cases they will never prime enemies for additional combos either. Cryo Explosions are the one exception to the latter rule, as they can freeze nearby unprotected enemies setting up additional cryo combos for detonation.

Once a source power has been applied to an enemy, it can only be detonated once on that particular enemy. If another explosion is desired, the source must be reapplied and another detonator used. This is true even if the source power has a damage over time effect that is still active on the target after the combo explosion. Note that the Dark Channel power has an effect that spreads to a new target after the death of the first, and the new target can be detonated. More specifics and exceptions are covered in the next section.

Complex Interactions[]

When working with mixed power types (biotic/fire/cryo/electricity), it is often more effective to adopt a strategy of "prime-prime, detonate-detonate" or "prime, detonate+prime, detonate" instead of "prime-detonate, prime-detonate." Understanding this allows Power Combos to be done more efficiently. Though the concept is fairly simple, memorizing the interaction rules as well as the Source Powers & Detonator Powers charts below is necessary to take full advantage of this technique.

An enemy can be primed for 1, 2, 3 or all 4 types of explosions at once but only 1 of each type at a time. If 2 or more primer types are present, they can then be set off, back to back, by a sequence of detonator powers. Despite the enemy visuals often suggesting the contrary, the addition of a different primer type does NOT erase the previous one(s), nor will it fail to prime if another type is already present. Instead, the different primer types form layers.

Sequence Generally[]

The order in which the primers are applied will affect the sequence in which they are detonated. The detonation sequence follows a reverse chronological order, meaning the outer-most layer (the most recent primer) is the first to be detonated and the inner-most layer (the first primer) is the last to be detonated. If the detonator used cannot trigger an explosion on the outer-most layer, it will work its way chronologically backward or "inward" until it finds a primer it can detonate but the primers it skipped will not be erased.

  • Example 1: An enemy is hit with: Dark Channel, Disruptor Rounds, then two Throws. Disruptor Rounds are the most recent primer so it will be detonated by the first Throw, causing a Tech Burst. Dark Channel is still present and the second Throw will cause a Biotic Explosion.
  • Example 2: An enemy is hit with: Flamer, Reave, Concussive Shot, Throw. Reave cannot detonate Flamer so it simply becomes the most recent primer. Concussive Shot cannot detonate a Biotic Explosion so it skips over Reave and detonates Flamer instead, causing a Fire Explosion. Throw detonates Reave, causing a Biotic Explosion.
  • Example 3: On an armored target (without active shields or barriers), a Warp-Throw biotic with incendiary ammunition can trigger 2 Power Combos in 3 moves by: (1) shooting the enemy, (2) using Warp, (3) then using Throw. Warp will simultaneously cause a Fire Explosion and prime for a Biotic Explosion, which Throw will then detonate. The same 2 combos can be achieved in a similar fashion to Example 1 by: (1) opening with Warp, (2) shooting the enemy, (3) then using Throw two times in a row. If the Expose and Pierce evolutions of Warp are chosen, this version will do more damage; however, likely due to a known glitchy interaction, enemies already affected by Warp are more difficult to prime with Incendiary Rounds, even at Rank 4, making the later method unreliable.

When a team has a mix of tech and biotic priming powers, it is useful to have a member with a "universal detonator," a biotic power capable of causing all 4 types of explosions without any detonation restrictions. For multiplayer, the universal detonators are: Annihilation Field (from the blast that occurs on manual deactivation only), Biotic Charge, Biotic Hammer, Biotic Orbs, Biotic Slash, Biotic Sphere, Cluster Grenade, Nova, Poison Strike, Seeker Swarm, Shockwave, Smash, Throw and Warp.

Enemy glows (or lack thereof) and impact sounds do not always reflect what primers the target is carrying or what the most recent one is; keeping track of which powers have been used and which explosions have occurred is sometimes a challenge.

Chaining Primers[]

When multiple priming powers of the same type hit a target, each successive primer overrides the previous one so only the most recent one can be detonated. For example, an enemy hit with Inferno Grenade, then Flamer, then 2 Concussive Shots will result in only one Fire Explosion just as Reave, Dark Channel and 2 Throws will cause only 1 Biotic Explosion. As a result, the player who applied the last primer would get credit for the explosion.

With the exception of Warp-Effect Biotic Sphere, if the detonator is also a source and of the same type as the source, the enemy will not be primed by the detonator after the Power combo. If the detonator power is also a source and of a different type than the source, the enemy will be primed after the Power Combo by the detonator.

Note: Snap Freeze is the only cryo-based detonator power. Only biotic powers can cause Biotic Explosions.

So, if the compatible detonator power is also a source, then:

  • Electricity Primer + Electricity-Based Detonator = Tech Burst (No primer present).
  • Electricity Primer + Biotic-Based Detonator = Tech Burst + Biotic Primer.
  • Electricity Primer + Fire-Based Detonator = Tech Burst + Fire Primer.
  • Electricity Primer + Snap Freeze = Tech Burst + Cryo Primer.
  • Fire Primer + Fire-Based Detonator = Fire Explosion (No primer present).
  • Fire Primer + Snap Freeze = Fire Explosion + Cryo Primer.
  • Fire Primer + Electricity-Based Detonator = Fire Explosion + Electricity Primer.
  • Fire Primer + Biotic-Based Detonator = Fire Explosion + Biotic Primer.
  • Cryo Primer + Snap Freeze = Cryo Explosion (No primer present).
  • Cryo Primer + Electricity-Based Detonator = Cryo Explosion + Electricity Primer.
  • Cryo Primer + Fire-Based Detonator = Cryo Explosion + Fire Primer.
  • Cryo Primer + Biotic-Based Detonator = Cryo Explosion + Biotic Primer.
  • Biotic Primer + Biotic-Based Detonator = Biotic Explosion (No primer present except for Biotic Sphere).
  • Biotic Primer + Fire-Based Detonator = Biotic Primer + Fire Primer (No explosion).
  • Biotic Primer + Snap Freeze = Biotic Primer + Cryo Primer (No explosion).
  • Biotic Primer + Electricity-Based Detonator = Biotic Primer + Electricity Primer (No explosion).

As the above list shows, using a detonator that is also a source but a different base is a useful tactic. A sequence of Carnage, Incinerate, Overload (Fire, Fire, Electricity) would yield a single Fire Explosion and a target primed for a Tech Burst. In contrast, a sequence of Carnage, Overload, Incinerate (Fire, Electricity, Fire) would yield: a Fire Explosion, a Tech Burst and a target primed for a second Fire Explosion.

This also means it is advantageous (especially in multiplayer) to use ammo that primes differently than the powers being used. For example, if Disruptor Rounds were paired with Flamer, enemies could be primed for a Tech Burst and a Fire Explosion simultaneously. If Flamer were paired with Incendiary Rounds, enemies could only be primed for 1 Fire Explosion at a time. Additionally, because of the "counter-intuitive" way Power Combo damage is calculated (covered in detail below), overriding Flamer's primer with Incendiary Rounds' primer will actually make the Fire Explosions weaker.

Advanced Chaining[]

If this concept is taken to the extreme, it is possible to have the number of explosions on a target be equal to one less than the total number of powers used. This chain of explosions is achieved by alternating powers that: are both source and detonator, different types and can all detonate each other. This means, after the first power is used, each successive power will simultaneously trigger an explosion and prime for the next one. Doing this with a team is easier and gives far more options but there are a handful characters that can do it alone.

  • Quarian Male Engineer: Incinerate + Electrical Damage Arc Grenade.
  • Human Engineer: Incinerate + Overload.
  • N7 Paladin Sentinel: Snap Freeze + Incinerate.
  • N7 Paladin Sentinel: (On synthetics/shields/barriers) Energy Drain + Snap Freeze.
  • N7 Paladin Sentinel: (On synthetics/shields/barriers) Snap Freeze + Incinerate + Energy Drain.
  • Salarian Engineer/N7 Paladin Sentinel: (On synthetics/shields/barriers) Energy Drain + Incinerate.
  • Phoenix Adept & Vanguard: (On unarmored enemies) Shield Penetration Lash + Electrical Damage Smash.

The Phoenix Adept, Phoenix Vanguard and N7 Paladin have limitations on their chains. In multiplayer, Lash cannot prime or detonate an armored target and when Snap Freeze is used as a detonator, the explosion is centered around the player instead of the enemy, limiting its usefulness. (See Snap Freeze => Player Notes => Strategies #5.)

Examples: The following is not a comprehensive list; these are merely examples of synergy with different power types. As mentioned, some powers have priming and/or detonating restrictions and many tech powers have a short priming duration. If overlooked, the examples below will not work as described. Fast recharge speeds and/or additional teammates are often necessary. To see if a hypothetical sequence would work, consult the charts in the sections below.

  • Example 1: Dark Channel, Carnage, Throw, Throw = Fire Explosion, Biotic Explosion.
    • An enemy is hit with a priming Biotic power and then a fire attack. Since no fire attack can cause a Biotic Explosion, it is now double primed. The two Throws will trigger a Fire Explosion first and then a Biotic Explosion.
  • Example 2: Snap Freeze, Flamer, Warp, Warp, Throw = Fire Explosion, Cryo Explosion, Biotic Explosion.
    • While Warp is detonating Flamer, it primes for a Biotic Explosion. Warp is the newest primer but it cannot detonate itself so the 2nd Warp detonates Snap Freeze, causing a Cryo Explosion. Throw then detonates Warp. An enemy cannot carry two primers of the same type at once so a 2nd Throw would not cause a 2nd Biotic Explosion.
  • Example 3: Snap Freeze, Flamer, Warp, Throw, Throw = Fire Explosion, Biotic Explosion, Cryo Explosion.
    • Substituting Throw for the 2nd Warp in Example 2 yields the same explosions but alters the order. Warp detonates the Flamer but also primes for a Biotic Explosion, making it the newest primer, so the 1st Throw detonates Warp and the 2nd Throw detonates Snap Freeze.
  • Example 4: Warp, Disruptor Rounds, Throw, Throw = Tech Burst, Biotic Explosion.
  • Example 5: Disruptor Rounds, Warp, Throw = Tech Burst, Biotic Explosion. (Faster version of #4)
  • Example 6: Singularity, Overload, Reave, Incinerate = Biotic Explosion, Tech Burst.
    • Because Overload was used after Singularity, it is first in line to be detonated. However, since Reave can only detonate Biotic Explosions, it will bypass Overload and detonate Singularity instead but Overload's primer remains in effect and will be detonated by Incinerate. The enemy is also primed for a Fire Explosion after Incinerate hits.
  • Example 7: Warp, Snap Freeze, Sabotage, Flamer, Throw x 4 = 4 Explosions (Fire, Tech, Cryo, Biotic).
  • Example 8: Energy Drain, Incinerate, Arc Grenade, Incinerate, Warp, Throw = Tech, Fire, Tech, Fire, Biotic.
    • For this to work, the Rank 5 Electrical Damage evolution of Arc Grenade must be chosen, otherwise, it will not prime for a Tech Burst.
  • Example 9: Carnage, Overload, Warp, Throw = Fire Explosion, Tech Burst, Biotic Explosion.
  • Example 10: Snap Freeze, Sabotage, Flamer, Concussive Shot x 3 = Fire, Tech, then Cryo Explosion.
  • Example 11: Warp, Energy Drain, Incinerate, Overload, Throw, Throw = Tech, Fire, Tech, Biotic.
  • Example 12: Submission Net, Incinerate, Warp, Shockwave = Tech Burst, Fire Explosion, Biotic Explosion.
  • Example 13: Incinerate, Overload, Incinerate, Overload . . . = Fire Explosion, Tech Burst, Fire Explosion . . .
    • This is one of the most devastating tactics in the game. It can be done with a single Engineer but it requires precise timing as Overload and Incinerate only prime for around 3 seconds each. For this sequence to work, the time between successive hits must be less than that. With a 200% recharge speed bonus, Engineer Shepard and the basic Human Engineer in multiplayer can get the recharge speed of Overload and Incinerate down to 2.54 seconds without selecting any recharge evolutions. The Engineer becomes capable of continuous, max-level Power Combos (if both powers are Rank 6) every 3 seconds.
    • Overload and Incinerate have large damage bonuses against shields/barriers and armor respectively. Fire Explosions do double damage to armor and Tech Bursts do double damage to enemy shields. With no caveats for priming or detonating, this is highly effective against elite enemies.
    • 3 target Chain Overload with radius evolution on Incinerate is extremely useful for crowd control. Tech Bursts and Fire Explosions have a larger radius than Biotic and Cryo Explosions. A wide Incinerate can hit 3 clustered targets and Overload can detonate 3 separate tech-based (Fire, Cryo or Electricity) explosions with a single use. Multiple explosions make the effective blast radius even larger.

Note: Rank 6 Warp-Effect Biotic Sphere technically follows the same rules listed above but due to a unique property, it behaves as though it is an exception. A sequence of: a Biotic Primer, Warp Effect-Biotic Sphere, a Biotic Detonator will result in 2 Biotic Explosions despite all the powers being biotic.

Normally, a power that is both source and detonator, will prime first and detonate second, when it hits a target. There is, however, a caveat. The game's rule against duplicate primer types will prevent the source+detonator power from priming if an identical type is already present. This is why a target isn't primed after a Power Combo if the primer and detonator types are the same.

Contrary to other powers, Warp-Effect Biotic Sphere detonates first and primes second. Upon initial activation, it is only a detonating power. Once the sphere has been fully formed, it is strictly a priming power. This means that Warp-Effect Biotic Sphere detonates the previous biotic primer before applying its own so the duplicate primer rule does not apply. From a Power Combo perspective, deploying Warp-Effect Biotic Sphere directly on an enemy is like hitting the enemy with Throw first and Dark Channel second, which would detonate whatever primer was there initially and apply a biotic primer after. This is why: an enemy hit with Reave inside a Biotic Sphere causes an explosion, an enemy hit with Reave that then has Biotic Sphere deployed upon it causes an explosion but an enemy hit with Reave who then walks into an existing Biotic Sphere, does not cause an explosion.

Note: Like Biotic Sphere, the Rank 6 Detonate Evolution of Singularity can be used to achieve 2 Biotic Explosions with only 3 biotic power uses because of a unique property. Due to the delay of Singularity's Detonate Evolution, it can act as the primer for the first Biotic Explosion and then the detonator for the second Biotic Explosion. If an enemy is within the area of effect of Singularity, hit with a biotic detonator power and then a biotic priming power before the Singularity "dies," it will detonate the second biotic primer. The basic human adept could do this by using: Singularity, Shockwave, Warp or Singularity, Warp, Warp. The Phoenix Adept could use Singularity, then Smash (with the Rank 4 Biotic Combo Evolution) two times in a row. In each case, the second power would detonate Singularity's primer and the third power would prime the enemy again for a second Biotic Explosion. When Singularity duration expires, the Detonate evolution would trigger a Biotic Explosion off of the second primer.


All Power Combos have a "base" damage based on the combo level, which is simply the total power level of the source and detonator. The base damage ranges from 100 (for a minimum combo level of 2) to 250 (for a maximum possible combo level of 12). Note that for purposes of combo levels, multiplayer Ammo Bonuses always count as rank 1 powers. This is in contrast to single-player ammo powers, which use their respective power rank for the sake of calculating combo level. This base damage is then multiplied by a factor dependent on the game's difficulty, scaling with enemy health.[3]

  • Narrative: x.5833333
  • Casual: x.83333
  • Normal/Bronze: x1.5
  • Hardcore/Silver: x2.25
  • Insanity/Gold: x3.375
  • Platinum: x4.3875

Note that this scaling means that, as difficulty levels increase, the relative importance of combos for a power-based class's damage output increases dramatically. For example, in multiplayer a maxed-out combo will do only 375 damage on Bronze but an astounding 1,096 on Platinum. This also has the ramification that while ammo powers may be useful from a single-player/solo perspective for priming/detonating combos at will, it can severely reduce the total damage output of a power-heavy party in multiplayer.

The combo damage is further modified based on its type and on whether it is damaging armor, shield, barrier, or health as noted below (e.g. Tech Bursts do 2x damage to shields). Any debuffs on the target receiving the combo (such as Sabotage's Tech Vulnerability) will also affect the combo damage, if applicable.

The combo damage is otherwise completely independent of the actual damage or damage bonuses of the powers being used, unless it is a damage bonus that specifically mentions combo damage, such as Warp's Detonate evolution. Power evolutions that enhance combo damage for both the source and the detonator powers do stack if they are both for the same combo type (e.g. Warp and Throw both so-evolved results in an especially powerful detonation). Note that Snap Freeze's Tech Combo and Electric Slash's Detonate evolutions are bugged: Electric Slash's Detonate evolution does not actually affect combo damage, and Snap Freeze doubles damage for any Cryo Explosion the N7 Paladin primes when he chooses Reach at rank 4. As for the Alliance Infiltration Unit Infiltrator, she has to select the Tech Combo evolution, which doubles combo damage for any non-biotic combo (i.e. fire, cryo, or tech) whether priming or detonating. Electrical Hammer's Radius & Combo evolution by contrast only affects combo damage when used to detonate.

Biotic Explosion[]

Assault Trooper primed for a biotic explosion

Biotic Explosions cause a wave of biotic force that damages and knocks back enemies. These combos can be triggered without killing an enemy. Most biotic powers that lift or suspend targets in the air only prime for Biotic Explosions when a target is successfully lifted, which can only happen to lesser unprotected enemies, though there are some exceptions.

Unlike the other types of Power Combos, Biotic Explosions are detonated exclusively by other biotic powers, meaning that biotic-focused characters or classes must either be able to self-execute biotic combos or have biotic teammates that can assist. A few biotic powers such as Warp are "universal detonators", able to detonate all combo types.

Biotic Explosions have a radius of 2 to 4 meters.[4]

Biotic Explosions do two times normal damage against biotic barriers and armor.[5]

Source Powers[]

Detonator Powers[]

*Has rank evolution that increases combo damage.

Cryo Explosion[]

Assault Trooper primed for a Cryo Explosion

Cryo Explosions create a blast of ice that deals severe damage to the primary target and nearby enemies, also freezing most unprotected enemies (no armor, shields, or barriers), setting them up for additional combos. Cryo Explosions can be triggered without killing an enemy, although in most cases, the enemy must be frozen solid in order to do so. Enemies killed by Cryo Explosions shatter without leaving a corpse.

Cryo Explosions have a radius of 3 to 5 meters. Even if enemies in the radius are not frozen, they are still chilled and have their movement slowed by 30%.[6]

Snap Freeze has a bug where Cryo Explosions that use it as their source do twice their normal damage.[7]

Source Powers[]

Detonator Powers[]

*Has rank evolution that increases combo damage.

Tech Burst[]

Assault Trooper primed for a Tech Burst

Tech Bursts, also called Electric Combos, create a blast of electricity that inflicts severe damage to nearby enemies and has a chance of stunning them. Tech Bursts can be triggered without being a killing blow. Bursts are notably harder to see or hear than the other types of combos.

Tech Bursts have a radius of 4.5 to 7.5 meters.[8]

Tech Bursts do two times normal damage against shields.[5]

Source Powers[]

Detonator Powers[]

*Has rank evolution that increases combo damage.

Fire Explosion[]

The Assault Trooper on the right is primed for a Fire Explosion

Fire Explosions, also called Flame Combos, create a blast that inflicts severe damage to nearby enemies, including dealing two times normal damage against armor.[5] It also has some cosmetic effects, setting enemies visually on fire and vaporising corpses of lesser enemies, although the fire effect does not apply extra damage over time. Unprotected organic infantry enemies caught in the blast can panic from being ignited. Fire Explosions originally required that the enemies be killed to trigger them, until Patch 1.04 removed that requirement.

Fire Explosions have a radius of 3 to 6 meters.[10]

Source Powers[]

Detonator Powers[]

*Has rank evolution that increases combo damage.

Note: Fire Explosions cause a damage-over-time effect with 0 damage modifiers against all defenses, which can become the owner of Incendiary Rounds' effect and nullify its damage if used without caution.[11]


In the table below, the columns marked Biotic/Cryo/Tech/Fire indicate whether the ability can detonate primed Biotic Explosions, Cryo Explosions, Tech Bursts, or Fire Explosions respectively. Underscore indicates whether a power has a multiplier evolution which increases the effective combo level of the power for the purposes of the combo type indicated by the column. These evolutions increase damage by at least 50% regardless of whether the power is used as source or detonator, and whether it is stacking with another power with such a multiplier.

Icon Power Primes Biotic Cryo Tech Fire Notes
ME3 Annihilation Field Annihilation Field Biotic ✓* ✓* ✓* ✓* *On self-detonation (deactivation)
ME3 Arc Grenade Arc Grenade Tech* *Primes with "Electrical Damage" evolution
ME3 Barrier Barrier Biotic* *On self-detonation, primes if target is lifted
ME3 Biotic Charge Biotic Charge
ME3 Biotic Hammer Biotic Hammer
ME3 Biotic Orbs Biotic Orbs
ME3 Biotic Protector Biotic Protector ✓* ✓* ✓* ✓* *Detonates with "Blast" evolution only
ME3 Biotic Slash Biotic Slash
ME3 Biotic Sphere Biotic Sphere Biotic* ✓** ✓** ✓** ✓** *Primes with "Warp Effect" evolution
**Detonates on activation only
ME3 Carnage Carnage Fire
ME3 Cluster Grenade Cluster Grenade
ME3 Combat Drone Combat Drone ✓* ✓* ✓* *On destruction, detonates with "Detonate" evolution
ME3 Concussive Arrows Concussive Arrows Tech* *Primes with "Shock" evolution
ME3 Concussive Shot Concussive Shot Cryo*/Fire* *Primes with "Amplification" evolution with Cryo/Incendiary Ammo (single-player); Disruptor Ammo is bugged and does not prime Tech Bursts[12]
ME3 Cryo Ammo Cryo Ammo Cryo Also applies to Cryo Rounds
ME3 Cryo Blast Cryo Blast Cryo
ME3 Dark Channel Dark Channel Biotic
ME3 Dark Sphere Dark Sphere Biotic
ME3 Decoy Decoy ✓* ✓* ✓* *On destruction, detonates with "Exploding Decoy"
ME3 Disruptor Ammo Disruptor Ammo Tech Also applies to Disruptor Rounds
ME3 Electric Slash Electric Slash
ME3 Electrical Hammer Electrical Hammer Fire* *Primes with "Fire Damage" evolution
ME3 Energy Drain Energy Drain Tech ✓* ✓* ✓* *Only detonates shielded, barriered, or synthetic targets
ME3 Flamer Flamer Fire
ME3 Flare Flare
ME3 Frag Grenade Frag Grenade
ME3 Geth Turret- Icon Geth Turret Fire* *Primes with "Flamethrower" evolution
ME3 Havoc Strike Havoc Strike
ME3 Hex Shield Hex Shield Tech* *Primes with "Shock" evolution
ME3 Homing Grenade Homing Grenade Each projectile of the "Split Grenade" evolution can detonate
ME3 Incendiary Ammo Incendiary Ammo Fire* *Priming effect can apply to shielded targets but only detonatable once shields destroyed
Also applies to Incendiary Rounds
ME3 Incinerate Incinerate Fire
ME3 Inferno Grenade Inferno Grenade Fire
ME3 Lash Lash Biotic Primes if target is lifted.
Armored targets cannot be detonated in MP
ME3 Lift Grenade Lift Grenade Biotic Primes and detonates unprotected enemies only
ME3 Multi-Frag Grenade Multi-Frag Grenade
ME3 Nova Nova
ME3 Overload Overload Tech* *Primes primary target only
All chain hits can detonate
ME3 Phase Disruptor Phase Disruptor
ME3 Poison Strike Poison Strike
ME3 Proximity Mine Proximity Mine
ME3 Recon Mine Recon Mine * * * *Only on detonation
ME3 Pull Pull Biotic* *Combo evolution in multiplayer only
ME3 Reave Reave Biotic
ME3 Sabotage Sabotage Tech* *Only primes non-synthetics, application delayed 1.5s
ME3 Seeker Swarm Seeker Swarm
ME3 Sentry Turret Sentry Turret Cryo*/Fire** *With "Cryo Ammo" evolution
**With Flamethrower evolution vs. unshielded targets
ME3 Shadow Strike Shadow Strike Tech* *Primes with "Electric Damage" evolution
ME3 Shield Mastery Shield Mastery Cryo*/Fire* *Mutually exclusive evolutions
ME3 Shockwave Shockwave Biotic* *Primes with "Lifting Shockwave" evolution
ME3 Siege Pulse Siege Pulse
ME3 Singularity Singularity Biotic ✓* *On self-detonation, detonates with "Detonate" evolution
ME3 Slam Slam Biotic* *Primes only during lift effect
Detonates unprotected enemies only
ME3 Smash Smash Biotic*/Tech* *Mutually exclusive Rank 4 evolutions
ME3 Snap Freeze Snap Freeze Cryo* *Affects both slowed and frozen targets
ME3 Stasis Stasis Biotic
ME3 Sticky Grenade Sticky Grenade Cryo*/Tech*/Fire* *Primes with Cryo/Disruptor/Incendiary Ammo or Rounds
ME3 Submission Net Submission Net Tech
ME3 Throw Throw
ME3 Warp Warp Biotic