Power combo

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Power combos are specialized combat explosions that allow for extra damage and elemental effects. Power combos start when an enemy (or group of enemies) is primed, setting them up for a power combo, and then a detonator is used to detonate the explosion.

Combo types[edit | edit source]

There are four types of combo explosions:

  • Fire Combo.png- Sets every enemy in the area on fire.
  • Cryo Combo.png- Slows or freezes nearby enemies.
  • Tech Combo.png- Creates a lingering electrical discharge that stuns enemies.
  • Biotic Combo.png- Detonates with extreme force, sending enemies flying.

Mechanics[edit | edit source]

Many skills are primers, detonators, and some are even both.

  • Some skills are primers and/or detonators right away while other skills require specific skill point purchases to become primers and/or detonators. Look for primer and detonator icons on the skill menu for each skill when planning skill purchases.
  • There are ammo consumables, melee weapons, and explosive canisters that can also prime enemies but none can act as detonators.
  • Some skills have Ranks that increase bonuses to combo explosions such as damage and/or radius. (Refer to each skill page for specifics on bonuses)
  • Squadmates can be specifically upgraded toward making them good at priming and/or detonating power combos.
  • Squadmates will automatically use skills to detonate primed enemies, as well as semi-randomly priming enemies.

Skill Primers[edit | edit source]

To set up a combo explosion, an enemy must first be "primed" with a skill. Skills that can prime enemies are marked with different icons on the Skills screen that indicate their primer type.

  • Fire Primer Icon.png Fire primers burn enemies and set them up for a Fire Combo.
  • Cryo Primer Icon.png Cryo primers chill or freeze enemies and set them up for a Cryo Combo.
  • Tech Primer Icon.png Tech primers electrify enemies and set them up for a Tech Combo.
  • Biotic Primer Icon.png Biotic primers lift enemies into the air and set them up for a Biotic Combo.

Consumable Primers[edit | edit source]

Consumable ammo items are also able to prime enemies for combo explosions:

The enemy will have to be successfully shot with rounds until there is a clear visual display that the enemy has been primed (ice, electrical charges, flames).

Care should be taken when using consumable ammo items to prime enemies. If you prime an enemy with a Skill, and then shoot an enemy with consumable ammo before detonating the primed enemy, the Skill primer will be replaced with the ammo primer.

Melee Weapon Primers[edit | edit source]

Several melee weapons are able to prime enemies for combo explosions:

The enemy will have to be successfully hit with the melee weapon until there is a clear visual display that the enemy has been primed (ice, flames).

The Electric Firaan is NOT able to prime enemies for an electric Tech Combo.

Explosive Canister Primers[edit | edit source]

Explosive canisters are found in many battle areas. The color of the container indicates the type of explosion that will happen when they are detonated. Detonating these containers with an enemy nearby are able to prime enemies for combo explosions:

  • Fire Primer Icon.png Red Explosive Materials canisters prime for a Fire Combo.
  • Cryo Primer Icon.png Light-blue Coolant Containment canisters prime for a Cryo Combo.
  • Tech Primer Icon.png Yellow Dischargeable Supercapacitor canisters prime for a Tech Combo.
  • Biotic Primer Icon.png Purple Charged Element Zero Stasis canisters prime for a Biotic Combo.

The enemy will have to be successfully hit by the exploding container with a clear visual display that the enemy has been primed (flames, ice, electrical charges, biotic glow).

Detonators[edit | edit source]

Once an enemy is primed for a combo explosion, a detonator skill is required to set off the combo explosion. Detonator skills are marked with an icon Detonator Icon.png on the Skills screen. Any detonator will set off a combo explosion.

Consumable ammo items, melee weapons, and explosive canisters WILL NOT detonate combo explosions.

There is one exception to the detonators rules involving one unique melee weapon, known as the Batarian Gauntlet, in multiplayer. This melee weapon is wielded by the Batarian Scrapper and Batarian Vanguard and will act as a combo detonator. Targets must be suitably primed and then a melee attack performed to detonate the combo explosion. However, using this melee weapon to act a detonator will not count towards any of the challenges involving combo detonations.

Combo Table[edit | edit source]

The table below lists all of the skill primers and detonators.

  • A check mark (✓) in any Primer column implies that the skill can prime that type of combo explosion.
  • A check mark (✓) in the Detonator column implies that the skill is a detonator.
  • Any skill with a check mark that has an asterisk (✓*) has issues or restrictions. (Refer to the specific skill article in question for details)
  • Upgradeable skills require additional points to be spent on the skill to activate primers and/or detonators.

Not all skills are available to every character:

  • SP - Skill that Pathfinder Ryder can acquire in Single-player mode.
  • SM - Skill of a squadmate in Single-player mode.
  • MP - Skill in Multiplayer mode.


Skills Fire Primer Icon.png Cryo Primer Icon.png Tech Primer Icon.png Biotic Primer Icon.png Detonator Icon.png SP SM MP Upgradeable Notes
Annihilation 1 Icon.png Annihilation (SP, MP)
Asari Commando 1 - Weapon Training Icon.png Asari Commando
Assault Turret 1 Icon.png Assault Turret (SP, MP) ✓* ✓* Either Fire or Cryo
Avenger Strike 1 Icon.png Avenger Strike 1 (MP) Icon.png Avenger Strike (Jaal, MP)
Barricade 1 Icon.png Barricade (SP, MP)
Bioelectric Focus 1 - Bioelectric Focus Icon.png Bioelectric Focus
Charge 1 Icon.png Charge (SP, Cora, MP)
Concussive Shot 1 Icon.png Concussive Shot (SP, Vetra, MP)
Cryo Beam 1 Icon.png Cryo Beam (SP, MP)
Defense Drone 1 Icon.png Defense Drone
Energy Drain 1 Icon.png Energy Drain (SP, Jaal, MP)
Flamethrower 1 Icon.png Flamethrower (SP, MP)
Fortify 1 Icon.png Fortify
Havoc Strike 1 Icon.png Havoc Strike
Incinerate 1 Icon.png Incinerate (SP, Drack, MP)
Krogan Warrior 1 - Weapon Training Icon.png Krogan Warrior
Lance 1 Icon.png Lance (SP, MP)
Nova 1 Icon.png Nova (SP, Cora, MP)
Overload 1 Icon.png Overload (SP, Liam, MP) ✓* Only while stunned
Power Armor 1 Icon.pngPower Armor
Pull 1 Icon.png Pull (SP, Peebee, MP)
Remnant VI 1 Icon.png Remnant VI (SP, MP)
Resilience 1 - Defensive Training Icon.png Resilience
Shockwave 1 Icon.png Shockwave (SP, Peebee, MP)
Singularity 1 Icon.png Singularity (SP, MP)
Snap Freeze 1 Icon.png Snap Freeze
Throw 1 Icon.png Throw (SP, MP)
Trip Mine 1 Icon.png Trip Mine (SP, MP)
Turian Smuggler 1 - Weapon Training Icon.png Turian Smuggler
Warp 1 Icon.png Warp

Notes[edit | edit source]

The number of combos detonated can be tracked on the Accomplishments tab in the statistics menu.

Achievements and trophies[edit | edit source]

The following achievements and trophies can be earned for Power Combos:

Challenges[edit | edit source]

Combos are the focus of the following challenges: