EMP grenades

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EMP grenades

EMP grenades

Electromagnetic pulse grenades damaging to electronic equipment.

Base Stats

Tech Level
Market Value
315 Silver
1 kg

Ranged Combat

Single Thrown
50 dmg (EMP)
90 ticks (1.5 secs)
160 ticks (2.67 secs)
12.9 tile(s)
12 (m/s)
Burst Count
1 (per burst)
Miss Radius
1.9 tile(s)
Blast Radius


Crafted At
Machining table
Required Research
Work To Make
24,000 ticks (6.67 mins)
Resources to make
Steel 20 + Component 6

EMP grenades are short ranged, thrown weapons that have a forced miss radius but deal EMP damage in a small radius around their target, allowing them to stun mechanical targets and deplete shields.

Note that EMP grenades, once equipped, can be thrown infinitely; they are not consumed by use.


EMP grenades can be crafted at a Machining table once the Microelectronics research project has been completed. They require Steel 20 Steel, Component 6 Component and 24,000 ticks (6.67 mins) of work.

They can also be purchased from orbital pirate merchants and orbital combat suppliers, outlander faction bases, and can be recovered after defeating the following raider types:

Raider Kind Chance Average Quality Health
EMP Grenadier 100% Normal 70-230%


EMP grenades have very short range of 12.9, moderate aiming time, and a 100 ticks (1.67 secs) delay before exploding in a 3.5 tile radius, causing 50 EMP damage to everything in that radius. Note that EMP damage does not deal any physical damage, instead stunning mechanoids, turrets and mortars in that radius for 25 seconds and instantly depleting shield belts. A target that is stunned shows a mote saying 'STUN'. Using EMP grenades against friendlies counts as an attack even if they aren't hurt.

After being stunned, mechanoids become "Adapted" and gain immunity against further stuns for 2,200 ticks (36.67 secs). Immunity is applied on stun, and will not be extended by stunning an adapted or already stunned mechanoid.

Each set of EMP grenades can be thrown infinitely; they are not consumed by use.

They are thrown with the same animation as of shooting, they cannot be used over walls and must have a direct line of sight. A circular zone will generate to indicate range, then another 3x3 indicator with a circular center will become the aiming spot. The character cannot hold both the grenades and another weapon at the same time.

Grenades will always land within 1 tile of their targeted tile, including on the diagonal, unless the path of the grenade intersects with a wall or object. This forced miss radius means that Shooting skill and shooting accuracy of the grenadier is irrelevant. The grenades will not get any more or less accurate based on the skills or health of the thrower. Aiming time effects do still apply however.

When throwing a grenade down an 1-tile wide alley, a pawn can consistently throw a grenade 4 tiles, not including the tile the pawn is standing on, without intersecting the two side walls. Beyond 4 tiles, there is a risk of hitting the wall and dropping short. This can be relevant to prevent friendly fire during combat.

When damaged with Flame damage[How much?], they may explode. The grenades will spark and emit a hissing sound shortly before exploding some time later. The explosion deals 50 EMP damage in a 2.66 tile radius around itself.

EMP grenades have no quality - every set of grenades will have the same stats, regardless of the skill of the crafter.


The main benefit of EMP grenades is the continual stunning of mechanoids, reducing the time they have to act and harm colonists by as much as 68%. This can be a decisive reducing in incoming DPS against some of the toughest enemies in the game. With the Royalty DLC active, they also play a vital role in suppressing low-shield packs Content added by the Royalty DLC and downing mech low-shields Content added by the Royalty DLC, ensuring that colonists can maintain damage output. There are also niche uses in brain shocking pawns with certain implants to safely down them as a method of safely downing berserking supersoldier colonists or rebellious slaves.Content added by the Ideology DLC Finally, EMP Grenades are also particularly useful against mechanoid clusters Content added by the Royalty DLC if they don't have proximity activators. Content added by the Royalty DLC

Against enemies that are vulnerable to EMP, they also offer a viable combat alternative for those with low skill or health issues that diminish accuracy as their accuracy is irrelevant but they can also swing the tide of battle. EMP grenades strictly benefit from the trigger-happy trait, as the Aiming Time bonus applies while the accuracy penalty does not, resulting in a signficantly higher DPS. Similarly, the careful shooter trait is strictly detrimental, reducing DPS with no benefit in return.

Usage without oversight is prone to vulnerable positioning, inefficiency against moving target, and unwanted collateral damage. It therefore is a good idea to manually aim EMP grenades instead of relying on the colonists' AI to do that. They will not lead a moving target and will not attack targets which can only be hit by area of effect (e.g. well behind the corner of a wall). Also, repeated applications while the target is already stunned will cause stun adaptation to happen sooner, while not affecting stun time significantly.

Specifically, these grenades are very effective against centipedes, as their slow movement speed and large size make them easy targets. Centipedes have a very high damage potential, so even temporarily shutting them down will give your colonists an advantage in a battle.

Comparison to EMP launchers

The key differences between EMP grenades and launchers are: Range, Rate of Fire, Blast Radius, and Quality.

While both have the same miss radius, the launcher has a significantly smaller blast radius. This means that when the projectile goes wild it may not hit the targetted tile at all. Conversely, the grenades will always overlap the target tile with their larger blast radius. This makes the launcher significantly less reliable. When combined with its 68% slower rate of fire this means that, despite the longer range, using the grenades is almost always the better choice. Note that range can still be beneficial, such as when shutting down low shield packsContent added by the Royalty DLC or mechanoid shieldsContent added by the Royalty DLC.

This equation changes when at very high qualities however. Unlike the grenades, the launcher is affected by quality. As damage is affected by certain qualities and stun duration is affected by the amount of EMP damage done, this means that awful quality launchers will stun targets for a shorter duration, but also means that masterwork and legendary launchers will stun for longer. The legendary launcher is particularly interesting because, while stun time increases with damage, adaptation time stays the same, and the legendary launcher stuns for long enough that the adaptation will end before the stun does. This means that it is technically possible to keep mechanoids 100% stun locked with perfect timing. In practice, it is almost impossible to get the timing perfect even before accounting for the risk of missed shots, but a team of pawns with legendary launchers can keep a mechanoid stun locked to the point where they cannot finish the warmup on their attacks, which is effective the same. When done in a 1 wide tunnel, this becomes even more reliable. Thus, while launchers of excellent quality of lower are inferior to grenades unless the range is strictly needed, the longer stun durations of higher quality launchers make them useful more generally.

Source Damage Stun Duration Post-Stun Adaption Duration Ideal Stun Uptime
Awful EMP launcher 45 1,350 ticks (22.5 secs) 850 ticks (14.17 secs) 61.36%
EMP Grenades, Poor/Norm/Good/Exc EMP launcher 50 1,500 ticks (25 secs) 700 ticks (11.67 secs) 68.18%
Masterwork EMP launcher 62.5 1,875 ticks (31.25 secs) 325 ticks (5.42 secs) 85.23%
Legendary EMP launcher 75 2,250 ticks (37.5 secs) ticks (0 secs) (-50 ticks (-0.83 secs)) 100%

Version history

  • 0.6.532 - Added.
  • On or before 1.0.2096 - Texture updated.