Image via Respawn Entertainment
Fuse and his explosive kit brought a hefty dose of chaos to Apex Legends‘ eighth season. After this master of mayhem fought his way to the top of the fighting pits in the planet Salvo, he faced his greatest challenge yet: the Apex Games. And he’s bringing in a lot of firepower to become the champion.
Fuse’s kit is all about causing a ruckus. What he lacks in mobility, he makes up for in area denial and sheer damage potential. Mastering the explosives enthusiast can be a tricky task, but his skillset offers plenty of opportunities to bring the aggression to your opponents’ doorsteps—and keep them right where you want them.
Here’s what you need to know to play Fuse.
Screengrab via Respawn Entertainment
Fuse’s skillset is explosive and aggressive, with considerable potential for area denial and direct damage to his enemies—especially when used in conjunction with his other abilities.
Fuse’s passive, Grenadier, lets him throw grenades “farther, faster, and more accurately” with a little help from his mechanical arm, according to his official page. The ability also lets him stack two grenades per inventory slot, giving you more bang for your buck.
Grenadier allows Fuse to bombard his opponents with a barrage of assorted ordnances. The increased speed makes it easier to stick targets with Arc Stars, while the longer range and higher accuracy ensure the explosives land exactly where they should, even from hundreds of meters away. Grenadier’s increased throw power can be toggled on and off during a match, allowing Fuse to throw grenades the same way as other legends if desired. Fuse players should always be aiming to stack at least two of every grenade in their inventory to keep enemies at bay.
Speaking of keeping enemies at bay, Fuse’s tactical is the Knuckle Cluster, a cluster bomb that generates a series of sequential explosions in a small area. Like Arc Stars, players can stick the Knuckle Cluster to a target for a guaranteed blast and an extra 10 damage when the shot connects. The cluster only sticks to the target until it begins exploding, at which point it no longer travels with a stuck enemy. Fuse has two charges of Knuckle Cluster, so fire away.
Knuckle Cluster is extremely versatile. It can be used as a quick way to deal some damage to a target or as a small area-denial device. Toss it into a door and blow it up for free—with a little kick to anyone near it. Throw it on a hallway and watch the enemies debate whether to go through it, or even pre-fire it into a choke so your enemies stumble into a series of explosions. It’s essentially a grenade that’s unique to Fuse, but be careful; it can also damage him.
Knuckle Cluster can serve as a situational counter to Bangalore’s smoke. It’s not uncommon for Bangalore players to use the visual clutter from the smoke to heal or revive a teammate, so throwing in a Knuckle Cluster could help apply pressure, even if you don’t see them. There’s nothing more satisfying than landing a blind stick, too. Knuckle Clusters can also provide a distraction while you revive a teammate or make a quick getaway.
What you don’t want to do is fire a Knuckle Cluster directly at an enemy if your weapon runs out of ammo and you want to try to finish them off in a close-range fight. While it’s tempting, the amount of time it takes to ready, aim, and fire the cluster usually results in you being downed, so it’s better to gain some distance and fire a Knuckle Cluster from further away.
For his ultimate, Fuse whips out the big guns: the mortar strapped to his back. The Motherlode creates a ring of fire around an area, significantly damaging and slowing anyone who walks through it. Fuse and his teammates can also see the outline of any enemies trapped within its flames for the entire duration of the ultimate.
The Motherlode is fairly intuitive to use. The HUD displays a trajectory for the mortar shell that will split into a series of firebombs. Using it in the open creates a ring of fire that engulfs an area, but using it indoors just rains hell on Fuse himself, who takes self-damage from it. Don’t try using it in areas with low ceilings, like parts of Storm Point and World’s Edge—it won’t rise to its full height, and you’ll usually just end up hitting yourself.
The Motherlode is a strong area-denial tool. It forces enemies to choose between standing in one place or passing through the fire. When used indoors, it can create a fiery mess that catches everyone inside its area. While it can hold off a push or be used to ambush an enemy squad, it takes a long time to aim and fire, leaving Fuse open to damage. It’s usually best to aim it at a squad you know is hiding behind a rock or building in a large outdoor area.
One of the Motherlode’s main utilities is keeping enemies confined in one place and making them easy targets for the rest of Fuse’s kit. Idle enemies are susceptible to a barrage of frags, Arc Stars, or Fuse’s Knuckle Cluster. If they run, players can shoot the tactical straight into their path to get some easy damage ticks on the opponents.
Because Fuse’s kit revolves around damage, any character who can mitigate it—either by blocking it or escaping it—can give him a run for his money. On the other hand, a team that complements those strengths can be a powerful force in the arena.
Screengrab via Respawn Entertainment
Fuse’s kit specializes in area-of-effect damage, and his ultimate has the added bonus of keeping its targets pinned down in a small perimeter. Legends who specialize in area damage can help Fuse bring the mayhem to his enemies.
Caustic’s ultimate throws a deadly gas grenade that deals significant damage to targets in its range. It works perfectly with the Motherlode: players can toss the poisonous cloud directly at enemies while they’re trapped inside to apply more pressure and force them into moving, or throw the ordnance after the opponents have left the ring of fire to inflict a second round of damage. Gas traps, too, can be used to ambush an enemy squad if escaping the Motherlode forces them to pass through a tight hallway or a choke.
Gibraltar and Bangalore are also good choices. Their ultimates call down an airstrike that can take out enemies inside the Motherlode’s area of effect. Bangalore’s smoke can also disrupt the enemy team’s vision, but as with any smoke, it’s a double-edged sword.
Revenant and Horizon can also synergize well with Fuse, but not for their role as damage dealers. They provide valuable utility in keeping targets within the Motherlode or punishing them for getting out.
Revenant’s Silence can disable invaluable enemy abilities, such as escapes or dome shields. Its small radius and two charges give the simulacrum more than enough power to hit enemies trapped inside the Motherlode and make sure they don’t go anywhere.
Horizon’s Black Hole serves a similar purpose; it will physically restrain any targets caught in it and make them susceptible to a flurry of grenades or abilities, such as Caustic’s gas. Bold players can also throw the Black Hole at the edge of the Motherlode to pull nearby enemies into the fire.
A note on weapons: because all of Fuse’s abilities, including his Grenadier passive, take a short period of time to activate, Fuse is best used at mid to long range. He works surprisingly well with sniper rifles and mid-range precision weapons like the 30-30 Repeater and the Bocek. If you get too close to an enemy squad, you’re more likely to damage yourself with your own abilities than you are to land a good hit, and the time it takes to fire a Knuckle Cluster and the Motherlode can often get you killed.
Screengrab via Respawn Entertainment
There are two main ways to counter Fuse’s abilities: negating their damage or escaping their area of effect. Wattson is an example of the first, but there are a handful of legends that can safely take a team away from danger—and destroy a calculated play from Fuse.
The entirety of Fuse’s kit revolves around explosive ordnances, which makes Wattson one of his biggest counters. Her Pylons disrupt all of Fuse’s abilities, making it impossible for him to fight her without getting up close and personal. Pylons negate grenades and the Knuckle Cluster projectile and protect teams from part of the Motherlode’s firebombs.
Because Fuse has little in the way of mobility and his abilities are all about trapping enemies in given locations, mobile heroes can usually outmaneuver him. Wraith and Ash can portal a squad to safety from inside the Motherlode, although Wraith will probably have to burn a cooldown of her tactical to safely escape the ring of fire. Octane’s jump pad also provides a way to get out of the blast radius. Pathfinder’s zipline and Valkyrie’s Skyward Dive may be able to safely take a team out of the ring of fire, but neither promise a harmless escape.
Fuse counters Rampart just as hard as Wattson counters him. Rampart’s kit revolves around fortifying a position, and Fuse’s all about smoking them out. His passive allows for a salvo of grenades to take out Rampart’s Amped Cover, even at long range. His Knuckle Cluster can deal enough damage to destroy a wall while it’s being set up, and the Motherlode can hit stationary enemies inside the perimeter of the Amped Cover.