Deadly Reach and Damage Distance: Explained


I’ll cut to the chase. I know that there are some of you out there who don’t know what Deadly Reach does (I’m looking at you Kevin). The lack of understanding is what I aim to resolve with this here thread. I will do everything in my power to make it as crystal clear to you what this augment does, what it doesn’t do, and hopefully give you the information you need so that next time you look at the choice on that helix level you can make an informed decision as to which one you pick.

But first, the helix card:

Just for your reference. This is the augment I’m talking about (Left) and its alternative (Right). If you look at the description of Deadly Reach you will see the words “damage distance”. Those two words are where a lot of the confusion stems from. I myself spent many hours wondering what the hell it means. But that was many moons ago. There are two instances to look at for understanding the nature of this augment. The first one is the regular burst dash, and the second is with the Ground Zeros augment at level one that turns burst dash into an AOE.

Normal Burst Dash

The explanation for damage distance is fairly straight forward. When you Burst Dash you dash in whatever direction you are looking. However, when your physical body stops moving forward a wave of damage is projected outwards for a certain distance. The distance from your stopped body to the edge of the damage wave is the damage distance. This wave enables you kill someone without actually hitting them, therefore taking the Deadly Reach augment will increase your range and make it easier for you to land a damaging blow on one as well as multiple enemies.


If you didn’t understand what just happened then let me explain. The first burst dash was me finding my range. The normal damage distance was a hit so I moved back. For the second dash at the further distance the normal burst dash was not a hit, so I moved back to roughly the same spot and put on Deadly Reach. The burst dash hit so I moved even further back to give a rough idea of the new range.

Note – At the time of the test it was 1 in the morning so I was dead tired and didn’t think to make my friend there move back so we could do the test on flat ground. Despite that little imperfection the point remains the same, with the video’s sole purpose being to show that there is an increase to range, but not the exact increase to range. – End Note

For a frame of reference look at this screenshot which I used my fabulous paint skills on.

Now there is one other thing I would like to address on normal burst dash. Deadly Reach does not increase the distance that Deande moves. I’ve heard some people say that it did so I thought I would do another test.

That should be easy enough to understand. She actually moved a bit less on the second dash for some reason. No idea why. Anyway, due to the lack of increased move distance I can safely say that Deadly Reach will not help in your escapes from peril, or your ninja-like acrobatics from one side of the map to the other.

Ground Zero

Because this augment changes the way burst dash functions it warrants another set of explanations. Originally I had been operating under the assumption that Deadly reach increased the radius of your AOE based on previous forum discussions. This held up in testing, however there was one aspect to the results that surprised me.


Maybe you couldn’t get a good enough look at what was going on. So look at these side by side, or download them and flip back and forth between them really fast. One is of the normal burst dash and one is of the Deadly reach burst dash.


Deadly Reach

Note – I did my best to capture the images on the same rotation of the burst dash to get an exact comparison, however my ps4 was being uncooperative. – End Note.

There is little to no visual change to the AOE of the Ground Zero burst dash. Whether or not you take the augment it still looks like it is the same size. Originally when I saw that I assumed that extra range was applied to the diameter instead of the radius, and that the expansion/contraction of the Ground Zero animation caused the two instances to look similar. However that is not the case. The damage distance is in fact applied to the radius of the original Ground Zero but there is no visual indicator as to what range you are reaching.

Again, observe.

Note – due to my tragic inability to edit video and put the files back into a YouTube friendly format you will just have to bear with me. Uncut/unedited footage might be a bit tedious, but for the moment it is the best I can do. – End Note.

Up to this point I’ve been calling the damage outside the visible radius “phantom damage” just to make things easier when talking to others. While I don’t have an exact reading on the increase of range from a testing standpoint (probably 40% though as the card states), I hope it’s at least clear that Deadly Reach does in fact increase the damage range on Ground Zero.

Final Thoughts

On the whole this augment is a solid choice no matter which burst dash type you happen to be using. For objective play with Ground Zero you can gain greater lifesteal on minion waves, as well as weaken more enemies at once which is especially useful in PVE. And if you are using normal burst dash the added range will help you chase down those runners as well as hit multiple enemies in the damage wave. From experience I can tell you that the increased range on normal burst dash is really surprising to some players. They think they are safe, that your range is too short and that you move too slowly. And then you hit them and kill them without touching them, and they send hate mail and everyone that is you is happy.

As for whether this option is better over its counterpart, well I would have to leave this one to personal preference. Personally I like to run the cooldown option because I like to jump into a fight and make my kills as many times as possible during a match. When my team calls out a weakling I want to be ready to finish the job. However there is no denying the validity of Deadly Reach. The few times I do run it are always good fun, and if you are looking to get the most out of a single burst dash then you might want to try this one out.

Anyway, that’s all for this little quick guide. I hope this helps some people (cough Kevin cough). I hope there are no errors, but as always I encourage everyone to poke holes so that perfection can be achieved.


Also if it has knockback like montana it acts as if you hit them regularly

Really good job here

I am not going to lie, I thought that a lot of people knew this. I remember when I did not understand Deadly Reach either until I used it a couple of times and realised that I was hitting people without even technically touching them.

You would be surprised how many people have asked me about this (Like 4 or 5 so not really that many but whatever), and I gave the same responses all those times, but I thought I might as well throw this together so i can say “link, go look”. So then I made this, and now I have a standard response for whenever someone asks me about this which is accompanied by useful visual aids.



Your testing is exemplary!

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Just out of curiosity, what helix options did you go for her burst dash? I notice for your ground zero its only doing 141+123+19. Unless the 0 isnt popping up…


that is just a little quirk with the way the damage pop ups work in this game. I don’t remember what options I took at the time, aside from Deadly reach and Ground Zero, but I can explain what you are seeing.

watch the footage again closely, and you will notice that at the moment the 19 stat pops up Pendles’ shield breaks. The way the stats work is that it displays number pop ups twice on one damage instance if the damage in the single hit goes past the current shield capacity of the enemy.

i.e. You get both the damage pop up for damage to health and damage to shield, even though they are of the same damage instant.

In this case you saw a 141 in a shingle damage instant to the shield, and then a value of 19 to break the shield, but the game also displayed the 123 damage done to the health bar separately, even though it was technically applied at the same time. The way you can tell which number corresponds to which stat bar is by look at the color of the numbers displayed, with any shield damage numbers taking on a blue tone and any health damage numbers being pure white.

Now when you add 141 and 19 you get 160, which isn’t the full shield capacity of 300. However there is one number that is missing, cheekily hiding being the minimap. it is another 141 damage to shield, and if you watch the video at 45 seconds onward you can see the fourth number clear as day.

the extra 141 added to our 160 gives us our 300 shield capacity with an extra 1 due to decimal rounding, and then there is the 123 damage to the health bar again.

in total that would give 424 damage, so since the base damage of burst dash at level 9 is 272 i think it would be a safe bet to say that I took calculated risk. also you can see my shield deplete, so i definitely took calculated risk. (272 + 150 = 422 so yea the numbers match up and I didn’t take Burst Brawler)

So i think i figured out what augments I took anyway, but hopefully my explanation makes sense.

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I tip my hat off to you, OP.
Deande is one of the toons I play as (albeit on the rare side) and never really managed to understand this skill.

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Makes sense. Sometimes I wish the damage numbers would be the color of that of the shield and health. Would be cool little thing to add since I am a number-kind of guy.