System Shock Wiki
System Shock Wiki

Explosives are a powerful alternative to conventional weapons. They inflict damage in a wide range and can injure multiple enemies. If you’re too close to an explosion, you can be hurt yourself (this does not apply to EMP Grenades).

Explosives are found under the GRENADE section of the MAIN MFD inventory tab. They are divided into three types:

The effect of each depends on the type:

  • Grenades and Bombs explode upon impact against any surface, creature or other object.
  • Timed Explosives detonate after a set time after being armed. Their timer can be adjusted using the slider control in the ITEM MFD tab before you arm them. The default countdown time is seven seconds and can be set from 1 second to almost 1 minute.
  • Land Mines settle on the ground and then blow up if anything collides with them or is in their immediate vicinity.

To activate and throw an Explosive:

  1. Open the MAIN tab of your inventory panel.
  2. Double-click an Explosive to put it in your hand in an armed state.
  3. Throw the live Explosive by right-clicking in the 3D view.

The distance and direction of the throw depend on the current position of the crosshair. Explosives are thrown the farthest when aiming 45° up, but such situation is rarely possible, as most often they will hit the ceiling.
Looking up while crawling helps, even in case of normal height corridors, because the throw range is greater. Aiming/having your crosshair too low will in turn result in dropping the Explosive under your feet, which is not advised unless you're using an EMP Grenade or a Timed Explosive set for a longer time. The maximum throw range is seven squares (or eight with accumulated jumping). Health and fatigue do not affect throwing.

You cannot put an activated Explosive back into your inventory, nor arm more than one Explosive at the same time.
If you’re holding a live Timed Explosive when the time runs out or you pick up any other type of armed Explosive, it will blow up and injure you with twice the normal damage. On the other hand, armed Contact Explosives will never blow up by themselves when held ; you can even interact with objects like doors or switches at that time.

All Explosives (regardless of type and state) are instantly destroyed when shot at with most weapons. Watch your fire!
You can use this to your advantage by detonating them from afar. This applies even to non-armed Explosives - simply right-click on them in inventory to put in the hand, throw/drop where needed and fire off when ready.

Last but not least, Explosives can be combined to create deadly traps by putting different types of them nearby.
The DC-05 Riot Gun shines in these situations, as it enables moving the Explosives from a distance (not on Combat 0).
These traps can trigger when the countdown of a Timed Explosive ends, an enemy steps into a live Land Mine, or the Mine is pushed under its feet using the Riot Gun's rubber slugs (or as above, when they're shot at or blown with a Contact explosive). Just make sure you're not there when it happens, unless you're considering a Viking funeral.