Deus Ex 2: Environment

From PlayItHardcore

Thrown Objects

Barrels include any open or closed round container that you can pick up. They tend to be larger than trashcans and more difficult to wield, but often have other properties associated with them that make them useful. There are Gas Barrels, Radioactive Barrels, Burning trash barrels and plain jane metal barrels.

Gas Barrels

One of the most useful environmental objects in the game. On top of being able to outright kill a human if you toss it at their head, a gas barrel will begin to leak gas if you fire at it. As long as you don't outright destroy the barrel, it will continue to leak gas forever - any human that ventures too close to the barrel gets stuck, caught choking. They will eventually be knocked unconscious. This is particularly useful in hallways - you can set a trap which humans seem to ignore, running blindly past it, getting stuck and falling over. When you utterly destroy a gas barrel, they explode, sending a highly toxic cloud of gas out that fills up an entire room. This will choke any humans inside, almost always rendering them unconscious unless they get caught too late or are up too high. Even still, it allows you to cripple a room while taking potshots from the outside. Be warned that these barrels will also kill you quickly on the harder difficulty settings. They are best used thrown at enemies to lure them to the spot and then shot. (Strength biomod required)

Burning Trash Barrels

These have the nifty bonus of being on fire. No more damaging than any other barrel when thrown (apart from to yourself, unless you use the momentum tactic), except they can set people on fire which is often fatal. You can even burn dead bodies with them and lure enemies over these flaming corpses to kill them, too. The fire never goes out (although objects on fire will), and you can use it to ignite a few other in-game items. This is more for fun than anything, though can be a very useful tactic when "ghosting". They will deal fire damage to you if you are too near them or are holding them for more than a second or two. You can move them without damage by throwing another object at them and then rolling them into groups of enemies.

They can be used to "silently" dispatch most unarmoured organics in the game. Take a look at the Murder for Free section on how to use them to kill people without penalty.

Metal Barrels / Radioactive Barrels

Radioactive barrels are small, like gas barrels, and can easily be hurled long distances. You can kill humans or destroy small to medium robots with 1-3 tosses if you have the Enhanced Strength Biomod. Metal barrels are larger and a bit more awkward to aim, but are very damaging. They have an added bonus of being easily stackable, letting you climb.

There aren't many instances in DX2 where climbing is needed, if you play in one particular fashion and do not make use of the advantages gained, or this would be more useful.

The "box jump" technique is far more useful.

Boxes / Crates

The game has a large assortment of cardboard boxes, though most of them are useless. They occasionally hide objects, but more often than not are not worth carrying. They do minimal damage when thrown. One item of particular note, however, are explosive crates.

It is worth noting that you can jump off a thrown crate, allowing you to reach places by quickly dropping a box/crate and jumping, grabbing it and repeating until you gain the height you need. This increased momentum technique also greatly increases the damage of the object. For both you and enemies.

Explosive Crates

Extremely potent explosives that anyone can make use of. If fired at, they will explode, causing significant damage to anything nearby. Humans and most robots are outright killed, doors and locks are destroyed, and objects will be scattered about. Somewhat funner, these crates are lightweight and can be picked up / tossed. With upgraded strength you can hurl them across a room. They will explode when they contact something, including a pack of humans or a door. If you can get above your foes or near them without being seen, you can obliterate them with no effort or ammo expenditure on your part. When placing an explosive crate down, such as in the case of making a barricade that will kill the enemies that "kick" their way through it, make sure you are crouched else you might end up dead.

Trash Cans

Abundant throughout the game, small and heavy, these are extraordinarily useful if you have upgraded strength. They can be hurled across great distances and are extremely damaging. If you strike a human in the head with one, they will be killed. If you hit them anywhere else, they will be hurting very badly. You can destroy small robots with a single toss and medium size ones with a couple of tosses.


Not nearly as damaging as trash cans, they are still fun and are lethal to humans if you have upgraded strength. One or two tosses of a chair will kill many people, even from a distance.

Small Objects

Most small objects, like glasses and picture frames, can also be hurled at enemies. They are not as damaging as the larger items, but are found pretty much everywhere. With upgraded strength, they will do damage, though not enough to be "efficient." They do make great distractions, though, so do not underestimate their value in this regard.

Doors / Grates

As simple as it sounds, doors and grates are often large assets as they can be used to trap enemies or bottleneck them during a fight. Next to doors and grates will be a health bar, indicating how much damage it can withstand before it is obliterated.

Destroying Doors

The most efficient way to remove a door you don't want to pick is to detonate an explosive near it. Concussion prox mines placed on the floor next to it. a rocket fired directly at it, a concussion grenade in alternate firing mode, an explosive crate positioned near it or hurled at it... et cetera. Bear in mind, many doors cannot be destroyed - if any explosive fails to do any damage, don't bother with a second attempt.

Blockading Doors

Sadly, creating a blockade is much more difficult in DX2, if not often outright impossible. Unlike in DX1, the majority of NPCs seem to have MechanoMan strength, and will often kick objects, including stacks of heavy barrels, out of their way if they are blocked by them. Not only will they push objects out of the way, but they can kick them with extreme strength and send then flying far away. Any enemies hit by these "friendly fires" will suffer the damage that you would. Remember that including an explosive barrel in this barricade will pretty much guarantee they won't have legs to kick with again.


Glass windows are plentiful, and are often the only barrier between you and delicious items or a shortcut into a room.

Unarmed Glass

Simple enough, they are just glass. You can break them with anything, even a coffee pot. Note, however, that glass shattering is sure to earn the attention of any nearby guards - unless you use the glass destabilizer. Always keep your pistol with you, equipped with both the silencer and glass destabilizer. It will silently remove any glass without alerting anyone.

Armed Glass

The same as above, except that it has red laser alarms set to trigger if the glass is broken. Luckily, the same tactic as above applies equally - a pistol equipped with a silencer and a destabilizer will remove it without anyone being the wiser, even if you fire it out when they are standing right next to it.

Laser Grids

These are security grids set to impede your progress with "a strong deterrent". They cannot physically stop you, but are easy signs of "you're not supposed to go past here". All laser grids can be disabled with EMP blasts set off near them, and Electrostatic discharge mod will disable them if you directly strike the emitter. There is also always a nearby console you can use to turn them off. For green and yellow grids, you can put a trash can or other object in between the laser and the wall and provide yourself a safe path. Note that doing that to red or green grids will cause it to set off, though with green grids the gas will disappear after a short while.

Any weapon, even a pistol, modified with EMP Converter, will let you disable any laser beam by firing at the emitter.

Red Grids

Simple alarms. If you've already dispatched the guards in the area and have disabled the turrets, they have no effect aside from making an annoying squeal and wrecking your "ghost" hardcore run.

Green Grids

These release toxic gas, akin to gas barrels. Interestingly enough, this is actually usually a benefit to you - if you are quick on your feet, you can trigger these time and time again and make the nearby guards die in a cloud of their own traps, especially since the gas will harm you, but outright paralyze them.

Yellow Grids

Extremely damaging. If you are in full health, you can run through them without dying immediately, though be prepared to heal afterward if you are allowing yourself to use medpacks. You can't push enemies through them or hope they will run through, though, so don't bother. You can, however, block the beam's emmiters with a crate or box and just walk through them. This can be useful if you want to retreat from a fight, as you can then push the box back into the room you have entered and "reactivate" the death rays. There is usually an alternative to going through these barriers, so take a look around behind crates for vents if you don't want to use the crate to block the path or switch off the beams, etc...

Back to Deus Ex 2: Invisible War.