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I see this mentioned in the tip text lots, but I've no idea how to actually make it happen. Anyone have any ideas how I can combo skills properly?

I've tried running with Fenris, who can stagger, but when I backstab or anything similar, nothing happens.

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

If you look at the various skills in the talent trees of each character, you'll see that some cause opponents to be Disorientated, Brittle, or Staggered (I think - can't recall exact names at the moment). You'll also see other skills that cause massive amounts of damage (usually 400-600%) when the enemy is in one of those states.

The trick is, one class can cause each of these states, but only the other two can cause more damage when the enemy is in that state. A cross class combo is taking advantage of this.

I found the easiest way to do this is to add tactics for each character to take advantage of this. Set the trigger to an enemy being in this state, and the action will be the character's skill that takes advantage of this. This way you'll get the damage bonus for free (assuming you aren't controlling the character in question, of course).

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Thanks, and big +1 for the tip on Tactics setup – David Yell Apr 1 '11 at 20:16
It's worth nothing that there's a very visible spinning gold icon over the head of enemies suffering from one of the status effects. If you pull off a CCC successfully, there will be a "shattering" sound effect and the status will be consumed. – Sapph Apr 1 '11 at 20:31
With regards to setting up your tactics for cross-class combos, you may want to make sure that there also isn't another tactic that uses the ability under other conditions, or that ability may already be on cooldown every time the opportunity arises for a cross-class combo. For example, Merrill can use chain lightning on targets that are staggered for some serious damage. However, by default she has a tactic that will shoot chain lightning at a clustered group of 3 (or 4). You'll want to turn this tactic off or in most cases chain lightning will be on cooldown by the time a stagger happens. – Jagd Apr 5 '11 at 17:37

it's also worth mentioning that warriors are the ones that usually staggers

while the rouges are the disorienting fellows.

and mages are more likely the ones that make enemies brittle, specifically with cold magic

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