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According to the Javik/Unique dialogue wiki:

During the battle with the Phantoms, Javik remarks that the Phantoms' barriers appear to be unidirectional and suggests they shoot them in the backs.

But this is not a strategy noted in the wiki entry for phantom tactics.

Is this an actual game mechanic/weakness for battling phantoms? Or will attacking them from behind (while they have barriers up) still inflict the same amount of damage?

Also, I assume that this would only apply to weapon-based attacks and not biotic and tech powers that effect barriers, correct?

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I've tried this several times in co-op, without any apparent benefit. Javik's remark seems to just be a bit of interesting lore that is not in the game itself.

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Well, there is the benefit that if you're shooting them in the back they're not shooting you with those nasty palm-blasters. ;) –  technophile Sep 4 '12 at 22:08
    
Haha, true, they have a straight up aimbot with those pistols. But as far as shields go, there is no difference. –  Dusda Sep 5 '12 at 20:56
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