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"Frag out!"
—Marcus throwing a Bolo Grenade

The Bolo Grenade, otherwise known as the Fragmentation Grenade[2] and often shortened to Frag Grenade, was the standard-issue fragmentation grenade used by the Coalition of Ordered Governments, the Locust Horde and the Swarm.[3]

Function and Usage[]

The Bolo Grenade is substantially different from any other previous fragmentation grenade, both in damage and its throwing method. The grenade's structure consists of an explosive attached to a chain-like extension that is swung around and released when enough momentum is gained to throw it. Its targeting system is also quite different, since it actually maps out a predicted trajectory (the blue line, or red line if you are playing as Locust), as well as a finishing point (the distinct blue circle at the end of the trajectory marking). In addition, the grenade's blast radius is quite large. If the grenade lands directly at an enemy's feet, a combat roll will not bring them out of range. Furthermore, if they do manage to get outside of range, a substantially larger area will bring them to max damage. However, the grenade cannot damage foes behind a cover point no matter how close the grenade is to them. Therefore, the grenade can be used effectively as a supplementary, or even as a primary means of taking out foes. The Bolo Grenade is also great for flushing someone out of their cover point. Perhaps most important is its ability to close Locust Emergence Holes and destroy Swarm Nests.

The weapon's full potential, however, lies in the ability of the user. When close enough to an enemy, you can melee them with a grenade equipped to stick the grenade onto the enemy. The grenade will beep faster and faster, signalling its countdown, and detonate afterwards. Once tagged, it is more than useful to get as far away as possible before the explosion. This ability in Multiplayer gave the grenade its name, 'frag tag', since anyone who attempted to tag a frag grenade on a helpless victim almost always succeeded. In Gears of War 2, players are able to plant the Bolo onto walls as a proximity mine, exploding whenever an enemy comes into a certain radius of it. Also, if a player is downed while having the Bolo Grenade equipped, they can choose to detonate it by pressing RT. This tactic is used to Kamikaze opponents by getting close enough for them to down you, then detonating the grenade, injuring, downing, or killing any opponents in the area. This tactic is great in Annex and King of the Hill matches, but it is not recommended in Wingman.

In Gears of War 3, a new execution move was added to the grenade. When a player has a meat shield, that player can frag tag the meat shield and throw him or her at other enemies in an attempt to kill them. Grenades can even be tagged on the floor.


A player is readying a smoke grenade throw. The peculiar aiming can be seen.

In multiplayer, you do not start out with this grenade, but with a Smoke Grenade. A Bolo Grenade, as stated, can force an enemy to dive from cover, making him vulnerable, or it can be stuck onto a not-so-lucky individual with messy results. However, remember that it must be aimed accurately or it won't be very effective. It is also possible to bounce the grenade off several surfaces/walls to get them into hard to reach locations. Proper use of these grenades can be a game-changer. Additionally, when attempting to frag tag someone, you should attempt a flanking action, as a direct assault will no longer work with the update. There is an Achievement for getting 10 kills with proximity mines called "Said The Spider To The Fly".

On maps such as Jacinto, Blood Drive and River, which feature distinct easy-to-defend camping spots, a pair of these grenades work very well when thrown in confined spaces, usually killing or inflicting heavy damage on those in the vicinity, particularly if they have planted grenades of their own nearby.



  • The Bolo Grenade beeps four times before detonating. This gives you time to roll away to avoid death or serious injury. It is best to hide behind cover that covers your entire body.
  • An example of the Meat Shield Tag can be seen in the Gears of War 3 Dust to Dust trailer.
  • If you plant a Bolo Grenade on the back of a Boomer, it will usually be killed depending on the difficulty setting.
  • If you tag a Gunker, one Bolo Grenade will usually kill it, depending on the difficulty setting.

Gears Tactics[]

Bolo Grenades are carried by most Gears in Gears Tactics, though those with the Support class can opt to use Stim Grenades instead. They can be thrown or planted at a Gear's feet, both of which carry a seperate 6-turn cooldown. Grenades will often knock back and interrupt enemies, making it good for pushing drones out of cover and disrupting enemy overwatch. Finishing an enemy off with a grenade will always kill rather than downing them, regardless of how much overkill damage is done.

Perhaps more important than the damage they deal is their ability to reseal Emergence Holes, as sealing E-Holes is critical to avoid being overrun by endless Locust reinforcements. Although they aren't effective against holes that have yet to open when thrown, having Gears plant a grenade where a hole is about to appear can seal it immediately upon opening.

Behind the scenes[]

  • In Gears of War 4, three model types of the Bolo Grenade are shown in-game. The first grenade model appears during the 'Aspho Fields' and 'Emergence Day' prologue scenes, and is thinner and longer (similar to a Smoke Grenade) than the standard model previously used. The second grenade model - the model previously used in the Gears trilogy - appears during the 'Anvil Gate' prologue scene, throughout the rest of the campaign, and in Horde 3.0. The third model appears throughout the campaign and alongside its earlier iteration in Horde 3.0, and is the new model for the Bolo Grenade in the post-Locust War era.




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