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Bloons Wiki

For the BTD5 ability of the same name, see Artillery Battery (BTD5).
Pop and Awe has permanent rapid attack speed and enhances the BAD and Boss damage of all Artillery Batteries. Pop and Awe Ability: rains explosions over the whole screen, damaging Bloons and stunning them periodically.
~ In-game description

Pop and Awe is the fifth and final upgrade of Path 2 for the Mortar Monkey in Bloons TD 6. It replaces its Bombardment ability with a new ability, Pop and Awe. Activating this ability will stun bloons and blimps, excluding BADs, at 1-second intervals 8 times during approximately 8 seconds, with bloons only moving for very short time in between. During the ability, all bloons onscreen are damaged at a rate of 20 damage per second. Cooldown for the ability is 60 seconds, and always goes under initial cooldown before initial activation.

In addition to a new ability, the attack cooldown is reduced to 0.0675s, and the explosion radius is increased from 20 to 23, as though it has the Bombardment ability permanently active; furthermore, some of its damage bonuses are improved, +2 to +8 for stunned bloons, and +1 to +2 to unstunnable blimps (BADs and Bosses). All Artillery Batteries on screen will receive a total bonus of +2 unstunnable blimp damage, gaining an extra +1 to BADs and Bosses.

Crosspathing with Burny Stuff improves burn damage from 1 damage to 5 damage per tick.

This upgrade costs $27,200 on Easy, $32,000 on Medium, $34,560 on Hard, and $38,400 on Impoppable.



Pop and awe demo

Pop and Awe's main attack and the Pop and Awe ability

Pop and Awe wears the attire of an army commander, and behaves in a similar way to what an army commander may do. The three mortars are now displayed in a line instead of a triangle position. The two lines on the mortars are thicker and slightly brighter compared to the Artillery Battery. Not many changes occur for the monkey, however, as only its hat is now white and the super thin yellow rim on the Artillery Battery's sleeves is gone. The monkey does do an army salute; its idle animation sometimes features the monkey saluting to the player, and also in the upgrade portrait as the mortar shells get shot.

The highlight of the Pop and Awe derives from its eponymous Pop and Awe ability, in addition to the impeccable attack speed and increased blast radius that is equivalent to an activated Artillery Battery's Bombardment ability, and further extra damage to unstunnable blimps and stunned bloons. The Pop and Awe ability perpetually stuns and inflicts high damage to all bloons on screen in intervals of every 1 second, for up to 8 seconds. Similarly to the Artillery Battery, the monkey perpetually presses the button on his remote at rapid rates while performing the main attack. While triggering the Pop and Awe ability, a flashes of explosions will sporatically appear across the entire screen, but without the extra mortar shells unlike the BTD5 Artillery Battery's Pop and Awe ability, the flashes of explosion resembling Bomb Blitz's passive Bomb Storm ability.

In addition to the rapid rate of fire, the Pop and Awe gains a lot more extra damage to stunned bloons and unstunnable blimps. Furthermore, the Pop and Awe adds further increased unstunnable blimp damage for all Artillery Batteries on screen. If crosspathed with Burny Stuff, it burns even harder on bloons.

Activated Abilities[]

See also: Activated Abilities (BTD6)#Pop and Awe

Pop and Awe Ability

Pop and Awe, which now attacks as if it always had the Bombardment ability active, now has a new ability, the Pop and Awe Ability. When activated, it produces a barrage of mortar shells on screen that stun all bloons on screen for an extensive amount of time, periodically striking the screen with recurring blitzes. Every time a new interval of stuns is produced, which occurs every 1.0s with a stun duration of 1.0s each, the entire screen is dealt 20 damage, including the initial stun. It always undergoes initial cooldown regardless of whether its previous ability was active or not.

Pop and Awe's ability lasts for 8 seconds, and its cooldown is 60 seconds. Its ability cooldown can be reduced by Monkey Knowledge, Relic Knowledge, and the global Energizer buff, and it can be reset by Striker Jones' Artillery Command ability or Geraldo's Rejuv Potion.

Targeting Priorities[]

Mortar Monkey has only one target priority, "Set Target". This allows the Mortar Monkey to land shells within anywhere inside the target reticle. Tapping on the "Set Target" button prompts the player to change the target position of where the Mortar Monkey will land its shells. By default, once the Mortar Monkey is bought, the Mortar Monkey's target reticle is placed near the start of the first bloon track.

If Striker Jones's Level 7+ Target Focus ability is activated, all Mortar Monkeys are automatically set to Follow Touch / Follow Mouse temporarily, unless manually re-targeted via Set Target, and snap back to their old Set Target option once the ability is finished.

Full Popology[]

Updated as of Version 42.0
Base stats
  • Explosion:
    • Lobbed projectile, normal type, targets at a custom-aimed location with deviation of 18, 0.5s deployment cooldown, 0.0675s attack cooldown, 23 blast radius, 2 damage, +3 bonus Ceramic damage, +1 bonus Fortified damage, +1 bonus Lead damage, +1 MOAB-class damage, +8 bonus stunned damage, +2 bonus unstunnable blimp (BADs and Bosses) damage, 25 pierce.
  • Artillery Buff:
    • Tower buff, targets all x-4-x Mortars, adds +1 bonus unstunnable blimp (BADs and Bosses) damage.
Ability stats
  • Pop and Awe:
    • Whole screen, normal type, detects camo, 1.0s attack cooldown, 20 damage, applies Stun to affected bloons and blimps for 1.0s. Duration of 8 seconds. Cooldown of 60 seconds.
Crosspathing interactions
  • 1-5-0: Blast radius of Explosion increases from 23 to 32.2, and Explosion pierce increased from 25 to 45.
  • 2-5-0: Explosion damage increased from 2 to 3.
  • 0-5-1: Explosion target deviation decreased from 18 to 8.
  • 0-5-2: Explosion applies Burn status effect, dealing 5 damage every 1.25s for 3.75s.

Attack Interactions[]

See also: Attack Interactions/Bloons TD 6/Military
Updated as of Version 41.1
Base attack(s)
  • Explosion:
    • Normal Type (pops Black, White, Purple, Lead, Frozen) Normal
    • Area of Effect Area of Effect
    • Full Map Range (unspecified description of how the tower can attack beyond basic range) Full Range
    • Erratic Movement (small projectile deviation from reticle) Erratic Movement
    • Extra damage to Leads (+1) Extra Damage to Lead (+1)
    • Extra damage to Fortified (+1) Extra Damage to Fortified (+1)
    • Extra damage versus Ceramics (+3) Extra Damage to Ceramics (+3)
    • Extra damage versus MOAB-class Bloons (+1) Extra Damage to Blimps (+1)
    • Extra damage versus BADs (+2) Extra Damage to BADs (+2)
    • Extra damage versus Boss Bloons (+2) Extra Damage to Boss (+2)
    • Extra damage to bloons affected by the "stunned" status effect (+8) Extra Damage to Stunned (+8)
  • Artillery Buff:
    • Passive Type (no attack) Passive
    • Targets Tower(s) (x-4-x Mortars) Target Tower (x-4-x Mortars)
    • Tower Buff (+1 unstunnable damage bonus) Tower Buff (+1 unstunnable damage bonus)
    • Influence (unspecified influential boost) Influence
    • Whole Screen Whole Screen
  • Pop and Awe:
    • Normal Type (pops Black, White, Purple, Lead, Frozen) Normal
    • Also affects Camo Bloons Camo Detection
    • Whole Screen Whole Screen
    • True Infinite Pierce Infinite Pierce
    • Extra damage to all bloon types (20) Extra Damage (20)
    • Stun (standard bloons, 8x 1.0s stuns over 8 Stun (1s duration, 8x)
    • Stun (MOAB-class Bloons, 8x 1.0s stuns over 8 Stun Blimps (1s duration, 8x)


Updated as of Version 43.0. Listed prices exclude external buffs, any sacrifices, and Monkey Knowledge.
[Module | Data] Purchase Sell
Costs Easy Medium Hard Impoppable Easy Medium Hard Impoppable
Upgrade (X-5-X) $27,200 $32,000 $34,560 $38,400 -
Total (0-5-0) $34,295 $40,350 $43,575 $48,420 $24,007 $28,245 $30,503 $33,894
Crosspath (1-5-0) $34,720 $40,850 $44,115 $49,020 $24,304 $28,595 $30,881 $34,314
Crosspath (2-5-0) $35,145 $41,350 $44,655 $49,620 $24,602 $28,945 $31,259 $34,734
Crosspath (0-5-1) $34,465 $40,550 $43,790 $48,660 $24,126 $28,385 $30,653 $34,062
Crosspath (0-5-2) $34,890 $41,050 $44,330 $49,260 $24,423 $28,735 $31,031 $34,482

This upgrade's prices (or included crosspath's prices) are affected by the following MK: MilitaryConscriptionIcon Military Conscription, AdvancedLogisticsIcon Advanced Logistics, BudgetBatteryIcon Budget Battery, BetterSellDealsIcon Better Sell Deals



Pop and Awe is a very strong tower overall for its moderately expensive T5 status, with highlights coming from its permanent Bombardment effects, higher damage to stunned bloons, and the added ability to stun all bloons on screen. Combining its hypersonic attack speed and high specialized damage per shot, the Pop and Awe stands out for its versatility at inflicting widespread damage in focused positions and throughout the screen. Despite having solid damage for all its attacks, Striker Jones helps with patching Pop and Awe's major weaknesses, most particularly the long ability cooldown and the small blast size of its main attack. Striker Jones' stun ability also activates the increased damage on the main attack for stunned bloons (dealing a bonus +10 damage), making this an incredible combo. Additionally, its extra BAD and Boss damage to itself and all other Artillery Batteries allows for Mortars to shine as a viable short-term burst damage to single-target bloons.

To take full advantage of Pop and Awe, proper micromanagement is required for its targeting and ability timing, especially going into Rounds 81+ with Super Ceramic Bloons on the rise. Reposition the targeting reticle often, preferably along bends, targeting clumps of MOAB-class bloons for general damage and Ceramics if they get too far along the track. Use the Pop and Awe ability against rounds with either too many strong stunnable blimps like ZOMGs and DDTs, or if needing to perform widespread crowd control, while additionally taking advantage of the massive bonus damage to stunned bloons via the main explosions.

In spite of its low stun ability uptime, Pop and Awe is significantly more reliable at tackling Super Ceramics in the presence of good Super Ceramic stuns such as Shell Shock, Bloon Impact, or Flash Bomb, as just one stun triggers massively increased damage to stunned bloons, wiping out any stunned Super Ceramics in just a few seconds.


  • When paired with Striker Jones, Pop and Awe makes an excellent global stun tower. His Artillery Command can reset the Pop and Awe ability, which is very useful in dire emergencies, and can allow stunning the entire screen for longer than 8 seconds at a time.
  • Pop and Awe's power depends greatly on Striker Jones to maximize its true potential. Alongside general buffs such as increased attack speed and increased blast radius, his Level 7+ Target Focus lets Pop and Awe and all other Mortars to specifically target spots, allowing for easier control of multiple Mortars at once, especially synergetic combinations such as Pop and Awe + The Biggest One, or Pop and Awe + multiple Shell Shocks. Also, his Artillery Command is powerful synergy with maintaining high ability uptime, and brutalizing even the hardest of rounds if his Artillery Command is activated when he is Level 20.
  • The better crosspath for Pop and Awe is 2-5-0, as it increases blast radius, gains substantial pierce, and increases damage by +1. The increased accuracy is not very useful outside of while utilizing the additional stun damage at very specific locations, while Burny Stuff is very weak in comparison to its main attack and lacks any self-synergetic potential that its other crosspaths may provide.
  • While the Pop and Awe grants all Artillery Batteries with extra damage to BADs and Bosses, relying on those for damage to those types isn't recommended unless utilizing an Artillery Battery spam strategy. However, Pop and Awe can hugely assist with Mortar-only challenges because it provides the highest possible Mortar offense against BADs and Bosses.
  • In gamemodes where selling is possible, selling the Pop and Awe and buying a new one shortens the ability cooldown, providing an interesting usage of the Pop and Awe tower.
    • It takes 20 seconds initial cooldown before it can be used once upgraded in normal games, however.


Bug Reports
  • [27.0] An active Bombardment ability from Artillery Battery upgraded while ability is active causes Pop and Awe to receive two abilities of the same type.
Bug Fixes
  • [27.1] Fix of the 27.0 bug.

Version History[]

Balance Changes[]

Pop and Awe's damage output has been buffed in various updates. Firstly, the ability now deals a lot more damage compared to the original ability. Alongside more synergy with stun effects in Version 17.0, its main explosions has also gained substantially more Heavy Shells bonus damage on Version 22.0 to distinguish itself as a powerful Tier 5 upgrade. Version 39.0 reworked its attack so it always has effect of Bombardment active, and reduced its bonuses, with exception to extra damage to stunned bloons and unstunnable blimps, to compensate for increased firepower, which overall increased its DPS to all affected Bloon types. Version 40.0 and 41.0 toned Pop and Awe's damage output in addition to a price increase to reflect its incredible versatility.

  • BUFF Pop and Awe now deals +1 damage to MOAB-class.
  • BUFF Pop and Awe ability damage increased (2 → 10).
  • BUFF Pop and Awe damage per second during ability increased from 10 to 20.
  • BUFF Pop and Awe cost reduced ($33,000 → $30,000).
  • BUFF Now deals +10 damage to stunned bloons with its base attack.
  • NERF Explosion random deviation radius increased (18 → 30).
  • NERF Attack speed decreased (0.2695s → 0.27s), due to Mortar Monkey attack speed reworks.
We felt like we set up the math quite well with Mortar changes last update, but regardless of this missed shots due to inaccuracy vs. attack speed turned out to be unpopular and impacted the middle path too severely. Fortunately this change led to the community finding some critical bugs in the middle path upgrades there since Mortar's release! That said, since low tier Mortars were never powerful we chose to leave the speed buff from last update but revert the accuracy nerf. Additionally mid-path T5 mortar has had all of its T3 damage bonuses increased to better reflect its position as a Tier 5.
~ Ninja Kiwi
  • BUFF Explosion random deviation radius decreased (30 → 18), reverted from Version 21.0.
  • BUFF Pop and Awe ceramic damage bonus increased from 3 to 12.
  • BUFF Pop and Awe Lead damage bonus increased from 1 to 4.
  • BUFF Pop and Awe Fortified damage bonus increased from 1 to 4.
  • BUFF Pop and Awe MOAB damage bonus increased from 1 to 4.
  • BUFF Pop and Awe active ability now lasts between rounds.
  • BUFF Pop and Awe now (correctly) benefits from Increased Accuracy.
[...] Artillery Battery’s special stun bonus is completely ineffective against targets which are impossible to stun, so it is receiving a small damage bonus to these targets to compensate. [...]
~ Ninja Kiwi, referring to Artillery Battery
  • BUFF Pop and Awe deals now deals +10 damage to BADs and Bosses
  • BUFF Pop and Awe grants all other x-4-x Mortars with +6 damage to BADs and Bosses (stacks with Artillery Battery BAD+ bonus)
38.0 and 38.1
  • NERF Affected by Lead/Fortified/MOAB-class mutual exclusivity bugs and nerfs from Heavy Shells
We’re looking to shakeup mortar in a couple small ways this update, along with Striker Jones changes noted further on for ‘multi-mortaring’ synergy. From the base level Mortar has far more pierce than should ever be necessary at low rounds but doesn’t hit beefy enough for the low fire rate, so we are trading up some base pierce for damage, instead moving this lost pierce up into crosspath. To reduce the great feeling of loss that some players feel when upgrading to Pop and Awe & losing their Artillery Battery ability, this upgrade is seeing a stat rework that considers Artillery Battery as now always active at T5 instead of pumping up the damage numbers.
~ Ninja Kiwi
  • BUFF Pop and Awe base damage increased (1 → 2)
  • NERF Pop and Awe base pierce reduced (40 → 25)
  • BUFF Pop and Awe main explosion radius increased (20 → 23)
  • BUFF Pop and Awe attack cooldown reduced (0.27s → 0.0675s)
    • NERF Pop and Awe bonus Ceramic damage reduced (+12 → +3)
    • NERF Pop and Awe bonus Lead damage reduced (+4 → +1)
    • NERF Pop and Awe bonus Fortified damage reduced (+4 → +1)
    • NERF Pop and Awe bonus MOAB damage reduced (+4 → +1)
  • BUFF Pop and Awe's Lead/Fortified/MOAB-class damage bonuses are no longer mutually exclusive
  • NERF Pop and Awe will no longer gain an active Bombardment's ability effects from the Artillery Battery upgrade. This does not affect the normal "perma-Bombardment" it passively gains from this upgrade.
We’re ecstatic for all the Mortar love after the recent rework, however the two bonuses we left unchanged with the rework in order to leave a buff are… Probably a biiit much now and this has been far too significant an improvement, easily slotting Pop and Awe into an extremely high tier position over the past update. We don’t want to take this away, but are nipping those bonuses back slightly so it doesn't feel broken for our entire holiday break.
~ Ninja Kiwi
  • NERF Pop and Awe BAD/Boss damage bonus reduced (+10 → +6)
  • NERF Pop and Awe damage bonus to stunned reduced (+10 → +8)
[...] BAD/Boss damage was used to help prevent middle path falling flat against strong single targets - but the more recent rework did farr better at bringing great power to this path so we're cutting back on those bonuses again now. [...]
~ Ninja Kiwi
  • NERF Pop and Awe's buff to other Artillery Batteries' bonus BAD and Boss damage reduced from +6 to +1
  • NERF Pop and Awe bonus BAD and Boss damage reduced from +6 to +2
  • NERF Pop and Awe price increased from $30,000 to $32,000
We’re feeling quite happy about the overall state of mortar compared to how it has fared in the past, however the Burny Stuff crosspath is still very hard to justify on middle mortar so along with other DoT attacks in this update we’re trying out a slight increase to damage over time across this path.
~ Ninja Kiwi
  • BUFF 0-5-2 Pop and Awe burn damage-over-time increased from 1 to 5

Bug Fixes and General Changes[]

  • Description changed from "Pop and Awe Ability: Rains explosions over the whole screen, popping and immobilizing all bloons for a few seconds." to "Pop and Awe ability: rains explosions over the whole screen, damaging and immobilizing all bloons for a few seconds. Main attack gains additional bonus damage to stunned Bloons."
  • Change Description partially changed from "Main attack gains additional bonus damage to stunned Bloons." to "All Artillery Batteries do more damage to BADs and Boss Bloons. Main attack gains additional bonus damage to stunned Bloons."
  • Change Changed from "Pop and Awe ability: rains explosions over the whole screen, damaging and immobilizing all bloons for a few seconds. All Artillery Batteries do more damage to BADs and Boss Bloons. Main attack gains additional bonus damage to stunned Bloons." to "Pop and Awe has permanent rapid attack speed and enhances the BAD and Boss damage of all Artillery Batteries. Pop and Awe Ability: rains explosions over the whole screen, damaging Bloons and stunning them periodically."
  • NERF Upgrading Mortar to x5x with Artillery Battery active no longer retains ability bonuses

Extra Notes (Version History)[]

  • The Version 17.0 description change featured a typo where "[...] Main attack gains additional bonus damage to [...]" where "additional" is spelled as "additonal". This has since been fixed in a later unknown update.
  • Version 27.0 buffed Artillery Battery by gaining a new Bombardment ability, but this does not affect Pop and Awe nor does the Artillery Battery's ability integrate into the Pop and Awe ability. Rather, upgrading into the Pop and Awe upgrade replaces the Bombardment ability entirely.
  • The description of Pop and Awe used in Version 33.0-38.3 is 241 characters long, the longest of any upgrade description.
  • Since the Heavy Shells attack speed buff in 37.0, Pop and Awe was the only Path 2 Mortar upgrade that lacks an increase in attack speed. After Version 39.0's buffs, all Path 2 Mortars in BTD6 gain extra attack speed in some way shape or form.
  • In Version 39.0's patch notes, this was included in the change notes for Pop and Awe:
    • x5x Pop and Awe | || main attack explosion radius increased from 20 > 23
    • x5x Pop and Awe || |_ attack cooldown delay reduced from 0.27 > 0.0675
    • This, together with the phrase "To reduce the great feeling of loss that some players feel," is a reference to the internet meme Loss.
  • In Version 39.0, Pop and Awe was able to solo Logs on Round 100, because of the rework to Pop and Awe's base damage, bonus specialised damage, and attack speed on that update.


When activating Pop and Awe Ability:


Idle Animations[]

Official artwork[]



  • This upgrade used to be the second Tier 5 upgrade that granted an ability, after Special Poperations.
    • The Mortar Monkey is the second tower that has ever had an upgrade path with only tier 5 having an ability, the first one being the now-discontinued Soulbind for the Wizard Monkey.
  • The global explosions animation of Pop and Awe ability is the same animation as the Bomb Blitz ability.
  • The ability activation sound effect is a high-pitched bleep sound (alongside explosive shell sounds), possibly to denote the pressing of a handheld radio button.
  • At the peak of Pop and Awe's damage per hit, the greatest amount of damage Pop and Awe could inflict at a certain bloon type is a stunned Fortified Ceramic. By default, it would deal 27 damage. But adding Bloon Buster (+1 damage), Permanent Brew (+2 damage overall), True Sun God with maxed Support sacrifices on both sacrifice stages (+4 damage), and then doubling the damage from Striker Jones Level 20, the maximum damage per shot to a single bloon would be 68 damage to a stunned Fortified Ceramic. Adding debuffs such as Glue Storm or Embrittlement, of course, further increases that damage.
  • The tower's name "Pop and Awe" is a reference to a war tactic known as shock and awe, where one uses overwhelming power and spectacular displays of force to paralyze the enemy's perception of the battlefield and destroy their will to fight.
  • On 27th/28th March 2021, large amounts of Pop and Awe underrated appreciation posts were posted on r/btd6.
  • Unlike in Battles 2, Pop and Awe does not grant a buff icon to Artillery Batteries.