|This article is specific to v2.5|
The High-Explosives skill represents a soldier's ability to use grenades, and weapons with a splash damage effect (whether caused by a high-explosive ammunition or any other ammunition, even alien). A soldier with a big High-Explosives skill is better at landing the charge at the spot where he wants it: at the feet of the enemy or, if the spot is unreachable, still close enough to harm him. A soldier trained in this skill will also be more attuned to a launcher's recoil and more accustomed to its fire trajectory, increasing accuracy.
Character needs to hit enemies 5 times to gain one point of this skill.
Explosive weapons can damage all beings within their 'Blast Radius'. This is good if several aliens are congregated together, but bad if soldiers [or civilians] are near your target. It can also be problematic if your shot misses its target. It is a good idea for a soldier carrying an explosive weapon to have a secondary weapon for when the enemy gets too close.
Several of the hand grenades do not cause damage, but create other special effects. These are listed below.
Note: UFO:AI 2.3 has changed such that there are no longer any explosive weapons that are capable of reaction fire. If the ability to fire defensively is important to you, then don't use any explosive primary weapons.
The Rocket Launcher is a unique weapon that deserves its own discussion.
- Range. No weapon has a longer reach than the Rocket Launcher. There are only two weapons with equal range, the Sniper Rifle and the Bolter Rifle.
- Accuracy. Rockets have a narrower 'spread' than any weapon on the battlefield. Only the Lasers even come close.
- Firepower. HE Rockets do more damage than any other weapon available in the beginning of a campaign.
- Unlike most other weapons, the Rocket Launcher does not have a magazine. You have to reload each time you pull the trigger. Carrying more than a few rockets will fill up your backpack.
- The Rocket Launcher is incapable of reaction fire. Make sure some other of your soldiers cover the gunner of your Rocket Launcher from surprise attack.
- The Rocket Launcher is the only weapon in the campaign that uses a two-handed hold. You can't use a Medikit, Flashbang or any other item without setting the launcher on the ground.
- Frag Grenade
- Flashbang: Startles enemy, prevent them from reacting next turn. Good when you are surprised.
- Gas Grenade: Not really a gas, but a cloud of dust particles that attack skin to cause pain. Used to capture live aliens.
- Incendiary Grenade
- Plasma Grenade
- Smoke Grenade: This is supposed to fill an area with a cloud that breaks line of sight, but doesn't work yet. Used to approach entrenched opposition.