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Seeing that the Blaster Launcher is the single most powerful and expensive weapon, I don't want to waste it for trivial cases when a heavy plasma bolt or two would be able to do its job and I also don't like putting my troops into danger.

The possible use cases I know of so far:

  1. Against single enemies: If there is a line of sight then I can almost always position one or more troops to have a clear line of fire and neutralize the target using plasma weaponry.

  2. Against groups of enemies: If there is a fallen enemy (or friend) nearby then its equipment probably will get destroyed by the blast, and I have yet to stumble upon a bunched-together group of aliens.

  3. To crack open UFO hulls: After clearing an enormous zone free of friendlies and loot, opening a single spot doesn't seem to offer that much of an advantage, especially when considering that aliens can also use it to fire upon my troops from the cover of the remaining hull. Opening the top of an UFO and dumping in grenades seem to be a better use case but this method still destroys valuable loot and UFO parts.

  4. To level farmhouses which might hide aliens: For this purpose it seems a bit too expensive, especially when compared to using plasma tanks to punch enough holes in walls to see inside from a safe distance.

  5. To clear larger UFOs from the inside: Using such a powerful explosive in confined spaces seem to guarantee the destruction of loot, lootable UFO parts and the injury or death of friendlies. When accounting for missed shots and accidental reaction fires the situation is even worse.

I'm quite a beginner though (on my first playthrough) so I might miss some things that are more significant on harder difficulties, that's why I'm asking the experts and veterans here :)

My current strategy has a Commander with Blaster Launcher sitting on top of the Avenger in case he is needed, while snipers with Heavy Plasmas cover scouts equipped with Plasma Rifles. Using this strategy I hardly lose any troops and have yet to find a situation where I need to fire a Blaster Bomb. Am I doing something wrong or is this the expected way of fighting?

  • OK, just on the evening after I posted this I encountered a farmhouse with 5 Mutons on, in and near it. I think I figured out when and how to use the Blaster Launcher :) It is worth noting though that at first I only saw a single one, after killing it I encountered the second, then the missed shots revealed the third, and the scouts found the fourth and fifth. So without extensive and dangerous scouting I'd never knew there were more than a couple at any time. – zovits Aug 27 '15 at 7:36
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One thing to remember about the blaster launcher is that (unlike any other weapon) you can set it to fire around multiple corners. You can set up to 9 waypoints for the blaster round to pass through after you fire it. So your fired blaster round might travel straight up 3 levels from a soldier hiding behind a building, to the east, to the south, through an open UFO doorway, up an elevator shaft, and then against a wall in a specific location in the UFO. Just be aware that if the round strikes any solid object (like an unseen alien) while traveling between waypoints the round will blow up prematurely.

If you are fighting a battle against an alien using psionic control on your soldiers, and you know where he is located, this is a quick way to eliminate that threat.

I would say that the ideal use for a blaster launcher is as an ultimate backup plan; when things are going to hell and multiple scary terror units have been spotted by your soldiers, using it is a way to cut down on opponents before your squad is decimated.

Ideally you will never have to use it; your crack squad of soldiers will precisely pick apart every alien target with laser or plasma rifles, maximizing your acquired loot during that mission. The blaster launcher is the exact opposite of a precise weapon. It's messy, and it's wasteful, and it's the best weapon you can possibly have when when things get really really out of hand and you need to use absolute maximum overkill. It's also a really fun to make very large explosions during a mission, and then reload that mission again so as to do it the slow, precise, tedious way using laser or plasma rifles so as to maximum your loot.

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