The effectiveness and efficiency of mass-effect-based weapon technology has rendered large-scale deployment of highly explosive weaponry all but obsolete in infantry weapons.

Normandy's scientists have prototyped a modified version of traditional high-explosive rounds that it applied to a 25-gram slug. When accelerated to 5 km/s, the round is devastating. Though a technically inaccurate label, this prototype weapon is nicknamed the "Nuke Launcher," and its high-explosive matrix generates an archetypical mushroom cloud on impact.

Inflicts high damage with a very large area of effect. Very effective against armor, shields, and barriers.