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The auto-cannon combines the versatility and power of a heavy cannon with a faster rate of fire.

Source: Enemy Unknown Ufopaedia

(h x w)
3 x 2
Weight 19
D. Threshold TBA
Grip Two-Handed
TU Cost Accuracy
Auto 40% 32%
Snapshot 33% 56%
Aimed 80% 82%
Sale Price $10,125
Research None
Purchase Price $13,500
Armour Piercing
(h x w)
1 × 2
Weight 5
D. Threshold TBA
Damage 42 Armour Piercing
Capacity 14
Sale Price $400
Purchase Price $500
High Explosive
(h x w)
1 × 2
Weight 5
D. Threshold TBA
Damage 44 High Explosive
Capacity 14
Sale Price $560
Purchase Price $700
(h x w)
1 × 2
Weight 5
D. Threshold TBA
Damage 48 Incendiary
Capacity 14
Sale Price $520
Purchase Price $650

This is the automatic version of the Heavy Cannon. It retains the versatility of the Heavy Cannon and features a larger magazine as well as the capability for automatic fire.

The Auto-Cannon is heavier than the Heavy Cannon and less accurate. It is slow and cumbersome. Though it has a three-shot auto fire mode, it is the slowest auto-fire weapon in the game. Despite this, it is the Auto-Cannon's most powerful feature.

As with its heavier cousin the Heavy Cannon, the Auto-Cannon retains a versatile selection of shells to suit your every need. Armour piercing, High Explosive and Incendiary rounds are all available. By reducing the effectiveness and size of the shells, more shells can be stored in the Auto-Cannon's magazine, and the shells are slightly lighter to carry than Heavy Cannon shells. The shells still pack a considerable punch nonetheless.

AC-AP rounds are standard for the Auto-Cannon, but are not particularly remarkable since they aren't as strong as Heavy Cannon AP shells. However, a three shot burst at close range can do a considerable amount of damage. They are particularly reliable in close quarter combat and when you do not want to cause any damage to your surroundings or destroy equipment.
AC-HE rounds are the Auto-Cannon's most destructive ammunition. They can be used to clear terrain, and wipe out groups of enemies. Note however they they may not be suitable against very heavily armoured units like Cyberdiscs and Sectopods. HE shells are unfortunately also a major source of self inflicted wounds or kills, so be very careful when using them. Be prepared to lose equipment dropped if an enemy is defeated in the middle of a high explosive burst.
AC-Incendiary rounds can serve two important functions. The first is simply to start fires. Burning down a building or orchard is often safer then going inside or blasting away the obstacles, which would expose you to reaction fire. The other important use is simply to start fires and illuminate the battlefield. Compared to Electro-flares this can conserve the limited item space aboard the transport. Each clip of IN rounds can illuminate 14 areas on the map for a reasonable period of time, especially if using a patch to fix the Smoke/Fire Limit bug. Three-shot incendiary bursts can also be used to deal the killing blow to zombies to prevent them from hatching into Chryssaldis.
It is difficult to use AC-I rounds to deal killing Incendiary damage against Zombies to prevent them from hatching into Chryssalids. First this effect only works on the killing blow. Sadly, incendiary damage does so little damage per shot that it often takes less TUs to just kill Zombies with conventional weapons, and then kill the resulting Chryssalid, which gives you a better score and more loot in any case. For instance, a Heavy Plasma on auto-shot will often kill the Zombie with the first shot and the Chryssalid with the second or third shot. With the weaker weapons, say AC-HE rounds, you can fire a few conventional rounds in the hopes of leaving the zombie on critical health, then finishing it with AC-IN, but due to damage being random, this turns out to be more time consuming than one might think.[Verify?]
Also if you wish to abuse the game bug/exploit where all units standing in fire will take on incendiary impact damage whenever any unit is hit, then again this is the most efficient mean of producing the damage. Damage dealt this way tends to ignore the protection on very heavily armoured units. In conjunction with this bug, AC-IN is the most effective way to breach UFOs while keeping Elerium in Power Sources intact.

This weapon appears in UFO: Enemy Unknown. For the Terror from the Deep equivalent, refer to Hydro-Jet Cannon.

Usage notes

The following lists how many times a soldier can fire the gun by shot type continuously in any given round and the remaining percentage of any left over TUs that cannot be spent as a shot.

  • Aimed: 1 Shot, 20% Remaining TUs
  • Snap: 3 Shots, 1% Remaining TUs
  • Auto: 2 Shots, 20% Remaining TUs

Limitations of incendiary damage

The listed damage using incendiary rounds is misleading. Incendiary rounds do ~6.4 damage on a direct hit. The damage values listed in the UFOpaedia do not determine how powerful an incendiary round deals damage; it only determines how wide an area will be blanketed with flames.

Furthermore soldiers cannot gain any form of experience shooting any weapon loaded with incendiary rounds.


The Auto-Cannon is most efficient when armed with AC-HE shells and excels at close to mid range combat. If you must fight in long range combat, use the same strategies that you would use with the Heavy Cannon or Rocket Launcher. Use terrain to your advantage and try to hit a wall or climb up a level or two and fire down at the ground.

When using AC-HE shells, be sure to wear some armour. A Power Suit or better is most ideal, but Personal Armour can do in a pinch. Armour will protect you from any blast from shells that detonate too early. With Power Armour in particular, the Auto-Cannon is turned into an extremely potent close combat weapon and can safely attack from an adjacent tile without fear of damaging yourself. Be careful of the indiscriminate destruction of anything and everything around you, especially around UFO Power Units.

Direct hits from the Auto-Cannon may harm you even in a Power Armor, but it will not be severe. This is extremely useful knowledge to have when you face enemies with psi powers. Though not especially powerful, the Auto-Cannon packs enough firepower to be a real threat against most enemies such as Mutons, but is an insignificant threat to your own soldiers as long as everyone wears Power Armour or Flying Suits.

When inside buildings or UFOs, you can also shoot AC-HE rounds at the ceiling and defeat anything that's directly above you. This is a very useful strategy to use in UFOs that have aliens waiting in ambush, such as in the Abductor. This strategy works with all weapon that produces an area of effect, including incendiary rounds or stun bombs.

See Also

UFO Badge X-COM: Enemy Unknown/UFO Defense: Equipment
Armour: CoverallsPersonal ArmourPower SuitFlying Suit
Weapons: PistolRifleHeavy CannonAuto-CannonRocket LauncherStun Rod
GrenadeProximity GrenadeHigh ExplosiveLaser PistolLaser RifleHeavy Laser
Plasma PistolPlasma RifleHeavy PlasmaAlien GrenadeSmall LauncherBlaster Launcher
Equipment: Smoke GrenadeMotion ScannerMedi-KitElectro-flarePsi-AmpMind ProbeElerium-115
HWPs: Tank/CannonTank/Rocket LauncherTank/Laser CannonHovertank/PlasmaHovertank/Launcher
Data Item WeightsAlien Weapon Loadouts • Armour Damage Modifiers