First manufactured in 1951 and widely known for its use in Vietnam, the M79 (unofficially known as the "Thumper" or "Blooper" due to the sound it makes when fired) is a single shot, break-open grenade launcher with a rifled barrel. The barrel is hinged to the receiver and is locked closed by rotating the lever at the tang of the receiver. 40mm cartridges are loaded from the breech, then the barrel is closed. The internal hammer is cocked automatically upon reloading. There is a manual safety, which automatically switches on when the gun is reloaded. The trigger guard can be hinged sideways, so the gun can be fired while wearing winter gloves. The stock is made from wood, and the butt is fitted with the rubber recoil pad.
In the Resident Evil series, it serves as an all-around useful weapon for dealing with larger enemies. Its versatility comes from the numerous types of ammunition it can fire, among them, acid, explosive, and incendiary grenades; in Code Veronica, an anti-B.O.W. round can also be used.
Similar grenade launchers appear in most other games in the series.
For more information on the M79 Grenade Launcher, see the M79 Grenade launcher