The Hammer of Dawn is, hands down, the most powerful weapon in Gears of War. It can waste nearly anything in just a couple shots, but there are a few catches to it. It is not a gun, but rather a spotting and targeting device for an orbital strike. You will only get it at select locations, and usually only for boss fights or extra-large Locusts. Bring it on!
Grab the Hammer of Dawn if you see it. As we mentioned, it only appears in select locations, meaning that if you see it on the ground, you're about to need one.
Make sure your target is outside and your intel officer has given the go-ahead. Because the Hammer of Dawn is an orbital (satellite) weapon, it only works on targets that don't have a roof over their heads, and only for a very limited time (typically 5 minutes or less) when you have satellite coverage. If your target is not outside, they must be lured outside.
Press the trigger, hold it in place and keep it pressed until the action happens.
Keep holding the trigger until the beam stops. This will ensure maximum damage.
Wait a few seconds before attempting to fire again. Attempting to continuously fire will deprive you of other weapons you might need for the rest of the fight. For example, Seeders must be taken out with the Hammer of Dawn, but in between blasts, they spawn Nemecysts which do massive damage. They are easily shot down with rifles, but you can't hit them with the Hammer of Dawn.
Bringing a second blast to bear is usually enough to bring down anything short of a Berserker.
Drop the Hammer of Dawn as soon as you're done with it. Why? It's great, right? Yes, but once the boss fight or big baddie is over, satellite coverage is typically over, making the weapon useless. But fear not! There will be another Hammer of Dawn available to you the next time you wind up needing it.