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- "The Buzzard is a light, compact helicopter for military or millionaire use. With a 5-bladed main rotor and a top speed of 175mph, it's widely considered to be the best performing helicopter in its class. These hardly ever drop out of the sky like a stone. Helicopters are one of the safest ways to travel."
- ― Warstock Cache & Carry description, Buzzard Attack Chopper.
The Ballad of Gay Tony
- "The ultimate party starter: light, manoeuvrable and armed with rockets and a high-calibre machine gun"
- ―TBoGT Official Website
Similarly armed with machine guns as the Annihilator, as well as additionally featuring rocket pods, the Buzzard is evidently an AH-6, an attack variant of the MH-6 Little Bird light observation helicopter, which in turn is a military version of the OH-6 Cayuse and the MD 500C. The Buzzard also features a FLIR (Forward looking infrared) pod under the cabin, similar to the real life AH/MH6M Little Bird variant. It's important to note that the Buzzard has the old style tail stabilizer, characteristic of the MD-500C and its corresponding defender AH/MH-6 counterparts.
As mentioned above, the Buzzard is based on a military class light attack helicopter. This makes it illegal, at least in Liberty City. It holds two people, and is equipped with two high-powered miniguns and rockets. Miniguns on the Buzzard are much more effective than those on the Annihilator - they have a much faster rate of fire, a narrower spread, and are fired both simultaneously, unlike the Annihilator, which only fires one gun at a time. However, they do considerably less damage than the Annihilators guns. They also never overheat, which allows for continuous fire. The Buzzard's weakness is its bubble canopy and low bullet protection, which can prove dangerous to the pilot and passenger when faced with heavy weapons like the M249 or Explosive Shotgun.
According to in-game speech, the Buzzard that Luis Fernando Lopez intended to steal for Yusuf Amir was a prototype, meaning there is possibly only a single one in existence. The same stolen one was later repainted gold, by Yusuf - this difference would be first recognized during the mission, "Not So Fast", where Luis must use it to land on the roof of the Libertonian. LCPD will call it a "black/gold helicopter", depending on which version Luis uses - the black one acquired by cheats or the gold one from Yusuf.
Grand Theft Auto V
The Buzzard returns in GTA V, along with an unarmed variant, which is based on the Hughes OH-6 Cayuse, itself an observation variant of the AH-6 that the attack variant is based on. It is no longer considered to be illegal. The attack variant from TBoGT is now known as Buzzard Attack Chopper and the weaponless variant is simply Buzzard.
Sometime between 2008 and 2013, Nagasaki mass produced the Buzzard, where it entered service with the FIB, NOOSE, IAA, Military and Merryweather. The Buzzard looks and handles similarly to how it did in TBoGT; the Buzzard Attack Chopper now features missiles which lock on to vehicles and some models have paired missile launchers instead of rocket nests. Both the machine guns and rockets cannot be used at the same time, unlike in TBoGT. The missile can lock on any AI-controlled helicopter or plane, police vehicles during pursuits, and hostile persons. It is possibly one of the fastest helicopters in the game, even faster than some airplanes.
It also appears in GTA Online. Upon reaching Rank 43, it can be purchased for $1,750,000 from Warstock Cache & Carry, and will also spawn on numerous helipads, such as in the Paleto Bay Police Station helipad. Like in GTA V, it does not feature the lock-on ability on players, except if they are piloting a helicopter or an aircraft. A skilled pilot can easily kill players using the rockets. If a co-pilot is present in the passenger seat, they have the ability to aim the rockets from a mounted camera, which can make it deadly. One should be careful however, as the open cockpit makes the player very vulnerable.
- Three's Company
- The Merryweather Heist
- The Bureau Raid (Roof Entry)
- The Wrap Up
- Legal Trouble
- The Big Score
- Abdul Amir
- Frickie Van Hardenburg
- Los Santos Police Department
- Federal Investigation Bureau
- International Affairs Agency
- Luis Lopez
- Merryweather Security
- Yusuf Amir
- Military (GTA V)
The Ballad of Gay Tony
- Yusuf Amir gives his golden Buzzard Attack Chopper to the player as a gift after completing the game. It will be then available at the helipad beside the golf club on the West River. It replaces the Swift there.
- Can be spawned via cheat code, by dialing the number: 359-555-2899 (FLY-555-BUZZ).
- A black one can be obtained without cheats. After destroying the boats in "Sexy Time," land the black Buzzard Attack Chopper on a road. Get into a car or bike, and drive away from it but keep the camera fixed on the Buzzard Attack Chopper. After you have failed the mission, reverse and it will be there.
- In multiplayer, there are multiple locations where Buzzards can be found:
- The first two can be found at Francis International Airport on the helipads.
- One can be found at the heliport in southern Algonquin.
- One can be found at the helipad on the West River where the golden Buzzard Attack Chopper is in single player.
- One can be found at the yacht (not removed in multiplayer) just south of Acter Industrial Park and east of Happiness Island.
- Can be bought from Warstock Cache & Carry for $2,500,000.
- It may rarely spawn in a unique white paint scheme in story mode.
- Can be found at Fort Zancudo.
- On top of the NOOSE Headquarters on Sustancia Road in Palomino Highlands, Los Santos County.
- The civilian version may spawn in South Los Santos, Rancho, Davis Avenue, or on top of the LSPD building next to the Towing Impound Lot.
- Can be found on the LSPD Station in Mission Row, although once on the roof, the player will get a 3 star wanted level (unarmed).
- Can be found on the LSPD Station in Rancho (unarmed). Sometimes a Police Maverick spawn at the same spot.
- The unarmed one can be seen acting as a Police Patrol Helicopter flying around the city.
- Can be spawned by using the cheat code :
- Unarmed versions equipped with a Police Maverick spotlight can be found (rarely though) late at night, flown by NPCs over the Davis & Strawberry districts.
- Spawns on numerous helipads at level 43 or higher.
- Commonly parked at Los Santos Naval Port.
- Can be bought on Warstock Cache & Carry after reaching level 43. It can be ordered after via Pegasus Lifestyle Management.
- Hunter an attack helicopter featured in the 3D universe
- Annihilator, an Armed law-enforcement helicopter featured in Grand Theft Auto IV and its stories
- Sea Sparrow, another light attack helicopter featuerd in the 3D Universe
- APC, another armed attack vehicle in The Ballad of Gay Tony.
- Savage, another attack Helicopter featured in Grand Theft Auto Online as part of the Heists Update
- Valkyrie, another light attack helicopter featured exclusively for Grand Theft Auto Online as part of the Heists Update
- Buzzard 1, a police helicopter with a similar name
- The name "Buzzard" may be a reference to Buzzard 1, a named Police Maverick helicopter from the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas mission, "Reuniting the Families".
- The name may also be a reference to the AH/MH-6 Little Bird Attack Helicopter, as a Buzzard is a type of Bird
The Ballad of Gay Tony
- Despite it being considered an illegal helicopter in Liberty City, flying it will not give the player a wanted level.
- Firing the miniguns and rockets will not gain you a wanted level at all if no one is hurt in the process.
- Firing a rocket at the side of an Annihilator will cut it in half, however they will not destroy an APC.
- Firing a rocket at a low altitude (lower than about a person's height) may cause the Buzzard that the player is in to be destroyed because of the rockets' firing system. Before a rocket takes flight, it is first dropped out of the container, then takes flight when the fuse lights itself. However, at ground level the fuse doesn't have enough time to ignite, thus making the rocket explode when it hits the ground.
- When firing the miniguns at a vehicle, the driver may burst into flames even if the car is not on fire. (Same with Annihilator and the APC.)
- In TBoGT's Multiplayer, the Buzzard's rocket fire can vary on rate of fire.
- The Buzzard, despite being a military vehicle, has a radio just like the Annihilator does. However it is turned off when entered.
- Like the Annihilator, the tail section of the Buzzard can be torn off. However unlike the Annihilator if it is torn off, the Buzzard cannot sustain flight and will simply plummet toward the ground.
- The Buzzard's rockets do not move faster than the Buzzard at top speed which makes it possible to have the Buzzard destroy itself using its own rocket without an obstacle detonating the rocket before the fuse triggers the explosion. If the rocket is fired parallel to the ground and the Buzzard moves in the same direction the rocket will detonate and right next to the Buzzard, destroying it.
- Like the Annihilator, the Buzzard's miniguns do not spin while being fired.
- In TBoGT, standing on the Buzzard's rockets while turned off will cause Luis to trip even if nothing happened.
- Despite the description saying it "hardly falls like a stone from the sky", ironically in Grand Theft Auto V's story mode, it is destroyed numerous times, mostly in missions.
- In Grand Theft Auto V, the Buzzard's miniguns can rotate vertically when these are controlled by Merryweather. These cannot do this outside of missions.
- In Grand Theft Auto V, when doing a standard air race in the Buzzard, the weaponless variant is used.
- In Grand Theft Auto V, the Buzzard Attack Chopper seems to fire RPG shells, rather than its Hydra 70 rockets fitted in the pods. This is best seen when you have the camera on cinematic view and having it on slow-motion by pressing , or by using the Slow-Motion cheat. The reason for this is unknown, but it is likely added in due to balancing reasons since the RPG is just as effective as the Buzzard Attack Chopper's rockets.
- The Buzzard is the fastest helicopter in Grand Theft Auto V, even though real-life counterparts for most of the other helicopters in the game are faster than the real life counterpart of the Buzzard.
- The cheat code used to spawn the Buzzard Attack Chopper is the same cheat used to spawn the Rhino tank in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, with a few button modifications.
- The Buzzard Attack Chopper in GTA V has the same code below the main propeller as its TBoGT version. The unarmed variant features MP over it, which will stand for "Military Police."
- In GTA V, NPC controlled unarmed versions sometimes appear late at night, flying low over Davis and Strawberry districts. They possess a Police Maverick spotlight, similar to the unique White Frogger in The Bureau Raid.
- Oddly, in GTA Online, when a passenger using the mounted camera rockets successfully destroys another player's insured personal vehicle, the players in the Buzzard Attack Chopper will not have to pay for the insurance costs or get a strike as being a "bad sport."
- The Buzzard Attack Chopper in GTA V can aim both ground and aerial targets, even despite JT Boyd claims that is equipped with air-to-ground missiles.
- In the enhanced version of GTA V, the minigun barrels rotate when fired.
- As of patch 1.17, the machine gun's aim is reset to a large dot, however, this can be changed in the settings menu.
- The player can actually change the sound of the machine guns being fired in GTA V. To do this, the player must find a cinematic camera and fire the machine guns, a specific cinematic view will make the sound higher pitched, the player must not let go of firing the guns, but release the cinematic camera, the guns now produce a higher pitched sound.
- Strangely, if the player gains a wanted level near an unarmed Buzzard patrolling the city, it will start to chase the player. If the player enters the cinematic camera, until it shows a mounted camera on the helicopter, pistol shots can be heard from the Buzzard, as if the pilot or a co-pilot is able to shoot whilst piloting.