- "Yeah... Hey, friend, look, I've been seeing unauthorized aircraft move through Trevor Philips airspace...running guns. How about I let you know when they're in the sky, and you can take 'em down for me. You'll be paid, of course."
- ―Trevor's phone call to unlock the mission
Aircraft Takedown is a feature in Grand Theft Auto Online Free Mode unlocked after reaching Rank 15 that was added as part of the Heists Update. The player has to shoot down a smuggler aircraft for Trevor Philips.
After installing the Heists Update or subsequently reaching Rank 15, the player will receive a telephone call from Trevor explaining that there are rival operations smuggling guns by air around Southern San Andreas and he would like the player to assist in eliminating the competition.
From this point, periodically a notification will appear on the player's screen and a red aircraft icon will appear on the free-roam map.
The job can be offered to a player who is alone in an online session (be it Public, Invite-only, Crew or Friend session).
The aircraft can be shot down from the air or from the ground.
Smugglers will spawn with one from a specific list of planes/helicopters. This is the smugglers planes list extracted from game files. The smugglers plane speed is set to a base of 20.
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They also have specific locations to spawn.
- Locations 1
- Locations 2
- Locations 3
- Note: The black icon isn't a spawn location only the blue icons.
- "Well dun, frend. I hope u told 'em 2 run guns with TP Inc next time, b4u blasted em out the skie"
- — Trevor's congratulatory text message
The player who destroys the vehicle will get a variable amount of cash rewarded and a text from Trevor thanking them.
A cash reward is given depending on the number of times a player has taken down an aircraft.
The first takedown rewards $3,000. Every subsequent takedown pays a multiple of $3,000 up to a maximum of a $30,000 cash reward for the 10th aircraft. The reward multiplier is persistent across session types and does not appear to expire. Once the maximum multiplier is achieved, every subsequent takedown will continue to yeild the maximum $30,000.
Normal wanted level rules apply, if the takedown is witnessed, the player will gain 2-3 stars.
Failure will result in a derogatory message from Trevor.
- "Sum1 just tried 2 sell me sum guns! That means that the byrd landed, and u r no kind of friend at all! Remind me 2 eat u when I next c u"
- — Trevor's text message if the target aircraft escapes
- Rarely, an aircraft will spawn and leave approximately 30 seconds later, leaving the player no chance to take down the aircraft.
- If the player bumps into the plane and it crashes, the mission will be failed, even though it is a way of destroying the plane. Choppers will not generally fall from the sky if bumped into.
- If the aircraft flies over Fort Zancudo, the mission is impossible to complete.
- As of the Freemode Events Update (patch 1.29), Aircraft Takedown have been disabled or discontinued on the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. It, however, remains available for last-gen platforms (Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3).