- "The ultimate party starter: light, maneuverable and armed with rockets and a high-caliber machine gun"
- ―Rockstar Games Official Website
The Ballad of Gay Tony
Similarly armed with machine guns as the Annihilator, as well as additionally featuring rocket pods, the Buzzard is evidently an AH-6 Little Bird, 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. 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 off of 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 lack of bulletproof glass, 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.
- Machine Guns — (Xbox 360) or (PS3) Left Shift (PC)
- Rockets — (Xbox 360) or (PS3) LMB (PC) (Note: The player should NOT use rockets at a low altitude with a sharp trajectory as the detonating rocket can destroy the helicopter and kill the player.
Grand Theft Auto V
The Buzzard has been confirmed to return in Grand Theft Auto V, appearing on the second trailer, on the box art and in various screenshots. It is possible that it was made legal during V's events.
On the cover art, the Buzzard is seen transporting and being piloted by NOOSE units, meaning that it will most likely be used to chase the player, possibly on higher wanted levels just like the Annihilator in Grand Theft Auto IV, and that The NOOSE will return in GTA V. The Buzzard in the box art also seems to have a more blue-ish light tone, yet this is most likely only for aesthetic reasons. The buzzard has the same body shape as TBOGT, but is slightly larger in size, but still has the numbers "17340" imprinted near the helicopters tail.
- Logically, Yusuf's Buzzard must be gold painted, not gold plated, as the weight of the gold would make takeoffs very difficult, if not completely impossible.
- The name "Buzzard" may be a reference to Buzzard 1, a named helicopter from the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas mission Reuniting the Families.
- 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 a Annihilator from a side 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 you are 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.)
- The Buzzard's miniguns do not overheat in rapid fire like the ones on the Annihilator helicopter.
- In TBoGT's Multiplayer, the Buzzard's rocket fire can vary on rate of fire.
- The Buzzard is the only helicopter in the GTA IV Era that has five blades, despite it being the lightest.
- The Buzzard is attainable by cheats using your phone. Dial 359-555-2899
- The Buzzard, despite being a military vehicle, has a radio just like the Annihilator does. However it is turned off when entered.
- The Buzzard's serial number is 17-340.
- Like the Annihilator gunship, 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 rocket pods carry 8 Hydra 70 pod rockets, a family of rockets used in the AH-6 and many other attack aircraft.
- The miniguns cannot be fired while the cell phone is activated. If the player wants to fire the guns, they must hang up the phone.
- The Buzzard is HIGHLY maneuverable. It is able to do things that even a Maverick can't. It can fly very low to the ground, mere feet from the asphalt. It can fly between buildings without hitting them, provided the player is a skilled enough pilot. These are both excellent tactics if the player has a wanted level. Flying close to the street and flying between buildings are especially useful for shaking persistent Police helicopters. The latter is especially useful for preventing Police Maverick gunners from hitting the Buzzard.
- 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 mini-guns do not spin while being fired.
- The Buzzard's miniguns shoot at a much faster rate than the ones of the Annihilator.
- In The Ballad of Gay Tony, Yusuf's Golden Buzzard is unlocked after the mission Departure Time.
'The Ballad of Gay Tony'
- Yusuf Amir gives his gold Buzzard 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 on a road. Get into a car or bike, and drive away from it but keep the camera fixed on the Buzzard. 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 is on Singleplayer.
- One can be found at the yacht (not removed in multiplayer) just south of Acter Industrial Park and east of Happiness Island.
Grand Theft Auto V
- Hunter, Sea Sparrow and Annihilator, other attack helicopters in the Grand Theft Auto series.
- APC, another armed attack vehicle introduced in The Ballad of Gay Tony.