- For the police helicopters in GTA III and GTA Chinatown Wars, see Police Helicopter (GTA III) and Helicopter (GTA CW) respectively.
The Police Maverick, also known as the VCPD Maverick in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, is the police adaptation of the civilian Maverick helicopter, and the first controllable police helicopter introduced in series when it debuted in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.
The Police Maverick possess many characteristics of the preceeding police helicopter in Grand Theft Auto III. When flown by police units once the player obtains a 3-star wanted level, the helicopter has an "invisible" 50mm machine gun on the fuselage (similar in both sound and power to the M-60), as well as a searchlight, and a loud speaker (used by the police to address the player from the skies) only absent in the GTA Vice City Stories rendition. The helicopter can also airdrop SWAT units on ropes in GTA Vice City and GTA San Andreas.
The Police Maverick controls similarly to a normal Maverick, differing only by its ability to pitch steeper than a regular Maverick (especially in games prior to GTA IV). In addition, Police Mavericks obtainable by the player will have no microphone or machine gun fire. A search light is also available on the GTA San Andreas rendition (see #Trivia).
GTA Vice City — GTA Vice City Stories
Like the Maverick, the helicopter has made repeated appearances in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories and Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories.
In GTA Vice City, GTA San Andreas and GTA Vice City Stories, the helicopter is usually always parked on the roof of the main police station of the city. In GTA Liberty City Stories, it is also not available in a normal game, but can be obtained by a third party trainer program. Like the Maverick, the Police Maverick originally featured two rotor blades.
With the exception of GTA San Andreas, two versions of the Police Maverick exist in all its appearances between GTA Vice City and GTA Vice City Stories. Airborne Police Mavericks operated by the police feature its back doors slide back, but the same back doors of Police Mavericks available to the player swing open instead. In GTA Vice City Stories, the slide-door variant retains GTA Vice City's green and white livery while the swing-door variant is only available in a olive/gold and white livery. The slid-door variant is not normally available to the player, but it is possible to spawn a slid-door VCPD Maverick in GTA Vice City Stories through a cheat device.
In GTA Vice City, GTA San Andreas and GTA Liberty City Stories, there is no visible pilot flying the helicopter when it is flown by an NPC. This visual goof was rectified in GTA Liberty City Stories by simply having the windows of the helicopter blackened, obscuring the interior; Police Mavericks spawned using a cheat device, however, feature transparent windows. In GTA Vice City Stories, there is a pilot appearing as a normal police officer without any pilot gear.
In Grand Theft Auto IV, the Police Maverick is in turn based on a redone Maverick, and as a result, features a rear slid-doors and a four-blade main rotor. In place of an "invisible" machine gun under the fuselage are two officers seated on both sides of the helicopter, programmed to shoot the player with M4A1s; its ability to deploy tactical response units has also been dropped in the game. In The Ballad Of Gay Tony, the officers will be armed with Advanced MGs (M249 SAWs) instead.
The Police Maverick is slightly faster than a regular Maverick and can turn faster, thus giving it more maneuverability.
- In GTA Vice City, the red light on the back of airborne Police Mavericks is dislocated, and remain in the same place as its predecessor.
- In GTA Vice City, the police pilot voice actor is arguably the most intimidating police pilot in the GTA series.
- In GTA Vice City, there is no pilot in the chopper and is preferably "driving by itself" this was fixed in GTA Vice City Stories however as you can see a pilot and his weapons will become obtainable after taking down the helicopter.
- In the beta version of GTA San Andreas, there were LSPD Police Mavericks.
- GTA San Andreas is the only GTA game to date that lets the player turn on its powerful search light, but its the direction can only be controlled in the PC version - in console versions, it moves in the opposite direction to the movement of the helicopter. The light can only be turned on at night by pressing the left analog stick (Xbox), R2 button (PS2) or Left Shift key (PC).
- If the player manages to steal the Police Maverick in GTA San Andreas, the helicopter will remain hostile. For example, if the player parks the helicopter and gets out, the helicopter's underbelly will shoot at the player from the ground; this is due to programming limitations however.
- In GTA San Andreas, the mounted gun oddly bypasses any coding that would make the object/character invisible. For instace, it will damage the player even if the "Invincibility" cheat is activated. It also can damage Rhino, which would be impossible with any other firearm; only molotovs, flamethrowers, and crashing the tank have the ability of damaging the Rhino.
- In GTA San Andreas and GTA Vice City Stories, the player is able to steal the Police Maverick chasing them on certain occasions.
- To ensure the player does not manage to gain control of an NPC Police Maverick in GTA Liberty City Stories, the helicopters are programmed to explode upon contact with the player, or fly higher than the player.
- Whilst all Police Mavericks have police radios, the GTA Liberty City Stories rendition is equipped with a conventional radio.
- The Police Maverick appears in Rockstar North's Manhunt 2, bearing the VCPD's color scheme.
- There is a Glitch involving the Police Maverick in Grand Theft Auto IV where once Niko gets out, the helicopter will start flying away and fall once it is realised that there is no pilot. This is because the game still reads the helicopter as AI controlled. Holding Y (Xbox 360) or X (PS3) to shut off the engine will prevent this. This will no longer happen when the player goes back to the safehouse from a considerable distance away from it.
- GTA Vice City
- GTA San Andreas
- On top of the LSPD rooftop in Pershing Square, Los Santos after completing the mission Learning to Fly.
- GTA Vice City Stories
- On roof of the Downtown and Washington Beach police stations.
- GTA IV
- Only obtainable by sniping the pilot, making the helicopter slowly hover to the ground undamaged. It only works 5/10 times. Also obtainable by an even more frustrating process in which the helicopter is disabled at a low enough altitude that all occupants live, and then the chopper is pushed into a safehouse parking spot. That method probably works less often than the previous. Other than that, you can only fly the Police Maverick in multiplayer race mode.
- The Ballad Of Gay Tony
- (Multiplayer only) On the rooftop helipad of the East Holland police station in Algonquin.
- During the mission "Not So Fast", you can steal a Police Maverick when you have to climb back on to the roof to get back in Yusuf's Buzzard by waiting a few seconds, when a Police Maverick will land on the roof.
- Police Helicopter (GTA III)
- Buzzard 1
- Complementary information on the Police Maverick: