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A Sparrow is a land-based vehicle used for rapid local transportation. They are used by Guardians to get from place to place quickly within a map or area. Each Guardian has at least one unique, personalized Sparrow stored in their jumpship, which can be summoned at will.
Sparrows consist of a drive engine, antigrav system, steering system, and seat. Steering is managed via the pedals, whilst the hand grips control thrust and braking mechanisms. A comms system and sensor suite is located right in front of the driver's seat.
While the Sparrow is fast and relatively hard to hit, it is also rather fragile, can easily be destroyed by enemy fire, and gives next to no cover to its rider. Sparrows can, however, run down smaller enemies. It is prone to rolling over if used carelessly.
After taking enough damage, a Sparrow will fire its engines and launch itself as a projectile, exploding on impact and inflicting damage to anything nearby.
In Destiny, a new character will obtain their first Sparrow during the mission The Warmind. Other Sparrows can be obtained through various activities and vendors, such as Amanda Holliday. Some sparrows were also given through promotional offers.
The durability and speed of the Sparrow directly corresponds to its rarity:
|Tier 1 (Basic)||132||20||35|
|Tier 2 (Uncommon)||140||30||45|
|Tier 3 (Rare)||150||35||50|
|Tier 4 (Legendary)||160||40||55|
|Tier 5 (Legendary)||160||35||55|
|Tier 6 (Legendary)||150||60||60|
- Vanguard Sparrows
- Titan Sparrows
- Hunter Sparrows
- Warlock Sparrows
These are the 30-class Sparrows.
- Vanguard Sparrows
- Crucible Sparrows
These are the 30-class sparrows upgraded with a drive from Xûr. There are 4 different types of drives: "Emerald Coil", Plasma Drive, Stealth Drive, and Void Drive. Each increases the speed and durability of the Sparrow, but also changes the contrail color. Emerald Coil will make the contrail green, Plasma Drive will make it blue, Void Drive will make it purple, and Stealth Drive will make it red. These sparrows also have slightly higher boost speed than tier 5 sparrows, but cannot be used to perform tricks.
These are special legendary Sparrows that have enhanced durability and speed, with the exception of the EV-30, 31, 32, and 33, which have only Tier 3 speed and durability.
- EV-30 Tumbler
- Iron Gjallarwing
- EV-31 Nightbird
- EV-32 Snowblind (unused)
- EV-33 Dragonrider (unused)
- F11 Scavenger (unused)
- SV7 "Lightbearer" (unused)
- SV7 "Morrow's Gait" (unused)
- SV7 War Runner (unused)
These are the sparrows that can be found in the Vault of Glass and Crota's End raids. Both sparrows have Tier 3 speed, however boost and durability are significantly higher than all other sparrows in Destiny.
- "Glitch-thrusting" or "trigger-Boosting" allows the rider to transfer the sparrow's boost meter into additional speed. This is because the sparrow goes at a faster speed than usual right after boosting, then slows down to its usual pace. This exploit works by repeatedly pressing and releasing the boost trigger. The sparrow will act as if it just started boosting and launch forward, reaching a greater speed. It can be used more effectively if used right before a jump, allowing the sparrow to retain its launch speed while in midair.
- This does not work in Sparrow Racing League.
- A Sparrow will not take any fall damage if a Guardian uses the strafe thrusters right before it hits the ground.
- Sparrow flying (upward): a technique that utilizes roll destabilizers and strafe thrusters to lift the sparrow in the air. It has various uses, and is the fastest way to travel on a sparrow. By letting the sparrow roll on its horizontal axis, you must direct the force of the strafe thrusters upwards relative to the ground and in the opposite way of which the other side of the sparrow is facing. E.g., if your sparrow is tilted 90° to the left, pressing the right strafe thruster button will launch your sparrow into the air. This technique can vary in execution, but the most efficient way to perform it is by using a strafe thruster every 180° spin, in the same fashion as stated above.
- You can fly indefinitely by letting the Sparrow fall and regain its boost meter, making it possible to lift the sparrow into the air again.
- Sparrow flying (sideways): this is very similar to the first sparrow flying exploit with the only difference being that the sparrow needs to be facing the direction in which its moving with its side. This allows the user to fully control the sparrow's speed and height mid-flight. This is due to the fact that the strafe thrusters can be used to propel the sparrow in the direction it is going in, as well as lift it upwards at the same time.
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Some Sparrows come with extra perks such as ones that automatically reload the Guardian's weapons while riding.
- The Sparrow was designed to be in keeping with Destiny's overarching fantasy theme elements, giving the "knights" of the Destiny world a "horse" to ride. Bungie Art Lead Tom Doyle stated that the Sparrow was inspired by wanting to give players "the experience of having a glorious beast to convey them from place to place - something that represented them." It is designed to make getting from place to place "fun... not a menu option."
- A Sparrow is capable of achieving speeds of up to 220 kilometers per hour, but not in gameplay.