The AC-130H Spectre is a gunship used by the United States Air Force in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (Nintendo DS), Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare: Mobilized, Find Makarov: Operation Kingfish, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3: Defiance, Call of Duty: Strike Team, Call of Duty: Black Ops II and Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War.
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
On the PC and consoles, the AC-130 only appears in the missions "Death From Above" and "Hunted". In "Death From Above", where the player controls the AC-130, they are the Thermal Imaging TV Operator. The gunship is armed with a 105mm cannon, with a very wide blast radius, but it must reload after each shot and has a long reload phase. It has the widest view in the Gunship, making it good for spotting ground targets. The 40mm Bofors auto-cannon creates small explosions and is fully automatic. The 25mm Gatling gun is an automatic rapid-fire weapon with the highest zoom and least splash damage, making it very useful when friendlies and enemies are close to each other. The 40mm Bofors and 25mm Gatling gun have unlimited ammunition and do not reload like the 105mm cannon. This ability is lost in Modern Warfare 2 and Modern Warfare 3. An unused model for the AC-130 can be found in the game files, suggesting it to be seen in campaign or multiplayer.
The AC-130 was originally going to be in Modern Warfare's multiplayer, but was however cut from the final release. Several files can be found (ac130_25mm_mp, ac130_40mm_mp, ac130_105mm_mp). However, attempting to use the effects of these files will result in the game crashing. This suggests that it was scrapped very early in development. A model can be found in the game files.
- Death From Above (20 ) - Operate an AC-130 gunship.
- Straight Flush (20 ) - Kill five enemies with one shot of the AC-130 in "Death From Above".
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (Nintendo DS)
The AC-130 makes a brief appearance in the level "Spectre". The player is under the callsign Thunder One-One. The player must protect SAS troops from Ultranationalists with their 25mm, 40mm, and 105mm guns.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
The AC-130 makes a brief appearance in "S.S.D.D", where one is seen landing on the airfield. It doesn't make any other appearances in campaign.
- Main article: AC-130 (killstreak)
The AC-130 returns as an obtainable killstreak in Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer. It takes eleven kills without dying to get the killstreak. It has three different mounted guns (105mm, 40mm and 25mm) and lasts 40 seconds.
The AC-130 appears in the Special Ops mission "Overwatch" being gunned by one of the players. Before the mission starts the host is asked to select the AC-130 gunner. Just like in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare campaign and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer, the AC-130 features three guns, all being the same, but like in Call of Duty 4 the 40mm and 25mm guns do not need to be reloaded. Depending on the difficulty selected, the AC-130 gunner may have to provide overwatch for the ground player for a longer period of time.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare: Mobilized
The AC-130 returns in Modern Warfare: Mobilized as one of the three usable vehicles, the others being the M1 Abrams and the Humvee. The AC-130 has an increase in damage for most weapons from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (DS), as the 20mm Vulcan cannon is capable of taking out enemy T-72s, as well as an increase in bullet speed and rate of fire; the 105mm Howitzer is capable of taking out large buildings in around two shots. Unlike previous games, where the player could only fail by attacking friendlies and no-fire zones, the AC-130 can now be shot down by enemy anti-air vehicles, supposedly BM-21s.
The AC-130 is only used in the level "Clearing the Way" under the callsign Eagle, though Eagle is seen giving the player air support in "Winter Assault" and guiding the player in "Last Chance". The main use of the AC-130 is not to protect allies, but to take out enemy vehicles (BM-21s, T-72s, Hinds), and destroy enemy structures.
Find Makarov: Operation Kingfish
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3
The AC-130 makes an appearance in the missions "Bag and Drag" and "Iron Lady" in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. In "Bag and Drag", Frost uses air support markers to designate targets for an AC-130, callsign "Warhammer". In "Iron Lady", "Warhammer's" AC-130 Gunner continues to provide fire support for Delta Force operators, and Frost continues to designate targets with air support markers. The imaging camera can be toggled for thermal as well as dynamically controlled for zoom. Also, unlike previous games, the FCO is a female, and not a male.
- Main article: AC-130 (killstreak)
The AC-130 also returns in multiplayer, as a 12 Pointstreak in the Assault Package. The only changes are an ammo counter for each weapon as well as the ability to switch between Thermal and Enhanced Optics.
The AC-130 appears in the missions "Toxic Paradise" and "Fire Mission". In "Toxic Paradise", the player can throw an Air Support Marker that produces purple smoke on the ground to designate targets for an AC-130. In "Fire Mission", much like the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Special Ops mission "Overwatch", one player controls an AC-130, while another player on the ground must disable anti-air defenses to protect the AC-130, and reach the entrance to an enemy base. It also appears in mission "Light Em Up", at the end of the mission, where the player throws an Air Support Marker to mark the target.
- Main article: Air Strike
The AC-130 also appears in the Survival Mode as an upgrade called Air Strike, that can be purchased from an Air Support Armory for $2500. Like in Mission Mode, the player can throw down an air support marker to designate fire for the vehicle.
It is advised the player try and locate the AC-130 in the air before throwing the air support marker, as to know the direction the AC-130 is currently hovering. This is because vehicles and other obstructions may prevent the AC-130 from hitting its target, utterly being a waste of the air support marker.
- Danger Close (20 / Bronze ) - Take down a chopper with an AC-130 smoke grenade in "Bag and Drag".
- Ménage à Trois (20 / Bronze ) - Destroy 3 tanks with a single 105mm shot in "Iron Lady".
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3: Defiance
The AC-130 appears in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3: Defiance in the level "Clearing Out". In the level, the player under the callsign Thunder must protect SAS troops. They will have to destroy a tank as well as a building later on with either the 40mm or 105mm, and at the end of the level, protect civilians as they board two buses and evacuate.
Call of Duty: Black Ops II
The AC-130 is briefly seen in the mission "Suffer With Me", where it can be called to provide support if the player manages to find Strobe Grenades using the perk Access Kit. The AC-130's callsign is Odin 1-2. Later in the level, Mason, Woods, and Noriega are nearly killed by a gunship strike from Odin 1-2 called on their location by US soldiers due to Noriega attacking the soldiers.
- "Suffer With Me" - Eliminate enemy personnel (x15) with IR strobe.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2019
In multiplayer, the AC-130 returns under the title of “Gunship.” It has an unlimited amount of reloads and has 1 105 Millimeter round, 5 40 Millimeter rounds, and 30 25 Millimeter rounds. It has 2 flares that automatically deploy when there is a missile lock. It does not appear in the campaign.
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
In End of The Line when Bell and the team is on the roof, Bell can call AC-130 support and take control of the aircraft (callsign Skyhook). After killing the soldiers on the roof, Bell will no longer have control of Skyhook and the pilot warns the team that they only have enough fuel for one more pass and that they should be ready for extract. After Bell connects on the harness, an ambush occurs and Bell, Park, and Lazar gets knocked out by an RPG. Bell has a choice to save Park, save Lazar, or save no one. Skyhook gave a 10 second countdown before they would fire at the building. The AC-130 is not seen again in the rest of the campaign. In Multiplayer, the AC-130 appears as a multiplayer scorestreak as the Gunship. It has the same armament as its predecessor in Modern Warfare: 2019 with 105MM, 40MM, and 25MM rounds. However, the amount of rounds before reloading is different. Instead, there are two 105 rounds, four 40 rounds, and multiple 25 rounds.
Known AC-130 Operators
- Main article: AC-130/Trivia