The AV-49 shares several similarities with its fellow aerodynes, the AV-14 Hornet, AV-19 SkyHawk, AV-22 Sparrowhawk, and AV-30 Kestrel. The aircraft features an integrated VTOL propulsion system that combines dual lift ducted fan engines pioneered by the AV-30, with air-cooled vectored-thrust fusion thrusters for forward movement. The AV-49 also features twin 7.62 heavy machine guns autocannons and twin 50mm missile launchers, energy shielding, and cyberlink-compatible fly-by-light avionics.
Designed for expeditionary usage, the Wasp can be easily prepped and deployed with minimal tools, and their hardened storage containers have identical dimensions to NAVLOGCOM-standard flat containers, simplifying interstellar transport logistics.
The Wasp augments existing stocks of AV-14 and AV-22 aircraft in Marine service. UNSC doctrine sees the Wasp employed as a gunship escort for troop transports or on-call close air support for special forces teams. The Office of Naval Intelligence employs their own variant of Wasp, using it for night sorties and stealth surveillance missions.
Although in use by 2553, the Wasp was still undergoing field trials with the UNSC as of 2558. By this time, the Spartan Operations branch was asked to assess its tactical utility for their specific needs, with SPARTANs able to test the vehicle in War Games simulations or review protypes manufactured aboard UNSC Infinity in Hangar A-6. Due to their ease of assembly, Sarah Palmer recomemnded that all SPARTANs aboard Infinity become familiar with this process.
A vehicle called the Wasp was cut from Halo 4 early in development. Whether it had any relation to the AV-49 Wasp is unclear. The Wasp vehicle was first teased in a Canon Fodder article on Halo Waypoint, listed as the
Halo 5: Guardians REQ cards
List of appearances