|This article is about the Reaper subtype. For other uses, see Destroyer (disambiguation).|
Destroyers are a type of Reaper that appear during their galaxy-wide invasion in 2186. They are approximately 160 meters in height; smaller than a Reaper of Sovereign's class, which measure over two kilometers in height. Destroyers make up the majority of the Reaper fleet and are believed to be created using harvested species that are not used to build Reaper Capital Ships.
While relatively small in stature, they still possess a formidable capacity for destruction due to their main gun being easily capable of destroying cruisers in seconds. Unlike Capital Ships, they have four main legs, along with five jointed appendages encircling their "head". The frontal plates of a Destroyer can fold to the sides, exposing a powerful beam weapon. They are used to escort the capital ships, destroying smaller targets such as frigates. On the ground, they are capable of unfolding their legs and walking to support the husks, becoming extremely powerful heavy walkers. They are nigh-immune to ground vehicle fire and not at all fragile in space, but a cruiser is noted to be able to take out a Destroyer fairly quickly.
Due to their smaller size, Destroyers are significantly more agile and maneuverable than the larger Capital Ships. In exo-atmospheric engagements, they are capable of directly landing on larger spacecraft and attacking at point-blank range.
- While escaping from Earth aboard the Normandy SR-2 during the initial attack, Shepard witnesses a Destroyer strike down an escaping shuttle containing a boy they came across earlier.
- On Tuchanka during the mission to disseminate the genophage cure, Shepard summons the legendary thresher maw Kalros to attack a Destroyer guarding the Shroud. The Destroyer is crushed and pulled underground.
- While attempting to free the geth from Reaper control on Rannoch, Shepard discovers a weak spot of the Destroyer design: the Reaper's main weapon firing chamber in its "eye" is vulnerable when charging up for an attack. Shepard then proceeds to destroy the Reaper by directing orbital strikes from the quarian fleet using a handheld laser designator and the Normandy SR-2's weapon guidance systems. Before it dies, the Destroyer speaks with Shepard and explains that the Reapers' cycle must continue, or else all organic life is doomed. If Shepard asks why, the Destroyer says that the explanation is beyond Shepard's comprehension and goes dark.
- During the battle for Earth, Shepard aids in the destruction of two Destroyers. The first has a Hades Cannon mounted on its chassis and is destroyed with an M-920 Cain to allow Hammer ground forces to land in London. The second is killed when EDI programs multiple Thanix missile batteries to strike the main weapon of a Destroyer guarding the Citadel beam. Shepard manually activates the batteries and successfully strikes the Reaper on the second attempt.
- According to BioWare, the design for Destroyers was based on a leaf insect nymph, which was also an early basis for the design of Sovereign.
- The Art of the Mass Effect Universe