Sgt. James Byrd is a fictional character in the Spyro the Dragon series. He is a flying penguin native to Sgt. Byrd's Base. He was raised by hummingbirds (which is where he learned how to fly) and always carries his rocket launchers and He wears an Army Helmet. He first appeared in Spyro: Year of the Dragon, and was playable in two subsequent games.
Sgt. Byrd is a spoof of James Bond and other secret agent archetypal characters from movies, books, and video games, right down to his introduction ("Byrd, James Byrd"). Byrd speaks with a British accent, not unlike James Bonds, and always carries Rocket Launchers, however, prefers to conserve ammo for the right moment. The Year of the Dragon manual gives this as his introduction:
"Meet the world's only flying penguin. Sgt. Byrd was raised by hummingbirds who taught him how to get airborne. Then he flew the coop and joined the Air Corp. He developed the first BAM (Bird to Air Missile). BAM Launchers are mounted on his shoulders. Sgt. Byrd can also pick up items and drop them with superb accuracy."
From this quote, we can also assume that Byrd was a weapons designer as well.
Sgt. Byrd lived in the Forgotten Realms, more than likely in Sgt. Byrd's Base. As a child, he was adopted by hummingbirds, who raised him until he joined the Air Corps. The hummingbirds also taught Byrd to fly, though now it appears that he no longer relies on his wings because of his jet pack. Once he was of age, he joined the Air Corps and rose to the rank of Sergeant. While leading an uprising against The Sorceress, Byrd was captured and held captive by Moneybags.
Rescued by SpyroEdit
In Spyro: Year of the Dragon, after Spyro defeated Buzz, the balloon took him to Midday Gardens. In the centerpiece castle of the Homeworld, Spyro met Moneybags, who was holding Sgt. Byrd prisoner within a cage. Moneybags agreed to sell Sgt. Byrd to Spyro for a couple hundred gems. When Moneybags released Sgt. Byrd, Byrd promptly fired on Moneybags with his BAM Rocket Launchers, sending Moneybags flying.
When freed, he returned to his homeworld, and assisted the hummingbirds who were kept captive. Byrd released the five hummingbirds from their captors, and then cleared his base of Rhynocs. This was a crushing blow to the Sorceress' war machine, as Sgt. Byrd and his army of hummingbirds began to strike back at the Sorceress in full force.
After ridding his base of Rhynocs, Byrd went to Enchanted Towers, in order to free the denizens from the Sorceress' cruelty. Unfortunately, by the time he got there, Spyro had already taken care of the Rhynocs and the statue built of the Sorceress. Byrd then decided to patrol the Towers, in the event of a counter attack, but took out the Gargoyles in the process. Byrd ended up collecting bones for a citizen of Skelos Badlands, so he could bring back his friend.
After ridding the Towers of Rhynocs and collecting the bones, Sgt. Byrd took a brief rest at the Tiki Lodge in Molten Crater. The vacation did not go as planned, however, as he was begged by a potential Tiki Lodge member to help him gather the heads of the other Tikis which had been scattered around the inside of the Lodge. Sgt. Byrd succeeded and was rewarded with two Dragon Eggs - One which was given to him (leftover from the Tiki Lodge party the night before) and another that was hidden in a wall (which, undoubtedly was also from the aforementioned party).
Upon return from the vacation, the hummingbirds had determined that The Sorceress was going to ambush Spyro as he was in transit between Midday Garden and Evening Lake. Sgt. Byrd went on a reconnaissance mission, along with several type of ammunition, and met Spyro before Spike could ambush him. Spike used his laser blaster to attack Spyro, but Byrd dropped ammunition from the sky in order for Spyro to use against Spike. Eventually, Spike was defeated by their combined force.
Finally, Byrd snuck away from the army to meet up with his fairy girlfriend in Charmed Ridge. Unfortunately, when he had arrived, cat wizards had attacked, and it was up to Sgt. Byrd to stop them. Eventually, they were subdued, and Byrd recovered another Dragon Egg.
The last time that Byrd and Spyro met was at the Fireworks Factory, after the initial defeat of the Sorceress. He put on a fireworks show for Hunter and Bianca, while Spyro watched in horror as another noble warrior falls to love. Elora then joins Spyro, as they watch the show.
More than likely, during the Season of Ice Crisis, Byrd was at Sgt. Byrd's Base, continuing to clean up after the Sorceress' mess. It is possible, however, after communication with the Dragon Realms reopened, that Byrd left to set up the Hummingbird Fort that is also sieged by Rhynocs in Spyro: Season of Ice.
Byrd's activities during the Season of Flame Crisis and when Ripto returned are unknown, but it may be possible that Byrd was constructing Byrd's Base in the Dragon Realms, and got his turn to kick his share of Riptoc butt.
The Stolen LaboratoryEdit
In Spyro: Attack of the Rhynocs, Sgt. Byrd returned, and fought off the Rhynoc swarms once again, this time, serving as reconnaissance to save captured creatures. First, he saves penguins in his army captured by Rhynocs, then proceeds to save hostages and captured hummingbirds. After the three groups of hostages were saved, Sgt. Byrd continued to train his army at his Dragon Kingdom branch of the Air Corps.
It is unknown, however, if the Air Corps were involved in the counterattacks against Ripto's army of Rhynocs, or if Byrd attempted to face Ripto himself.
Hero Team UpEdit
In Spyro Orange: The Cortex Conspiracy, after Ripto was defeated and banished, the diminutive sorcerer teamed up with Dr. Neo Cortex, and threw the Dragon Castles and Wumpa Jungle into siege. Spyro and his friends responded to the attack, as they met with Crash Bandicoot and his gang as well. Sgt. Byrd held down the fort at the Arctic Cliffs, attacking Riptocs and Scientists, and giving Spyro advice and moral support. It was at this time that Byrd began to use his jet pack.
The Traitorous ElderEdit
In Spyro: A Hero's Tail, as Red, Gnasty Gnorc, and Ineptune set into motion their plan to dominate the Dragon Realms, Sgt. Byrd returned to the Call of Duty, and formed a Band of Five with Blink the Mole, Hunter the Cheetah, Sparx the Dragonfly, and Spyro the Dragon. Byrd assisted Spyro in collecting the stolen Dragon Eggs and Light Gems that were hidden by Gnorcs in Speedways.
It is unknown if the Air Corps were involved when Red terrorized the Dragon Kingdom, or if Sgt. Byrd did work on his own and cleared some of the realms of Gnorcs himself.
Sgt. Byrd does not excel in melee combat, so he relies on his BAM Rocket Launchers. These are always mounted on his shoulders, and can fire at the drop of a hat. From what Byrd said in his introduction in Year of the Dragon, we can infer that Byrd has limited ammunition in his BAM Rocket Launchers, but when playing as Byrd in all three games, he appears to have infinite. This continuity issue has not been addressed.
Byrd also can pick up bombs and drop them. He has the ability to look down while holding a bomb for a precise hit. He can also pick up other items and drop them, for example, weights to a pressure sensitive door.