The MH-53 Pave Low can be obtained after a killstreak of 9, or 8 with Hardline. Since it is used as an armored attack helicopter, the MH-53 is harder to destroy and packs a bigger punch than regular Attack Helicopters, as it features two gun turrets instead of one. However, it is also larger and slower, making it a potentially easier target to shoot down, provided the enemy guns do not shoot the player first. The helicopter is equipped with one set of flares, which will distract any locked-on missile. After the flares are spent, a missile can track it directly. If a missile strikes the Pave Low while turning to follow the flares, it will still destroy the aircraft. However, as the Pave Lows fly very low, it is possible, but unlikely, that a Stinger can take out Pave Lows in one missile if it is low enough and the player jumps when it is fired or if the player fires directly below it.
Pave Lows seem to be much more intelligent with regards to enemy targeting than Attack Helicopters; this may be because it can fire from both sides as opposed to just one. For example, it will target a player who recently tried to shoot it with a rocket. It also travels across the map to kill selected targets. Also, it typically targets an opponent who is on a killstreak first before dealing with other threats.
Calling in a Pave Low rewards the player with 300 XP. Destroying a Pave Low gives 400 XP , 4000 in Search and Destroy.
As of the patch released alongside the Stimulus Package, Pave Lows now count toward the user's killstreak. Pave Lows can also easily be destroyed by a Harrier, like all other Helicopters in the airspace.
The Pave Low is a 12-point (11 with Hardline) AssaultStrike Chain reward, in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. It is almost identical to the Pave Low kill streak in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 in terms of function, except for the fact that it now requires a streak of 12 points (11 with Hardline). It still has one set of flares, requiring 2 missiles to destroy but also shoots evenly from both door mounted guns, not just the port side. Similar to the Attack Helicopter it takes 5–10 seconds to arrive, and will last for 60 seconds.
Despite its Attack Helicopter likeness, the Pave Low has several radical differences. Firstly, it will fire two streams of bullets at once. Secondly, it has more than 2x the health, and an extra set of flares. Thirdly, the Pave Low will retaliate fire. Unlike its 7 Kill-Streak counter-part, the Pavelow will respond to players shooting at it, rather than firing on already chosen victims.
The Pave Low can be seen in the E3 2012 demo, appearing as an enemy helicopter David Mason must shoot down while he is piloting the FA38, however, in final version of the game, it is replaced by a different type of helicopter.
It is possible to throw a Semtex on the Pave Low, but doing so will not destroy it.
A Callsign in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 has the title "Transformer", with Pave Lows on it. This is a reference to the Decepticon named Blackout from the 2007 Transformers movie, whose vehicular form was a Pave Low.
When looking at the cockpit of a Pave Low in killcam or while spectating, the player can see that the Pave Low actually has a pilot and co-pilot, unlike the Attack Helicopter.
The pilots of the Pave Low in single player are blocky with pixel-like faces which look like pilots from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.
When the Pave Low fires its turrets, it appears to use FMJ rounds.
Upon the release of the Stimulus Package, a patch made the Pave Low's kills now count to a killstreak.
The Prestige Challenge for kills with a Pave Low is named "Jolly Green Giant", an earlier version of the Pave Low.