SPARKs are able to be built at the Proving Ground once the Lost Towers mission is completed. If the player disables the mission in their campaign, then they can be built after completing the Mechanized Warfare research project.
Two versions of the SPARK appear in-game by default. The original SPARK is a large, bulkier version of the ADVENT MEC with pale yellow paint. Its wrists, shoulders and knees are decorated with yellow and black caution stripes. A pair of glowing devices can be seen in the shoulders (presumably servomotors for the arms). Its head is similar to that of a Gremlin, albeit with a speaker in place of the stun gun and a blue light that lights up when it speaks. Like the ADVENT MEC, it has three digits on each hand; two fingers and a thumb.
Derelict MECs, exclusive to the Lost Towers mission, have several notable differences from the original SPARK. They are painted black, have a skull-like head with red eyes, and wear an armored vest with red trim along with padding on the legs. In comparison to the well-kept original SPARK, derelict MECs are notably rusty with their paint clearly peeling off.
|“||These high-powered robotic units can unleash devastating frontline attacks or absorb incoming fire and protect the squad.||”|
–-XCOM 2, Soldier Ability Selection
SPARKs are large, bulky units similar to the MECs of XCOM: Enemy Within in that they are large mechanical units with a large health pool and heavy weaponry at their disposal. Their abilities can make them into a highly defensive/supportive unit, or a close combat damage dealer.
Like MECs, SPARKs have their own weapon and armor type, and cannot equip weapons/armor that are available to normal soldiers, and vice versa. They cannot equip utilities or receive weapon upgrades as a result. (In the War of the Chosen expansion, you can apply weapon upgrades to the primary weapon.) They also do not receive defense bonuses from cover. Unlike MECs, however, SPARKs are fully mechanical and are immune to mental effects such as Disoriented along with immunity to Burning and Poisoned. All SPARKs are automatically equipped with jump jets, allowing them to ascend any vertical distance without the need for a climbing aid like a ladder or pipe.
SPARKs have a unique type of armor upgrade system that is separate from human soldiers. Their default armor provides a single armor point. SPARKs can be upgraded to have Plated Armor, which gives more health and 2 armor points, and further into Powered Armor, which maximizes the unit's health and provides 3 armor points.
SPARK BITs will upgrade automatically based on the tech level of the unit's armor, unlike the GREMLIN which has a separate upgrading path.
SPARKs feature unique ranks, and some extra, passive, abilities. There are no Rookie SPARKs as they are built in the lab, not recruited. The lowest rank is Squire, the equivalent of Squaddie.
|Shredder||Your cannon attacks shred armor.|
|Mechanical Chassis||This unit is immune to fire and poison effects.|
|Hack||Attempt to remotely breach security on a network access point with your SPARK BIT.|
|Overdrive||Take three actions this turn, and no action is turn-ending. Multiple Standard Shots incur a small recoil penalty.|
|FUTURE COMBAT||WAR MACHINE|
|Bulwark||Gain a point of armor and always provide high cover to all adjacent squadmates.||
|Adaptive Aim||When Overdrive is active, Standard Shots do not incur recoil penalties.|
|Rainmaker||Equipped Heavy Weapons deal +2 damage and have increased area of effect.||
|Strike||Attack any enemy within movement range with a powerful melee attack.|
|Intimidate||When targeted by an attack, the enemy has a chance to panic.||
|Wrecking Ball||While Overdrive is active, break through walls and cover while moving.|
|Repair||Send the BIT to a damaged robotic ally and repair it. Advanced BITs can repair slightly more.||
|Bombard||Launch the BIT to any visible location where it releases a powerful explosive blast. Advanced BITs do more damage.|
|Channeling Field||Every time you are targeted, part of the energy is channeled into your heavy autocannon. This energy is unleashed with your next Standard Shot.||
|Hunter Protocol||When an enemy is revealed, there is a 33% chance to take a free Overwatch shot.|
|Sacrifice||Generate a protective field which redirects any attacks against allies inside it towards you. Gain bonus defense and armor while active.||
|Nova||Release a blast of energy, damaging all nearby enemies. This attack has no cost or cooldown, but consecutive Novas will damage the SPARK.|
|Overdrive||A recoil penalty of -15% Aim is applied after each Standard Shot while Overdrive is active. Overdrive has no cost to activate, but has a 4 turn cooldown.|
|Bulwark||Bulwark adds one point of Armor. Any squadmate (or enemy) standing adjacent to the SPARK will gain the high cover Defense bonus. Do not stand next to enemies who can make use of cover if you select this ability as it will make it much more difficult for your Spark unit to land shots or a Strike ability.|
|Adaptive Aim||Adaptive Aim eliminates the -15% Aim penalty for consecutive Standard Shots when Overdrive is active.|
|Rainmaker||Rainmaker adds +2 damage to all heavy weapons. Heavy weapons with circular areas of effect have their radius increased by +2. Heavy weapons with a conic area of effect have their width increased by +2 and length increased by +2.|
|Strike||You can trigger the Strike ability by placing the movement cursor over an enemy. A SPARK can perform a "Dash" move, using both actions to move, and still trigger a Strike against an adjacent enemy. The Strike ability is subject to Overdrive's recoil penalty if standard shots were fired prior to using the Strike ability.|
|Intimidate||Intimidate's chance to panic the attacker increases with higher tier SPARK armors. Intimidate can be triggered by melee and area of effect attacks. Intimidate will not trigger when targeted by Overwatch fire.|
|Wrecking Ball||Wrecking Ball can be used to expose enemies to flanking shots. Use movement waypoints to guide the SPARK on an optimal path for destroying cover and the environment.|
|Repair||Repair will restore 6 health. Upgrading your BIT will lead to more HP repaired. Using Repair as your first action will not end your turn. Repair has 2 charges per mission. You can repair yourself.|
|Bombard||Bombard can be fired at any location within squadsight. Upgrading your BIT will lead to more bombard damage.|
|Channeling Field||Each point of energy channeled by Channeling Field increases the damage of the primary weapon attack by 1. The energy stored by Channeling Field is expended even if the next shot misses.|
|Hunter Protocol||Hunter Protocol makes the SPARK an ideal unit for scouting into the fog of war, since any revealed enemy can be instantly attacked.|
|Sacrifice||The SPARK gains +20 defense and +2 armor while Sacrifice is active. Sacrifice has a 3 turn cooldown.|
|Nova||Nova has no action point cost or cooldown. The first Nova attack each mission will deal 0 damage to the SPARK. All Nova attacks after the first will deal a stacking 2 damage to the SPARK.|
- Main article: SPARK (XCOM 2)/Guides