Call of Duty: Warzone developer Raven Software has today unveiled its latest set of changes. This patch looks to address the battle royale’s biggest problems. Amongst these includes a nerf to the infamous Roze skin, a commonly used operator in Warzone.
Roze is a popular choice as her armour in this skin was completely black all over. This made it an excellent choice for hiding in shadows or difficult to spot locations. Many players found this skin frustrating and, in some cases, even unfair. It was unlockable last year before the Cold War integration so many players can’t even use it.
A Significant balance patch
Alongside the Roze changes Raven has also confirmed certain Warzone guns will be receiving nerfs. Those listed include the M16, AUG, FFAR 1, and Sykov. The inclusion of the Sykov is particularly interesting as it was only added a few days ago.
Furthermore, Raven Software is planning to use this opportunity to fix some crucial bugs. Amongst these includes a current bug that prevents the Variable Zoom scope from producing sniper glint. Sniper glint is a mechanic that gives away a sniper’s location when scoped in. However, by using this attachment you can bypass this mechanic.
The other major bug fix is focused on the Modern Warfare weapon perks. A couple of patches ago many of these became broken in both Warzone and Modern Warfare. An example of this is the Sleight of Hand perk no longer speeding up reload time.
Finally, the RC-XC killstreak is going to reworked so that you cannot acquire it through a Buy Station. This may not be as exciting to Warzone players as the Roze skin nerfs, but it’s a nice change nonetheless. Many players weren’t happy with how the RC-XC had taken the loadouts spot on the Buy Station. This change resulted in players accidentally purchasing the killstreak when trying to obtain a loadout.
We’ve known for a while now that a new Warzone map is in the works. The leaks first appeared a few months back when the name Ural Mountains first appeared. Originally, we thought that Ural Mountains was a remake of the existing Warzone map, Verdansk. But the leak that has come out today has revealed some fascinating new information.
Instead of being a remake of Verdansk, it turns out Ural Mountains most likely started life as a Blackout map. Blackout was Call of Duty’s first attempt at creating a battle royale. Bundled as part of Black Ops 4, it wasn’t overly successful. Since Warzone has taken over the Blackout population has faded outside of a handful of diehard fans.
Ural Mountains is coming
The theory is that Warzone was not intended to have Cold War integrated into it. Instead, Treyarch had likely been working on a Blackout 2 of sorts. However, once Warzone gained so much traction plans changed and Blackout was scrapped. This left Treyarch with the difficult task of converting Ural Mountains into a Warzone map.
The leaked images suggest that Ural Mountains will be made up of several existing Fireteam maps. Fireteam is a large-scale game mode in Black Ops Cold War that sees ten teams of four battle over various objectives. It isn’t overly surprising that Ural Mountains will consist of Fireteam maps as this is what the original Warzone map did too.
The Verdansk that players know is effectively a merging of several Ground War maps. Similar to Fireteam, Ground War is another large-scale game mode exclusive to Modern Warfare. It’s an effective strategy as it allows a developer to create one map that covers multiple game modes.
However, it doesn’t look as though Ural Mountains will be coming to Warzone anytime soon. Even though Ural Mountains itself isn’t the Verdansk remake, that remake is still expected in the near future. It seems likely that the Verdansk remake will drop in Season 3 later this month whilst Ural Mountains will follow in a later season.
Yesterday Activision accidently released the R1 Shadowhunter Crossbow early into Warzone. It could be unlocked via an in-game challenge or purchased from the store. It However, the publisher has reversed the change and some fans aren’t happy.
Anyone who purchased the bundle has been refunded for their purchase. You’ll be able to re-purchase the bundle again when it goes live again later. Assuming it is planned to be a mid-season release, players can expect the R1 Shadowhunter Crossbow to drop early next month.
It hasn’t gone down well
Had Activision simply removed the crossbow Call of Duty fans may have not been too bothered. However, the publisher has chosen to reset all progress players made with the crossbow. If you earned mastery camo on it you won’t have unlocked once the R1 Shadowhunter Crossbow is released.
Unlocking Gold camouflage on a gun can take several hours. In Black Ops Cold War especially, gun levelling is very slow. This is an unusual move as in the past Activision has not punished players for similar situations. For example, some Modern Warfare players have unlocked the Sykov pistol early and have kept access to it for months.
On one hand, I can understand Activision’s position. It was an unintentional release and it likely doesn’t want anything messing up its release schedule. AAA games like Call of Duty usually have strict schedules that developers have to adhere to. It’s currently unclear why this mistake happened in the first place.
However, there was no indication that the R1 Shadowhunter Crossbow was released by accident. Therefore, it seems unfair to punish the most dedicated players who put aside time to play your game. As far as we can tell, there is no plans to revert this decision. Once the crossbow releases for real next month players will have to level it up again from scratch.
Leaks about the next Call of Duty game have prevalent over the last couple of months. And yesterday we saw the biggest and most reliable leak yet. As part of a Doritos’ advertising campaign, a packet spread online references the next CoD installment.
As revealed by the leak, the next Call of Duty will most likely be called Black Ops: Cold War. Although it is a bit of a mouth full, the branding make sense. The BlackOps franchise is huge and with the success of the ModernWarfare reboot, a similar approach seems sensible. As for the Cold War part, the original BlackOps released in 2010 was also set in the Cold War.
What have Doritos revealed?
It’s not just the game’s name that has been leaked. The promotion itself features a competition that starts October 5. Given that Modern Warfare was released at a similar time, October 25, this could hint at Cold War’s release date.
Although the source hasn’t been officially verified, it does seem reliable. Doritos and Activision have ran annual partnerships for several years now. The idea being that if you want to get the edge on your opposition, you can purchase Doritos for some double XP.
The same promotion is usually matched by both Monster Energy and Mountain Dew. This means you should have plenty of choice if its something you’re interested in. Regarding the double XP, the small print suggests it’ll be limited to 1 hour per day and 40 hours total.
This leak follows a successful datamined that revealed the name of several multiplayer maps. Amongst these were Black Sea, KGB, Miami, Moscow, and Tank. A handful of campaign missions were found too such as Stakeout and Revolution. Either way, it shouldn’t be long until Activision confirms if this Doritos leak is real.
I’ve been playing the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Open Beta throughout the weekend. My relationship with Call of Duty is a long and fractured one. I fell out of love with the series a fair few years ago. There’s always that time each year where I tell myself maybe I’ll rekindle my love for it once again. Unfortunately, after playing five hours of the open beta, a cruel reality has struck me down. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is not a game I enjoy.
It’s no secret that of the major Call of Duty studios, Infinity Ward has the worst balancing team. Many of their older titles feature dreadful gameplay balance from top to bottom. Call of Duty 4’s M16 could one-shot burst anyone in the game. Modern Warfare 2 has a ludicrous amount of game-winning, momentum stacking killstreaks. Let’s not forget how dominant Modern Warfare 3’s MP7 was either. That thing straight up didn’t recoil.
The Modern Warfare reboot is no exception to this tradition. The gap between the best gun and the worst gun is hilarious. Currently, the M4A1 is the best gun by far. It suffers from little recoil and can delete enemies from just about any range. Equally, shotguns don’t exactly work as intended. They fail to one-shot far too often which makes it better to hip-fire with a rifle instead.
Modern Warfare’s big issue is that Infinity Ward doesn’t seem to have compared between guns at all. For example, in the assault rifle class, the M4A1 outclasses the AK-47 at almost everything. The AK-47 fires slower and has at least triple the recoil yet doesn’t seem to do more DPS. Equally, both the MP5 and MP7 seem to completely outclass every other SMG.
One of the best parts of games like Advanced Warfare and Black Ops 3 was the gun balance. Weapons were designed specifically to fit different situations and niches. Of course, the ASM1 and BAL were strong but on the right map, other options became very viable. Modern Warfare completely lacks this. If you want to do well, just pick the M4A1 and call it a day.
Map Design of Modern Warfare
The maps are hit or miss. In truth, it’s difficult to judge them in the game’s current state. This is because spawning is atrocious. It’s not uncommon to spawn in the middle of the air and immediately fall to your death. On one instance, I was playing Ground War and spawned in a room with at least ten enemies.
Modern Warfare was initially going to have no minimap. This would have been a theoretically good change. Modern FPS are moving more towards communication and scouting based gameplay. Infinity Ward could have brought an end to the red dot chasing culture of Call of Duty. The no minimap design doesn’t work in practice. This is because Modern Warfare’s sound design is poor. Friendly footsteps are too loud. It’s also difficult to establish an enemy’s location on sound alone. Compared to a competitor like Overwatch, it’s impressive how weak CoD’s sound design really is.
The best map I played was probably Hackney Yard. Spawns aside, it has some really nice design features. Points have several entrances making it difficult to camp them. This allows you to get value out of niche Field Upgrades such as Deployable Cover. Being able to take that little extra bit of space can help lock down an objective.
For the most part, the Field Upgrades are unbalanced. Stopping Power Rounds drastically increases bullet damage for one clip. You can get this roughly every 70-90 seconds. When its off cooldown, you are practically guaranteed to win your next gunfight. Anything that gives you a won gunfight is too strong in my eyes.
To Modern Warfare’s credit, I cannot pull out the cliché of “it feels like another CoD game.” Seriously, it really doesn’t. Modern Warfare plays like no Call of Duty title before it. Maps are far larger, and the gameplay is slower than ever. I find on Ground War this is beneficial. The slower-paced, vehicle-centric combat creates a more casual version of what Battlefield used to do so well.
However, this doesn’t translate well to traditional game modes. Team Deathmatch and Domination are painfully slow. Especially, with how strong assault rifles are, players are encouraged to sit in one area. Run and gun playstyles are sub-optimal on most maps. This is very noticeable on open maps like Azhir Cave. In most of the games I’ve been in, it’s very rare to see someone get more than 25 kills. Considering lobbies are 10 versus 10, that’s quite the feat.
Mind you, on PC at least, you hardly ever get full lobbies anyway. Modern Warfare features neat cross-platform input-based matchmaking. Regardless of platform, keyboard players will face other keyboard players. The main benefit of this system is that you can finally use a controller on PC and still compete equally. The downside is that keyboard lobbies are relatively unpopulated. Perhaps it’s no surprise given how gamepad friendly Call of Duty has always been.
Whilst not awful, I didn’t particularly enjoy Modern Warfare’s Open Beta. There are just a few too many flaws getting in the way of the overall experience. The quality of the PC port was a nice surprise, but the actual gameplay falls flat on its face. If I’m frank, I don’t think Infinity Ward can fix these problems either. I’ve never seen them make a game with good balance. Tragically, I think Ghosts got the closest and I reckon most of us can agree that was a fairly poor game.
If they prove me wrong, then maybe I’ll do a 180 and give it a proper second chance. For now, this feels like the latest in a long run of mediocre Call of Duty titles. Be sure to comment below what you thought about the Modern Warfare Open Beta. Do you like the new direction Call of Duty is going in or would you prefer an old-school styled FPS instead?