Call of Duty: Modern Warfare has been out for quite some time now. Since the release of the game back in October 2019, fans have speculated about the release of a new Battle Royale mode. Coming off the immense success of Black Ops 4’s Blackout, which is still heavily played to this day, Activision Blizzard did what many people thought they would never do: they’ve made Call of Duty free to play with the release of the new Warzone Battle Royale game mode.
Warzone is the successor to Blackout and it has the potential to be one of the best battle royales on the market right now. Fans all over the world are excited to jump into the battlefield. Let’s go over everything you need to know about Call of Duty: Warzone!
Release Date and Download Size
Call of Duty: Warzone released on March 10, 2020. You can now load up Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and you'll be prompted to update if it hasn't already started. The update is 15-22 GB depending on whether you're playing on PC, PS4, or Xbox One. If you don't own Modern Warfare, expect an 80-100 GB download.
When you load up Call of Duty Warzone for the first time, you'll be asked to complete some basic training missions. There are two of these: one is an introduction to the weapons and gameplay mechanics in Warzone. The other one pits you against 20 NPCs on the Warzone map. The latter helps you get a sense of how Warzone is played before you head into action. Completing these missions grants you some bonus rewards, so it’s a good idea to dive into them.
Battle Royale Overview
The official Activision Games Blog gave an overview of the Warzone game mode. Check out the full description below!
You and your squad start on the infil plane ready to jump out over Verdansk. After the plane crosses a section of the area as marked by your Tac Map, the rear loading ramp drops down, allowing your squad to drop out and parachute down to safety.
At the beginning of a Battle Royale match, the Tac Map shows the first safe area; while you could land anywhere in Verdansk, the circle collapse will shrink the playable area over time, causing those outside of it to eventually succumb to the gas.
Once you hit the ground, your squad’s objective is to survive longer than everyone else in the lobby. Looting items, killing enemies, and completing Contracts all help you outlast the competition, as they will boost your loadout and give you in-match Cash.
Cash can be spent at Buy Stations. Though optional, should you start collecting Cash (by completing Contracts, finding Cash in the environment, or looting foes), you can spend it at a Buy Station. Simply find one on the Tac Map (the Shopping Cart icon), visit it, and purchase Armor Plate Bundles, Gas Masks, Killstreaks, a Self-Revive Kit, and even a Loadout Drop, a way to gain your custom loadout – including perks – in Battle Royale.
After a few minutes into the match, the first circle collapse begins, then another cycle starts once the first collapse is complete. You can see how much time is left until the next collapse – or when the current one is over – under the mini Tac Map on the HUD, and you can see where it will collapse on the Tac Map itself.
When your Operator drops to zero health, they enter a downed state and bleed out. You must either be revived by a teammate or use a Self-Revive Kit to keep your inventory and continue fighting. Otherwise, upon your first death, you will be captured as a 'Prisoner of Warzone' and sent to the Gulag.
Once in the Gulag, you will be pitted against another fallen player in a 1v1 match for redeployment. Watch other prisoners fight, throw rocks, and study the Gulag map layout to plan for your own fight.
Winning your Gulag fight gets you back into the game via redeployment. Losing a Gulag fight, or dying after being brought back into the match from a Gulag victory, eliminates you from play. However, live members of your squad can redeploy the fallen by purchasing a Redeployment Token at a Buy Station. A fireteam is fully eliminated with no chance to redeploy after all its members are dead and eliminated.
Note: Although there is a Gulag on the Verdansk map, it is not the same area where 'Prisoners of Warzone' are taken.
There are three game modes in Warzone:
1. Battle Royale, which has support for up to 150 players
2. Plunder, in which players try to collect $1 million in cash before the other squads. CharlieIntel noted this about the new game mode, as they were given access to Warzone ahead of the release:
Plunder has a 30-minute timer for players to reach $1 million in cash. When a team reaches $1 million in cash secured, an overtime phase is triggered in the mode. The team that deposited the $1 million in cash has their $1 million secured. During this overtime phase, the amount of cash you find is doubled. The team with the most cash when the time ends wins the match.
If no one reaches $1 million in cash by the 30-minute mark, the team with the most money wins.
3. Solos, the newest mode added in Warzone. Here are the basics from the Activision Blog:
In Solos, you drop into Verdansk alone with Battle Royale rules. That means no squadmates, no friends – only you and a pistol with a few bullets. Think of this as Free-For-All in a traditional Call of Duty game, but on a massive scale.
As you loot, complete Contracts, and survive against up to 149 other players, the circle collapse will roll in just as it does in a normal Battle Royale. The Gulag will still welcome in prisoners of the Warzone, but if you die in that 1v1 Gunfight, forget any form of redeployment – you’re out for good.
The last Operator standing wins.
Similar to Blackout, the new Battle Royale mode features usable vehicles throughout the map. These include quads, ATVs, and helicopters to make getting around the large map easy for all.
One of the most unique features is the addition of the Gulag, which acts as a second chance for players when they're eliminated for the first time. When you get killed, you're transported to the Gulag, where you'll fight 1v1 with another player (similar to Modern Warfare’s hit Gunfight mode) to see who gets a second chance to rejoin the match. If you don’t win, you’ll have to watch until the match ends, or you’re bought back in by a teammate.
Cash is one of the most vital parts of Warzone. Not only is it useful in the Plunder mode, where the main objective is to get as much cash as you can, but cash can be used in the Battle Royale mode at Buy Stations around the map. At these locations, you can buy items such as killstreaks and revive tokens to resurrect your fallen teammates.
This is one of the newer features in Warzone. Similar to how challenges work in other battle royales, such as Fortnite and Apex Legends, contracts are designed to give you additional XP. Contracts can be located across the map when you load into a Warzone match and can be completed during the match, granting you cash, XP, and other rewards.
There are also in-game bounties, pushing you to take out a certain player during the match for big rewards.
Infinity Ward posted the full patch notes for Warzone about an hour after its global release, and we've included them below. These also include some additions and changes to the standard multiplayer for Modern Warfare.
- Added Search and Rescue.
- Added Mayhem Mosh Pit (10v10 Grind, Drop Zone, and Cranked).
- Removing “Boots on the Ground War.”
- NEW Shotgun: “VLK Rogue.”
- Fixed a bug that prevented respawning after a Defcon Nuke was set off in Realism Ground War.
- Increased damage to Juggernauts when being hit by a Thermite Crossbow.
- Various Exploit fixes, including fixes to Hackney Yard and Piccadilly.
- Fix for a bug where a different pistol than the one that was equipped would appear when climbing a ladder.
- Fixed a bug where any charm used alongside the MP7 Bengal variant would clip through the weapon.
- Various Ground War exploit fixes.
- Fix for a bug where a constant yellow “High Alert” screen would persist after death if the player died while the perk was granted via Specialist.
- Fixed a bug in the After-Action Report that would display 0 in the Challenge field even if a Challenge was completed.
- Fixed a bug that would spawn players elsewhere on the map after using a Tactical Insertion near the crawl space on Rust.
- Fixed a bug in the Giant Infection mode that spammed radio VO across all teammates when a player is a driver or passenger.
- Fixed a bug that allowed players to deploy throwable Field Upgrades during the round countdown. After the countdown ends, the player would still have another Field Upgrade available. This has been fixed.
- Added option to toggle a square or circular minimap.
- Call of Duty League: Restricted the .357 Snake Shot in the CDL public playlist.
- 725 Sawed-Off Barrel
- Increased move speed
- Increased ADS Spread
- Reduced ADS damage
- Reduced far damage range
- Extended very lethal close-damage range
- Fix for the RAM-7 variant, “The Corrupter,” not allowing the use of any sniper scopes.
- Fixed a bug that could create an “infinite ammo” glitch on the Model 680.
- Updating the ammo descriptions to the “Bludgeoner” LMG and the “Skull Hammer” Shotgun.
- Fix for a bug where using an NVG Thermal Scope on the Grau 5.56 could cause a graphical bug.
Missions and Challenges:
- Fix for a bug that only displayed the “One Shot One Kill” splash medal on screen when a sniper rifle was used. This is fixed to display whenever any one-shot weapon (like shotguns or marksman rifles) is used.
- Fix for the “Get 50 Kills with Light Machine Guns” challenge not tracking as intended.
- Fix for Golem’s 3rd Mission Objective, “Get 5 Kills using Lethal Equipment,” not tracking properly.
- All vehicles now award progress to any challenges that require “X vehicle run over kills.”
- Updates to the splash screen and in-game HUD as players make progress in the “Alliance” missions.
Classic Special Operations:
- Fixed a bug that prevented players from being able to use finishing moves on enemy AI.
- Bomb Squad: Fix for a bug where enemies might not spawn until after the last bomb is defused.
- Special Operations: Survival – Leaderboards for Azhir Cave (night) and St. Petrograd have been added.
- Camera is now in a fixed position when reviving while prone or crouched.
- Hostages will reset to a safe area if dropped out of bounds.
- Fix for the match ending if the last-alive player calls in a Team Revive, but goes down before the other players revive themselves.
- Fix for some instances where the Juggernaut music could stay on unintentionally.
- Increase Heavy Hitter weapon perk to 2x melee damage.
- Ensure that players who are parachuting receive the “out of bounds” warning if they drift out of bounds.
- Fix for hint prompts showing up while players are in last stand.
- Fix for an edge case that could prevent the 4th squad leader from spawning in during Operation Headhunter.
- Operation Just Reward: Fixed an issue where the cell phone intel would fail to drop.
- Operation Strongbox: Fixed a bug where destroying an enemy Wheelson wasn’t granting any XP.
Keyboard and Mouse: A contextual menu is now displayed when a KBM player right-clicks on usernames in the Social menu’s Party tab
- Several fixes to prevent crashes and improve stability.
- New PC players using the latest Battle.net client now have access to a simple, one-click way of creating their Activision account using their Battle.net credentials.
- Fixed a few cases where certain Social menu pop-up messages would display incorrectly in higher aspect ratios.
What do you think of the new Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Warzone?
Do you think it has the potential to be the best battle royale on the market?
Let us know in the comments below!
Top image via Activision
This article was written by Nick Farrell, a full-time university student who loves talking and writing about video games.