Connect with us

Call of Duty: Vanguard

CoD Vanguard Zombies review: Empty experience sees series take giant step back

Treyarch has returned to carry on their Zombies adventure in Vanguard, but a worrying lack of content has gotten things off to a bad start.

Published

on

vanguard zombies text over zombies pic

Vanguard Zombies branches the Dark Aether story off into a darker, but sadly not deeper direction. The game’s debut map, Der Anfang, is a paltry offering devoid of life and content, getting CoD’s latest Zombies adventure off to a disappointing start.

We should prefix this whole review by saying that we understand Treyarch is battling on multiple fronts when it comes to Call of Duty.

They are overseeing the maintenance of Black Ops Cold War, it wasn’t long ago that they developed and released the final round-based map for the game – Forsaken, and they’ve also had to make brand new exciting content for Call of Duty: Vanguard.

Something had to give, and it appears like Vanguard has taken the fall as the introduction of the new Der Anfang map has come with very little substance to keep hungry Zombies players entertained.

Not even a Ray Gun?

The most alarming thing about Der Anfang is how the more you play, the more you realize how much is actually missing from the experience. What’s the metric you ask to compare Der Anfang to? We’ll go with a very basic one – Black Ops Cold War.

The world was in the midst of a serious pandemic, and it seemed like Cold War’s development was going to be hindered as a result. Yet, the game launched with the terrific Die Maschine round-based map, and also Dead Ops 3 as a bonus.

A ton of features included in Die Maschine are noticeably absent in Vanguard, and here’s a small sample of missing features: No round-based map, no Wonder Weapons (including Ray Guns), no Easter Eggs, no PAP camo, fewer Perks, no power to turn on, no Killstreaks, and no split-screen.

There are many more things missing, but if stuff is missing, then the stuff that made the cut must be worth a dime, right? Not exactly.

Repetition. Repetition. Reptition.

It feels like the Zombies themselves have more life than Der Anfang as this bare-bones game mode genuinely has all the potential in the world, but not right now.

You start off in an enclosed version of Stalingrad with a choice of the game’s three objectives: Blitz, Harvest, and Transmit. Blitz wants you to survive in a small area for a set amount of time, Harvest is about killing enough Zombies to collect 15 runestones, and Transmit task you with guiding a floating head in a linear path.

Aside from trying to find the odd chest or crystal to smash and get a tiny amount of Essence or free goodies, there’s not much else to Der Anfang.

The Pack-A-Punch machine is there, live, and already good-to-go. The workbench returns with a more limited selection, the Mystery Box is fixed to the same spot, and you’ll have to use it as wall buys are gone, and the Altar of Covenants is available too.

Cold War’s Outbreak was a breath of fresh air in our eyes and we loved it. When it was announced that we were going to get a hybrid of the classic game modes, we were excited.

But instead, all players get is the same three objectives over and over, in a handful of the same locations, with nothing to grind for – e.g the Aetherium Crystal system that Cold War had.

Is it worth playing?

Honestly, yes, at least a few games anyway. If you already own Vanguard, then you should have games of Zombies with friends to make the experience more enjoyable. There’s still some fun to be had after all.

We alluded to the Altar of Covenants earlier, and despite it being a transparent RnG system with not much to it, it does change the dynamics of the gameplay, especially as you improve your upgrades using hearts.

After the sluggish nature of the first couple of rounds, the intensity does start to amp up with the introduction of exploding Boom Schreiers and minigun-wielding Elite Sturmkrieger enemies. However, these two enemy types pretty much cover the “special” enemy Zombie types and you’ll have seen everything by round five.

Perks return in a slightly rejigged and reshuffled format with new names and all, and you can work towards upgrading them to Level IV, as well as getting any weapons you have to Level 3 via the Pack-A-Punch machine.

And that’s it really.


Call of Duty: Vanguard’s Zombies currently feels like a huge step back from everything that Black Ops Cold War achieved. The removal of so many cool systems and features becomes seriously detrimental to Der Anfang’s potential and already risks alienating the Zombies fanbase.

Potential is the keyword as Treyarch’s new formula meshes a bit of round-based here and Outbreak there, sadly there’s nothing to sustain it. With Season 1 on the horizon and presumably plans for future content, Treyarch might need to inject Vanguard Zombies with a lot more content going forward to pick things back up.

Verdict: 4 / 10


For more Call of Duty: Vanguard content, take a look at our extensive ranking of every Vanguard weapon, and our top 10 too.

Image Credit: Activision / Treyarch

Call of Duty: Vanguard

Best CoD: Vanguard SMG loadouts: Ranked list

Here are the best SMG loadouts you can run in Call of Duty: Vanguard, as well as every Submachine Gun ranked from best to worst.

Published

on

Call of Duty: Vanguard offers players seven powerful and unique WW2-era SMGs to rank up and master. We’ve sorted every SMG into a ranked list, and revealed the best loadout for each one.

Call of Duty: Vanguard offers over 40 weapons to level up and unlock the elusive Atomic Mastery camo for. Submachine Guns, or SMGs, allow you to be a speedy menace on the map, getting in the enemy’s face and dealing serious damage.

However, not all SMGs are created equal, and some are much better than others. We’ve ranked all six Vanguard SMGs from best to worst, and counted down the best loadouts you can use.

Best Vanguard SMGs ranked list

Every Call of Duty: Vanguard SMG is viable, but some are much better than others thanks to their mobility, fire rate, and time to kill.

Here are all seven Call of Duty: Vanguard SMGs ranked from best to worst.

  1. MP-40
  2. Welgun
  3. Type 100
  4. M1928
  5. PPSH-41
  6. Owen Gun
  7. Sten

Best SMG loadouts in CoD: Vanguard

7. Best Sten loadout

While it will still serve you well in Vanguard’s multiplayer, we believe the Sten is the least effective SMG.

The Sten suffers from the bloom mechanic discovered by TrueGameData, which means that your shots aren’t always going to go where you aim. This means that you need to use attachments to counter this, sacrificing attachments that could otherwise be used on mobility.

It’s not unusable by any means, but any other SMG on this list will serve you infinitely better.

Here are the best attachments to run with the Sten, increasing its accuracy and mobility:

  • Muzzle: M1929 Silencer
  • Barrel: Hockensen 174MM B11S
  • Optic: Slate Reflector
  • Stock: Hockensen S33S Padded
  • Underbarrel: Carver Foregrip
  • Magazine: .45 ACP 20 Round Fast Mags
  • Ammo Type: Lengethed
  • Rear Grip: Grooved Grip
  • Proficiency: Gung-Ho
  • Kit: Quick

6. Best Owen Gun loadout

The Owen Gun is a unique SMG designed for medium-range fights, but you’d be better off running an Assault Rifle such as the Automaton instead.

While each bullet deals significant damage, its low fire rate and obtrusive magazine hold it back from being up there with the best. But it does perform well at medium range, so if you’re a player who doesn’t like to take fights up-close, the Owen Gun could be the weapon for you.

Here are the best Owen Gun attachments, taking advantage of its medium-range damage:

  • Muzzle: M1929 Silencer
  • Barrel: Gawaun 188MM Shrouded
  • Optic: Nydar Model 47
  • Stock: Gawain H4 Folding
  • Underbarrel: M1930 Strifle Angled
  • Magazine: 7.62 Gorenko 72 Round Drums
  • Ammo Type: Lengthened
  • Rear Grip: Leather Grip
  • Proficiency: Brace
  • Kit: Fully Loaded

5. Best PPSH-41 loadout

The fan-favorite PPSH-41 is also available in Cold War, but Vanguard’s is a much more unique offering. It has a rapid-fire rate, which allows it to shred enemies at close-range.

You might not be a huge fan of the PPSH-41 when you first unlock it thanks to the fast fire rate and high recoil, but once you start picking up attachments to reign it in, you’ll be melting enemies in no time. It doesn’t really excel in any one area but makes for a powerful all-rounder.

Here’s the best loadout for Vanguard’s PPSH-41, taking advantage of its high fire rate:

  • Muzzle: Mercury Silencer
  • Barrel: ZAC 30MM
  • Optic: Slate Reflector
  • Stock: 
  • Underbarrel: Carver Foregrip
  • Magazine: Nambu 71 Round Mags
  • Ammo Type: Lengthened
  • Rear Grip: Leather Grip
  • Proficiency: Tight Grip
  • Kit: Quick

4. Best M1928 loadout

As you start to level up the M1928, or Thompson, you’ll probably start to notice that it’s extremely underrated.

It has a very competitive TTK, a large magazine, and minimal recoil, making it a standout choice in Vanguard’s pre-season. The key to unlocking its fast TTK is using the 8MM Kurz 50 Round Drums magazine, and combining it with Hollow Point ammo. The Thompson doesn’t have the Vital Proficiency, so the extra limb damage from Hollow Point rounds is the next best thing.

Here are the best attachments for Vanguard’s M1928, boosting its damage and recoil control:

  • Muzzle: M1929 Silencer
  • Barrel: Chariot 5.5″
  • Optic: Slate Reflector
  • Stock: Ragdoll T2 Support
  • Underbarrel: Carver Foregrip
  • Magazine: 8MM Kurz 50 Round Drums
  • Ammo Type: Hollow Point
  • Rear Grip: Stippled Grip
  • Proficiency: Frenzy
  • Kit: Quick

3. Best Type 100 loadout

The Type 100 comes in second place, but only just. If you’re looking for a weapon with an incredibly fast TTK, we wholeheartedly recommend the Type 100.

As soon as you pair the Vital Proficiency with the .30 Round Short 30 Round Mags, you’ll be killing enemies in only two shots. Mix this high damage with a fast fire rate, and enemies will die before they know what’s hit them. Although a rapid killer, it just isn’t quite as versatile as the number one spot.

Here’s the best Vanguard Type 100 loadout, boasting that rapid TTK:

  • Muzzle: M1929 Silencer
  • Barrel: Sakura 282MM Wrap
  • Optic: Slate Reflector
  • Stock: Warubachi Skeletal
  • Underbarrel: M1930 Strife Angled
  • Magazine: .30 Russian Short 30 Round Mags
  • Ammo Type: Subsonic
  • Rear Grip: Fabric Grip
  • Proficiency: Vital
  • Kit: Fully Loaded

2. Best Welgun loadout

The Vanguard mi-Season 1 update introduced players to a new SMG called the Welgun. As is the case with most new weapons, the SMG is an incredibly viable choice and just barely misses out on dethroning the MP40 as the top SMG in the game.

The Welgun’s high fire rate and rapid time-to-kill make it an obvious choice. But with the right attachments, it can also shred at greater distances improving its versatility.

Here are the best Welgun loadout attachments, that boost its potential damage range and TTK:

  • Muzzle: Recoil Booster
  • Barrel: 320MM SA Shrouded
  • Optic: Slate Reflector
  • Stock: Gawain Skeletal
  • Underbarrel: M1941 Hand Stop
  • Magazine: .45 58 Round Mags
  • Ammo Type: Lengthened
  • Rear Grip: Fabric Grip
  • Proficiency: Frenzy
  • Kit: On-Hand

1. Best MP-40 loadout – Best SMG in Vanguard

The MP-40 kills fast, has almost no recoil, and can contend with some of the best Assault Rifles at range. If you’re looking for an SMG to suit any situation, you simply can’t go wrong with the classic MP-40.

The only thing holding slightly holding the MP-40 back is that it doesn’t have the powerful Vital Proficiency, but its low recoil and fire rate makes it much more versatile than the Type 100, allowing it to be the best SMG in Vanguard.

Here are the best MP-40 loadout attachments, maximizing its accuracy and damage:

  • Muzzle: F8 Stabilizer
  • Barrel: Krausnick 317MM 04B
  • Optic: Slate Reflector
  • Stock: Krausnick 33MM Folding
  • Underbarrel: Carver Foregrip
  • Magazine: 9MM Para 24 Round Fast Mag
  • Ammo Type: Lengthened
  • Rear Grip: Stippled Grip
  • Proficiency: Brace
  • Kit: Quick

And those are the best SMG loadouts for Call of Duty: Vanguard Season 1! Metas change and another SMG may arrive in Season 2, so we’ll keep this list updated throughout the year.

You can also check out how all of these SMGs compare to the rest of Vanguard’s weapons.

Image Credit: Sledgehammer Games

Continue Reading

Call of Duty: Vanguard

Strange Vanguard glitch is teleporting players through walls

CoD: Vanguard players are encountering a new teleportation glitch that is causing them to clip through solid walls.

Published

on

A bizarre new teleportation glitch is plaguing Call of Duty: Vanguard, causing players to suddenly clip through solid walls.

Vanguard players are no strangers to glitches, as they’ve encountered quite a few since the game launched. These all have different effects on gameplay, such as letting you levitate above the map.

While Sledgehammer Games try to fix these problems, new ones tend to pop up in the game. Now, Vanguard players are reporting a bizarre glitch that is causing them to teleport through solid walls.

Reddit user ‘Wrap-Lazy’ showcased this glitch in a clip posted to the CoD: Vanguard subreddit. The player was on top of the balconies during a match on Dome when they suddenly clipped through the solid surface. to the floor below

This teleportation glitch left many commenters as stunned as the original player, leading some of them to speculate about what caused it.

Some users came stated that this was “lag-related” since the Redditor got a bad packet burst at the same time that they teleported. Connection issues can often cause these kinds of things to occur in the game.

Others were amused by the glitch and began joking about it. “This was actually added for realism. My grandfather was in WWII and he told me he would routinely clip through solid surfaces to confuse the enemy,” wrote one commenter.

“It’s a feature, you just don’t know how to use it properly,” another user jokingly stated. Instantly clipping through the wall can be disorienting for both you and your enemy. If this becomes a widespread issue then the developers will need to fix it.


For more Vanguard content, check out the classic CoD game modes that Vanguard players are begging the devs to add as well as this bizarre Stim bug that’s throwing players into the shadow realm.

Image credits: Sledgehammer Games

Continue Reading

Call of Duty: Vanguard

Vanguard’s Gold Mastery Camo has been “ruined” in Warzone

Warzone players claim Raven Software “ruined” Vanguard weapons’ Gold Mastery Camo by changing the design in a recent update.

Published

on

Warzone players were delighted with Vanguard weapons’ white and gold Mastery Camo design, but the devs changed the design in the mid-Season 1 update and players claim they “ruined” it.

Gold Camo has long been the way for Call of Duty players to prove they’ve mastered a weapon, and Warzone is no different. Players were racing to get as many Vanguard weapons Gold and Diamond as possible ahead of the Warzone integration, and many were delighted with the battle royale’s unique take on the Gold Camo.

Rather than Vanguard’s black and gold design, Warzone featured gold with a swirling white overlay. However, the mid-Season 1 update changed it to Vanguard’s Gold, and players claim it “ruined” the camo.

It’s likely that Vanguard weapons’ white and gold design was an unintended texture bug that was fixed with Warzone’s mid-Season 1 update, yet it has split the community.

Popular Warzone YouTuber JGOD shared a side-by-side view of the new and old camo, saying “they really ruined the way the Vanguard Gold Camo looks in Warzone.”

YouTuber KRNG Hero revealed when the change happened: “they changed it since the mid season update and I’m like, why?”

The post was met with a ton of disappointed replies, with CoD content creator LoochyTV asking: “Why are they even changing this stuff? I just don’t understand why any manpower is being put towards working on THIS instead of the bugs.”

“Why do they change things that don’t need to be touched,” echoed LensEffect. “Like all these problems and they’re worried about the gold camo appearance.”

Not everyone preferred the old design though, with one player saying they prefer the new design because “it looks more like gold in Vanguard.” Another said that “the black and gold looks so much better, that white just looked cheap.”

Raven Software have plenty of major issues listed in their Trello board such as Xbox players being unable to play and the dreaded Buy Station freeze glitch, so it’s unlikely they’ll change the camo back any time soon. But, you can never truly know what Raven have in store.

Also, be sure to check out the bizarre Stim bug that’s throwing players into the shadow realm.

Image Credit: Activision

Continue Reading