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Opinion: Call of Duty: Warzone desperately needs anti-cheat for its competitive future

Warzone’s successful competitive future is all in Activision’s hands.

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Call of Duty: Warzone is in desperate need of a proper, clarified anti-cheat system to prevent the influx of hackers as Activision looks to develop the game’s competitive future.

Call of Duty: Warzone launched to much fan fare in March 2020. It was the first free to play Call of Duty experience ever for consoles & PC. And that opened up the amount of players that could enter the Call of Duty world. There was no $60 barrier anymore to experience Call of Duty.

But with that, an influx of cheaters and hackers on the PC platform stormed into Call of Duty: Warzone. Since the game’s launch, there has been an extensive amount of hackers in Call of Duty: Warzone on the PC platform. And with cross play, those hackers infest the PlayStation and Xbox lobbies, too.

The biggest issue has been: Activision’s lack of a concrete plan to address the hacking situation. The company has issued a few statements in 2020 on how they combat hacking in Call of Duty: Warzone, but none of them have left fans with hope of a sustainable future for the title on PC.

It makes sense, in other ways, that Call of Duty is being infested with cheaters at a higher pace compared to other free to play Battle Royale games. Call of Duty is one of the biggest entertainment franchise available, and Warzone was the first chance that allowed everyone to play Call of Duty. There’s always been cheaters and hackers in Call of Duty MP. But that was on a more controllable scale with the game being $60 to play. With Warzone, the entry barrier is gone, and now hackers who could never hack in Call of Duty before, can do so now. And with Activision’s lack of aggressive action within the game itself, it welcomes more to the field.

But aggressive action from Activision is needed to counter cheaters and it’s needed ASAP.

Activision’s responses to cheaters in 2020

The first big stance Activision took on cheaters was a few weeks after launch, where the company announced that over 50,000 hackers and been banned and said “cheaters not welcome” in the Warzone world. Activision said they take cheating “very seriously” and would work hard to maintain “a level and fair playing field for everyone” as one of their “highest priorities.”

That did not change much. Hackers continued to flourish in the Warzone world on PC. And at the same time, Activision started to build up their vision for a competitive Warzone future. They started it with Live From Warzone series, which highlighted fan run tournaments and events for Warzone.

On April 24, 2020, the next big step from Infinity Ward: hackers would be match-made in the same lobbies only forward. They also said the studio “increased resources” to help alleviate the cheater concerns.

And then, the worst statement of all time was released on July 24, 2020: Infinity Ward was kindly asking players to not use 3rd party software while playing Call of Duty: Warzone.

Please do not use unauthorized 3rd party software to mod or hack,” said an image statement from the studio, as shown below. They said listed out what items they believe to be considered hacking/cheating, and failed to lay out an progress on what they’re doing themselves to combat it.

Lastly, the final update we’ve received on the hacking issue with Warzone was in Sept. 2020. Infinity Ward said they had banned 200,000 accounts since the game’s launch.

But 200,000 it not even close to enough. There’s, according to Activision, over 90 million players who have played Call of Duty: Warzone. Only 200,000 accounts banned (that’s the last official number of banned accounts Activision has informed the public about).

Focused on the Wrong Thing

Now, we’ll give credit to Activision in some areas. The company has taken a legal path of action against many cheater makers that were designing cheats for Call of Duty: Warzone.

The company issued cease and desist orders to two cheat manufactures. The first one was CXCheats, which received a cease and desist in August 2020. Once they were threatened by Activision, the site removed all cheats related to Call of Duty: Warzone. And then in September, Activision filed another lawsuit against GatorCheats and even sent a representative to the owner’s house. GatorCheats removed all Warzone cheats from their site.

But the problem with the cease and desist orders is that there’s an infinite number of companies out there that can create and manufacture cheats for games. Just because you take down two through legal action, does not mean more will spawn up. Activision probably thinks that threatening a few will make many more stop, but that has not been the case. There’s also a wide variety of online forums where players share cheats they’ve created, and those never hit or show on an ‘official’ cheat manufacturer’s website.

The only real action Activision took on the public side, which was a major step for them, was being able to detect EngineOwning cheats in Warzone. EngineOwning updated their website in Sept. 2020 to state Warzone cheats were ‘now detected’ by Activision, and over 20,000 accounts got banned.

That’s what we need more of: focus on fixing the game itself, not trying to stop cheats from being made on the manufacture’s side. A comprehensive anti-cheat system is the best way for Activision to ensure that cheats cannot continue in Warzone.

There will always be hackers & cheaters in every game, but having an extensive anti-cheat software will be able to reduce the overall number of hackers and help promote and more enjoyable game environment.

For example, Riot Game’s VALORANT FPS title has an entire anti-cheat developed for it called Vanguard. Riot makes players install Vanguard anti-cheat in order to play VALORANT on their PC. While some players have been able to get by the software, this has stopped the game from being infested by hackers, even if it’s a free to play title.

Competitive Integrity

The situation with anti-cheat and hackers kicked into high gear on the competitive integrity side over the last several months. Many high profile content creators having been playing in Warzone competitions, some of which have prize pools thanks to Activision. And there’s always suspects of hacking occurring during these events, and Activision has yet to address that problem.

The most recent example was the $250,000 Twitch Rivals tournament for Warzone. This tournament was hosted in a private lobby, meaning all players were known and required to join into a specific server code. During the 5th match of the event, the game was stopped. There was suspects of hackers in the match.

Twitch had to remove teams from the match & ban them, and then had to continue the tournament.

This is the problem we face in Warzone: it’s a massively successful game for Activision, and truly has a bright future as a big force in the gaming industry. But why can’t Activision and Blizzard take the time to implement a proper, anti-cheat system to ensure competitive integrity. More importantly, why won’t they do it to just improve the overall quality of the game?

Fortnite has many tournaments and events, with over $20 million in prizing planned for 2021. They’ve solved a lot of the cheaters problem on their end with an anti-cheat system. Apex Legends’ has a ranked play mode that has an anti-cheat system in place to avoid these issues Warzone faces.

Popular content creators have been vocal about the lack of anti-cheat in Warzone for months.

NICKMERCS commented saying he won’t be playing in any Warzone tournaments until there’s an authentic anti-cheat system implemented to avoid controversial wins.

And recently, Dr. Disrespect also commented on the drama calling out Activision for lack of proper action to prevent the situation from happening.

Warzone most certainly continues to be a very popular free to play battle royale option for many fans out there.

Warzone’s Future

And Activision seems to be invested in its future too. Johanna Faries, VP & Head of Leagues at Activision Blizzard Esports, recently revealed the company has plans for Warzone to become part of the Call of Duty League.

“There are [plans to bring Warzone to Call of Duty League], and we’re excited to announce those plans in the coming weeks and months. We’ve been closely monitoring the introduction and the wild popularity of Warzone since last spring. We did bring in Warzone-related content with our pros last season, but we’ve taken the off-season to think bigger about what a more structured investment could look like. There are really exciting things to come as early as this season.”

That’s great to hear. But if they want a CDL based around Warzone or integration of the title into an esports program to be successful, Call of Duty: Warzone desperately needs an anti-cheat system setup to ensure there’s competitive integrity and no disputes over the legitimacy of wins.

We hope Activision has plans — sooner, rather than later — to deliver on this.

Call of Duty League

How to earn CDL 2022 Champs viewership rewards for Vanguard & Warzone

Here’s how you earn Vanguard and Warzone Weapon Blueprints and a MW2 beta code by watching the CDL 2022 Championship weekend.

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CDL Championship weekend 2022

Vanguard and Warzone players can unlock unique cosmetics just by watching the Call of Duty League 2022 Championship weekend, so here’s how to connect your account and unlock Weapon Camos, Calling Cards, XP, and more.

As is traditional, the Call of Duty League 2022 season provides Call of Duty Warzone and Vanguard players with the opportunity to earn some unique in-game rewards simply by watching the matches.

Following the New York Subliners’ incredible run at Major 4, the final eight teams are locked in for the Championship weekend. Let’s go over how you can earn Champs rewards such as a Modern Warfare 2 beta code, Automaton Weapon Blueprint, Operator, Calling Cards, Emblems, and XP Tokens for watching CDL Champs 2022 matches.

How to earn CDL Champs 2022 viewership rewards

Call of Duty League 2022 season

If you want to earn CDL 2022 viewership rewards in Vanguard and Warzone then all you need to do is connect your Activision account to YouTube and watch the CDL 2022 Champs weekend.

The Call of Duty League can either be watched on YouTube or the CDL website, so here’s how to link your Activision account on PC and mobile:

  1. Open YouTube.com or the YouTube app
  2. Select your profile photo on the top right and hit Settings
  3. Click on Connected Apps
  4. Locate Activision and hit Connect
  5. Sign in to your Activision account

Then, simply watch the Call of Duty League Champs weekend through either YouTube or the CDL website, and you can earn all of the free rewards on offer.

CDL Champs 2022 viewership rewards for Warzone & Vanguard

CDL 2022 Season viewership rewards

Vanguard double xp tokens

Players can earn a ton of Double XP and Double Weapon XP by watching live matches throughout the CDL 2022 season.

There will be sixteen 30 Minute Double XP tokens up for grabs, with a new level reached for every hour of watch time. Players will earn a regular XP and Double Weapon XP alternating for each hour watched.

  • 1 Hour: 30 Minute Double XP Token
  • 2 Hours: 30 Minute Double Weapon XP Token
  • 3 Hours: 30 Minute Double XP Token
  • 4 Hours: 30 Minute Double Weapon XP Token
  • 5 Hours: 30 Minute Double XP Token
  • 6 Hours: 30 Minute Double Weapon XP Token
  • 7 Hours: 30 Minute Double XP Token
  • 8 Hours: 30 Minute Double Weapon XP Token
  • 9 Hours: 30 Minute Double XP Token
  • 10 Hours: 30 Minute Double Weapon XP Token
  • 11 Hours: 30 Minute Double XP Token
  • 12 Hours: 30 Minute Double Weapon XP Token
  • 13 Hours: 30 Minute Double XP Token
  • 14 Hours: 30 Minute Double Weapon XP Token
  • 15 Hours: 30 Minute Double XP Token
  • 16 Hours: 30 Minute Double Weapon XP Token

With four hours of Double XP to be gained, you’ll find leveling up your weapons much easier across Vanguard and Warzone.

CDL 2022 championship sunday viewership rewards

CDL Champs 2022 rewards

Vanguard and Warzone players can also earn rewards such as Calling Cards, Emblems, and exclusive Blueprints for watching at least half an hour of August 4’s CDL Championship weekend hosted in LA’s Galen Center.

Perhaps even more exciting is the chance to earn a code for early access to Modern Warfare 2’s beta. There are 50,000 up for grabs in random drops, so make sure to keep an eye on the CDL website to see if you’ve been given one.

Here are the CDL 2022 Champs rewards and their watch time requirements:

  • Thursday, August 4
    • Camper Calling Card (30 Minutes)
    • S&D Star Emblem (1 Hour)
    • 1 Hour Double XP Token (1 Hour 30 Minutes)
    • Wall Banged Calling Card (2 Hours)
    • 1 Hour Double Weapon XP Token (2 Hours 30 Minutes)
  • Friday, August 5
    • First Blooded Calling Card (30 Minutes)
    • Round 11 Emblem (1 Hour)
    • 1 Hour Double XP Token (1 Hour 30 Minutes)
    • Spawn Trapped Calling Card (2 Hours)
    • 1 Hour Double Weapon XP Token (2 Hours 30 Minutes)
  • Saturday, August 6
    • Donut Weapon Charm (30 Minutes)
    • Sprinkles Volk Weapon Blueprint (1 Hour)
    • 1 Hour Double XP Token (1 Hour 30 Minutes)
    • COD Timing Watch (2 Hours)
    • EGO CHALL Calling Card (2 Hour 30 Minutes)
    • 1 Hour Double Weapon XP Token (3 Hours)
  • Sunday, August 7 – Championship Sunday
    • The Chip Emblem (15 Minutes)
    • Champs Automaton Weapon Blueprint (45 Minutes)
    • 1 Hour Double XP Token (1 Hour)
    • Down to the Wire Operator (1 Hour 30 Minutes)
    • 1 Hour Double Weapon XP Token (2 Hours)
    • Chance to earn Modern Warfare 2 beta code

For more, you can check out the leak claiming Modern Warfare 2’s Ranked Play arrives “shortly after” launch.

Image Credit: Activision

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Call of Duty League

How to register for Warzone $100k CDL Resurgence Rebirth Island open tournament

Here’s how to register for Warzone’s upcoming CDL Resurgence Rebirth Island tournament and compete against pro players for $100k.

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Call of Duty League Resurgence Rebirth Island tournament

Warzone players have the chance to compete against Call of Duty League pro players by qualifying for the CDL Resurgence tournament, where $100k is on the line. Here’s how to register for the tournament taking place on Rebirth Island.

Just after the completely overhauled Rebirth Island Reinforced arrived in Warzone with the Season 2 Reloaded update, the Call of Duty League announced that players can compete against CoD pros in an open tournament.

The Call of Duty League Resurgence: Rebirth Island tournament gives eight teams of North American players the chance to make it to the finals, where they’ll be playing against 12 teams of Call of Duty pros with $100k on the line.

Here’s how to register for the CDL Resurgence open tournament, and compete against pro players for your share of $100k.

How to play in CDL Resurgence $100k Warzone tournament

The CDL Resurgence Warzone tournament is open to any player, as long as they’re over 18 years old, live in North America, and are free to stream their gameplay on YouTube, regardless of platform or input device.

Registration is done through GameBattles, so here’s everything you have to do:

  1. Log in to GameBattles, or create an account if you don’t have one.
  2. Register your squad on GameBattles by April 7, 2022, at 3PM PST.
  3. Play in the “Call of Duty League Resurgence” playlist on April 5-6.
  4. Be within the Top 40 teams to be invited to the qualifier stage
CDL Resurgence Warzone tournament schedule

CDL Resurgence $100k Warzone tournament schedule & format

Warzone players will need to drop into the Call of Duty League Resurgence playlist, where each player in the squad’s 10 best games will be scored. Then the top 40 teams will progress to two Qualification Stages, where the final eight teams will compete against the 12 Call of Duty League organizations.

You can check out each stage and their dates below:

  • In-Game Open Stage (April 5-6)
  • Qualifier Stage Round 1 (April 11-14)
  • Qualifier Stage Round 2 (April 15)
  • Main Stage (April 24)

The CDL Resurgence Warzone tournament will be based on players’ eliminations, with a multiplier in place for placements.

Here’s how the CDL Resurgence tournament will be scored:

  • 1 Elimination = 1 Point
  • Placement Multiplier
    • 1st = 2x Points
    • 2nd and 3rd = 1.5x Points
    • 4th – 10th = 1x Points

CDL Resurgence $100k Warzone tournament prizing

Out of the twenty teams that make it to the Main Stage, only the top 10 teams will be in the money  — including the Call of Duty League franchise teams.

Here’s a breakdown of how the CDL Resurgence’s $100k prize pool will be divvied up.

Placement$ Per Team $ Per Player
130,0007,500
220,0005,000
315,0003,750
410,0002,500
55,0001,250
64,0001,000
74,0001,000
84,0001,000
94,0001,000
104,0001,000

Although there isn’t $100k on the line, players can play like the pros in Vanguard’s Ranked Play and earn free rewards such as Blueprints and Operator skins.

Image Credit: Activision

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Call of Duty League

Scump reveals best Vanguard Ranked Play MP40 loadout

Here are Call of Duty pro OpTic Scump’s MP40 loadout, attachments, and Perks you can use to dominate Vanguard’s Ranked Play mode.

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Scump ranked play MP40

Call of Duty: Vanguard’s Ranked Play is here, allowing players to play like the pros, grind through the ranks, and earn unique rewards. You’ll need to best weapons to secure victory, so here’s OpTic Scump’s MP40 SMG loadout for Ranked Play.

Seth ‘Scump’ Abner is one of the most accomplished Call of Duty players of all time, being a member of the OpTic Dynasty and the fifth-highest earning player. After helping OpTic Texas secure a winners bracket slot in the CDL Major 1, Scump dominated Vanguard’s new Ranked Play mode.

As a sub player, Scump runs the MP40 in both the CDL and Ranked Play. If you’re looking to win more matches and raise your ELO, here’s Scump’s MP40 loadout including the Perks and Equipment he uses.

Scump’s Vanguard Ranked Play MP40 loadout

Scump's vanguard ranked play mp40 loadout
  • Muzzle: No. 3 Rifle Break
  • Barrel: Krausnick 317MM 04B
  • Optic:
  • Stock: Krausnick 33M Folding
  • Underbarrel: SMLE Pistol Grip
  • Magazine:
  • Ammo Type: Lengthened
  • Rear Grip: Stippled Grip
  • Proficiency: Brace
  • Kit: Quick

Revealed in a February 21 stream, Scump’s MP40 is designed to help him quickly rotate around the map and break into hills. This is also his CDL loadout, so you’ll notice he’s opted for the No. 3 Rifle Break rather than the GA’d F8 Stabilizer which also boosts range.

He has also gone against the grain by not using the Krausnick ISO 1M iron sight, which many pros prefer, and using the default optic. The rest of the attachments are typical for a pro player MP40 build, improving accuracy and mobility.

Scump Vanguard Ranked Play Perks & Equipment

Scump's Ranked play perks and equipment
  • Perk 1: Survival Training / Ninja
  • Perk 2: Radar
  • Perk 3: Double Time
  • Lethal Equipment: Frag Grenade
  • Tactical Equipment: No 69 Stun Grenade
  • Field Upgrade: Dead Silence
  • Secondary weapon: Ratt

Scump usually runs Survival Training in respawn modes so that Stun Grenades have much less of an effect, but will sometimes switch to Ninja in Search and Destroy to be much more stealthy on the map.

Radar and Double Time are standard Perks for competitive CoD, allowing Scump to see enemies firing on the minimap and move around much quicker. He also uses Frag Grenades and No 69 Stun Grenades due to the others being banned.

And finally, he uses the Ratt pistol as his secondary to get around the map quicker and give him another weapon to use when the MP40 is empty.


If you want a more varied selection of the best weapons, Perks, and Equipment across all roles, you can check out the best Vanguard Ranked Play loadouts.

And for more on Vanguard’s Ranked Mode, you can check out how to fix the frustrating Dev Error 6144 and how the Skill Rating and Ladder systems work.

Image Credit: Activision / Scump

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