For the last several weeks, leading up to Infinite Warfare’s launch, there was always something I kept thinking: will Infinity Ward learn from their mistakes they made during Call of Duty: Ghosts and will this year reflect that? A week after launch, it seems the answer is no.
Modern Warfare Remastered, while it is an old game, still has that same traits that made it fun to watch and fun to play. The pro players seem to be enjoying it too, and the game itself is not over-run with bugs. And one of the most important things: boots on the ground.
One of the biggest reasons that hurts IW is Infinite Warfare is not fun to watch as a spectator. Advanced movement, crazy abilities with rig system, and the strategy of Call of Duty is out the window in this. This game just does not have that appeal to turn to it and watch. It’s clear that many players also feel this way, but the fact that its not even fun to watch hurts the competitive scene more. Yes, players will have to play the game Activision ends up putting forward, but without viewers, there’s nothing really to it.
And there’s a lot wrong with the game itself: Hardpoint spawns are a mess; map exploits; overdrive lets players run outside of the map in certain maps to score an uplink, and more importantly the maps are not that good. It’s the same issue with Ghosts; majority of the maps in IW are not designed for, well, competitive experience. And some of the maps do not even play that well with the movement system.
One of the biggest things that really made Ghosts a bad esports title was the overall lack of support in-game. There was just a Clan v Clan playlist and the overall broadcaster mode had way too many issues. I get the idea behind Clan v Clan. It was something that a part of the community wanted, where players had to play in their own Call of Duty clan in 4v4 style. After some feedback, they changed it around to try and make it an esports playlist to match Black Ops 2’s league, but that still failed.
Now, you would think Infinity Ward would have learned from Clan v Clan and try and implement a good esports league based playlist, like Arena or League Play, in Infinite Warfare. But instead Infinite Warfare has this “Competition” tab. Did it really take them 3 years to come up with that?! The playlist locks items based upon rank, does not even have its own ranking system where players can experience being put into matches based upon skill, and more importantly, it has no rewards. There’s no point in playing it. What’s truly shocking here is that Sledgehammer Games, on their very first solo Call of Duty title with Advanced Warfare, were able to implement a fully-fledged Ranked Play playlist that was well thought out and worked. Yes, Ranked Play had its faults, but still it was a league system. And so, how can Infinity Ward not do the same?
Modern Warfare Remastered does not have a league system in-game, as the original game did not have it, but it does not seem far-fetched for Raven to implement. Raven Software seems to be listening to fans, and interacting more so than Infinity Ward, and its not out of the question a esports playlist could come down the line.
Modern Warfare Remastered also needs a CODCaster mode. The game, otherwise, is how players want it: fun, boots on the ground, and not half broken like Infinite Warfare. It’s also where many viewers are.
But the issue that arises from Modern Warfare Remastered is that Search and Destroy is probably the one of the only game modes that many will enjoy watching. Many players who were around during COD4 will probably like to watch the other modes, but to newer viewers, it might be difficult. It’s hard to tell those newer viewers that Sabotage and Domination are esports mode, when recent games have not had it. But, Raven could introduce Hardpoint into Modern Warfare Remastered, and that would work. Hardpoint does not need any advanced movement system, as it was introduced in Black Ops 2. And CTF could make a return.
Another big reason why Raven Software is more successful right now than Infinity Ward is communication: Raven’s Amos Hodge has been very interactive on Twitter and has actually been responding to what they are working on. Communication is key in any community, and Raven seems to understand that. And especially for esports, players need to know what’s coming up, what might change, and how the game will be effected.
Infinity Ward, on the other hand, is not being communicative about many issues. They have yet to acknowledge a lot of the flaws with Infinite Warfare or provide an accurate time table for a fix. There’s two events happening next month, and we still do not know if Hardpoint spawns will be fixed; if some map exploits will be removed, etc. This game has more bugs at launch than any recent Call of Duty games before.
For Call of Duty esports to grow, both the players and viewers have to be able to enjoy the game they are playing. Currently, it seems players and viewers are not that excited or looking forward to the Infinite Warfare esports season, and that is a problem. While we get that players will end up playing whatever game Activision says, there needs to be a good number of viewers to keep the growth and have a scene. Without it, it’s nothing.
Activision needs to make Modern Warfare Remastered the competitive title for 2016-2017. If not, I think this year will be failure.
— Nadeshot (@Nadeshot) November 13, 2016
competitive wise the boots on the ground games were good tho hard to rank the last 4
— Chris ? (@Parasite) November 13, 2016
11:11 I wished for MWR competitive this year.
— Seth Abner (@OpTic_Scumper) November 13, 2016
Gears of War, Halo, and more are taking over in their own respective rights, but Call of Duty seems to be stuck in place.
Maybe it’s time for Activision to listen to fan demand to help grow this scene.
Why Warzone’s QBZ-83 is Season 4’s most underrated weapon
The QBZ-83 is Warzone’s most underrated weapon, so we’ve broken down why you should consider running it in Season 4.
The QBZ-83 is one of the best weapons in Warzone Season 4, but hardly anyone uses it. We’ve got the stats and the best loadout to prove why you should give this weapon a try.
Thanks to significant balance tweaks in Warzone Season 4 and its Reloaded update, weapon balance is in a great spot. Warzone now features plenty of viable Assault Rifles, SMGs, and Sniper Rifles from both Modern Warfare and Black Ops Cold War.
However, there’s one weapon that received a significant buff in Season 4 Reloaded and is now one of the best in its class: the QBZ-83. It was unfortunately so bad before Season 4 that it wasn’t even on players’ radar, but here’s why you should give it another chance.
By looking at the stats on WZ Ranked on July 23, we can see that the QBZ-83 has a 0.6% pick ratio in Warzone Season 4, which puts it as the 32nd most used weapon. This puts it behind guns such as the Kilo 141 and AX-50, which are perhaps some of the least effective weapons in their classes.
The likely reason why nobody picks the QBZ-83 is that it was next to useless before Season 4 Reloaded. However, it received some major buffs which appear to have gone under the radar for the majority of players. Not only did it get a buff, but a ton of other weapons got nerfed, which only improved the QBZ further.
YouTuber JGOD, who’s renowned for breaking down every weapon and its stats in incredible detail, recently discussed the QBZ-83. He compared it to the Krig 6, which is probably its closest rival for a low-recoil Assault Rifle.
He revealed that with the Task Force barrel on the QBZ, the recoil goes up in a straight line. So, controlling it couldn’t be easier – just pull down slightly on your analog stick or mouse. And as a plus, it even has a faster ADS speed than the Krig.
For accurate players, the QBZ’s time to kill is where it really shines. When hitting the head and chest, it actually kills faster than the Krig 6. So if you can line up those accurate shots and control the recoil, you’ll find the QBZ especially effective.
However, the damage drops off significantly at extremely long range and when hitting the stomach and limbs. JGOD suggests using it alongside a Sniper Rifle to take advantage of its damage sweet spot.
Now, the QBZ isn’t the be-all and end-all in Warzone Season 4. You still need to hit your shots, and weapons such as the C58 can outgun it. But, its solid time to kill and low recoil makes it an extremely solid choice, and incredibly underrated.
It’s a shame that the QBZ-83 was so bad before because that’s probably what put players off using it even after it got buffed. Now after the Reloaded update, it deserves to be up there with Season 4’s most popular guns.
If you’re looking to try something different from the FARA 83, Krig, or C58, you should try the QBZ and feel the difference the Reloaded update made.
Best Warzone QBZ-83 loadout
- Muzzle: Agency Suppressor
- Barrel: 15.5″ Task Force
- Optic: Axial Arms 3x
- Grip: Field Agent Grip
- Magazine: STANAG 60 Rnd Drum
If you’re looking to give the QBZ-83 a try, these are the attachments you should be running. As JGOD explained, the 15.5″ Task Force barrel eliminates any horizontal recoil, while also boosting its effectiveness over range.
To keep you off the minimap and further improve range and recoil control, there’s no better option than the Agency Suppressor. Then, to make sure you’re hitting the head and upper chest shots at range, the Axial Arms 3x is a solid choice.
Then, we go with the Field Agent Grip and 60 Rnd Mags, which are necessary for almost any Cold War Assault Rifle build.
And that’s it! More players need to try out the QBZ-83 in Warzone Season 4, as it’s one of the best, but most underrated, ARs in the game.
Image Credit: JGOD / Activision
5 things we want to see in Call of Duty: Warzone Season 4
Verdansk ’84 has seen a big change for Warzone in Season 3. But despite new weapons and POIs, here are 5 things we’d like to see in Season 4.
Warzone Season 4 is almost here, so we’re counting down the top five things we’d most like to see in the next major update for Call of Duty’s battle royale.
Warzone Season 3 is one of the most successful in the game’s short history. Whereas Season 2 rested on its laurels and became associated with its burst and FFAR meta, Season 3 majorly shook things up.
After the Nuke Event, Warzone took Verdansk back to 1984, added lots of new POIs for players to rotate around, and transformed the game’s meta into arguably the most stable and balanced. All the best Assault Rifle loadouts feature a multitude of weapons from the AMAX to the Kilo 141 to the AS Val to the Cold War AK-47.
But to continue Warzone’s success, here are the top 5 things we want to see in Warzone Season 4 and beyond.
5. Make rocks easier to traverse
Despite being in 1984 and the rocks being slightly younger, better maintained, and haven’t fallen apart yet, they are still troublesome.
Getting caught next to rocks with the zone on your heels or enemies above you can leave you with little option other than running around until you can find an area you can actually climb.
We don’t necessarily want every single rock to be climbable, but in a big cliffside area, we feel there should be one or two footholds to climb. To compensate for this, a climbing animation could be put in place to penalize players ascending, in the same way, that rappeling leaves players vulnerable for a few seconds.
4. More Killstreak options
Warzone’s offering of Killstreaks is so awkward. Again, you either go all-in, or you need to leave Killstreaks out altogether. The current offerings are mainly Precision and Cluster Strikes, neither of which are particularly effective and are practically signposted anyway.
UAVs are useful and not too overpowered as they can easily be counteracted, and drones aren’t used by anyone. There’s no excitement in finding one, which begs the question as to why they’re in the game in the first place.
At the very least, Raven Software should experiment with Sentry Turrets and perhaps Care Packages to give the player a random goodie e.g a loadout, UAV, etc. It’s an area of Warzone that could do with a shake-up.
3. Reduce Dead Silence and Stopping Power
Stopping Power and Dead Silence abuse needs to stop, most importantly the latter. When it’s possible to find between five and ten different Dead Silence pickups per match, it’s time to put your foot down.
Once someone triggers Dead Silence, then it’s just over for anyone that gets in that person’s way as they literally make no sound. It’s completely unfair. The attacking player gains a ridiculous advantage, and they can do this multiple times per match if they search enough.
Stopping Power isn’t as bad, but when you get into a 1v1 with someone and you’re landing consistent headshots and still get downed because your opponent’s bullets were artificially stronger, then it’s frustrating.
2. More events like the 80s Action Hero Event
The 80s Action Hero Event was a breath of fresh air for many reasons. The addition of Rambo and John McClane as Operators for Cold War and Warzone was fabulous and a really solid scoop for Activision.
But not only did players get special skins to acquire and equip, but Warzone as a whole got an incredible new POI in the process – the legendary Nakatomi Plaza from Die Hard.
It was incredibly exciting and many players would drop there regularly to try and be the first to acquire the building’s sacred treasure tucked away in the Vault. It added a whole other dimension to the game, and even after the Vault was closed, the location still remains popular.
Extra locations and POIs don’t need to all be included at once, drip-feeding them through limited events is another way to keep players invested.
1. Maintain Warzone’s meta and keep on top of it
Season 1 of Warzone eventually succumbed to the Black Ops Cold War DMR after the integration. Every man and his dog was using the DMR, leading to the term “DMRzone” being thrown around.
Then, Season 2 nerfed the DMR, but this led to players moving onto pastures new, and discovering burst weapons and the FFAR in the process. As a result, most loadouts contained either an AUG, M16, or FFAR. Once again, after many complaints, Raven nerfed all burst weapons and the FFAR.
Apart from a bit of the light being cast on the AMAX Assault Rifle, Season 3 of Warzone has been a joy for most players as there isn’t really one or two guns that tower above the rest. It’s meant a greater variety of loadouts, weapon choices, and long may it continue as Warzone enters Season 4.
With these five changes, Warzone Season 4 could be the game’s best season yet, plus we know some ways to make any future live event the best too!
Image Credit: Activision / Raven Software
How to make Call of Duty: Warzone’s next live event the best yet
Call of Duty: Warzone Season 2’s Nuke Event was spectacular, but we’ve come up with a few ways to make the next one the best ever.
Warzone is certain to have another live event at some point in the future, and whilst the Verdansk Nuke Event was pretty cool, we think there are ways to make CoD: Warzone’s next one the biggest and best one yet.
Warzone’s first go at an interactive live event was a pretty good first attempt. Knowing that Verdansk’s Zombie invasion was to be the beginning of the end, Activision did a great job in planting the seeds throughout Season 2.
In meant that the hype and excitement were at a fever pitch come the Season’s end, and there was a real sense of wonderment about what people would see. The two-day event had plenty of cool moments for players to enjoy, but its slightly disjointed nature left a lot to be desired.
Here’s how we’d make the next Call of Duty: Warzone event much better.
#4 – Don’t do the next Warzone live event over two days
The content itself for the live event was fascinating and “The Destruction of Verdansk Part I” was absolutely ‘do not miss.’
Excitement filled your body seeing it as a playlist option. It was new, exciting, and entered uncharted territory for Warzone. The mode itself was a blast too: from the original Zombies music eerily playing over everything to its shocking conclusion of Juggernauts fighting off a sea of undead next to Dam.
It was followed by the iconic nuke cutscene, and the rest is history. If anything, that should’ve been the end of the live event, and then we could’ve been dropped into Verdansk ’84 not knowing what to expect.
- Read More: When is Call of Duty: Warzone Season 4?
Instead, having the Rebirth Island playlist options, and mini Verdansk ’84, soured the event’s special aura. It became a bit too self-indulgent, overstayed its welcome, and the additional modes didn’t offer anything extra. It felt like needless padding.
A unique, one-off event feels a lot more urgent, and offers fans a chance to be part of the crowd who can say, “I was there.” By drawing it over two days, the second day lessened the experience and merely delayed the process of Warzone Season 3 starting.
#3 – Make it a one-time playthrough
Following on from the previous point, one of the reasons Fortnite has built up a reputation for delivering stellar live events is because they make them an occasion to be present at all costs.
The feeling of the unknown is a special feeling in life as it makes you nervous but excited. So when Fortnite players waited to see what Galactus would do, it was a fun surprise to see him tower over Fortnite Island and try and destroy everyone.
Being there in person made players live for the moment as it would be the only time that anyone would be able to witness it in person, ever. Whereas Warzone’s various limited-time modes pretty much stuck around and could be replayed endlessly.
Again, this feels like it detracts from the feeling of a “one-off live event.” At most, players should be allowed a single play. This would allow for any potential server issues (which we’ll get onto) and still remind you to enjoy your only attempt, and soak everything in.
#2 – Let players witness the big moment in real-time
Would Galactus’ event have been half as cool if players had to watch it through a CGI cutscene? Absolutely not. Imagine how incredible and surreal it would’ve been to have had the Nuke detonate inside Stadium, with everyone inside, live.
Even the end of Season 1 could’ve been the start of something special by having players converge on the crashed ship. A one-off Solo event witnessing the ship opening, and hundreds of zombies swarming you and overcoming you.
It’s all about interactivity and forming a tangible connection, whereas having a cutscene, especially after having just gone through a tense game mode, causes a serious disconnect between players and the game they’ve become attached to.
Millions of Warzone players have the game ingrained in their system and practically have it coursing through their blood. Exposure to streamers or playing with other people for over a year brings you closer to the game, and any significant changes should be absorbed in person.
#1 – The servers
You all knew this point was coming, but it needs to be hammered home until the nail is visible no more – make sure the servers can cope with the outrageous demand.
So many players, our staff included, were not able to get stuck into most of these limited-time modes because of excessive queues. Activision’s servers were simply flooded with millions of gamers desperate to see the end of Verdansk as we know it.
But many people’s excitement and giddiness were swiftly dissolved and replaced with envy and jealousy as other lucky players got to see the action unfold straight away.
Obviously, trying to accommodate so many Warzone players is going to be a tough ask. But given how much money Activision has made and is worth, it doesn’t seem unreasonable to ask that they have enough server space for a live event.
These are just some of the main issues that, if addressed, we believe could ultimately shape Warzone’s future events, and could drastically improve them to be the best in the business.
Image Credit: Activision / Raven Software / Epic Games
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