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Call of Duty: Vanguard

Will CoD: Vanguard have skill-based matchmaking?

Skill-based matchmaking has been divisive ever since it was introduced in Modern Warfare, but will it return in Call of Duty: Vanguard?

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Vanguard player behind cover

Skill-based matchmaking has proved to be a controversial addition to the Call of Duty series in the last few years, and fans are curious as to whether or not it will be returning in CoD: Vanguard.

The release of Call of Duty: Vanguard is set to bring with it plenty of exciting new additions to the CoD cannon. From a stacked list of weapons to a brand new Pacific Warzone map, there’s a lot for fans to look forward to.

However, it’s an existing feature that also has the community talking. Will the divisive skill-based matchmaking be making a return in this year’s Call of Duty? Here’s what we know.

Vanguard player aiming down sights

What is skill-based matchmaking?

SBMM is a system used in many video games which aims to keep online matches fair and balanced by filling them with players who are operating at a similar level.

The feature looks at players’ past performances by analyzing stats like K/D ratio and matches them against others who are thought to be of the same skill level.

Players believe that Call of Duty uses this along with engagement-based matchmaking, where this rating is heavily based on the last match you played, which could explain why games sometimes feel easier straight after a bad performance.

The feature has been divisive since it was brought into the series with Modern Warfare in 2019. Casual players tend to welcome it as they can avoid stressful lobbies, while high-tier players have criticized it for making their games far more difficult.

Two Vanguard characters firing SMGs

Will Vanguard have SBMM?

Sledgehammer Games are yet to officially confirm whether or not SBMM will be returning in Vanguard, but all the signs do seem to suggest that it will be there.

Last month, known CoD leaker ‘TheMW2Ghost’ tweeted to say that the controversial system will be back in Vanguard, and it will function the same as it does in Black Ops Cold War.

We will update this article once devs formally share more details about matchmaking and how it will work.

This news will likely frustrate those who have criticized the system in the past. Many feel that while, in theory, it should lead to more balanced lobbies, in reality, it punishes players for a good match by putting them against players far more skilled than them.

It remains to be seen if the ongoing complaints will cause Sledgehammer to make any tweaks when Vanguard finally releases in November.

For more on Call of Duty: Vanguard, check out how Create a Class works, as well as the two classic World at War maps coming back for the game.

Image credits: Activision

Call of Duty: Vanguard

Best MP40 loadout for CoD: Vanguard Season 4

The MP40 has maintained its status as a standout SMG in Vanguard, so here are the best attachments and perks to create the best loadout.

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Arthur Kingsley using MP40 in CoD Vanguard

The MP40 is the ultimate short-range weapon in Vanguard and with the right attachments, perks, and equipment, you can create a truly powerful class. Check out everything you need to build the best MP40 class in Vanguard Season 4.

Vanguard Season 4 Reloaded didn’t bring much in terms of weapon buffs and nerfs, which means the MP40 is still the top short-range option in the game.

With great stopping power, a quick fire rate, and good maneuverability, the MP40 is great at getting in the face of your enemies.

Getting the right attachments will turn the MP40 from a solid weapon to the best SMG in the game, so here’s everything you need to create the best Vanguard MP40 loadout.

Best Vanguard MP40 Gunsmith loadout attachments

MP40 in Call of Duty Vanguard's gunsmith
  • Muzzle: Recoil Booster
  • Barrel: Krausnick 317MM 04B
  • Optic: Krausnick ISO1M or Slate Reflector (preference)
  • Stock: Krausnick 33M Folding
  • Underbarrel: Carver Foregrip
  • Magazine: 9MM 24 Round Fast Mags
  • Ammo Type: Lengthened
  • Rear Grip: Stippled Grip
  • Proficiency: Brace
  • Kit: Quick

First, you should add the Recoil Booster and Krausnick 317MM 04B barrel. Together, these will be a major help in recoil control, weapon handling, and also accuracy, while a massive boost to fire rate will make the MP40 as deadly as possible.

For Optics, it’s entirely down to your own personal preference. Some players prefer the classic MP40 iron sights, but others would rather the precision of the Slate Reflector optic. The Krausnick ISO1M is a solid choice as it increases ADS speed.

MP40 in Call of Duty Vanguard's campaign

Then, we’re going for the Carver Foregrip underbarrel as it will help players control the weapon seeing as it boasts considerable kick when firing. If you’re not worried about accuracy and wish to maximize speed, then the SMLE Pistol Grip is also a great choice.

For Ammunition, the 9MM 24 Round Fast Mags are a solid choice. Despite reducing magazine capacity the increase to reload speed is much needed as you’ll encounter waves of enemies. For Ammo Type, Lengthened increases bullet velocity, making far-off targets easier to hit and reducing the time to kill.

In order to make the MP40 fire as accurately as possible, we’ll opt for the Stippled Grip which increases recoil recovery and initial accuracy, making targets of all distances easy to hit.

The Brace Proficiency provides improved initial accuracy which will make your first few shots all the more impactful. Finally, the Quick Kit increases your sprint speed, which is perfect for an SMG loadout.

Best Vanguard MP40 Perks & Equipment

Perks in Call of Duty Vanguard
  • Perk 1: Ghost
  • Perk 2: Radar
  • Perk 3: Lightweight
  • Secondary: 1911
  • Lethal: MK2 Frag Grenade
  • Tactical: Stim
  • Field Upgrade: Dead Silence

Ghost returned in Vanguard but does not follow the Cold War model. It’s only active while you move, but it remains a powerful choice when Spy Planes are overhead.

Next, we’ve opted for the Radar Perk. Vanguard includes Modern Warfare’s minimap which doesn’t show enemy gunfire on the minimap. However, Radar gives you the classic minimap, revealing enemies when they fire an unsuppressed weapon.

And finally, Lightweight is a great choice for Perk 3. SMG loadouts are all about aggressive play and maximizing speed will let you get up close and personal with enemy players.

In terms of equipment, we suggest the Stim as your Tactical, as it will allow you to replenish your health and Tactical Sprint in an instant while you fly around the map. Field Upgrade is a little more tricky, but we think Dead Silence is a good shout, as it will allow you to make sneaky plays and keep the pressure on your opponents.

How to unlock the MP40 in Vanguard

Player using MP40 in Call of Duty Vanguard

The good news is that it doesn’t take long to get your hands on the MP40, as it unlocks straight away, ready to start customizing when you unlock Custom Loadouts at Level 4.

You can also use the MP40 straight away in Warzone Pacific, meaning you won’t need to level up before making a custom class with it.

Best alternatives to Vanguard MP40

If you’re looking to stick within the SMG class, we suggest trying the Welgun or Type 100. These are both viable, but still aren’t quite as good as the MP40, so keep that in mind.

If you’re looking for something with a little more range, grab the STG-44, which has proved itself to be the most versatile weapon in the game. The Automaton is the dominant assault rifle in the game right now too and is another excellent option.

If none of these are of interest to you, make sure to check out our full guide to Vanguard’s best guns, with every weapon ranked.

Image Credit: Activision / Sledgehammer Games

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Call of Duty: Vanguard

Best Automaton loadout for CoD: Vanguard Season 4 Reloaded

Here’s are the right attachments, Perks, and equipment that you can use to make the best Automaton loadout for Vanguard Season 4 Reloaded.

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automaton assault rifle in vanguard

The Automaton is widely regarded as the top gun in Vanguard. Make sure you’ve got the perfect attachments, perks, and equipment to build the best Vanguard Automaton loadout.

Vanguard‘s lifespan is rapidly coming to a close, but with Sledgehammer dropping the Season 4 Reloaded patch and Season 5 on the horizon, there are still plenty of reasons to jump into the game.

If you’re planning on jumping into some multiplayer, you’ll want to be using the best gun in the game, and it’s hard to look past the Automaton.

The current king of assault rifles, the Automaton has a good damage range, easy recoil control, and the stopping power to wipe out enemies.

If that sounds like your kind of gun, then we’ve got everything you need to create the best Vanguard Automaton loadout.

Best Vanguard Automaton loadout attachments

Vanguard Automaton loadout attachments
  • Muzzle: MX Silencer
  • Barrel: ZAC 600mm BFA
  • Optic: G16 2.5x
  • Stock: Anastasia Padded
  • Underbarrel: M1941 Hand Stop
  • Magazine: 6.5MM Sakura 75 Round Drums
  • Ammo Type: Lengthened
  • Rear Grip: Polymer Grip
  • Proficiency: Tight Grip
  • Kit: Fully Loaded

We’ll start off this Vanguard loadout by bringing the weapon’s recoil under control with the help of the MX Silencer muzzle, Polymer Grip rear grip, M1941 Hand Stop underbarrel, and Anastasia Padded stock.

You can take advantage of the improved precision by equipping the G16 2.5x optic to pick off enemies from a distance. The ZAC 600mm BFA barrel will provide a boost to the Automaton’s damage range, priming it for medium-range combat.

The 6.5MM Sakura 45 Round Mags will provide you with plenty of ammunition to take out multiple foes, and the Lengthened ammo type will greatly improve the weapon’s bullet velocity so that it can shred through enemies.

For the Proficiency, we’re opting for Tight Grip to bring the recoil further under control, and we picked Fully Loaded as our kit to ensure that we start off with the maximum reserve ammo.

Best Perks and equipment to use with Vanguard Automaton

CoD Vanguard Ghost Perk
  • Perk 1: Ghost
  • Perk 2: Radar
  • Perk 3: Lightweight
  • Lethal: Mk2 Frag Grenade
  • Tactical: Stim
  • Field Upgrade: Trophy System

Ghost is an excellent choice for Perk 1 as it keeps you hidden from enemy radars and Spy Planes while you’re on the move. For Perk 2, we recommend Radar so that you can use the classic minimap to find out where your enemy is.

And finally, for Perk 3 we went with Lightweight to boost your movement speed. The Mk2 Frag Grenade is perfect for clearing out rooms, using Stim for your tactical will grant you a health boost, and the new Trophy System Field Upgrade will protect you from enemy Lethal Equipment.

How to unlock the Automaton in Vanguard

automaton preview in cod vanguard

The Automaton is unlocked at Rank 8, so you’ll get your hands on it soon after unlocking Custom Loadouts.

To unlock and level up the Automaton as fast as possible, you can check out our guide on how to rank up fast in Vanguard.

Best alternatives to Vanguard’s Automaton

If the Automaton isn’t your cup of tea, we recommend using the STG44. It’s the first Assault Rifle you’ll unlock and is an incredibly powerful choice.

The MP-40 is still the go-to SMG in Vanguard, so if you fancy some close-quarters combat, we recommend grabbing it.

If neither of these guns tickle your fancy, make sure to check out our full guide to the best Vanguard guns, where we’ve ranked every single weapon in the game.

Image Credit: Sledgehammer Games

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Call of Duty: Vanguard

Best STG44 loadout for CoD: Vanguard Season 4 Reloaded

Here are the right attachments, Perks, and equipment that you can use to make the best STG44 loadout in Vanguard Season 4 Reloaded.

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cod vanguard stg44

Vanguard’s STG44 has been one of the most powerful and popular weapons since the game launched. Make sure you’re running the strongest class possible with our best Vanguard STG44 loadout, including attachments, perks, equipment, and more.

Vanguard may be coming towards the end of its life cycle, but plenty of players are still dropping into the game for a taste of World War II-style combat.

July’s Vanguard Season 4 Reloaded patch didn’t shift the meta much, meaning the weapons that dominated the early part of the season are still powerful today.

Since the game’s launch back in 2021, the STG44 has been a go-to choice for many Vanguard players. With good damage statistics and controllable recoil, the STG44 has proved to be a great all-rounder.

If you fancy using this strong Assault Rifle, make sure you’re running the top attachments possible with our guide to Vanguard’s best STG44 loadout.

Best Vanguard STG44 loadout attachments

STG44 in Vanguard
  • Muzzle: F8 Stabilizer
  • Barrel: VDD 760MM 05B
  • Optic: Slate Reflector
  • Stock: VDD 27 Precision
  • Underbarrel: M1941 Hand Stop
  • Magazine: 9MM 24 Rnd Fast Mags
  • Ammo Type: Lengthened
  • Rear Grip: Stippled Grip
  • Proficiency: Sleight of Hand
  • Kit: Fully Loaded

We’ll start off this Vanguard loadout with the F8 Stabilizer, VDD 760MM 05B barrel, and VDD 27 Precision to bring the STG44’s recoil under control while providing it with a major boost to its damage range.

The Slate Reflector offers a clean and unobtrusive view when aiming at enemies from a distance, while the M1941 Handstop underbarrel and Stippled Grip will provide greater recoil control.

vanguard operator holding stg44

The 9MM 24 Rnd Fast Mags will ensure that the STG44 has enough ammo to take out multiple enemies, and the Lengthened ammo type will increase the bullet velocity so that your rounds shred through targets.

We’ll cap off this Vanguard loadout by equipping Sleight of Hand to boost the reload speed while Fully Loaded will keep you from running out of ammo in battle.

Best Perks and Equipment to run with Vanguard STG44

vanguard forward intel perk
  • Perk 1: Ghost
  • Perk 2: Radar
  • Perk 3: Lightweight
  • Tactical: Stim
  • Field Upgrade: Armor

You should definitely have Ghost as Perk 1 in Vanguard. While this Perk is only active while you move, it is still a powerful choice when Spy Planes are above in the skies.

Next, you should equip the Radar Perk as it will let you use the classic minimap that reveals an enemy’s position when they fire an unsuppressed weapon.

Our Perk 3 choice belongs to Lightweight. This STG build is fairly heavy, and Lightweight will counteract it by increasing your movement speed. Using a Stim will get you a health boost while Armor will provide extra protection while holding lanes.

How to unlock the STG44 in Vanguard

call of duty vanguard stg44 ar

The good news is that the STG44 is available at level 1, meaning you won’t have to grind to get your hands on it. The weapon will be added to your inventory as soon as you launch the game.

Best alternatives to Vanguard STG44

If you’re not feeling the STG44, there are a few other assault rifles that can do an equally good job. The Automaton has been popular in Season 4, while the Cooper Carbine and new Vargo-S are both strong options too.

If you fancy getting up close and personal with your enemies, it’s hard to go wrong with the MP-40. For more, check out our guide to Vanguard’s best guns, with every weapon ranked.

Image Credit: Sledgehammer Games

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