Season 01 Reloaded lands with some new game modes for CoD’s split personality, and a host of general fixes and tweaks
If you like soccer and PvE shooter experiences, the latest Call of Duty Season 01 Reloaded has a double whammy for you. Modern Warfare II gets the first-ever CoD raid, while Warzone has a limited-time event for all of you foosball fans. My personal favorite mode, DMZ, got some love too!
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II and its free-to-play battle royale mode Warzone 2.0 just received a substantial content update. Serving up traditional team-based multiplayer game types, battle royales, and PvE modes like DMZ, CoD has a ton of different modes these days. As such, updates like today’s Season 01 Reloaded are jam-packed with a ton of new stuff for the game’s many modes. The usual tweaks, both subtle and obvious—shotgun damage sure feels weaker—are here as well. Let’s get into it.
Call of Duty’s First Raid
Yep, today CoD got its first raid. CoD is noDestiny or World of Warcraft, so it’s easy to imagine dozens of jokers running around in League skins hop-skipping around corners. But fear not: The all-new Raid mode is a three-person mission (no matchmaking) available within Modern Warfare II.
This means you’ll need to buy the full 70-dollar version of the game to play it. But that’s not all. CoD also requires you do one of the following to unlock the raid:
- Complete a specific Daily Challenge in either Multiplayer or Special Ops
- Place within the top 20 in any Warzone 2.0 Battle Royale Playlist
- Exfiltrate DMZ with $30,000 in cash
Doing either of these will give you a Raid Assignment, which lasts for a week. You need a Raid Assignment to play the raid.
These tasks aren’t too onerous, so most folks should be able to get into the raid quickly. But what do you do then? Well, the Season 01 vReloaded update describes the raid as an “exciting mix of combat and puzzles for three-person teams to explore.” But it’s also tied into MWII’s campaign narrative. As this is the first raid, billed as “Episode 1,” we likely have some more to look forward to.
The story picks up from the end of Modern Warfare II’s campaign. And if you ask me, that’s not a bad thing. The first half of Modern Warfare II had me so bored I wanted to play Haze as a palate cleanser, but honestly, the latter half got really fun. Maybe we’ll even be treated to more sexy whispers from our boy Ghost.
While the raid homework and matchmaking requirements are a drag, I think the general concept of raiding concept has potential, and it’s certainly fun in games like Destiny. CoD sure as hell has the crunchy mechanics to make it satisfying, so let’s see how it goes.
Warzone 2.0 World Cup
While I certainly have never thought “I wish there were more sports in my video games,” I know some people are into that big soccer thing that’s going on right now. CoD is here to satisfy your sportsball love with a limited-time mode that features a big-ass soccer ball, a regular-sized field, ATVs, and shock sticks. First team to five goals wins.
If I’m being honest, you might be better off spending your time with Rocket League or some kinda weird Halo custom game. The sentiment is appreciated, but this mode feels a little too wonky in my initial playtesting.
The Warzone World Cup goes from December 14 to the 23.
DMZ Changes and Updates
If you’re into DMZ, Santa came early. There’s a new area, “Building 21” and brand-new keys scattered throughout Al Mazrah. They grant access to a mysterious new location “outside of Al Mazrah and into a hyper-dangerous new area of DMZ.” While I’m more than used to hyper-dangerous BS in DMZ, other additions should hopefully help make the game’s most awesome mode a little more survivable.
While there’s zero mention of fixing the telepathic AI’s ability to shoot you through fucking walls, DMZ will now see increased self revives, gas masks, field upgrades, plat carriers, backpacks, and far less of the things you don’t need, namely electronic components and toothpaste. RIP your dental hygiene.
One new option allows eliminated players to join an enemy squad by pleading for help. I haven’t yet tried this out, but to me it sounds more like offering to help. Regardless, sometimes it’s really frustrating when another operator team takes you out when you weren’t even interested in screwing them over. Now at least you’ll have a chance to hop back in more quickly.
Successfully exfiltrating will also reward a random perk now as well; perks like Scavenger, for example. You’ll get more for each subsequent successful exfil, making a successful exit even more valuable.
Kotaku has reached out to Activision to ask for clarity about the changes to backpacks, which apparently grant a third weapon slot if you have a medium or large pack equipped. This seems to be how backpacks operated already, but maybe there’s a fine detail I’m missing.
Season 01 New Map and Weapon Balance Changes
Sit down, because you’re either about to feel real happy or real angry: Shotguns no longer one-shot a fully armored opponent. That means chuckleheads like me who run around with silenced shotguns to deliver quiet one-hit blasts as if we’re Anton Chigurh or something are out of luck. But that’s okay, because goofs who strap a riot shield to their backs will now suffer nerfed movement speed and melee damage. Serves them right.
You’ll want to check the patch notes for specifics if you use the MX9, M13B, Kastov-74u, VEL 47, Basilisk, .50 GS, Expedite 12, or JOKR.
Modern Warfare II’s core multiplayer modes are also getting a familiar location. Shipment, a classic CoD map, will include a few changes as per a tweet from the official CoD account a few days ago:
And while I’m sure many may have fond memories of Shipment, I am here to warn you about this thing. Folks, I played two rounds on this map and it was my most nonsensical, frustrating shooter experience in recent memory. MWII already has a quick-as-hell TTK, so a map of narrow corridors set at night, clouded with tons of smoke from explosions and smoke grenades, means that this is nothing but a pre-fire fest of literally three-seconds-till-your-dead bullshit. But your mileage may vary.
Season 01 Reloaded Quality of Life Changes
Don’t you hate it when you activate an XP bonus token and have no way of seeing how much time is left? That changes today. Time left on a bonus token will now show in the lobby, and you can even activate them mid-game in the pause menu. I know I forget to activate those all the time, so that’s a huge plus.
But perhaps one of my personal favorite changes here is that joining a game already in progress won’t count as a loss if you lose. I get mid-game joining. Ya gotta keep the servers running I suppose. But nothing’s worse than getting into a match that’s clearly destined for failure and is too far gone to save. If win/loss stats are important to you, worry no more.
A number of other small changes include tweaks to UI, the addition of a toggle option for the ping wheel, and UI elements that clarify weapon-tuning capabilities and stat indicators. Call of Duty’s weapon loadout and upgrade system can be a little bewildering, so it’s nice to see some attention there.
All told, there’s a lot of cool stuff to check out. The DMZ features are by far the most interesting to me, but I’d be lying if I said that raid wasn’t a tempting siren song, especially if there’s more of it on the way. Once I manage to wrangle together two other players, I’ll be sure to report back on how this odd new addition is shaping up.