Headlining the upcoming season of content are the latest iteration of its free-to-play battle royale experience, including Warzone’s new extraction-based DMZ mode, reimagined multiplayer maps, a new Special Ops mission, the first three-player Raid, and a football-themed event.
Modern Warfare 2’s first season of live content will launch alongside Warzone 2 on November 16 at 10am PT / 1pm ET / 6pm GMT.
Warzone 2’s launch map is the city of Al Mazrah in the United Republic of Adal. It features 18 major points of interest, and multiplayer players will be familiar with several locations. The maps Al Bagra Fortress, Embassy, Zarqwa Hydroelectric, Taraq, Sariff Bay and Sa’id are all subsections of Al Mazrah
Custom loadouts are returning for Warzone 2, while the game features a new backpack system for carrying items, which is fully integrated for DMZ and streamlined for battle royale modes.
The new Gulag is a 2v2 environment where randomly paired duos are challenged with defeating their opponents to return to the battle royale.
Opposing players can also team up to try and earn a second chance by killing a powerful AI jailer, who will appear mid-match.
Players can choose to take on AI combatants at Strongholds and Black Sites too, for a chance to unlock their Loadout in the early game.
New Warzone 2 features include aquatic combat and a fuel mechanic. Waterways are navigable by boat or swimming. When submerged, only sidearms, melee weapons, throwing knives and equipment can be used.
Vehicles no longer offer unlimited fuel and must be refilled either with gas cans found around the map or at gas stations. New vehicles include the Heavy Chopper, which can hover in the air without a pilot, and the all-electric GMC Hummer EV pickup truck.
For the first time in Warzone history, the game will also introduce third-person playlists during Season 1.
Activision bills DMZ as “an open-world, narrative-focused extraction mode where Operator squads have free rein to complete faction-based missions, take on additional side objectives, engage with enemy Operators or AI combatants, and search for valuable items, all while fighting to survive toward exfiltration”.
The publisher also confirmed that the original Warzone will temporarily go offline about two hours before the sequel launches.
“Once the Warzone 2 ecosystem is fully stable, and after a small development break for Thanksgiving for the developers who observe this US holiday, Warzone is planned to be relaunched as Call of Duty: Warzone Caldera as a separate experience. This will happen at approximately 10 AM PT on November 28.”
On the multiplayer front, Modern Warfare 2 will get two ‘new’ maps in Season 1 in the form of reimagined versions of Shoot House (at launch) and Shipment (mid-season).
Special Ops is also getting a new mission at launch and the first episode of Raids during Season 1. New mission High Ground challenges players to find and destroy enemy communication servers to locate and extract three hard drives.
Continuing the story of the Modern Warfare 2 campaign, Raids are three-player cooperative challenges mixing stealth, intense combat and puzzle-solving objectives.
Season One will include four new weapons, two of which can be freely unlocked with its battle pass, and six new operators, including football players Paul Pogba, Neymar and Leo Messi.
They’ll be available as limited-time bundles as part of the Modern Warfare FC event. Coinciding with Qatar World Cup 2022, it will include a limited-time CODBall mode and “a community Support Your Team Pick’em minigame”.