Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War and Warzone Season Two Reloaded launches this week, Activision announced.
The mid-season update for both shooters adds several new maps, modes and features for Black Ops Cold War, as well as two new operators, and the new ZRG 20mm sniper rifle.
This all goes live following updates to Black Ops Cold War at 5am UK time tomorrow, 30th March, and to Warzone at 7am UK time on Wednesday 31st March.
As Black Ops Cold War developer Treyarch has already revealed, new 6v6 map Miami Strike launches as part of Season Two Reloaded. This newer, brighter and tiger version of Miami – considered by some to be the game's worst competitive multiplayer map, looks like a decent addition to the map lineup and gets its own 24/7 playlist this week.
Also at the launch of the mid-season update is 2v2 and 3v3 map Mansion, which joins the Gunfight and Face Off map rotations, and Golova, the Outbreak mode location now available in Fireteam mode.
New modes include Multi-team Hardpoint, which sees 10 squads of four fight for multiple hardpoints at the same time. Each set of hardpoints lasts 120 seconds before rotating to the next locations.
There's new Prop Hunt maps and props at the launch of the mid-season update, with Miami Strike and Satellite joining the rotation of maps.
At some point during the rest of season two, Gunsmith Customs hit Black Ops Cold War. This lets players mix and match attachments from weapon blueprints of the same weapon type in create-a-class. Also arriving later in the season are Gunfight tournaments
hotly-anticipated weapon tuning is also coming with the launch of Season Two Reloaded. This tweaks weapons in Black Ops Cold War only, and does not apply to Warzone. Here's the official blurb from Treyarch:
"In Season Two Reloaded, we've implemented tuning to make the Krig 6, FFAR 1, and Groza more competitive in the assault rifle class, while adjusting the Milano 821, KSP 45, LC10, MAC-10, and AK-74u in the SMG class. We've also made specific performance tuning to the RPG-7, 1911, Magnum, and more.
"These changes include complete tuning passes on Muzzle and Underbarrel attachments that affect Recoil on assault rifles and SMGs, increasing damage for rockets against enemies with Flak Jacket in Hardcore, and removing glint from sniper rifles with Iron Sights."
Now onto Zombies. Outbreak gets a night-time version of Sanatorium, a new objective called Secure, and a new vehicle: the Dirt Bike. As you'd expect, with the arrival of the new Sanatorium Night region comes new intel to find, including brand-new audio logs and radio transmissions that advance the Dark Aether story.
Here's a useful new feature for Zombies: you can apply any weapon blueprint you own to your weapon via the pause menu in Outbreak, Firebase Z, and Die Maschine. This includes any weapon picked up or bought from a Wall Buy.
Dead Ops Arcade 3 gets more useful with this update – it'll now award player XP and battle pass XP, so you can always make progress in your levels and tiers when you play the mode.
Remember the PlayStation-exclusive Onslaught mode? That gets some new content, too, via the Containment mode.
Now onto the new operators: Terrell Wolf joins NATO at the launch of Reloaded, and Karla Rivas joins NATO mid-season. These soldier skins are available as premium DLC from the store, and can be used in both Black Ops Cold War and Warzone.
The ZRG 20mm sniper arrives in-season. This has a higher bullet velocity than any other sniper, and has a fast reload speed and can kill with a single shot to the head, chest or shoulders. It's built for extremely long ranges.
You can unlock the ZRG 20mm by completing its in-game challenge or by buying the Jackpot Sniper bundle from the store.
Usefully, Season Two Reloaded creates a lower, optimised file size across Warzone. If you own the full version of Modern Warfare and Warzone, or if you own the free-to-play Warzone on its own, you'll see the overall file size footprint reduced.
This is particularly welcome given how much space these games take up. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Warzone have a reputation for enormous update downloads and massive install footprints, which we've reported on in the past. It got so bad that in February, Activision warned a standard 500GB PlayStation 4 may no longer fit Call of Duty: Warzone, Black Ops Cold War and Modern Warfare.
"Enhancements to the overall content management system have been made possible through data optimisation and streamlining content packs needed for individual game modes," Activision said.
This reduced file size will come after "a larger than usual, one-time update" for Season Two Reloaded, Activision warned. This update includes these optimisations and is necessary to reduce the overall footprint, Activision insisted. Hopefully it'll be worth it though – Activision said future patch sizes for Modern Warfare and Warzone are expected to be smaller than the one released this week.
"Along with the ability to remove individual modes that are no longer played, owners of the full Modern Warfare experience will see more space freed on their platform of choice," Activision said.
"However, those who want to continue playing Campaign, Multiplayer, and/or Special Ops will need to reinstall the optimised Content Packs, which will be released alongside and shortly after the Season Two Reloaded update."
Following the update, the Warzone file size will be reduced by between 10.9GB and 14.2GB, and the Modern Warfare/Warzone file size will be reduced by between 30.6GB and 33.6GB, depending on your platform.
Here's the breakdown of the reduction in file size:
- PlayStation 5: 10.9GB (Warzone only) / 30.6GB (Warzone and Modern Warfare)
- PlayStation 4: 10.9GB (Warzone only) / 30.6GB (Warzone and Modern Warfare)
- Xbox Series X / Xbox Series S: 14.2GB (Warzone only) / 33.6GB (Warzone and Modern Warfare)
- Xbox One: 14.2GB (Warzone only) / 33.6GB (Warzone and Modern Warfare)
- PC: 11.8GB (Warzone only) / 30.6GB (Warzone and Modern Warfare)
Yes, annoyingly if you just want to play Modern Warfare you still have to have Warzone installed.
And finally, on to the dreaded Season Two Reloaded update file sizes. Brace yourself: these are massive!
The Season Two Reloaded update will have a download size of approximately 7.4 – 14.18GB for owners of the full version of Black Ops Cold War, and 52.0 – 57.8GB for owners of the free-to-play Warzone, who are up-to-date with the latest updates on either (or both) games.
Activision reiterated the Warzone download is a larger file size due to the optimisation of data, but weighing in at nearly 60GB is pretty extreme.
Here's the breakdown:
Black Ops Cold War update sizes:
- PlayStation 5: 12.2GB
- PlayStation 4: 7.4GB
- Xbox Series X / Xbox Series S: 14.18GB
- Xbox One: 9.13GB
- PC: 8.1GB
Warzone update sizes:
- PlayStation 5: 52.0GB
- PlayStation 4: 52.0GB
- Xbox Series X / Xbox Series S: 57.8GB
- Xbox One: 57.8GB
- PC: 52.4GB (Warzone Only) / 133.6 GB (Warzone and Modern Warfare)