While Epic Games’ Fortnite remains the king of battle royale — and arguably mainstream gaming –, it’s not without its fair share of competition. Chief among them is PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, otherwise known as PUBG. Meanwhile, EA and Respawn Entertainment’s Apex Legends have rebounded big after going through slump following a record-breaking surprise launch.
In addition to these two is a crop of outliers that aim to put their own spin to the battle royale formula such as Escape from Tarkov and CS:GO Danger Zone.
Aiming to be the next big hit (if it already isn’t) and with serious potential to dethrone Fortnite is Call of Duty: Warzone.
Call of Duty: Warzone, otherwise simply known as Warzone, was released back on March 10, 2020, as a free-to-play title for the PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One. Since then, it’s broken one record after another. This includes topping the six-million-player mark in 24 hours, which is more than twice what the previous record holder, Apex Legends, set earlier last year.
Since it’s a free-to-play title, anyone who’s ever played a battle royale game will instantly feel familiar in Warzone. But, as they say, the devil is in the details. Even though it may just be another battle royale title, Warzone manages to set itself apart enough.
In more ways than one, we consider Warzone the best battle royale title, and here’s why:
More Players = More Mayhem
While you can only team up as three in Warzone (with “solo” and ”duo” drop options available), you can go up against as many as 49 other teams because of the 150-player limit.
With more players comes more mayhem and more fun.
Now, isn’t that what we all want?
The Biggest Battle Royale Map Ever
With such a player count, you’d expect Warzone’s map to be capable of supporting as many, and it can. In fact, the city of Verdansk has more than 300 points of interest and no two same buildings across a map that’s slightly larger than PUBG’s Erangel, which has a playable area of 6 kilometers.
Welcome to the Gulag
A mechanic that’s unique only to Warzone is the gulag.
What the gulag basically is a second chance for players already eliminated to get back into the match. Once down, players will find themselves pitted against another downed player in a 1v1 match in a closed-off room where the winners will get a second chance. Meanwhile, the losers will have to wait for redeployment to be purchased for them by their teammates, or, in the case of solo mode players, they’ll no longer be able to rejoin anymore.
What this means is that Warzone’s matches could last an entire hour, up until the final zone and there’d still be plenty of action going on in the map.
In Warzone, contracts that players can complete in the game for various kinds of rewards, including money, loot, and/or special abilities. The kinds of tasks included can range from anything like defending a particular point, doing recon, killing another specific player, or opening chests.
This helps make gameplay more dynamic as your team’s goals could change at any moment.
Money Makes the World Go Around
In Warzone, money is important. You need money in-game to buy redeploy tokens to revive dead teammates, self-revive kits, as well as special actions known as “killstreaks” that players can use to eliminate multiple enemies at once.
Sure, you can get by in Warzone without money but you’ll be at a serious disadvantage.
In particular, you’ll need money to get yourself your very own loadout of choice. The “Loadout Drop Market” is available at the “Buy Station” and when bought, puts a pin on every other player’s map where your marker is located.
While this admittedly makes you a target, if you survive, you’ll be rewarded with a full loadout that you can customize to your liking prior to the start of the match.
Plunder/ Blood Money
Warzone takes the battle royale formula and puts its own twist to it with the introduction of the “Plunder” mode. Its current name has changed to Blood Money since the recent update.
In this game mode, 102 players join together in teams of three for a total of 34 teams. However, instead of surviving until there’s no one left, there’s infinite respawn chances. The goal then shifts from survival to an all-out brawl as teams aim to collect as much cash as possible within the 30-minute mark. The round also ends when a team reaches one million dollars before the time expires.
With a dwindling amount of cash available on the map and constantly respawning players, Plunder makes for an arguably more exciting game mode than the standard battle royale mode.
It’s a Call of Duty Battle Royale
Who hasn’t heard of Call of Duty? Every gamer either loves Call of Duty or loves to hate it. It’s a well-known franchise both in and out of the gaming industry. This means that it has the experience and financial backing of industry giants, not to mention the financial savvy to know how to give the audiences what they want and get the most out of them.
Plus, again, it’s Call of Duty, which means that all of those familiar Call of Duty elements will be in Warzone. This includes, among others, loadouts, and killstreak rewards, as well as a color-coded loot system with fixed weapon mods.
An Entirely Unique Battle Royale Experience
What Warzone has done is that it’s taken familiar mechanics found in other video games. This includes quests in the form of contracts and currency in the form of money. But at the same time, Warzone marries these concepts with others that fans of the Call of Duty franchise are already familiar with, such as loadouts and killstreaks.
In doing so, what Warzone has created is an entirely unique battle royale experience that feels fresher than what Fortnite and Apex Legends have done in recent years.
As a result of this amalgamation of concepts, Warzone has become such a huge hit so quickly. To say that it’s the best battle royale to-date is no exaggeration. The best part? It’s only just begun.
Considering that it’s only been weeks since it launched, Warzone is only bound to get better.
Call of Duty: Warzone was based on the PC version of the game, if you do not have a PC you can also get the game on PS4 and Xbox One as a Free 2 Play title.
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Call of Duty: Warzone
Welcome to Warzone, the new massive free-to-play combat arena from the world of Modern Warfare. Drop in, armor up, loot for rewards, and battle your way to the top.