6 Things Sledgehammer Needs To Fix Before CoD: Vanguard's Launch

Call of Duty -
CoD Vanguard Fixes
Polina's having a hard time making the shot with these visibility issues | © Activision Blizzard

The Call of Duty: Vanguard beta began on Friday, September 10, and lasted for about two weeks. We were providing full coverage throughout the playtesting; breaking down all the weapons, perks, and equipment, and addressing the biggest concerns of our readers. Now we've had time to reflect, here are the 6 things Sledgehammer need to fix most before CoD: Vanguard's launch

Sledgehammer has a good core game here with the IW8 engine, and it flows well. The gunplay and map design are also worth highlighting here. But there are lots of strange design choices with Vanguard that they need to revert their decision on before release...


The Call of Duty: Vanguard Beta - What Needs Fixing?

6. The Gunsmith Needs A Rework

The Gunsmith was a huge hit when it was first introduced into Modern Warfare (2019), it felt like the kind of fully fleshed-out attachment system we might expect from a Ghost Recon game, but never CoD. It's good that the system itself is back in Vanguard, but it's become wildly permissive. With ten attachment slots on every gun, it's going to be far harder for the devs to balance, and now even casual players will be pushed into playing meta builds. That's not to mention how problematic some of these attachments are - the Shrouded Proficiency removes glint from Snipers, and Incendiary Ammo provides a straight damage buff...

5. Scorestreaks Need To Make A Comeback

To be clear here - we don't mean the BOCW system whereby your streaks continue through death - instead, we're referring to the older scorestreak system. In this system, you still lose all progress on death, so it feels like a streak, but you get points for capturing the objective, as well as killing opposing players. This encourages people to play the objective, it's simply better for everyone. So, where is it?

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4. War Should Be A Playable Mode

One of the few things Sledgehammer have added to Call of Duty that's been universally praised is their mode War. They introduced this in CoD: WWII in 2017 and we haven't seen it since. In War, K/D tracking is disabled to encourage everyone to play for the sake of their team and the objective, rather than their own performance. It was a fantastic mode, and while it requires its own maps to be played, we think it would be just as popular and worthwhile as it was in 2017.

3. Glide Bombs Are Too Difficult To use

Four people that played with us during the beta complained about the Glide Bomb, and they did so completely independently of each other. This is basically Vanguard's Predator Missile. The problem is that you don't control it from the perspective of the weapon's tip, you control it from a strange over-the-shoulder style angle. Add to this that you can only control the initial trajectory, and the Glide Bomb becomes effectively useless. Doubly so given how powerful other killstreaks are on the equivalent level.

2. Factions - Where Are They?

This was the most bizarre part of Vanguard so far. There are no Axis characters. Everyone is American or English, and they don't look distinct from one another. You can still make out who the enemy is (although not as easily or immediately as you should be able to), but having no Axis characters ruins the atmosphere. If they're worried about selling premium Axis characters, then they could just make the Axis team on each map use default skins that are based on the weapon class they're using. They have German and Japanese character models for the campaign anyway, so this surely wouldn't require too much effort.

1. The Sound Engineering Is Really Poor

This was the single worst technical flaw of the beta. It was in the alpha too, and they know it needs fixing, but they've promised it should be done by launch. If you didn't get a chance to hop on yourself, then how can we explain? It sort of sounds like your character is firing underwater, or your shots have been muffled in some way. None of the guns sounded punchy or crisp, and this hugely hurt how satisfying making kills felt. So whereas some items on the list might be Sledgehammer's intentional design choice, the sound of the game is just objectively a problem, and that's why it's our number one request for Sledgehammer to fix.

If you hadn't had a chance to hop into the beta, then don't worry, you won't need to be waiting too long - Call of Duty: Vanguard will release on November 5th.


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