Many of the current major Battle Royale games came out just a few years ago, and we just had another one in the form of Call of Duty: Warzone from Activision. Despite breaking into the already fairly saturated BR market, the F2P title managed to snag over 30 million players in less than 2 weeks, proving there's still a lot of space left in the demand for Battle Royale.

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Call of Duty: Warzone is an excellent addition to the already excellent list of BR games

As the newest major BR title, Call of Duty: Warzone no doubt has some similarities to other BR games that went before, but also clear differences and improvements in gameplay mechanics. A lot of the changes are very welcome in the Battle Royale genre, but there are a few things that might need some work.

Contracts have the best of both worlds

A new feature in Warzone is called Contracts, with a variety of objectives like Recon, Scavenging and Bounties, each providing different kinds of rewards. The Contracts are located throughout the Verdansk map, which provide a kind of distraction from the typical Battle Royale objective of being the last person or team standing.

call of duty: warzone contracts
Warzone's Contracts have the best of both worlds

Other BR games like Apex Legends and Fortnite do this kind of distraction as well, while PUBG mostly puts the focus on winning Chicken Dinner and nothing else. Apex Legends and Fortnite have daily challenges including those related to special events and Battle Passes. However, Warzone's Contracts only ask that you kill an enemy player or loot supply boxes, which are already a part and parcel of Battle Royale.

So it looks like Warzone managed to find the right balance between the distractions of Apex and Fortnite and the singular focus of PUBG. The Contracts do not stray too far from the main objective of Battle Royale like Apex or Fortnite, whose challenges can force you to use weapons you don't like or run around places to get shot at. They also add some variety to the game which improves on the staleness of simply trying to eliminate others in PUBG.

Even revival is fun

A great addition to Call of Duty: Warzone is the ability to tell the God of Death to piss off for a bit longer, assuming you can overcome the 1v1 Gulag battle. In most BR games, death means the end of a match unless you can get revived when downed in battle. Apex Legends has a banner that teammates can carry if someone gets killed, Fortnite has a Reboot Van, and PUBG lets others revive you.

call of duty: warzone gulag
The revival method is quite creative in Warzone

But in Warzone, death is never permanent, because you get a chance to be resurrected by proving your worth. When killed, players get sent to the Gulag where they first become spectators, before being shoved into 1v1 combat against other players also fighting for revival. Whoever kills their opponent, captures the flag, or finishes the 15-second battle with more health gets another chance at life.

This interesting way to keep players alive without being ridiculous ensures the combat is high-tempo and exciting, as the player count drops much more slowly. Some can just keep getting killed, resurrected, then killed over and over. Other than the ability to revive a downed teammate in other games, the Gulag adds an extra dimension that keeps the action constant and full of unpredictability.

Creative in-game items

Call of Duty: Warzone has three ways for you to earn cash in a match: Looting bodies, scavenging buildings and locations, and finishing contracts. Cash allows you to buy upgrades and consumables at Buy Stations. It's not something new in a BR game, at least when it comes to acquiring regular armor and weapons.

call of duty: warzone buy station
In-game items also add more randomness and unpredictability

But Warzone's items include some extra options that make it more interesting and unpredictable. One of the items is a Teammate Redeployment which costs $4,500, allowing you to bring a teammate back from the dead even if they died a 2nd death in the Gulag. The other one is the Loadout Drop Marker for $6,000, allowing you to acquire your tailor-made loadout in a match, giving you a major edge over other players.

Call of Duty: Warzone vs. Blackout

One could say that Warzone is the complete and fleshed out version of Call of Duty: Blackout. Blackout at this stage was the beta testing phase that allowed Activision to try out what could or couldn't work with a Call of Duty Battle Royale game.

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Warzone is a major improvement over Blackout

The most obvious difference between Blackout and Warzone is Call of Duty: Warzone is a free standalone title, while Blackout required purchasing Black Ops. Being a free standalone game expands the Warzone player base much more, allowing the new title to achieve the 30 million player milestone described above.

Call of Duty: Warzone also made proper simplifications that increased the gameplay experience. Health regenerates more quickly and armor is straightforward. Blackout has three armor levels that required min-maxing because the armor disappears when damaged. Meanwhile, Warzone has the option to carry up to five extra plates to help you get into action quickly.

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All the downsides in Blackout are improved upon in Warzone

A minor improvement over Blackout Warzone has is better weapons when starting out. For example, Blackout gives you nothing at the beginning, so players would have to engage in fistfights if no one managed to find a weapon. Since this is silly to have in a COD game, Warzone lets everyone have access to a basic pistol.

Storage size is a big oof

A glaring downside to Call of Duty: Warzone is the storage size the game requires, which is about 85 GB of space through the Modern Warfare client. Having cross-progression is a big bonus, but the size of the game is a pretty big turn-off when other high-quality BR games like PUBG and Apex Legends require much less storage space.

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Warzone is highly detailed and expansive but also crazily large in storage size

On the other hand, storage space is becoming more affordable over time, so in the future Warzone's size will be more acceptable worldwide. But right now, requiring that much space no doubt turns off potential players.

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