Modern Warfare 2 has a map problem. Yet, even proclaiming it out loud feels like an understatement. Starting off with a strong launch, the latest boots-on-the-ground COD entry made amends for the pitiful release of Call of Duty: Vanguard – but it’s been a rocky road since October. We’re all waiting for Highrise and Terminal to exit their Al Mazrah trappings, and with COD 2023 potentially stamping out hopes for some meaningful DLC, it is time to look at Advanced Warfare for some excellent map remasters.
Raven Software and Infinity Ward seem willing enough to look into the COD pantheon inspiration. The upcoming Ashika Island Warzone 2 map features Castle from World At War, effectively building a connective bridge between different aspects of the COD canon. Modern Warfare 2’s multiplayer can benefit from that approach too, but we’ll need to appreciate Advanced Warfare to do that. I’m not going to preach the return of jetpacks in Call of Duty – because they shouldn’t. But I will say that maps like the underrated Greenband should appear in Modern Warfare 2 Season 3.
Some of you have probably forgotten the minimalist arena, others may look back fondly on it. Sitting atop a South Korean skyscraper, the neo-futurist-inspired map champions Advanced Warfare’s design ethos perfectly. There is a timeless nature to it despite its sophisticated aesthetic that wouldn’t feel out of place in Modern Warfare 2.
Maps like Shipment and Shoothouse have been remade to accommodate MW2’s gritty locales, the same can be done for Greenband. For once, using Al Mazrah as the backdrop would work in favour of a map remaster, as opposed to draining them of their identity (sorry Rust).
Greenband’s original design was intended for Advanced Warfare’s exo-suit madness, but its extensive cover opportunities in the form of maze-like greenery and outdoor social areas offer up intense gunfights. It’s a constant push for control, where reflexes and aggressive players thrive. That’s where Modern Warfare 2 thrives too. No ridiculous movement exploits, just run-and-gun intensity.
You can see the remaster potential it has in footage from YouTuber ‘KGeri97’. Layers of verticality weave themselves around each stairwell and corridor, eventually leading to an aquarium where positioning is vital to stay alive. Naturally, this would lend itself to the campers of the MW2 player hierarchy, but that’s just Call of Duty for you. Modern Warfare 2’s weapons are a glorious fit for Greenband, counteracting those waiting in the shadows.
I don’t mean using the best Modern Warfare 2 guns, either. I mean a well-placed Drill Charge or Shock Stick that diverts an enemy onto a new floor, shaking up the pace of your encounter. Apart from Breenbergh Hotel, most of MW2’s core maps use verticality sparingly. Running around on the ground floor can only get us so far. Maps like Terminal understand this, using the expansive nature of an airport to explore the high and low ground. Especially when you’re trying to do a Temper Shot off the escalators. But what actually lies ahead for MW2 players?
There was a brief period for COD players where the possibility of a MW2 premium expansion pack could lead to some tasty map remasters. Terminal, Quarry, and Highrise (and more) are all still stuck within Al Mazrah, ripe for standard multiplayer skirmishes. However, the alleged development of COD 2023 sent those aspirations to the Gulag.
The Modern Warfare 2 Season 2 release date will bring about some arenas to battle in – but the selection is pathetic. Adding in the previously removed Valderas Museum map as ‘new’ content is ludicrous and only adds salt to the wounds of players hoping Infinity Ward will deliver the goods. Unfortunately, MW2 Season 2 seems to be the precursor for further disappointment.