Black Ops Cold War players slam new League Play: "It's a massive joke" - Dexerto
Call of Duty

Black Ops Cold War players slam new League Play: “It’s a massive joke”

Published: 9/Feb/2021 6:44

by Brad Norton


Three months into the release of Black Ops Cold War and League Play has finally arrived, though players are already fuming at the state of the mode, slamming it for limited features, an underwhelming ranked system, and a “mediocre” attempt at representing the pro level.

In most esports, players are able to rise through the ranks and gain recognition in a competitive playlist. Reaching the upper echelons of ranked play is typically the first step prior to joining a legitimate pro team.

In Call of Duty, however, that’s never really been the case. If League Play isn’t outright missing for a year, it typically arrives late into a game’s lifecycle. With Black Ops Cold War, players had been holding out for months waiting for a truly competitive playlist.


Now that League Play has finally arrived in 2021, it’s safe to say it isn’t quite what the community had hoped for. 

League Play failing to represent pro play

Immediately upon jumping into the new playlist, a few things become apparent. All sorts of powerful equipment and killstreaks are still readily available. From the Lawbreaker Wildcard to the RC-XD killstreak, there are plenty of features League Play that you simply don’t see at the pro level.

As a result, many have argued that it simply isn’t representative of the competitive experience. “My opinion is that this is a massive joke and isn’t really good enough, Reddit user ‘Viking-Hamster’ said. “It’s just a mediocre attempt at best.”


The new playlist is similar to regular public matches, just with a few exclusions across a limited map and mode set. Unfortunately, the combination available today offers a worse experience than standard multiplayer, according to some players.

“Didn’t think it was possible to have less than the no fun I was having in pubs but here I am,” Reddit user ‘ohdeebo’ chimed in.

League Play’s messy ranking system.

Players even called out the actual ranked system itself. The labels provided in-game are a tad confusing as ‘Competitor’ seemingly represents the bottom 50% of the player base. However, there’s nothing in between the top 20% and the top 50%.


There’s obviously still time for Treyarch to turn League Play around. More exclusions would be a strong starting point, refining the list of banned equipment to be more in line with what we see in the Call of Duty League. 

Some would even prefer strict loadouts that all players are forced to use. While not ideal, it “would have been so much better than the current restrictions,” according to Reddit user ‘ollybest.’

Veteran CoD stars speak out.

Even CDL players are against the new form of League Play.

“First game of League Play I loaded in 3v4,” Sam ‘Octane’ Larew explained. Already down a player, one of his teammates “didn’t make classes,” and the other stood still in spawn while “AFK.”


Naturally, this led to a loss in Octane’s first game.

With no strict rules in place to enforce full teams, and only minor consequences for leaving matches, what was supposed to be the competitive alternative feels all too similar to regular public games.

“We’re not getting a good ranking system,” OpTic’s Davis ‘Hitch’ Edwards said on February 8.

“It still has potential… let’s just hope there is some sort of longevity behind it.”

Things could certainly change for the better with a few key updates, but for a good chunk of the community, this version of League Play could be too little too late.