Popular Call of Duty YouTuber Brad ‘Drift0r’ Overbey has criticized developers Infinity Ward for a number of ‘stealth patches’ they have made to Modern Warfare, without informing players.
Since Modern Warfare’s October 25 release, fans have quickly identified issues they want to see adjusted. Among other things, Infinity Ward’s communication - or lack thereof - has been criticized as insufficient.
They have remained almost entirely silent as fans have debated skill-based matchmaking. However, they are facing renewed criticism since, at the start of December, it became apparent that Infinity Ward had been omitting details from Modern Warfare’s patch notes.
In an ‘in-depth’ video on December 31, Drift0r provided his thoughts on the situation. He makes it clear pretty early on that while most of his in-depth videos are guided completely by statistics, this is his subjective take on Infinity Ward’s behavior.
“It is a fact that Infinity Ward has been stealth nerfing, stealth buffing and patching various things in Modern Warfare,” he explained. “As of now, I know for a fact the skeleton stocks got nerfed and slightly reworked, LMGS as a whole got a nerf… the FAL fire rate got a nerf.”
The list continued, but Drift0r claimed he’s not bothered about the changes themselves, but that “none of these changes were in the patch notes - ever”.
“How are we, the gamers, supposed to know what’s good or bad with all these hidden changes?” he asked. “How can you at home know whether your weapon’s changed or not?”
Overbey went onto explain that fans will speculate about what they’re doing wrong when their go-to weapons do not perform as expected. They added: “You’ll think ‘have I forgotten how to aim?’”
He also stated that the kind of “irritating” stealth patches Infinity Ward are using leads to a “general resentment” from the CoD community.
Drift0r finished up by describing how difficult it makes his ‘in-depth’ videos. While his statistics and weapon profiles are accurate at the time of recording, by the time he comes to upload the video, the weapon’s stats may have changed, unbeknownst to him and to CoD community.
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Infinity Ward’s insistence on stealth patches is a new step for Call of Duty, and does not seem to be particularly popular in the CoD community. Fortnite Chapter 2 developers Epic Games have stopped publishing patch notes altogether, supposedly to reduce the influence they have on player decisions.
While that seems the most likely reason behind Infinity Ward’s decision, the lack of information seems to be frustrating both Drift0r and the wider CoD fan base.