The popular Ninja perk has been a staple in Call of Duty for years. However, Black Ops Cold War is changing the way it works, much to the chagrin of veteran competitors and popular content creators.
Ninja has been one of the most common perk picks in Call of Duty since its first inclusion in 2009’s Modern Warfare 2. Before then, and with a few releases in between, we’ve had Dead Silence instead. Both instances of the perk act in a similar way. They’re designed to help minimize your overall noise on the map.
From minor reductions in footstep volume to complete silence in some games, the perk has varied in power. Players were able to sneak around the map, flank opposing setups, and generally make plays they otherwise wouldn’t have been able to. This was the original intention of the perk, at least.
In Black Ops Cold War, the overall design of the Ninja has been tweaked for better or worse. In the alpha test, the perk allowed players to “sprint more quietly.” Just days out from the beta and many in the community have highlighted this as one of their biggest concerns.
“One concern I have going into Cold War is the lack of a silent footsteps perk,” Team Summertime’s Davis ‘Hitch’ Edwards said on October 6. Rather than allowing for unique gameplay opportunities, he argues that Ninja in its current form makes the game “extremely slow.”
“I don’t understand why CoD is going away from it. The best games had complete dead silence.” While the developers have been open to community feedback early on – already adjusting snipers ahead of release, for instance – they’ve yet to address the state of this iconic perk.
Agreed. Blops 1 sound design was the best IMO. Settle sound design indications for specific actions. Example: climbing a ladder and getting to the top, belt buckle would make a quick faint sound.
— #Doctober (@drdisrespect) October 6, 2020
“Agreed,” Dr Disrespect replied in the thread. “Black Ops 1 sound design was the best.” As an example, the two-time explained how specific actions tied into the game’s audio. While “climbing a ladder, [your] belt buckle would make a quick, faint sound.” This helped create a middle ground where sneaky players could be quiet, but still be caught out if they’re not smart.
“I say it every year man,” OpTic Gaming’s Austin ‘SlasheR’ Liddicoat responded. “Complete dead silence allows for more plays to be made in SND and higher game knowledge in respawn. Footstep volume is for scrubs,” he added. Implying that Black Ops Cold War changed the Ninja perk to help accommodate newer players.
I say it every year man.. complete dead silence allows for more plays to be made in SND and higher game knowledge in respawn.. footstep volume is for scrubs
— Austin Liddicoat (@SlasheR_AL) October 6, 2020
There’s no telling if enough public backlash will eventually lead to a complete change ahead of the game’s release. Though the beta is set to kick off on October 8 for PlayStation 4 users. If the conversation around Ninja continues, perhaps it’ll bring about some kind of adjustment.
If you’re looking to jump into the new release and test things out for yourself, be sure to check out our full beta overview so you’re up to speed.