Modern Warfare 3 Zombies: Trailer, map, gameplay features, more

Zombies in CODActivision

Modern Warfare 3 marks the first time an MW game will feature a Zombies game mode. Here is everything you need to know about Operation Deadbolt, a unique spin on the fan-favorite third-game mode.

Call of Duty Vanguard was the last mainline series entry to have Zombies, with Sledgehammer Games and Treyarch collaborating to create the project. Both studios caught flack as Vanguard controversially removed round-based gameplay in favor of completing objectives, and community members labeled it a “dumpster fire.”

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In response to negative feedback, Vanguard returned to round-based maps at the end of the game’s life cycle, but some community members were still left with a sour taste in their mouths. And, to add insult to injury, MW2 did not include a Zombies game mode at all.

So, after one year off and an inconsistent year before it, Sledgehammer and Treyarch went back to the drawing board for MW3 and created Operation Deadbolt, an experience unlike anything we have seen before.

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MW3 ZombiesActivision


Operation Deadbolt trailer

On September 19, Activision revealed the first cinematic trailer for the upcoming Zombies game mode.

Operation Deadbolt story and lore

Treyarch revealed a blog, detailing the story of Operation Deadbolt. The story starts with Viktor Zakhaev, the ultranationalist arms dealer and villain, discovering two vials with an unknown substance. The military police catch wind of Zakhaev’s actions and engage in a firefight before the arms dealer can escape.

Outnumbered and out of options, Zakhaev throws one of the vials toward the police, and the vessel shatters, and purple smoke engulfs the entire street, transforming everyone into zombies.

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In the event’s aftermath, SSO Kate Laswell, Sergeant Johnny “Soap” MacTavish, Captain Sergei Ravenovand, and a fourth unseen operator launch Operation Deadbolt. Intel pointed to Zakhaev planning something, and it’s up to the team to find out what he is scheming.

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The squad arrives at the Exclusion Zone a few weeks after Zakhaev creates the zombie outbreak. You are tasked with stopping Zakhaev and Terminus Outcomes, a private military company, from stealing more resources while also containing the zombie outbreak before its spreads any further.

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Does Operation Deadbolt have round-based gameplay?

MW3 does not feature traditional round-based zombies gameplay. Instead, the game mode combines Modern Warfare map features with the familiar Treyarch gameplay loop fans know and love.

Operation Deadbolt map and squad size

The game mode supports multiple squads of 4 up to 24 players and takes place on the new Warzone map. Unlike a battle royale or what we saw with DMZ, the mode is PvE only. Every team works together to complete missions, collect essence, and extract.

How does gameplay work in Operation Deadbolt?

As previously mentioned, MW3 Zombies only supports PvE and follows an extraction shooter loop instead of traditional round-based gameplay. The mode’s story is part of Treyarch’s original storyline.

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Completing exfils contributes to completing the story. To help make the process easier, teams can use fan-favorite zombie features such as the Pack-a-Punch machine, Perk machines, Mystery Boxes, and purchase wall weapons.

That’s everything we know about zombies so far. For more, make sure to check out the rest of our Modern Warfare 3 coverage.

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