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Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 release date, open beta, trailer and more

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) screenshot
(Image credit: Activision)

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 is confirmed as this year’s entry in the juggernaut shooter franchise. After a few weeks of rumors, publisher Activision confirmed that Call of Duty 2022 will be a Modern Warfare sequel via an official blog post (opens in new tab).

Slightly confused? We don’t blame you, after all, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 already released back in 2009 for the PS3 and Xbox 360. To clear up any confusion, this year’s installment in the popular shooter franchise will be a sequel to the 2019 Modern Warfare reboot. But it could still feature several throwbacks and references to the original Modern Warfare 2. 

The latest entry in the annualized franchise isn’t usually confirmed this early in the year, but we’ve already got several concrete details about Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 including a release date, a first trailer and some very exciting gameplay information via a large intel drop (opens in new tab). So, here’s everything we know so far about Call of Duty’s return to the modern-day. 

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) release date 

A new Call of Duty has been released every single year without fail since 2005, so no prizes for guessing that Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 will launch in 2022.

It has been confirmed that Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 will release worldwide on Friday, October 28. The game will launch on PS5, Xbox Series X, PS4, Xbox One and PC (via Steam). 

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) trailer 

The reveal trailer for Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 has just dropped. This first look at the game suggests another bombastic single-player campaign and first-in-class shooting mechanics. Plus, the game looks stunning from a visual perspective.  

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) open beta 

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) screenshot

(Image credit: Activision)

You won’t have to wait until October to get your first taste of Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2, as the game will have an open beta in the run-up to launch. There have been no details on when this beta will be held, but we’d expect it to fall somewhere between late August and early October. 

As is tradition, you can get early access to the beta by pre-ordering the game. Both the standard and deluxe Vault Edition will offer early beta access, and there is a possibility that PS5 and PS4 players will also get early access as they did with both last year’s Call of Duty Vanguard and 2020’s Call of Duty Black Ops Cold War. 

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) developer 

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) screenshot

(Image credit: Activision)

Development of the Call of Duty franchise is overseen by a rotating group of Activision-owned studios. Last year’s Vanguard was developed by Sledgehammer Games, with 2020’s Black Ops Cold War coming from Treyarch (with support from Raven Software).

That means it’s once again the turn of original series developer Infinity Ward. The California-based team last worked on 2019’s Call of Duty Modern Warfare, so it’s only natural it would be leading the development of its sequel.

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) campaign  

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) screenshot

(Image credit: Activision )

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 will offer a highly-cinematic single-player campaign. As per franchise tradition, expect a 4-5 hour collection of shooting galleries with some highly-scripted set-piece moments sprinkled in for good measure.

It’s been confirmed that Modern Warfare 2 will see the return of Task Force 141, which is comprised of familiar faces including Sergeant John “Soap” MacTavish, Captain John Price and fan-favorite Simon “Ghost” Riley. There will be a new face on the team as well in the form of Colonel Alejandro Vargas, an incorruptible Tier 1 Operator and member of the Mexican Special Forces.

The campaign will be a globe-trotting operation which missions set in Europe, Asia and the Americas. It will introduce a variety of gameplay elements ranging from “offshore sieges with underwater combat, all-out explosive assaults from 30,000 feet above enemy strongholds, and high-stakes, low-profile stealth missions in both plain sight and under the cover of darkness.”

We also know that Modern Warfare 2 will be powered by a new engine, which should help the series look better than ever. Presumably, this engine will be designed to take full advantage of the power of the PS5 and Xbox Series X.

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) multiplayer  

Call of Duty Modern Warfare (2022) screenshot

(Image credit: Activision)

Modern Warfare 2 is a Call of Duty game, so it should go without saying that there will be a large suite of multiplayer options including a wealth of competitive modes and hundreds of items to unlock from new weapons to cosmetic items. 

Modern Warfare 2 will feature both familiar and new ways to play. For starters, the Gunsmith is being revamped to offer more customization than ever before. There will also be two new modes called Knockout and Prisoner Recuse. The former will be similar to the popular mode Gunfight, and the latter is reportedly inspired by Rainbow Six Siege. 

We can obviously expect traditional fan-favorite modes like Team Deathmatch, Domination and Kill Confirmed to return, and there should be a solid variety of maps available at launch. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that some classic shooting arenas from the original Modern Warfare 2 will make a reappearance here. The likes of Afghan, Terminal and Favela returning with a fresh coat of paint would give long-time players a serious hit of nostalgia.

Post-launch support is also confirmed, with Activision noting: “Modern Warfare 2 will have an incredible post-release calendar, set to include a massive amount of free post-launch content drops featuring new maps, modes, and blockbuster special events that can’t be missed.”

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) Special Ops 

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) screenshot

(Image credit: Activision)

Call of Duty is almost as beloved for its co-op mode as it is for its competitive multiplayer, and Modern Warfare 2 will offer a bespoke mode designed to be played with friends. 

The Modern Warfare games don’t feature the popular Zombies mode, so instead, this latest installment will again offer a mode called Special Ops. This mode made its first appearance in the original Modern Warfare 2 and has subsequently been featured in 2011’s Modern Warfare 3 and 2019’s Modern Warfare reboot. 

Not a great deal about this co-op mode has been shared right now, but it’s described as “a tactical co-op mode that will advance team-building skills.”

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) Warzone 

Call of Duty Warzone screenshot

(Image credit: Activision)

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 is being developed alongside a new version of the popular free-to-play battle royale Call of Duty Warzone. Dubbed Warzone 2.0, it will launch as an extension of the Modern Warfare universe and is currently planned to release “soon” after Modern Warfare 2 debuts. 

Warzone 2.0 is built on the same engine that will power Modern Warfare 2, and will offer many of the new features and gameplay present in the latest Call of Duty sequel. Warzone 2.0 will also wipe the slate clean with brand-new progression and inventory systems. It’s highly likely that this new version of Warzone has been designed with the PS5 and Xbox Series X in mind.   

Warzone 2.0 is also being developed by Infinity War, along with support from Raven Software, and the team is promising that it has “taken a wide range of community feedback to heart.” If you’re already worried about cheaters, both Warzone 2.0 and Modern Warfare 2 will launch with RICOCHET Anti-Cheat enabled. 

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) outlook

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 (2022) screenshot

(Image credit: Activision)

At this point Call of Duty is effectively guaranteed to be one of the year’s best sellers regardless of quality. Even the franchise’s most mediocre entries still shift millions of copies, so the future of Modern Warfare 2 looks bright in that regard. 

However, the game is also shaping up to be one of the most exciting entries in the series for several years. As the sequel to the very well-received Modern Warfare reboot, there are a lot of expectations going into this one but based on the first gameplay details it does feel like this latest Call of Duty is hitting all the right notes. 

Activision is promising that Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 will usher in “a new era” for the franchise, and while we’re a tad skeptical of that claim, it’s unlikely to reinvent the well-oiled Call of Duty machine, Modern Warfare 2 looks like it could be a highly polished and very cinematic shooter — and you can’t ask for much more than that. 

Rory Mellon

Rory is a Deals Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on deals, gaming and streaming. When he’s not scouring retailers for PS5 restock or writing hot takes on the latest gaming hardware and streaming shows, he can be found attending music festivals and being thoroughly disappointed by his terrible football team.