Catch up to veteran Call of Duty players with our 'Infinite Warfare' beginner's guide

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Earn prototype weapons

A big new addition to the Infinite Warfare multiplayer model is “prototype weapons,” which you can unlock over time by completing mission objectives you get from various multiplayer factions (don’t worry if that sounds confusing. You’ll understand when you play thanks to a quick in-game tutorial explaining what the factions do). Those goals — which involve things like getting kill streaks, racking up kills with particular weapons, and other in-game milestones — unlock new skins and weapons, including special weapons called prototypes.

Prototypes are special guns for multiplayer that have their own unique pros and cons. For example: An automatic pistol that fires a full magazine of bullets with one pull of the trigger. Like the rest of the customization in the game, prototypes can mean the difference in your play style. Some are also pretty rare and offer you capabilities you’d never otherwise receive, so it’s worth investing in the system.

You can also craft prototype using “salvage,” which is earned by scrapping customization options you don’t want, and by earning keys to open “supply drops.”

Save your keys

Similar to games like Overwatch and Gears of War 4, Infinite Warfare’s supply drop system allows players to trade in-game currency for a box of randomly selected loot. Many of items found in drops are cosmetic alterations of weapons — but some are slightly tweaked, better versions of the standard guns. So there’s a benefit in caring about those supply drops.

COD Infinite Warfare Multiplayer

While that sounds tempting, you’re better off holding onto your keys for a bit. Resist the temptation to spend them on common supply drops, or to burn them while you’re at low levels. Instead, wait till you’ve unlocked some stuff and raised your level, as you’ll be able to use (and understand the benefits of) your new guns sooner. Make those keys count.

Throw grenades while firing

Here’s a big, useful change to how Call of Duty usually works: you throw grenades with your left hand and fire your gun with your right. That means you can do both at once, or, more specifically, you can “cook” a grenade — press and hold the trigger for a few seconds before throwing a grenade, so enemies can’t run before it explodes — while you’re still shooting your gun. It’s a little change, but one that makes you less vulnerable while throwing grenades, and allows you to use them more effectively once the fighting has started. You probably won’t be constantly whipping grenades at enemies while shooting them, but at least practice using the capability so that you don’t stop firing to throw: Despite what we said about not relying on twitch-reflexes, Call of Duty rely on muscle memory, and you’ll want to re-train your brain to take advantage of the change.

Let the deaths roll off you

Even if you’re a seasoned Call of Duty player, you might find yourself getting decimated in multiplayer from time to time. Infinite Warfare feels like it has a tougher learning curve than previous titles in the series. Deaths come faster, the maps are more maze-like and looping, players get behind you more often, and weapons feel different from CoD’s of the past. It’s going to take a while to get used to it.

COD Infinite Warfare Multiplayer

Do your best to minimize deaths by playing smart — don’t rush into unknown areas or active gunfights, avoid wandering into easy ambush points, and don’t stray too far from your teammates. But also realize that you’re likely going to die a lot. It might take a bit to get comfortable enough with Infinite Warfare to be a real competitor. Call of Duty games are extremely popular; you can stand to relax, ease into it, and learn to be good, since there will be players filling up matches for at least the next year. Take your time, try to watch and learn from other good players, and avoid getting too frustrated.

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