Getting killed more often than you’d like? I’ll explain some basic stuff to keep yourself alive and to get some kills too. Welcome to MW2 101, class!
Get used to the controls, be it Xbox 360, PS3 or PC. Playing the single-player and spec-op modes are a ton of fun and great to get to know the controls. For those playing MW2 on a console, I recommend you set the sensitivity of the controller higher than standard. The online multiplayer is really fast, so you want to be able to turn or switch from target to target quickly. Higher sensitivity means moving your crosshairs quicker. It takes some getting used to, but it works really well. You can increase the sensitivity one step at a time to get used to it.
I’d also recommend using the tactical controller layout, which swaps the knife-button with the crouch/prone button. This will not be of use in the beginning, but later on it will (for dropshotting, where you go prone whilst shooting). But then again, you might find knifing too hard. At least try them out both.
Get to know the maps! Good ways of doing that is to create a private game all by yourself, and to just walk around the maps. You could even make notes of possible good spots, routes and chokepoints. Or even more fun: if you have a Xbox 360 or PS3, just invite a friend a play some splitscreen games. I’m trying to update this blog with detailed map info. In the meantime, if you Google something like “MW2 overhead maps”, there are some nice maps that you could use to help you out. Also if you press ESC or Start, you have a nice little map that you can use to determine where you are in that map.
Most players strafe a lot. What that means is that you keep a target in sight but move sideways. So when you’re aiming at a window, you press left (left stick pushed left on controllers or ‘A’ on keyboards) whilst keeping the window in sight (using the right stick or the mouse). This is a very useful technique, as it allows you to keep the target in your crosshairs and to keep moving at the same time. This makes you a harder target to hit. Also when you go around a corner, you should strafe. That way, you’ll instantly see whether someone’s waiting for you around that corner.
Ideally, you’ll move from cover to cover, exposing yourself only the minimum amount of time. Some materials are not capable of stopping bullets, but they will hide you pretty good. Be careful though, sometimes when you’re really close to a wall or other object, your gun will go through the wall a little, giving away your position. So whenever possible, choose the most solid cover (concrete over wood, wood over glass etcetera) and remember that your gun might stick through.
When you hit someone, your crosshair changes into an ‘x’ (as opposed to a ‘+’). This is extremely useful when you can’t see clearly if your shooting the enemy or not. It’s also a very good giveaway that someone’s hiding behind cover. For instance, if you know that a enemy is hiding behind something, try to shoot through it. If your crosshair changes, you’re hitting him! It takes more rounds (damage behind cover is about 60% of the normal damage), but you will be able to kill him.
Most gamemodes (except for free-for-all and 1vs1) are team games. Try to be aware of where your team is, keep an eye on the radar for the green dots! The team can offer some form of protection and if you run in to 3 enemies at once, you still stand a chance. Now don’t go following a player too closely, but try to keep some green dots in your radar. If there’s no green dots, there’s a good chance that you’re in enemy territory and will get killed pretty soon. As you refine your playing you could go the opposite way of your team, trying to flank the enemy. But for now, don’t go solo.
There’s all sorts of information that you could (and should!) use to your advantage. The obvious one is your radar. Friendly’s show up green, enemies as red. Now the latter part is a bit tricky. There are three basic optrions:
- You have the minimap (radar), but there’s no UAV (which will show enemies on the minimap). You will only see friendlies and enemies that fire without a silencer. They will show up as red dots, but the red dot will fade quickly is they stop shooting.
- There’s a UAV in the air for your team. You will see friendlies and enemies (even if they don’t shoot). But if a enemy has the perk ‘Cold-Blooded’ equipped, he won’t show up on the radar, except for when he shoots without silencer.
- The last option is that there’s a counter-UAV or EMP used by the enemy, which renders the minimap completely useless. (also in hardcore modes there’s no minimap unless a UAV is flying).
So now you know, even in the best case scenario (2), some enemies won’t be visible on the map. The map also has a interval at which it is updated, so don’t be surprised if there’s a enemy in front of you that the map says is behind a corner.
What’s really useful about the map is the disappearance of green dots. If you see a green dot (a friendly) and it disappears, he is either far away from you or shot down. So that’s a pretty good giveaway that an enemy is near. Keep looking at the map regularly, but don’t trust it entirely.
Now you know the value of minimap, you can gather other forms of information. Except for the visual information, the sound also gives away A LOT. Unless an enemy is using the ‘Ninja Pro’ perk, you will hear his footsteps. And unless he’s using a silencer, you will hear nearby gunshots. There’s a lot of people using a headset or headphones to better determine the direction of the sound. So if you hear gunshots or footsteps, and you don’t see a green dot at roughly that place, be aware of enemies at short distance!
Finally, shooting! We’re talking about a first person shooter after all! I’ll give some basic advice on shooting (except for the shoot-button, go figure that out yourself ). When you shoot, try to aim down the sights (ADS). You will be a lot more accurate. Also try to crouch or go prone whenever possible, it not only makes you a smaller target, but it also improves accuracy (this is most obvious when sniping). Don’t panic when you see an enemy, just ADS and try and shoot him. Don’t empty your entire magazine if you’re using a fully automatic weapon, but try to shoot in bursts. All weapons have recoil and if you keep the ‘shoot’ button pressed down, eventually the recoil will cause your crosshair to move up so much that you will be shooting down the ceiling instead of the enemy.