Verdansk is your picture perfect fictional bombed out post-Soviet city in a fictional post-Soviet country. The setting will be familar to players of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, as some significant events for the storyline transpire here. Of course, the town also serves as the battlefield of Warzone, Call of Duty's free-to-play battle royale mode.
Activision has gone the distance in trying to fit Warzone into the lore of Modern Warfare and setting the game in Verdansk was the first step. Some fictional stand-ins for actual terrorist organisations steal poison gas from the city during the storyline, but misplace some of the stolen chemicals. This leads to a colossal cloud of deadly gas encroaching upon the city, forcing the allied forces inside to fight against each other for survival - there's the explanation for your shrinking map, too.
A major city in the fictional Kastovia, located in the caucasus bordering Russia, Verdansk has surprisingly well developed infrastructure and facilities considering how small the population presumably is, what with so few residential areas. It's almost like varied scenery and distinct urban locations were a necessity of level design!
In terms of gameplay, getting intimately familiar with the map is essential for victory. Knowing the best loot locations and the areas with the most fighting will inform all of your tactical decisions, and knowing when to go where might hold the key to winning a match.
TOP GAMEPLAY HIGHLIGHTS & GUIDES
The constantly collapsing circle will keep you on your toes and prevent camping, so it pays off to know the whole map. Verdansk is separated into five sectors, all of which are futher subdivided into zones.
Loot distribution, while incorporating a measure of randomness, is mostly fixed. The designers wanted to promote encounters between players while also adding a measure of tactics when it comes to positioning and rewards for those who explore, creating some interesting hotspots as far as loot and player density are concerned.
We've ranked areas in the map based on a metric of loot quality, quantity and player density.
The first underlying takeaway is that all combat hotspots coincide with an area significant in terms of loot, meaning there is no area with high player density that has poor loot. This makes sense when you think about it - why would lots of players go someplace with poor loot?
On the map below, we've circled all locations with good loot, lots of loot or both. The colour coding indicates both how good the location is in terms of loot and how crowded it usually is. Keep in mind that circle collapses will eventually make some or all of these areas inaccessible.
Our system of classification is as follows:
- Green: these areas are notable for loot, but are far away from player hotspots. Accordingly, the loot isn't the best in the game, but there's enough of it to take notice.
- Yellow: these areas are arguably the best places to head to. They're near combat hotspots, but not quite as crowded, and have comparable loot - sometimes as good as the real killzones but with fewer players. Still, expect more enemies than in green zones.
- Red: if you want a fight, go here. If you want the best loot in the game, also go here - but be ready for a throng of operators thirsting for the same loot. These areas see the most fighting, meaning that alongside generic loot, you can also expect corpses to pilfer. Incidentally, many of the red circles include the best drop locations.
Keep this map in mind when planning your tactics in Call of Duty: Warzone!