Now is the perfect time to experience Black Ops battle royale. If you’re just getting started or need a refresher before you drop in, here are some quick tips that cover a wide range of essential in-game mechanics that may help you on the road to a hard-fought victory, part of the following series:
Part 1: Initial Onboarding (Original Blackout Map) (see below!)
Part 2: Intermediate Tricks and Tips (Original Blackout Map)
Part 3: Alcatraz Blackout Tactics
Part 4: Hardcore Mode Blackout Tactics
Part 5: More Alcatraz Blackout Tactics
Initial Onboarding (Original Blackout Map):
1. So, Where We Dropping?
After choosing a playlist for the original Blackout map and waiting in the pre-game lobby, you and up to 99 other players will drop from a helicopter to start the match.
Pulling up the map in the live pre-match lobby reveals the helicopter’s path. During this time, it’s best to scope out a potential drop point if you want to coordinate with teammates. Looking before leaping is a great strategy to have in general, especially in Blackout. You can choose your destination on the fly, just consider letting your squad know if you are playing on a team.
When looking for a place to drop into, keep in mind that marked destinations have plenty of loot, but most likely have more players lurking about.
There are also plenty of unmarked locations with a good amount of loot, although they may be tougher to spot on the expansive map. Unmarked structures like houses, gas stations, and buildings will also have loot. If you choose not to drop into a marked destination, consider dropping on buildings so you can loot up.
Note: You can read about those locations here and here, as well as learning how much rich Black Ops history Treyarch has displayed across the original map.
2. Loot! Loot for your Life!
Upon landing, the single most-important objective is to find a weapon. Players will not survive long fighting only with fists in Blackout. With loads of enemy players in game, not to mention zombies shuffling about, it is safe to assume that danger is always nearby.
Weapons can be found anywhere: on the floor, on tables, in chests, heck, even in bathrooms. Keep those eyes peeled for a weapon (or even better, two of them!), pick it up as soon as possible, and use it to protect yourself from whatever threat comes by.
Looter, a perk that highlights all loot on the screen, is helpful should finding a weapon prove to be difficult.
After finding a weapon, scavenge for other loot that complements your playstyle. Ammunition is always needed, and health and armor are helpful to all players.
Attachments help boost your weapon capabilities. At the beginning any weapon is better than nothing, so find attachments to make it the best possible. When you come across a weapon you really like, utilize the Strip and Attach feature to quickly pick up and enhance your weapon of choice with attachments.
Choose equipment and perks that fit your gameplay. Plan on being a sniper? Iron Lungs will help you hold a steady aim longer. Want to get up close to your targets? Mobility and Dead Silence will enable you to move quickly and quietly. It may take a while to recognize all the perks, so consider giving them all a try to find out their benefits and what works for you.
For equipment, each one has its uses, so pick up what works for you. Cluster Grenades effectively clear rooms, Barricades provide extra cover while blocking lanes, and Grapple Guns allow you to quickly zip to another location or gain extra elevation.
You have limited space in your inventory, so choose your items wisely. Maybe one of the most crucial items is a backpack since it doubles carrying capacity. Find one of these lying on the ground, and you’ll be able to collect more loot.
3. Fight or Flight
In Blackout, not all engagements are equal.
Sometimes, there will be an unsuspecting enemy looking away and unable to react in time to an open flank. Other times, there will be a multi-person firefight happening and you’ll be caught in the middle.
Blackout is a game of survival — yes, kills will get you more merits, but consider all tactics before engaging in combat, particularly if you are low on supplies.
Take a moment to think about if that 4v1 fight is really worth sacrificing a potential life, listen closely for footsteps and gunfire, and always scan your surroundings for deadly equipment or sneaky foes.
Regardless if you choose to engage or not, play to your strengths in all combat situations. Do you want to divide a squad and win a serious of 1 v 1? Or force them together and hit them with a Cluster Grenade? Consider being strategic before you engage, so you have the most successful outcome.
4. About the Circle Collapse
At given intervals during Blackout, the collapse will slowly close in to make a smaller and smaller safe area. A player in the collapse will be dealt damage over time until that player is downed or deceased.
Most of the time, you do not want to be caught in the collapse. However, the best strategy might not be running towards the center of the safe zone during each collapse phase. There may be opponents already set up waiting for players racing in to escape the collapse.
Choosing how to play the collapse is important decision in Blackout. If you excel at holding a defensive position, play towards the center of the circle. You can shore up your position and pick off enemies running from the collapse. If you work best when racing head-on, consider playing towards the outside and get behind opponents. Or if you like risk versus rewards type situations, play all the way at the edge. You can even dip back into the collapse to get behind teams. If you are caught in the collapse for a few seconds, it won’t kill you. But, don’t stay there for too long!
The Outlander perk reduces the damage inside the collapse, which adds an additional layer of strategic moves throughout the game when enemies don’t expect another player moving within the collapse. The Mobility perk also will help you pick up the pace if you need to hurry to the safe area.
Click here for more advanced Blackout tips, as well as Alcatraz Blackout tactics. We hope you’re enjoying the Blackout Free Access. We’ll see you online!
The limited-time Blackout Free Access period ends on April 30, 2019. Available now on all platforms*.
*Online Multiplayer Subscription required for Console.
For more intel about Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, be sure to visit CallofDuty.com/blackops4 and follow @CallofDuty and @Treyarch on Twitter.