How to beat Modern Warfare 2 on Veteran difficulty

With Infinity Ward’s CoD4 selling just shy of several squillion copies (or thereabouts) worldwide, a sequel was inevitable. And what a sequel it is! With more content than ever before, we want to make sure you frag your way through the hardest difficulty in style. So pick up that rifle and plant that C4, as we show you how to survive the single-player game on Veteran difficulty. Please note: this guide has story spoilers in the screenshots, so be careful if looking at our campaign guide.

Call of Duty is renowned for its stupidly difficult Veteran difficulty (infinite enemies and grenade spamming ahoy!) And whilst there’s none of that in the latest instalment, that doesn’t mean it’s any easier – you will die repeatedly. But if you follow the advice contained here, you should find your journey somewhat less frustrating and your Gamerscore/Trophy collection that little bit more, well, impressive. Check your ammo, it’s time to roll…

Act 1

Team Player

Be careful of the upper part of the broken bridge right at the start as a bunch of enemies will have a clean shot at your noggin if you’re not on top of them first (always lethal on Veteran).


Taking the stealth approach (especially on Veteran) makes your life tons easier. So stick tight to the left-hand side and let Soap snipe everyone who gets in your way (also bagging you an Achievement/Trophy too!)


This is punishing, and easily one of the toughest levels on Veteran difficulty, so remember to approach every single corner with caution and use your sights when edging around for a clearer view.

When your colleague jumps down into the streets, stay behind the dustbin up top. This will stop you from getting ripped to shreds in seconds. Pick the enemies off first and then jump down when it’s safer.

Act 2


Use plenty of smoke when you need to approach the tank; there’s an ammo box right near you, so don’t be afraid to let it all off to give yourself plenty of cover on your way to the diners.

Once the Predator missile is active spam the hell out of it! Quickly assess where you need to aim it and then press Fire to speed it up, allowing you to get off more shots and thus, kill more baddies.

The Hornet’s Nest

Take the right-hand route at the start, but be careful and take advantage of the gaps in cover to use scoped weapons for taking out as many enemies as you can. Just be careful you don’t get flanked.

Once again, be careful of the corners as many enemies will shoot you from the side if you’re not on your guard. Use flashbangs or grenades and bounce them around the corners where you can.


Stay behind the truck at the start and use the laser pointer to tell your tank gunner where to fire (even when inside a house). Use this as often as possible to soften the enemy up.

Use the tank to take out the choppers that appear ASAP to stop them dropping even more annoying troops into the battlefield. And don’t forget that you can also take choppers out with machine guns…

The Only Easy Day... Was Yesterday

Use a red-dot scoped gun when performing the breaches (where possible). You need as much line of sight as possible, also DON’T fire more than one shot per enemy as you’ll most likely set off the C4 behind them!

When you reach the area on the rig with the guys that pop all the smoke, stick to the left-hand side with a thermal-sighted automatic. Use flashbangs to give you a chance to clear out the mercs.

The Gulag

When you reach the armoury in the centre of the prison make it a priority to pick up a riot shield. Then simply sit in a crouched position in a corner with it held up to stop you getting killed.

Now keep the riot shield and when you breach the toilet area, use it to advance up the room, remembering to keep your back to the wall at all times (also use up your flashes/grenades here).

Of Their Own Accord

After reaching the fifth floor, plant ALL of your C4 and claymores around the entrance to the sniper rifle before using it. This will stop you from being shot in the back as you try and take out the choppers.


  • princeofme - December 23, 2009 8:01 p.m.

    i agree with many people here this one was easier, but i guess that is only due to the fact that nade spamming was really taken out. i mean in world at war it was just unbearable you couldn't move at all. but hey that's what happens when you let the right developer make the game (im talking to you treyarch).
  • TheHamburglerTouchedMe - December 20, 2009 6 p.m.

    On Takedown, if you jump into the favela bit and just sprint right through, going from the left corner to the right corner, you can get through it without encountering any enemies. That saved me a fair amount of time.
  • CAPST3R - December 19, 2009 9:29 p.m.

    this was completely unnecessary, as it goes without saying. I mean, I'm sorry for having to insult you, but I'm pretty sure any moron could have thought of this. The only difficulty on veteran is getting caught out by enemies, and the only advice that could be given for that is 'take cover', and not even that helps (evil glare to every part with smoke, ghillies or juggernaughts). Best advice; stick to the walls, run behind every rock you see and if you see an enemy, run up to him, knife him and run behind that rock. best time to find a new rock is either when you get shot, when the shooting stops or when a grenade gets lobbed at you. basically, be a wimp; it works. all friendlies are invincible or instantly replaced, so don't be a hero, be that useless jerk who still has full ammo at the end of the level. (don't do this online, that's when you need to grow a pair.)
  • noobeater - December 18, 2009 9:48 p.m. offense...(ok quite a bit) but if you need a guide to this veteran campaign you shouldnt be playing... WaW and even cod 4 were harder, i did the vet campaign in what, 7 or 8 hours and i got max achievements for cod 1 4 WaW and MW oh and moosetwice, go die you stole my picture idea, its my patch asi was ere first!
  • fatpenguin69 - December 18, 2009 9:31 a.m.

    @Whiskey Hotel, wat is also a help is as asoon as you get out of the presidential bunker at the start get a FAL or M240 with an ACOG sight and pick off any1 on the white house and you then have a pretty much clear path until the downed jet. hope this helps :)
  • DoctorCrazy - December 18, 2009 12:54 a.m.

    I might just be wierd, but i found veteran this time around easier than on regular. No idea why, i just played veteran like a rainbow six game (cover, flanking, all that jazz) and found it really fun and tactical for call of duty, which was nice.
  • Ampatent - December 17, 2009 9:11 p.m.

    I imagine the reason this guide is coming out NOW as opposed to the day of MW2's release is because of the surge of people that will be getting the game for Christmas this year.
  • iCoLLatEraLL - December 17, 2009 5:26 p.m.

    u could of dun this wen i needed it but oh well. ive dun it on veteran already
  • LOUDcarBOMB - December 17, 2009 4:41 p.m.

    i thought veteran was easy until i got to loose ends. i got stuck at a stupid checkpoint where you probably had about 2 seconds to react to a baddie right in FRONT of you. it was evil!!!
  • egregious - December 17, 2009 4:03 p.m.

    This is the first Call of Duty where I have finished it on Veteran. IW's definition of "challenging" to this point has been quite ridiculous for reasons that don't need mentioning. I wish I could understand what compels me to do something like play Veteran mode when it is the opposite of fun.
  • gsr - December 17, 2009 3:23 p.m.

    I thought the game was alot easier than MW i completed in about 8/9 hrs and was left feeling that it needed at least 3 or 4 more levels beofre the big climax
  • Mirako - December 17, 2009 2:58 p.m.

    After beating the game in hardened I found veteran easy, managed to get through it in one sitting ^^
  • allthegoodnameswheretaken - December 17, 2009 2:13 p.m.

    I actually finished it on veteran in one sitting 9 hours, i actually lost 2 kilograms because i went without lunch or dinner =)
  • CaseD - December 17, 2009 10:57 a.m.

    I found that MW2 was harder on regular difficulty than the original, but easier on Veteran. This is easily atrributed to the loss of infinite respawning enemies and due to this the veteran playstyle of 'slow and steady' is alot more effective. I think the only thing stopping anyone from achieving this game on veteran is lack of patience, you can be sat in the same spot for very long periods of time before being able to move off.
  • Furyspittles - December 17, 2009 8:18 a.m.

    Yeah, I too harshly worded my earlier comment. I'm not saying the guide isn't useful at all, don't get me wrong. Veteran is still a very time-consuming and harrowing experience; just not as hard as previous CoD's, and definitely within the realms of possible. I honestly would have liked this guide a week ago when I started playing Veteran, for example. Managed fine without it, but would have been a great deal of help.
  • EliteDog - December 17, 2009 7:19 a.m.

    Veteran on MW2 is EASY compared to WaW. Maybe I just got better, but I got this platinum trophy a lot faster.
  • Cwf2008 - December 17, 2009 6:56 a.m.

    Or you could just exploit one of the millions of glitch bound to be in single player...
  • spideralex90 - December 17, 2009 6:18 a.m.

    Don't let anyone fool you, you'll die a thousand times, but it's possible. The enemies are actually limited this time, so they don't just keep respawning like COD4. No fighting in the war room in COD4 was impossible for me on veteran and difficult on hardened, but MW2 overall is just as hard as COD4, it just lacks that one extremely hard level. Also the single player campaign has so many more epic moments, it's like playing a movie. Especially the night scene in DC where you have to get to the roof to flare off the planes, it's epic. I love this game.
  • nadrewod999 - December 17, 2009 3:05 a.m.

    Contrary to what all of these previous posts may make Veteran appear to be, I thought I should let my fellow GR readers know that I found the campaign just as difficult, if not more so, than the previous installment's, especially since there were no "easy levels", where all you can do is look around, and the level ends the same way no matter what difficulty you were on (the nuke level and the execution level), while the two new bad levels (No Russian and Second Sun) both have sections of heavy fighting after the controversial parts (SWAT teams with riot shields in NR and gigantic swarms of enemies in the dark with malfunctioning red-dot and holographic sights in SS). I know that I will never beat the whole campaign on Veteran even with this guide, but I just wanted the GR staff to know that there are actually people who could use this.
  • Vakamon - December 17, 2009 12:25 a.m.

    Pff, didn't need this guide to beat it on Veteran, but this could have been useful if I had seen it before, instead of a month after it's release, after I also beat spec ops. Nice article though

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