Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer strategy guide

We’ve only selected a few of the modes available in Modern Warfare 2 to analyze. These are our favorites, and the ones we’ve spent the most time honing our skills on thus far.


Things are even more hectic in Modern Warfare 2 that they were last time – kill streaks pile up, helicopters and Harriers fill the air, and bullets fly more liberally than they did in CoD 4. You either need to find a cozy camping spot (if you’re sniping, remember to drop a tactical insertion to cover your ass), or keep moving. Watch out for prone campers on the tops of buildings and ledges – if you’re constantly being picked off, try sticking to interiors or other more claustrophobic spots and relying on your secondary weapon and knife. Beware of very experienced players who will simultaneously jump and go prone, and then put one through your head – keep them at bay by luring them to you instead of running after them. If someone takes a shot at you and you’re not in a good position to return fire, back up and take cover to see if they’ll foolishly run around the corner.

Above: A lovely sight 


This mode really requires teamwork. If everyone rushes for the enemy’s flag, they’ll just set up camp in your base and grab yours every time it appears. Keep several people on defense, and send a concentrated, synchronized force into the enemy base – a team of lone wolves generally fails.

Above: We do love to snipe…but seriously, ranged weapons can actually be very useful in CTF matches for picking off guards and taking out the enemy flag carrier and his escorts without having to chase them down 

If you plan to be a flag carrier, make sure you’re using the Marathon perk – there’s nothing worse than running out of steam and being shot in the back moments away from a capture. Ideally, one player will use a riot shield – he can assault the enemy base and create a disturbance while support picks off the defenses and a runner makes a grab for the flag. And if he’s still alive after that, the shield-holder can continue to protect and distract as the flag carrier runs for the base. Also note that riot shields are stored on your back when you switch to your secondary, and offers some protection as you run away.


The goal of Sabotage is to bomb the enemy’s base. There is one bomb, and your team must compete with the other for possession of it. The only advice to give regarding this mode is to go for it. If you see the bomb, grab it – the worst that can happen is that you’ll move it a little closer to the enemy base before being killed. And now and then you get lucky and actually manage to plant it.

Above: We don’t have a screen of this mode, but this video is relevant enough

In a recent game of Sabotage on Highrise, we were pinning each other down so hard that it took almost the entire match before someone actually managed to plant the bomb, and even then it was diffused. But there’s no draw in Sabotage, if time runs out sudden death overtime kicks in, which means no respawning. If that happens, just play like you would if it were Hardcore Mode – slow, quiet, and low. The bomb doesn’t even matter in overtime – if you eliminate the enemy team, you win.


The goal of Domination is to earn points by holding the majority of flags. There’s not a lot to the game, and the only good advice is to go after or defend whichever points seem to be getting the least attention. Many of the captures we’ve made were solo, simply because everyone was focused on the central position, B, and were ignoring either A or C.

Above: Attempting to capture locations with the help of a riot shield is sometimes effective, but without any support, will usually just get you killed 

Use frag grenades to clear out defenders, and smoke grenades to obscure yourself as you make the capture. And, of course, go prone to make yourself as difficult a target to hit as possible while capturing. And be sure not to forget about defense – Domination matches would be won much more swiftly if flags didn’t change hands so often, but most players tend to run in for the capture instead of staying back to defend.

Hardcore Team Deathmatch

Bullets are much more hurty, there’s no HUD, and friendly fire is on – “Hardcore” matches can be a little intimidating if you’re not used to them, but they’re really a lot of fun (and you can complete a challenge by winning one, so at least do that).

Above: The lack of a hud takes a while to get used to. It helps if you have surround sound so you can pinpoint the location of gunfire 

All you need to do to succeed is act more like a soldier. Move slowly, stay crouched – your goal is as much to not die as it is to score kills. Look and listen and you’ll be surprised how often you get the jump on the enemy. And that’s really the crux of Hardcore matches – you must see the enemy before they see you, or you’re toast. Oh, and watch where you aim those Predator Missiles – friendly fire is on!


  • Richard Chiodo - July 16, 2012 10:22 a.m.

    I Know This Postis OLD, But I Recently Discovered after Prestiging is Takes Time to unlock a good gun like m9 and to get the tactical knife for "stealth operations, =D" But I Also Discovered UsingThe "First Recon" Default Class Killing With The .44 Magnum via Bullets or /Tact. Knife They Count Towards Kills So In a ay You Can Unlock Tact. Knife For Your Custom classes for Those Stealth Operations.
  • MW2Maniac - March 27, 2011 8:18 p.m.

    the guide is much appreciated i have a question tho i am a lvl 20 although i need to plat more i think you should go wit the AA-12 or striker there my fav shoties my tag is REACHWARRIOR25 i may see you on ty
  • jakub-trust-wasilewski - April 4, 2012 5:38 a.m.

    no offence but sniping is intervention as a must, assult is ak 47 or famas, sub is most defenetly ump 45 with perks marathon cold blooded and ninja, riot is good with spas 12 aldough i prefeare the at4 hs or rpg-7, and light mashin gun as rpd because of its high accurucy and damege. you mostly got it wrong... im 10th and mostly for team games i use uav care pack and emergency air drop. if im going for a nuke i use harrier air strike choper gunner (it lasts longer then ac-130) and well nuke. if stealthy then use big uns like the kill streaks he used which were predator harrier air strike and ac-130. my x box gamer tag is Sinq shadowz and im going to change it to Jinz LoAdZ. im also geting a capture card called the roxio game capture costing 83 pounds with the post or $99 with post so you can messege me and i'm going to do montages and others in around 1 or 2 weeks time at the least a month. peace out
  • Scottster88 - October 13, 2010 7:39 p.m.

    Good stuff here. Thanks. There's a little more info here too that I found useful: Thanks again ^.^
  • andremurphy212 - September 26, 2010 5:19 p.m.

    Does any1 have any ideas as to how to easily get easy FMJ kills with the sniper rifle. I have the Barrett .50 cal w/ FMJ. also, the ACR is damn good at longer range. And dont mess with the SCAR since the accuracy on it sucks ass, unless u r used to high-power rifles. TANGO SUCKA!! -_-
  • andremurphy212 - September 20, 2010 9:28 p.m.

    Instead of tha scar-scavenger combo, the ACR-scavenger combo works alot better, since it fires faster and has a helluva lot more accuracy, so it makes for faster long-range kills. The intervention is good to master, since it has more accuracy than the .50 cal, and it has the exact same power, so all you need to deal with is the bolt action. The riot shield is good for protecting your TI, just in case some1 sees it and waits for u to respawn just to shoot u back down again.(Its hard to find a good TI location...:( btw, the ump45 silenced is good for a rush class... SoH is only good for a sniper, nothing else. scavenger, danger close, and commando are like the most godly rocket launcher class w/ an AR w/the grenade launcher and either the thumper, rpg-7, or the javelin. It always works. u dont hav 2 trust me, just read this over just in case u need a last minute resort. Lemme know if it worked out.
  • Midgetman377 - September 5, 2010 8:41 p.m.

    I've noticed that if you're playing domination, plant a C4 in a box near the flag and move on. If they try to capture the flag, you'll here it say that they're capturing the flag. If you blow it then you can get an easy kill.
  • ChucklesNM - September 4, 2010 1:41 a.m.

    Oh.... hah! Had I kept reading I'd have seen the Pro part of SoH, so now I get...... forgive the ignorance above.
  • ChucklesNM - September 4, 2010 1:31 a.m.

    Miss more shots because of Sleight of Hand???? You mean something else right, doesn't SoH only allow for faster mag changes?
  • ChucklesNM - September 4, 2010 1:28 a.m.

    Thanks Tyler, I'm sure to use most of this. Thanx again. \m/
  • Soapx - August 4, 2010 9:56 p.m.

    I am sorry but this guide is rather useless. i am final pristege in both cod4 and 6 and have been playing Call of duty since number 3. The best gun is the AK but definately for new players start with the famas but grab the scar-h asap. However While using the schar-h you definately need the scavanger perk, stopping power, and ninja. Lets face it as a newer player, you are going to burn through ammo be verry loud and have slow knife reactions. the attachment on the scar-h should be anything other than a sight, the metal sight on the scar-h is beautifull personally i use the silencer. For a sniper it does not mater what you use with it other than sight of hand!! if you dont use sight of hand (pro) i promise you you will die lots and miss far more shots. And for the riot shield , just dont go there. Thanx
  • andremurphy212 - August 2, 2010 7:35 p.m.

    One question... Which game mode helps u level up the fastest??
  • Manguy17 - June 4, 2010 10:51 a.m.

    you guys say you need slight of hand for the scar because it devours ammo quickly, in that case surely you would want scavenger instead? some of the stuff you guys advise seems a bit odd, but ill toy around with it anyway.
  • goldenbullet - May 9, 2010 5:42 a.m.

    Real good, the strategies go well with the stimulus package strategies also. Very good and one tip! always explore the maps like the quarry or the new stimulus maps.
  • mw2freak - April 20, 2010 2:05 p.m.

    Thanx Tyler now I can pound everybody in mw2
  • Merse91 - April 14, 2010 5:54 p.m.

    I HATE getting tactical happens all the time in free for all
  • travissmith - March 6, 2010 11:41 p.m.

    Put The ACOG scope on the Barret 50 cal and use like a assualt rifle you will get many one shot kills its also useful for longshots because its steady and you dont have to hold your breath. I have been playing for 2 1/2 years and this is an awsome set up for ranking up fast Add me to your friends on 360 Travman86 Thanks and good luck to all you players.
  • Matalgirrafe - March 4, 2010 4:21 a.m.

    Commander Crunch I completely agree they just get scared and just empty they're magazine into you, while they're reloading you throw the knife, works every time :D
  • Trayveon11 - February 15, 2010 6:03 a.m.

    everyone should add me on playstation network at Trayveon11
  • ten2oh9 - February 15, 2010 5:20 a.m.

    I miss the days of the first half life multiplayer counter strike - what happened to the good old vertical and horizontal sensitivity settings ??? this only adjusting the sensitivity as a whole is some bullsh*t ... i like my movement to feel heavy/steady but also fast if u can understand that ... but most of all i miss the simple play of everyone moves at the same pace , there wasnt nothing but ur weapons and aim , all this extra crap is ruining online play ... i do like some of it but i prefer the old ways , like the kill streak rewards, lame totally lame - u have enough crap to worry bout - to have to watch out for air strikes n what not , that just sucks ... the perks do make the game interesting but also ruin it , if im quicker to stab u i should kill u not the other way around bc u have a special perk ... but most of all this is a word of advise to all the idiots who have no idea about playing multiplayer games ... u see a guy bout to shoot down a heli or plane thats not urs, do everyone including urself a huge favor wait til he gets his shots off at the thing then kill him , seriously WTF u guys cant think n play at the same time ??? same thing goes for seeing a guy u know is trying to take out a sniper wait a sec then kill him !! to all u snipers theres time n places for it but to spend 60+ dollars on a game to just squat in one place all game , dude get a life winning isnt that important and alos its only a game if u die in COD u dont die in real life so please feel free to run around something amazing might happen like getting better at the game ... thats all for now ....

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