Warzone 2 Season 2: Release date, Resurgence, new map, and more

Warzone 2 Season 2 Ronin operator with dual kodachi swords on Ashika Island
(Image credit: Activision)

The Warzone 2 Season 2 update brings back Resurgence mode and adds a completely new map, called Ashika Island, on February 15 when it releases. The Season 2 update is huge, with a colossal list of patch notes and plenty of other additions, including several new weapons and guns, the Ronin Operator, and new maps, modes, and a ranked playlist for Modern Warfare 2. As for Warzone 2, the Gulag is returning to 1v1s, armor plates are getting adjusted, and there's a new Al Mazrah POI that looks like a classic Modern Warfare 2 (2009) map. DMZ fans will also get to infiltrate Ashika Island too! Those are just the most notable changes, so read ahead to learn about everything in the Warzone 2 Season 2 update.

Warzone 2 Season 2 update release time

The Warzone 2 Season 2 update will go live on February 15 at 9am PST / 12pm EST / 5pm GMT. That's a change from the previous Wednesday February 1 date stated by the Battle Pass countdown for Season 1.

The update delay is due to the developer making "several changes" based on player feedback - promising a return of Resurgence, a new, smaller map for Warzone 2, ranked play in Modern Warfare 2, along with new maps, modes and "much more", all of which we've detailed below.

Warzone 2 Season 2 updates and new content

There are a lot changes heading into the game with the Warzone Season 2 update, ranging from an entirely new map for Resurgence, new weapons, and 1v1 Gulag returning to Warzone 2. To learn more about changes coming in at launch and throughout the season, take a look at the Warzone 2 Season 2 roadmap, but you can also go straight from the source, and read the patch notes blog article for an extremely thorough breakdown. We've got all the important headline updates below.

Warzone 2 Season 2 content roadmap

(Image credit: Activision)

A new Warzone 2 Resurgence map - Ashika Island

The Resurgence game mode returns with Warzone 2 Season 2 on an entirely new map: Warzone 2 Ashika Island, set off the coast of Japan. Not only that, but Ashika will be pulling double duty and also serves as a DMZ map too. As a Resurgence map, Ashika Island is much smaller than Al Mazrah, better suited for frenetic combat as squads are forced together. The map also features new Redploy Drones that can move to accommodate new circles and can be destroyed with lock-on missiles, denying other players the chance to reposition with a parachute.

Ashika Island also has a unique feature known as 'Restore Honor', which causes players to drop a dog tag after their first death in a Resurgence or Battle Royale match. Recovering the tag yourself, or getting a squadmate to do it, awards Cash and a single UAV ping, revealing nearby enemies and Supply Boxes. There will also be a unique Search and Seizure Contract, which tasks players with retrieving and moving a marked vehicle, and a new Public Event known as Data Heist, where players must begin downloading data and fending off Shadow Company forces to get in-match bonuses.

Warzone 2

(Image credit: Activision)

It's worth noting that Ashika translates, from what we could tell, to "Sea Lion". We'd love if these waddling beasts became a new killstreak, but sadly that doesn't seem too likely.

For those who didn't play it the first time around or just want a refresher, the "Resurgence" game mode from Warzone 1 was a scaled-down version of battle royale, taking place on bespoke small maps, and players could freely respawn. This meant battling other players was much more common and matches flowed more like standard arena multiplayer. However, respawning took a little time, and if everyone on your squad was dead at the same time, you were officially out of the match.

Warzone 2 Season 2 Weapons

There are five new Warzone 2 Season 2 weapons and guns, and a new lethal item for both Warzone 2 and Modern Warfare 2. They are:

  • ISO Hemlock Assault Rifle: Available in Season 2 battle pass for free.
  • KV Broadside Shotgun: Available in Season 2 battle pass for free.
  • Dual Kodachi melee weapon: Available in Season 2 battle pass for free.
  • Crossbow: Available during launch window as part of the Path of the Ronin Event.
  • Tempus Torrent marksman rifle: Coming later in season 2.
  • Shuriken lethal equipment: Coming later in season 2.

Warzone 2 Season 2 crossbow weapon first person view

(Image credit: Activision)

Warzone 2 Season 2 Operators

Ronin was first introduced in Season 3 of Warzone 1 as an Operator bundle but he's returning with Warzone 2 Season 2. Look out for the Path of the Ronin event and complete the seven challenges when Warzone 2 Season 2 launches to get exclusive rewards. Complete all seven challenges and you'll unlock the deadly Crossbow weapon.

Warzone 2 Season 2 Ronin operator approaching downed player

(Image credit: Activision)

Ronin returns in Warzone 2 because he could no longer be obtained in Warzone 1 when the map switched from Verdansk to Caldera. This is because part of the Ronin unlock challenges could only be completed in Versdansk, so they became impossible to complete, leaving players without the Operator.

Warzone 2 Season 2 Battle Royale balances and changes

Warzone 2 Season 2 provides a chance for the developers to make alterations to the formula and experience for fairness and general fun. No mention of weapon balances yet - those are going to be held off until the patch notes, according to the blog - but we do know some major upcoming changes, laid out below. 

Warzone 2 Season 2 Al Mazrah new Afghan landmark from Modern Warfare 2 (2009)

(Image credit: Activision)
    • The Gulag will return to a 1v1 mode, with the Jailer replaced by the domination system from Warzone 1
    • The weapon pool for the Gulag will be expanded to include Assault Rifles, SMGs and LMGs
    • Shotguns have been removed from the weapon pool
    • Victory in the Gulag will provide a larger payout and cash reward
    • The existing Gulag map will be altered to better suit these changes (though it's currently unclear how)
    • The minimum amount of cash in a found pile has been increased from $100 to $800, or $500 from cash registers
    • However, Cash will no longer be found in basic or legendary Supply Boxes
    • Contracts will have a smaller cash payout for successful completion
    • Stronghold AI damage will be changed (though not clear whether up or down)
    • Stronghold completion rewards will be changed (again, not clear whether for the better)
    • Loot will now drop out of ALL supply boxes and containers to be picked up manually, rather than appearing in a UI window
    • Medium and Large backpacks will no longer be available at all
    • Players who are killed will drop loose loot, rather than a backpack container with a UI window (like the containers mention above)
    • Buy Station spawn locations have been changed and made static
    • Loadout Drop Markers will have unlimited stock at Buy Stations
    • Customizable perks packages have been added to loadouts for players to obtain
    • Primary weapons will be cheaper to buy from Buy Stations
    • Loadout Drop Markers will also be cheaper to buy from Buy Stations
    • A second Loadout Drop Public Event will occur in each match, meaning players can expect drops on the first and fifth circles
    • Players now start with a 3-plate vest, offering greater initial protection
    • Varying sizes of vest will no longer be available in the loot pool
    • Players can now armor up WHILE sprinting through closed doorways
    • Armoring yourself allows for slightly faster movement than before
    • Both Al Mazrah and Ashika Island will now feature Personal Watercraft vehicles (PWCs) - small, jet-ski-like vehicles for two players. 
    • Downed plane at Sattiq Cave, making the whole area look almost exactly like the Afghan multiplayer map from Modern Warfare 2 (2009).
    • Underground cave network around Rohan Oil and Taraq Village.
    • Passenger train that goes around the map. Carries Supply Boxes full of loot and you must manually open doors between each carriage
    • Shadow Company's forces are getting bolstered by the Rusher: an agile, close-quarters fighter that can use smoke bombs, a short sword, and a pistol. They don't have much health but they can be very dangerous if you let them get too close.

DMZ season 2 balances and changes

The DMZ is getting its own tweaks and modifications, and will of course be available on the new Ashika Island map too, though these changes aren't as drastic an overhaul as Warzone Battle Royale itself. Here's a summary of what working mercenaries can expect to go up against in Season 2:

Warzone 2

(Image credit: Activision)
    • Season 2 will mark the first reset to the DMZ experience. There will be a complete reset of players' inventories (Contraband and Keys). However, players will keep all permanent content they earned in Season 1, along with their Insured Weapon Slots
    • Enemy behavior, types and spawn rates have been changed for a more natural difficulty curve in the early game
    • Spawn points and locations across the map are being tweaked to ensure that no squad "feels isolated or without loot and contract opportunities"
    • The new Crown faction will be available for Modern Warfare 2 owners
    • Missions associated with factions are being altered for a less steep difficulty curve and easier barrier to entry.
    • New faction missions will be added
    • Progress in faction missions will be refreshed

Modern Warfare 2 Season 2 multiplayer balances and changes

Multiplayer in Modern Warfare 2 Season 2 seems be getting modified less than the Battle Royale, with alterations more focused on fixes and small-scale balances that'll more affect the meta instead of the larger player experience. However, there are some tweaks that are worth mentioning, listed here:

A solider stares at the screen during Call of Duty: Modern Warfare's campaign

(Image credit: Activision)
    • Ranked play, built in collaboration with Treyarch and the Call of Duty League, arrives with Season 2
    • Uses league-approved rules, modes, and maps
    • Climb through seven Skill Divisions (Bronze up to Iridescent) over the course of Season 2 
    • Separate Ranked Play Ranks system (Rank 1 to Rank 50) that does not reset between seasons
    • Offers unique rewards, including Skill Division skins
    • Dome from Modern Warfare 3 returns
    • Valderas Museum from the Modern Warfare 2 beta returns
    • Zaya Observatory and Al Malik International arrive as large maps for Ground War.
    • Infected, Gun Game, and Grind added
    • Hardcore mode will return to multiplayer, replacing "tier 1"
    • Drop Zone, All or Nothing, and One in the Chamber are arriving later in Season 2
    • Raid Episode 2 will also be arriving later in Season 2
    • "Valentine's Day playlists" will return
    • Infinity Ward will hold a monthly Twitter Poll for fans to vote on an upcoming playlist for the next week, from a rotating pool

Phew, that's a lot on the way! Be sure to keep an eye on more blogs and patch notes from the developers to learn more about Warzone 2 Season 2 before it goes live.

Leon Hurley
Managing editor for guides

I'm GamesRadar's Managing Editor for guides, which means I run GamesRadar's guides and tips content. I also write reviews, previews and features, largely about horror, action adventure, FPS and open world games. I previously worked on Kotaku, and the Official PlayStation Magazine and website. 

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