Best competitive loadout for Hardpoint and Control in MW3
The best competitive loadout for Hardpoint and Control in MW3
Image via Activision

Best competitive loadout for Hardpoint and Control in MW3

Dominate the respawn modes

It’s been officially confirmed that Hardpoint and Control are the competitive respawn modes in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. While this isn’t a shock to many people, you still might some guidance on crafting the best Hardpoint and Control loadout in MW3.

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There are a ton of new elements to consider when trying to design a competitive loadout in MW3. You have to consider all of the new Vests, perks, Field Upgrades, and other aspects of a complete loadout. Luckily, this guide goes over all of those elements and I will recommend certain loadout items depending on whether you’re an assault rifle or submachine gun player.

Best competitive loadout for Hardpoint and Control in MW3

The best competitive loadout for Hardpoint and Control in MW3
Image via Activision

The first part of any loadout is deciding what weapon you are going to use. For the most part, you’ll be using an AR or SMG, with the occasional sniper rifle thrown in there. If you’re like me, you always make multiple loadouts with both ARs and SMGs so you can be ready for anything in a given match. Either way, once you have decided what weapon to use, you can go about customizing the rest of your loadout.

To help you out, I have offered a couple of the meta loadouts in the early going of MW3. These loadouts are for the MCW and the Rival-9, the meta AR and SMG as of right now. There are no additional weapons professional players are using in respawn modes, so I recommend not using anything else.

MCW Loadout

  • Optic: MK. 3 Reflector
  • Muzzle: L4R Flash Hider
  • Barrel: 16.5″ MCW Cyclone Barrel
  • Underbarrel: XTEN Phantom-5 Handstop (accuracy)/DR-6 Handstop (mobility)
  • Rear Grip: RB Claw-PSL Grip

Rival-9 Loadout

  • Muzzle: Purifier Muzzle Brake S
  • Barrel: Rival-C Clearshot Barrel
  • Underbarrel: DR-6 Handstop
  • Stock: MTZ Marauder Stock
  • Rear Grip: Rival Vice Assault Grip

With your weapon decided, you can look at the rest of your loadout and customize it depending on the weapon you pick. Below, you will find the best Vests, perks, Equipment, Field Upgrades, and killstreaks to use for Hardpoint and Control in MW3. I have also specified which items are best for AR and SMG players so you can pick the ones right for your weapon of choice.

Best Vests for Hardpoint and Control

  • Infantry Vest – Recommended pick for all loadouts, as it increases Tac Sprint duration, reduces its cooldown, and gives you access to the Running Sneakers Boots. The only pick for SMG players.
  • Engineer Vest – Primarily useful if you’re a slower AR player. The main benefit of the Engineer Vest is gaining two Gear slots, but the downside is losing your lethal slot. You can also see enemy equipment through walls, which might be useful to identify Trophy Systems.

Best Perks for Hardpoint and Control

Image via Activision
  • Gloves Marksman Gloves (Best for all loadouts), Assault Gloves (SMG players), Quick-Grip Gloves (Preferred by Flex players)
  • Boots Covert Sneakers (A strong pick for AR players, especially since you likely won’t use the Dead Silence Field Upgrade), Tactical Pads (Perfect for faster SMG players who like to fly around the map)_
  • Gear Tac Mask or EOD Padding (Both are viable. You can equip both of them if you use the Engineer Vest)

Best Field Upgrades for Hardpoint and Control

  • Trophy System – The top pick for AR players. These help prevent early grenade spots from killing or damaging your team.
  • Dead Silence – The top pick for SMG players. Especially useful if you plan to run the Tactical Pads Boots, as Dead Silence gives you a way to stay silent at times in conjunction with that perk.

Related: The best competitive loadout for Search and Destroy in MW3

Best Lethals and Tacticals for Hardpoint and Control


  • Semtex Grenade – Primarily useful in respawn modes so you can quickly get out a grenade onto an objective. The Semtex is also easier to throw into tight spaces.


  • Stun Grenade – The only real option for respawn modes. Slows enemies down, which is crucial to ensuring they can’t reach an objective or set up spawns for their team.

Best Killstreaks for Hardpoint and Control

Image via Activision
  • Cruise Missile – The perfect streak to use at the start of a round to move enemies inside a safe space or to stop them from staying on an objective. Will be countered by Trophy Systems.
  • Mortar Strike/SAE – Either streak works to prevent enemies from moving into a specific area or to block them from staying on an objective.

And that does it for the entire Hardpoint and Control loadout in MW3. You should now be able to craft the best loadout for yourself in respawn modes regardless of whether you’re an AR or SMG player.

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Joey Carr
Joey Carr is a full-time writer for multiple esports and gaming websites. He has 7+ years of experience covering esports and traditional sporting events, including DreamHack Atlanta, Call of Duty Championships 2017, and Super Bowl 53.