One of the hotter topics in the lead-up to the launch of Call of Duty: Vanguard is how the Prestige system will work in multiplayer. For the past two years, Activision has fundamentally changed how Call of Duty players level up compared to every game dating back to 2007. In Vanguard, a similar Prestige system has been confirmed to be returning, but perhaps with a twist for veteran players.
The Prestige system in Vanguard
Since Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, players have gone through various Prestige systems, unlocking different icons after resetting their level. This stopped once players hit max Prestige, which was usually after 10 levels. Players re-locked their Create-A-Class items every time they reset to enter a new Prestige but they also received rewards for doing so.
Starting with Modern Warfare 2019, that system is no more. Instead, players reached level 55 and then entered Prestige mode, where they received a new icon after unlocking a certain number of levels. With every new season, players’ levels were reset to 55 so they could grind through the Prestige levels again.
With Vanguard, Sledgehammer is keeping an almost identical Prestige system as the previous two years. Players will go through the first 55 levels to unlock all of their loadout items, like weapons, perks and killstreaks. After this, they’ll enter seasonal Prestige levels. If Sledgehammer keeps the same system as Cold War, then players can rank up to level 200 to complete their Prestige levels for a season. After that, they can rank up to max level 1,000.
It’s currently unclear what the developer’s plans are for after Season 1, which is set for Dec. 3. In the month before that, players will get to level up to an unspecified max rank after reaching level 55. They’ll likely unlock rewards along the way after reaching level 55 but those are currently unknown. Players can earn character XP by playing Vanguard multiplayer and Zombies and Warzone Pacific, which releases with Season 1.
Another unknown aspect of the Prestige system is how challenges will work. In the past, players could complete seasonal challenges for calling cards and XP to put towards leveling up. Activision stated that there will be “a ton of challenges” and that the Prestige system in Vanguard “is a love letter to grinders.” However, it’s not yet known what they meant by either of these statements.
Players can see what Vanguard has to offer and start leveling up on Nov. 5.
Joey Carr is a full-time writer for multiple esports and gaming websites. He has 6+ years of experience covering esports and traditional sporting events, including DreamHack Atlanta, Call of Duty Championships 2017, and Super Bowl 53.