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Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War dev unveils Outbreak skill upgrades

Published: 13:50, 25 February 2021
Treyarch
Call of Duty Cold War screenshot showing zombies
Call of Duty Cold War

In anticipation of Season 2 of Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War and the hot new mode, Outbreak, Activision and Treyarch shared the new skill upgrades.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is debuting its second season today, and Treyarch prepared a hefty update to mark the occasion. You may want to skim over the 1.12 patch notes because there's a lot to cover, in addition to the shifting Zombies meta. 

As you'd expect, Outbreak is among the most anticipated additions to Season 2, as it brings a huge new open-world area for Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War players to explore.

Hand in hand with the map and other more obvious changes comes a slight Zombies meta shift, courtesy of new skills upgrades. Upgrading them, however, is no walk in the park, and Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War players should find Refined and Flawless Aetherium Crystals a bit more difficult to amass. 

"As Requiem agents are aware, completing the 10th round of a traditional Zombies experience rewards one Raw Aetherium Crystal, with one more given on top of that with a successful exfiltration. In Outbreak, they can earn one of these crystals after completing one experiment, plus one more with a successful exfiltration.

Because Refined and Flawless Aetherium Crystals are rarer in nature, they are rewarded upon completion of larger milestones. These include completing higher numbers of objectives in Outbreak, or reaching higher rounds in traditional round-based Zombies matches", they wrote.

Treyarch Call Of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Call Of Duty: Black Ops Cold War

Each weapon class that has its own skill upgrades can be amped up with the new Aetherium Crystals, and the upgrades affect weapons you pick up as well as the starting one. The only one not getting a direct damage boost is the Melee category whose Tier IV upgrade grants players a bit of healing for melee attacks.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War's new Frenzied Guard gets a huge duration boost at Tier IV, and adds enemy slowing at Tier V. Frost Blast and Energy Mine get their own powerful upgrades at Tier V, which are Zombie insta-kill and successive-stuns, respectively. 

Healing Aura gets superpowered at Tier IV and V; Ring of Fire gets even deadlier and runners get even faster with Aether's Shroud. 

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War is getting seven perks with a "bold new taste", and the Tier IV and V superpowers extend to weapon mods too, with more napalm, cryofreeze and shatter blasting than usual. 

You can have a look at all the Zombies meta changes on Activision's website .

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War - meet the operators

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A man with an axe running through a forest in SCUM
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War - Adler, Russell

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