Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War launched November 12, 2020 with a total of 8 6v6 multiplayer maps. While there are solid, well-designed maps, the low amount was no doubt disappointing. There is hope, however, as Treyarch is following Infinity Ward’s lead with post-launch content. Everything, including new maps, is coming to every Cold War owner for free. That’s excellent news, and with Season One concluding and Season Two kicking off, new content is on the horizon.
Cold War also continues the long tradition of bringing back old maps. Since Season One kicked off, three classic Treyarch maps have been remade or remastered for Cold War (Nuketown from Black Ops and Raid and Express from Black Ops II). While it doesn’t look like Season Two features any returning maps, there’s still an extensive library of classic Treyarch maps just waiting to be remade or remastered.
We’ve skimmed through World at War, Black Ops, Black Ops II, Black Ops III and Black Ops 4 to find nine maps that add variety to Cold War’s library of maps and compliment the story Treyarch is attempting to tell. The only rule? A focus on maps that haven’t been remade or remastered. As much as we love the likes of Firing Range, Jungle, Slums and Hijacked, we’re going to focus on other maps that deserve attention and love.
Aquarium (Black Ops III)
The only map from Call of Duty: Black Ops III to make the list is also one of the game’s best maps. Featuring a wide array of diverse encounters, players can find success with various play styles. Aquarium’s three-lane design allows for close-quarters combat down the center and both medium and long-range encounters down the sides. Most importantly, Aquarium creates opportunities for Black Ops Cold War’s most underutilized feature, water combat. Despite swimming and underwater combat returning in Cold War, no 6v6 map utilizes this feature, unless you want to count the small pools in Raid and Miami. From a story perspective, an abandoned Aquarium makes for a spooky location Stitch can take Adler. Remaking or remastering Aquarium for Cold War would be simple as the map didn’t have many distinctive advanced movement areas.
Carrier (Black Ops II)
Taking to the seas, this classic Black Ops II map puts players on a Chinese aircraft carrier. Designed with various obstacles that help facilitate different playstyles, the map makes it easy for players to use different weapons and still be successful. The center of the map is filled with debris, giving players ample opportunity to make their way across the map. The east side features lower levels that provide flanking opportunities, and to the west lies a small building players can run through for cover. Carrier is a well-designed map with enough medium-range combat spaces, power positions for long-range combat, and a few convenient areas where short-range combat is possible. For story purposes, the aircraft carrier could easily be turned into an American or Soviet carrier. That one simple change would give Cold War players an excellent map.
Castle (World at War)
A masterpiece of a map, Castle features a unique design with various power positions for players to fight over. Featuring shrines, towers, cliffs, and a dojo, is as beautiful to look at as it is to play thanks to its many cherry blossoms. It’s not hard to imagine this map looking even more stunning on current and next-gen consoles. Despite a focus on power positions, the map was designed to keep the battle cycling between critical locations. Every power position is open enough for an enemy to lob a lethal projectile inside, and the map successfully allows for all types of weapons. Castle was popular in World at War, and shockingly, it hasn’t been re-released in subsequent games. Though it would be hard to make the setting work in Cold War, it’s a map that deserves a second shot.
Dome (World at War)
Dome is to Treyarch what Shipment is to Infinity Ward. It’s the smallest map ever created for a Treyarch game and facilitates close-quarters, fast-paced gameplay. With narrow passageways, a handful of raised platforms and flanking routes, Dome features more controlled chaos than Shipment’s outright chaos. There’s even an indoor section that allows players a space to hide from airborne kill/scorestreaks. While Cold War has a few small maps like Nuketown 84, it lacks the Shipment style map players love to jump into for quick, chaotic matches to level up weapons and complete challenges. While the setting may need to be updated to make sense within the time period, Dome would make an excellent addition to Cold War’s lineup.
Grid (Black Ops)
This medium-sized map would add a new snowy area to Black Ops Cold War and serve as a Soviet intelligence station. It comprises small buildings, hangars, and generators with a radar array on end and a snowy forest area on the other. Grid fits so well because it’s a fun map that caters to different playstyles and is already kind of in the game. While Grid is based on the Duga-1 radar array in real life, the Duga-2 Radar Array appears in the mission ‘Ashes to Ashes’ in Cold War’s campaign. Though located in different locations in Soviet-controlled territory, there’s enough similarity to where Grid could be reskinned to look like Duga-2 or kept as is to be a new location NATO visits in their ongoing quest to rescue Adler. Either way, the addition of Grid is a win for players.
Hacienda (Black Ops 4)
The only map on this list from Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, Hacienda stands as one of that game’s top maps. A well-designed three-lane map, Hacienda features a lavish vineyard estate owned by a crime boss. It was a beautiful map to look at with some great gameplay opportunities for medium and short-range combat with a central pathway through the villa and then two excellent sides for flanking opportunities. As for Cold War, the estate could serve as a hub for a Perseus agent and become a top NATO target to gather intel on the organization’s next moves. If Treyarch were to pull just one map from the still recent Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, Hacienda would be the best choice.
Hanoi (Black Ops)
A medium-sized map, Hanoi takes players into a North Vietnamese prison under the dead of night. Despite being dripped in darkness, Hanoi was a fun map, offering plenty of indoor and outdoor spaces to engage in firefights. It also helped that Treyarch littered the map with plenty of natural lighting so that players didn’t blend in too much when running around in open spaces. Hanoi players well and comes with the added benefit that it fits well with the developing story. We know Russel Adler has been captured and is being taken somewhere to be tortured by Stitch. The Hanoi prison makes a lot of sense for Stitch to take Adler, and the fact that Season Two takes us to neighboring Laos means a trip to Hanoi in the near future might not be that far off.
Meltdown (Black Ops II)
Can it be a Cold War-era game without a nuclear power plant? With close to twenty nuclear power plants built across the Soviet Union (including the infamous Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant), it’s a little shocking that the original Black Ops didn’t feature a map based off a power plant. It wasn’t till Black Ops II that we got a Nuclear Power Plant based map with Meltdown, though the map takes place in Pakistan. Meltdown as a map is broken into different sections; the reactor chimneys, reactor control buildings and the cooling fluid disposal area. Medium-range weapons are the best way to engage with the map, but power positions on the control buildings’ top floors make for some long-range combat. Meanwhile, the paths between the chimneys are perfect for close-quarters action. Meltdown would deliver needed nuclear power to Cold War’s map lineup.
Turbine (Black Ops II)
A sandy and rocky map, Turbine is a rather large map built for medium and long-range combat. A large Turbine bisects the map for players to run through to get from one side to the next quickly. Numerous buildings overlook the space, giving snipers something to do. Meanwhile, rocky pathways to the north and south of the map open up opportunities for medium-range combat. From a variety perspective, Turbine would provide a needed large map to the rotation that still caters to more than just snipers. It could also serve as a sequel to the map Satellite due to their visual similarities. Treyarch could position Turbine as the location the victors of Satellite took the crashed KH-9 satellite with the losing team attempting to take it back. Cold War not only gets a large map, but also one that can continue the story of another map.