Modern Warfare 3’s beta looks and plays different this weekend thanks to a new update

Modern Warfare 3
(Image credit: Sledgehammer Games)

The second beta weekend for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (2023) has begun, and several large changes have been rolled out as part of a new update to add even more content and make a few tweaks to the game’s balance and appearance.

Players can now dive into two extra maps - Highrise and Orlov Military Base (Ground War), as well as the Search and Destroy mode and the all-new 3v3v3 mode, Cutthroat. Additionally, the level cap has been raised to 30, which will allow dedicated players to get their hands on more equipment and weapons. 

As detailed in the patch notes, some noticeable alterations have been made to the game’s user interface and experience. Playlist update notifications should now come through properly when you’re just hanging around in the menus, and a missing icon for the SVA 545’s Incursion XII Long Barrel Attachment has been amended. On top of that, enemy operators now have red nameplates above their heads, making them stand out a bit more.

If you’re someone who already had the chance to get stuck into the beta last weekend, you might notice a few changes in the strength and behavior of certain weapons. The Tac-Stance spread while sliding has been reduced for pistols, marksman rifles, light machine guns, assault rifles and submachine guns. Meanwhile, for the Striker submachine gun, minimum damage has been reduced, as has the near-medium, medium and far-medium damage. The range for near-medium and medium damage has been decreased, too, but the headshot damage and lower-arm damage multipliers have been boosted.

Movement animations of operators should now display properly after respawning, too, and 200ms have reduced the slide to sprint delay.

Otherwise, crashes have been fixed, collision has been added to certain areas in the Estate and Popov Power (Ground War) maps, and an issue where players were killed immediately after respawning near the yellow car in the Side Street of the Favela map has been ironed out. The Guardian-SC Killstreak has decreased health and a halved lifetime, and vehicles in Ground War no longer have limited fuel. Finally, the overhead camera sequence, which occurred upon respawn in the Hardpoint mode, has been removed.

This weekend’s Modern Warfare 3 beta is open to PC and Xbox players, as well as PlayStation. Those pre-ordered via PC on have been able to play since yesterday (October 12) via the early access period, but for everyone else, the open cross-play beta starts tomorrow (October 14). 

It remains to be seen if Modern Warfare 3 has what it takes to be one of the best FPS games. For more game recommendations, check out our list of the best multiplayer PC games.

Catherine Lewis
News Writer, TechRadar Gaming

Catherine is a News Writer for TechRadar Gaming. Armed with a journalism degree from The University of Sheffield, she was sucked into the games media industry after spending far too much time on her university newspaper writing about Pokémon and cool indie games, and realising that was a very cool job, actually. She previously spent 19 months working at GAMINGbible as a full-time journalist. She loves all things Nintendo, and will never stop talking about Xenoblade Chronicles.