Call of Duty: Modern Warfare PC system requirements demand a whole lot of RAM

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
(Image credit: Activision)

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare is about to kick-off its open beta on PC, and just ahead of the launch, Activision has revealed the minimum and recommended system requirements for the game – with the latter demanding 16GB of system memory.

Activision reminds us that these specs are “for the beta only”, but given that the game hits shelves in just over a month on October 25, we can’t imagine that the devs have misjudged things so badly that much – if anything – will change.

Anyhow, here are the specs for the beta in full:


  • OS: Windows 7 64-bit (SP1) or Windows 10 64-bit (1709 or later)
  • CPU: Intel Core i5 2500K or AMD equivalent
  • Graphics card: Nvidia GeForce GTX 670 2GB / GTX 1050 2GB or AMD Radeon HD 7950
  • HDD: 45GB
  • Memory: 8GB
  • DirectX 12


  • OS: Windows 10 64-bit (latest Service Pack)
  • CPU: Intel Core i7 4770K or AMD equivalent
  • Graphics card: Nvidia GeForce GTX 970 4GB / GTX 1060 6GB or AMD Radeon R9 390 / AMD RX 580
  • HDD: 45GB
  • Memory: 16GB
  • DirectX 12

So, the good news is that Modern Warfare’s system requirements aren’t too demanding in general, with the recommended graphics card allowing a GeForce GTX 970 or Radeon RX 580.

But as we mentioned at the outset, the sticking point for many will be likely be the fact that while you can get away with 8GB of RAM as a minimum, 16GB is recommended.

These days, 16GB of system memory seems to be swiftly becoming regarded as the amount gamers should run with, as we’ve seen other games recommending this quantity of RAM – such as Control to pick a recent example (while others like Battlefield 5 or Forza Horizon 4 are demanding 12GB, which is still more than the 8GB that many folks still happily run with).

Remember that we’re talking about recommended requirements, not minimum specs to run the game, though – and at least the good news is RAM prices are nicely affordable these days, and reportedly set to get more reasonable still

DX12 on Windows 7?

The other interesting point here is that we noticed Modern Warfare stipulates a DX12 system even as a minimum requirement, so you won’t be jumping into the beta on DX11.

So that means the latest episode of Call of Duty is Windows 10 only, then? Well, apparently not, because despite insisting on a DX12 system, as you can see above, the minimum spec says that supported operating systems are Windows 7 64-bit and Windows 10 64-bit.

So while Windows 8 gamers can forget it – all three of them, ahem – apparently Windows 7 is good to go, unless some kind of a mistake has been made with the spec details here. Perhaps Infinity Ward has achieved this DX12 trickery via Microsoft’s recent work to get DirectX 12 games running on Windows 7 (which Blizzard used to produce a DX12 version of World of Warcraft for Windows 7).

Although if that is the case – and we have no idea, we’re only guessing here – then Windows 7 gamers won’t be getting the best experience in terms of smooth frame rates. That’s because DX12 games won’t run as well on the older OS because it doesn’t have the same optimizations employed on Windows 10.

Anyhow, it’ll be interesting to see how Call of Duty: Modern Warfare runs on these operating systems (and in general) when the open beta begins later today at 10am PT (6pm UK time). Note that this is only for those who have pre-ordered the game at retail or on – other PC gamers will have to wait until Friday, September 20, at 6pm PT (which will be 2am early Saturday morning for those in the UK).

Anyone can pre-load the Modern Warfare client on now, though, to be ready for action when kick-off time rolls around.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).