Surviving the Undead Onslaught in Modern Warfare 3’s New Zombie Extraction Mode

  • Greg Burn

In the latest installment of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, prepare for a departure from the customary round-based zombie encounters. The new Zombies mode shifts its focus to extraction, breaking new ground with its large-scale operation. It's a departure from round-based play and even differs significantly from the objective-focused Zombie modes seen in titles like Black Ops Cold War or Vanguard.

Welcome to the high-stakes, trio-based PvE experience of MW3 Zombies, where players are offered the flexibility to chart their course of action. You can embark on looting sprees to collect valuable items, gear up, or immerse yourself in the story through Operation Deadbolt missions.

Your primary objective is to execute a successful extraction, which not only ensures the safety of your weapons and gear but also saves you from the dire consequences of defeat. Similar to the rules in DMZ mode, a victorious extraction means your inventory remains intact, except for your Insured weapon, which has a set of its own rules and weapon variety that you can familiarize yourself with in our dedicated guide.

Unlike previous versions, where waves of zombies were never-ending, here, a 45-minute match against the clock awaits. Keep a close watch on the countdown displayed on your HUD. As the timer runs out, a lethal gas engulfs the battlefield, reminiscent of a battle royale or DMZ gas collapse, threatening to eliminate lingerers who haven't reached an extraction point in time.

The map will present three extraction points, shuffled randomly, from which players can choose their escape at any stage of the game. The flexibility allows participants to dive into the match for short stints—whether it's mission completion, a quick loot grab, or both—before heading out at the preferred time.

Modern Warfare 3’s New Zombie Extraction Mode The map

However, if you find yourself caught as the match winds down and the gas starts to spread, you’re presented with one final opportunity to save your gear. As the map is consumed by the toxic fumes, your initial escape routes vanish, and one last extraction point emerges with roughly five minutes to spare. Make sure to consult your Tac-Map to locate this last-minute chopper evacuation point. Failure to make it to this final escape will result in the loss of all your carried items.

When you make it out during extraction, be aware of what you get to keep. Each player's choice of operator comes with backpack slots, allowing guns, equipment, perks, killstreaks, and gear pieces to be extracted and assigned to that operator. This feature is particularly handy for kitting out your character ahead of tougher missions or venturing into dangerous territories.

While the battlefield offers a variety of items with monetary value, from toothpaste to tech gadgets, you have the choice to either trade these at Buy Stations for points during the match or carry them out during extraction, converting their worth into XP. This can also speed up the recovery of any Insured weapons lost during unsuccessful missions.

It's critical to remember that weapon rarity levels and any upgrades obtained from Pack-a-Punch will not transfer after extraction. Therefore, it's advisable not to upgrade weapons unless you plan to utilize them within your current game. Additionally, it's wise to spend all your accumulated points at Buy Stations on necessary equipment prior to extraction as they will not carry over post-match.


Mastering the Chaos: Key Strategies for Modern Warfare 3's Zombie Extraction

In Modern Warfare 3's Zombie Mode, strategizing your survival takes place on the expansive new Urzikstan map from Warzone. Forget the old round-based challenges; instead, prepare for varying levels of zombie threats.

Your journey begins on the map's perimeter, where the threat is minimal. As you venture toward the map's center, the danger intensifies, reaching its peak at the core with a high-threat level brimming with formidable opponents. Keep an eye on your HUD – it's equipped with a threat indicator above your minimap to signify the zone you're currently in.

Staying on the map's fringe gives you the chance to gather equipment and build your arsenal before braving more perilous areas. Heading straight to the heart of the map without proper preparation isn't advised; the center teems with robust zombies resembling those from extremely high rounds (55+), which are notably tough to take down.

Venture Together for Survival

Although Modern Warfare 3's Zombies mode can support up to 24 players in a PvE trio setup, it also offers a "No Fill" option for a solitary plunge. Despite this, tackling challenges and confronting higher threat levels is daunting when flying solo, particularly when your gear is lacking. Collaborating with a team offers a distinct advantage.

Modern Warfare 3’s New Zombie Extraction Mode PvE

Accept and Accomplish Contracts

Amassing points is crucial for enhancing your weapons and gear, and contracts are a lucrative source for this. Mirroring the setup in DMZ mode, contracts come in various forms, including bounties, cargo deliveries, and territorial defenses, and are signposted throughout the map.

Start with contracts in the safer zones, building up your points and inventory along the way. Each completed contract fattens your wallet by 2,000 points and bestows a random reward.

Stocking Up on Gear 

Make sure to scour your surroundings, opening up opportunities to find premium weaponry, steadily accumulate points, and tempt fortune with the Mystery Box's Wonder Weapons. In this Zombies mode, there's no cap on the number of perks you can imbibe.

Perks manifest in the iconic form of Perk-a-Cola drinks, obtainable from marked machines, random rewards, or looted soda cans, which can be stashed in your backpack. These canned perks are single-use and grant the flexibility of usage whenever you deem fit during play or for later extraction. Detailed schematics also unlock the power to craft these perks permanently.

Modern Warfare 3’s New Zombie Extraction Mode Stocking Up on Gear

As for elevating your firepower, Pack-a-Punch machines are your go-to, albeit with some adjustments in operation specific to MW3. Schematics are also a valuable asset for your backpack, granting access to craft essentials like ammo mods, Aether Tools for rarity upgrades, and even Wonder Weapons. Remember to exfil with schematics to harness their crafting powers permanently, but note: the blueprints come with cooldown periods to prevent abuse.

Perspective Choices

A smaller adjustment in the Zombies mode is the choice between first-person and third-person perspectives. By pressing the down button on the D-pad, players can switch views, offering a change of visual experience and potentially a new tactical advantage.

These tips give you a baseline for surviving and extracting successfully in Modern Warfare 3's Zombie Mode. For further mastery, delve into our guides for rapid leveling and progression, including detailed walkthroughs on unlocking MW3's mastery camos.