We may earn commission from links on this page. Our editorial is always independent (learn more)

Call of Duty Vanguard Zombies: Maps, camos, perks, gameplay and story

Start singing the Cranberries song now!

cod vanguard zombies

If you’re looking for the skinny on Call of Duty: Vanguard zombies, you’ve come to the right place for flesh-eating insights! The Call of Duty: Vanguard release date and launch time are very soon, and we know a lot about what the situation will be with zombies in the new game.


Call of Duty: Vanguard will be with us later this week and we’ve now found out what changes Vanguard will bring to Warzone – and those changes will be big with a brand new Warzone map on the way in December.

But back to our brain-hungry frenemies! Here is all we know so far about zombies in Call of Duty: Vanguard.

Does CoD Vanguard have zombies?

The dead will indeed be rising once again as zombies are confirmed to be in Call of Duty: Vanguard, and the Dark Ether storyline will be moving onto its next phase.

Zombies have become a staple of the CoD franchise now, for better or worse, and that is not set to change any time soon. In fact, we could have the biggest zombie mode to date on our hands with Vanguard.

Who is making CoD Vanguard zombies?

As revealed by Sledgehammer Games, it will be Treyarch that will be handling all things zombie in Call of Duty: Vanguard. The team of developers at Treyarch certainly know what they are doing with CoD Zombies as they were the ones behind bringing it to us in the first place – they created the original CoD Zombies experience in 2008’s World at War.

What does the CoD Vanguard Zombies mode entail?

The main CoD Vanguard Zombies content will be bundled together in an “objective-driven Zombies experience” titled Der Anfang, which translates into English as The Beginning.

You can tackle the zombie apocalypse alone or with friends, much like in previous games in recent years that have had a heavy zombie focus. Treyarch being the people behind this should mean we are in for another fun and chaotic experience – no matter how you choose to play it.

CoD Vanguard Zombies gameplay footage

CoD Vanguard Zombies gameplay footage is starting to emerge in several streams and uploads, and here is one that will show you a lot of what is to come! Take a look below to see some zombie action:

More details are emerging about CoD Vanguard Zombies, so watch this space. We know that players will get these 11 unique Covenants to use at launch:

  • Bloodlust: Melee attacks do more damage and heal you.
  • Resurrectionist: Revive allies faster.
  • Brain Rot: Chance to turn enemies to your side.
  • Cryofreeze: Chance to slow enemies.
  • Death Blow: Critical kills return bullets to the clip.
  • Ammo Gremlin: Stowed weapons refill ammo from stock automatically.
  • Dead Accurate: Consecutive hits on the same enemy do more damage.
  • Splatterfest: Enemies killed by explosions may explode.
  • Unholy Ground: Deal more damage while stationary.
  • Cull the Weak: Deal more damage to slowed or stunned enemies.
  • Mother Lode: Chance to keep Equipment after using it.

What is the CoD Vanguard Zombies story?

The CoD Vanguard Zombies story will pit you against a villain named Wolfram Von List, who is working with the grimly named Kortifex the Deathless. The pair are intent on raising the dead and using them to help turn the tide of war in their favour – and we have to stop them. With Treyarch at the helm, it sounds like this story could tie in directly with events from Call of Duty: Black Ops – Cold War and its Dark Aether storyline.

CoD Vanguard Zombies main quest release date

The only thing we can say with certainty here is this – the CoD Vanguard Zombies main quest will not be releasing alongside the main game on 5th November. Treyarch has said that it will be coming in the following weeks, so we expect it to land this side of Christmas, but we will let you know when we hear anything more concrete.

We would predict that the CoD Vanguard Zombies main quest release date will occur in late November or early December 2021, but we will be sure to update this page when a precise date is confirmed.

CoD Vanguard Zombies maps

In terms of CoD Vanguard Zombies maps, we know that Der Anfang will include four main locations when Call of Duty: Vanguard’s zombie mode launches.

The developers have stated that fans will experience “the ruins of Stalingrad, the war-torn farms at Merville, the rooftops of Nazi-occupied Paris, and the Japanese army camp at Shi No Numa” while playing CoD Vanguard’s Zombie content.

“All of these locations, trapped within Kortifex’s barrier spell, have dark, disturbing visual touches,” the official description adds. Ooh, spooky!

CoD Vanguard Zombies mastery camo

CoD Vanguard Zombies mastery camo.
Commit to the grind to unlock CoD Vanguard Zombies mastery camo.

Seasoned Call of Duty players will know that you only get the special patterns known as mastery camos when you fully commit to the grind, with each colourful decal being unlocked by levelling up the weapon in question.

Golden Viper, Plague Diamond and Dark Aether (pictured above) sound like they are going to be three of the hardest-to-get mastery camos in CoD Vanguard Zombies. To get them, you’ll need to level up all of your weapons a serious amount through the ‘camouflage complete challenge’.

Every time you level up a weapon by a multiple of 10 (so hitting level 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 or 60), you’ll unlock some sort of camo that comes with multiple colour options.

You need to level up a weapon to level 70 to unlock the mastery camo associated with it, and then there are special requirements you need to hit to unlock Golden Viper, Plague Diamond and Dark Aether. This is what you need to do to unlock them:

  • To unlock the Golden Viper camo, you must unlock 10 camos in CoD Vanguard Zombies
  • To unlock the Plague Diamond camo, you must unlock Golden Viper on every gun in a Vanguard Zombies weapon class
  • To unlock the Dark Aether camo, you must unlock Plague Diamond in every weapon class in Vanguard Zombies

Basically, if you want the best camos, you need to put in some serious grind in every single weapon class!

CoD Vanguard Zombies perks

Another thing to think about is CoD Vanguard Zombies perks! To get a perk in CoD Vanguard Zombies, you need to find and activate one of the five perk fountains in Stalingrad. Each of these fountains has a different perk attached, and they are:

  • Fiendish Fortitude – increases health
  • Diabolical Damage – increases critical damage
  • Venomous Vigor – boosts your regeneration speed
  • Demonic Frenzy – boosts reload speed
  • Aethereal Haste – boosts movement speed

Each of these fountains can be levelled up, too. Tier one is free, but the other levels have a cost. Tier two costs 2500 essence, tier three costs 5000 essence, and tier four costs 7,500 essence.

The higher the tier, the more powerful the perk – so, for example, you’ll get the highest health possible if you have Fiendish Fortitude activated at tier four.

You get essence by defeating enemies, but your perk tier will be reduced by one every time you die. You won’t lose the perk altogether if you die on tier one, though, so that’s something!

Read more on Call of Duty:

CoD Vanguard Zombies entities and artefacts

You will also collect artefacts in the Zombies mode, with each one being linked to a powerful entity that will help you fight against the zombies. Those entities are:

  • Saraxis the Shadow – Spawns an Aethereal explosive, dealing massive damage to enemies who set it off.
  • Bellekar the Warlock – Cloaks you in Dark Aether, masking your presence from enemies for 5 seconds.
  • Inviktor the Destroyer – Sparks a ring of Aethereal flame to boost damage for anyone within its radius for 15 seconds.
  • Norticus the Conqueror – Summons a frigid vortex, damaging enemies with the initial blast and slowing those that enter.

And if you want to know the full ins and outs of what is coming, Treyarch has a whole blog post that is about all things zombie!

CoD Vanguard Zombies trailer

Get ready to see the latest members of the undead as the CoD Vanguard reveal trailer is below for you to watch right now! Caution: may contain brains.

Follow Radio Times Gaming on Twitter for all the latest insights. Or if you’re looking for something to watch, see our TV Guide.


Visit our video game release schedule for all upcoming games on consoles. Swing by our hubs for more Gaming and Technology news.