Following on from a bit of a rocky start, CoD MW3 Season 2 is bringing new changes to Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 Ranked Play and we've got it all explained to see how it now works.


We'll also be including the new rewards, maps and restrictions brought about by the new season as they're sure to drastically change the meta.

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Perhaps it's for the best, as many players were not happy with the state of Ranked Play when it launched in January, taking to Reddit to voice their frustration, lamenting "horribly bad matchmaking" and the fact that the "maps cannot work in the current day and age" due to the introduction of the Tac Stance and the like.

Hopefully, the future is kinder to MW3 Ranked Play, or perhaps the next CoD instalment will do away with it all and start afresh. But for the here and now, read on!

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CoD MW3 Ranked Play explained: How does it work?

A character from Modern Warfare 3 season one wearing camouflage and holding a gun.
Modern Warfare 3 Season 1. Activision

Multiplayer Ranked Play in Modern Warfare 3 is an online 4v4 multiplayer competitive mode that uses the same rules, maps and restrictions as found in the Call of Duty League. When those rules are updated, CoD MW3 Ranked Play follows suit.

Developed by Treyarch in partnership with Sledgehammer Games, it builds upon the Ranked Play mode that was featured in Modern Warfare 2 (2022) by utilising Modern Warfare 3 updated maps, weapons and Loadout content.

"Ranked Play is a feature-packed, stand-alone competitive Multiplayer mode that leverages the Call of Duty League approved rules, restrictions, maps, and modes," said Activision in a blog post.

"Track your standing with a visible skill rating and earn rewards across multiple Skill Divisions and Tiers. The best of the best will be featured in the Top 250 Leaderboard and Division for the chance to prove themselves as the number one player. Look for further information, including the rewards for ranking up, in the following weeks."

Furthermore, Ranked Play is only available to players who have reached Rank 55 so it requires quite a bit of effort to be put in before unlocking it upon which you will be placed in one of eight Skill Divisions based on your Skill Rating (SR).

  • Bronze – 0-899 SR
  • Silver – 900-2,099 SR
  • Gold – 2,100-3,599 SR
  • Platinum – 3,600-5,399 SR
  • Diamond – 5,400-7,499 SR
  • Crimson – 7,500-9,999 SR
  • Iridescent – 10,000 SR minimum
  • Top 250 – 10,000+ SR

Players earnarn Skill Rating by competing in matches. The better you and your team do in a Ranked match, the more SR you'll earn towards ranking up and rising through the divisions.

At the start of each new Season moving forward, you'll drop three division Tiers and the highest you'll start in is Diamond 1 (as per an official blog post).

Ranked Play matches take place across three different multiplayer modes (as per the blog post linked above):

  • CDL Search & Destroy: No respawning; 1.5-minute round timer; Friendly Fire enabled. Supported maps include Highrise, Invasion, Karachi, Rio, and Terminal.
  • CDL Hardpoint: 5-minute time limit; 250 score limit; 60-second objective rotation; Friendly Fire enabled. Supported maps include Invasion, Karachi, Skidrow, Sub Base, and Rio.
  • CDL Control: 30 lives per team; 1.5-minute time limit; 3-round win limit; Friendly Fire enabled. Supported maps include Highrise, Invasion, and Karachi.

What's new in CoD MW3 Ranked Play Season 2?

With the introduction of CoD MW3 Season 2, there have been a whole host of new changes made to Ranked Play which have been laid out in the official patch notes.

We've got them here to save you from jumping all over the web!


Maps and Modes

  • CDL Search and Destroy
    • Maps Removed – Skidrow
    • Maps Added – Rio
  • CDL Hardpoint
    • Maps Removed – Terminal
    • Maps Added – Rio
    • Returning Map – Sub Base (was previously removed while an issue with P3 was investigated. A fix for this issue is now live with Season 2.)

Content Restrictions

  • Weapon Restrictions
    • Assault Rifles – SVA-545, RAM-7, BP50
    • SMGs – HRM-9, RAM-9
    • Sniper Rifles – XRK Stalker
  • Attachment Restrictions
    • JAK BFB
    • JAK Bullseye
  • Vest
    • Ninja
  • Boots
    • Tactical Pads

SR (Skill Rating) & Divisions

  • SR Tuning
    • The amount of SR earned after wins early-on in a player’s Ranked Play journey have been increased to help elevate players to their intended Skill Division faster.
    • To increase competitiveness of the Top 250 Skill Division and reduce SR inflation, the amount of SR deducted after losses for players who are well beyond their intended Skill Division has been increased substantially.
  • End of Season Skill Setback
    • At the end of each Season, your ending Skill Division will determine where you start the following season:
    • Bronze through Crimson I Players are set back three Tiers below where they finished in the previous season.
    • Example: A Player ending Season 1 in Gold III will begin Season 2 in Silver III.
    • Players Crimson II and above will start Season 2 in Diamond I.

What are the CoD MW3 Ranked Play Season 2 Rewards?

MW3 Ranked Play Rewards still showing two men dressed in black with guns
MW3 Ranked Play Rewards.

The CoD MW3 Ranked Play Rewards have been revealed by Activision and include a new Weapon Sticker, Loading Screen, and Emblems to name a few.

Rewards Reminder

  • Players can earn Ranked Play rewards in three ways:
  • Rank Rewards: Available at launch and can be earned in any Season.
  • Players can continue their Season 1 Rank grind in Season 2.
  • Season Rewards: Available at the start of a Season and only available in that Season.
  • End of Season Rewards: Rewards that are awarded after the Season has ended and represent either your highest attained Division or an active placement in the Top 250 Division.
  • Season 2 brings new Seasonal Division Camos to unlock in MWIII Ranked Play!

Season 2 Rewards

  • In addition to Rank Rewards, each Ranked Play Season will give players the opportunity to earn exclusive limited-time rewards.
  • Throughout Season 2, players can earn the following rewards:
  • 5 Wins: ‘MWIII Season 2 Competitor’ Weapon Sticker
  • 10 Wins: ‘Pro Issue Gutter MCW’ Weapon Blueprint
  • 25 Wins: ‘Farmed Them’ Weapon Charm
  • 50 Wins: ‘Hard Day’s Work’ Large Weapon Decal
  • 75 Wins: ‘MWIII Ranked Play Season 2’ Loading Screen
  • 100 Wins: ‘MWIII Season 2 Ranked Veteran’ Weapon Camo

End of Season Rewards

  • At the end of each Season, players will be awarded Skill Division rewards that represent their highest attained Division that Season or an active placement in the Top 250 Division.
  • Season 2 Division Rewards
  • Bronze: ‘MWIII Season 2 Bronze’ Emblem
  • Silver: ‘MWIII Season 2 Silver’ Emblem
  • Gold: ‘MWIII Season 2 Gold’ Weapon Camo and Animated Emblem
  • Platinum: ‘MWIII Season 2 Platinum’ Weapon Camo and Animated Emblem
  • Diamond: ‘MWIII Season 2 Diamond’ Weapon Camo and Animated Emblem
  • Crimson: ‘MWIII Season 2 Crimson’ Weapon Camo and Animated Emblem
  • Iridescent: ‘MWIII Season 2 Iridescent’ Weapon Camo and Animated Emblem
  • Top 250: ‘MWIII Season 2 Top 250’ Animated Weapon Camo, Animated Emblem, and Animated Calling Card
  • Players must finish in the Top 250 Division to qualify for these rewards.

Seasonal Division Operators

  • Earn a Skill Division Skin for use with both CDL Male & Female Operators on both Factions to represent your highest Skill Division. Once the Skins from one Skill Division have been unlocked they can be permanently used in following Seasons in Modern Warfare III and Warzone:
  • Gold - Iridescent: Earn the applicable ‘Gold Competitor’, ‘Platinum Competitor’, ‘Diamond Competitor’, ‘Crimson Competitor’, or ‘Iridescent Competitor’ Operator Skin set based on your highest Skill Division reached over the course of the Season.
  • Top 250: Unlock the ‘Top 250 Competitor’ Operator Skin set by finishing a Season in the Top 250 Skill Division.
  • Players must finish in the Top 250 Division to qualify for these rewards.

Ranked Play First Place

The player who finishes Season 2 in the #1 position on the Top 250 Leaderboard will receive an animated unique, one-of-a-kind Calling Card and Emblem for ultimate Season 2 bragging rights

When is the CoD MW3 Ranked Play release date?

Rio in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, aiming a gun.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

CoD MW3 Ranked Play Season 2 released Wednesday 7th February 2024.

The intial release of Ranked Play for MW3 took place on 18th January 2024 and Treyarch took to X (formerly Twitter) to mark the occasion.

Ranked Play has now received an update as part of MW3 Season 2

Initially it was set for Wednesday 17th January at 5pm, but Ranked Play was delayed due to a "discovered critical issue" but the CoD team assured us that their "teams are working to solve this issue" at the time as can be seen in the post below.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is available across PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One and Microsoft Windows.

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