Skip to main content

Call of Duty: Cold War sniper rifles just got a sweeping nerf

cold war sniper rifle nerf
(Image credit: activision)

Maining a sniper rifle in Call of Duty: Black Ops - Cold War just got harder. One week after launch, Treyarch has deployed Cold War's first major balancing patch with sweeping changes for every weapon class. While some guns have received minor buffs, all three sniper rifles were nerfed.

Across the board, sniper rifles now have a slower sprint-to-fire speed, the time it takes to aim-down-sights coming out of a sprint, from 400ms to 450ms. That sounds like a tiny difference, but it can surely be felt in the midst of Cold War's fast-paced gunplay. The second nerf is Shooting Move Speed (the speed you move while firing), which has been slowed by almost 3 miles per hour down to 5.13mph. These before/after stats come courtesy of CoD YouTuber Xclusive Ace, who went into more detail on Twitter than Treyarch did in the official patch notes.

Snipers are good.

This isn't a surprise—alongside the recently-nerfed MP5, sniper rifles have been a major powerhouse across every mode in Cold War. The snappy ADS time of the Pellington 703, in particular, makes it easy to chain together one-shot-kills on Cold War's smallest maps. That will undeniably be harder now.

After some initial testing, those extra 50 milliseconds can definitely be felt when sprinting with the Pellington. It has lost a bit of the "snap" to its aim that makes it so dominant in my matches. That's probably a good thing in the long run. The overwhelming power of snipers tends to ruin the balance of maps with long sightlines like Miami, Cartel, and the 12v12 Combined Arms maps. Time will tell if these adjustments make a meaningful impact on sniper rifle presence.

Loads of other guns were adjusted in this patch, too. Burst and semi-auto weapons that have struggled to find a place in Cold War's meta, have received well-deserved buffs. Check out the highlights below and read the full patch notes for bug fixes, map adjustments, and more.

Assault Rifles

FFAR1

  • Increased recoil.
  • Slightly reduced max damage by 3.5% (28 to 27).
  • Reduced max damage range by 34% (38m to 25m).

Submachine Guns

MP5

  • Reduced base effective damage range by 33% (15.24m to 10.16m).
  • Added more character to initial recoil by tweaking several bullet trajectories. (While this doesn’t affect the vertical/horizontal control stats in Gunsmith, this change makes it more difficult to stay on target by adjusting the trajectories of several bullets in the initial firing experience.)
  • (Update: These changes were unintentionally reverted in today’s update and will return in an upcoming update.)

Tactical Rifles

M16

  • Reduced max damage range by 15% (25.4m to 21.59m).
  • Increased sprint to fire time.
  • Slightly slowed move speed while firing.
  • Slightly increased delay between bursts.
  • Rebalanced fire rate bonuses on barrel attachments.
  • Slightly reduced effectiveness of laser attachments.

Tactical Rifle Charlie

  • Reduced max damage range by 20% (38.1m to 30.48m).
  • Increased sprint to fire time.
  • Slightly slowed move speed while firing.
  • Slightly increased delay between bursts.
  • Rebalanced fire rate bonuses on barrel attachments.
  • Slightly reduced effectiveness of laser attachments.

Type 63

  • Slightly increased fire rate.
  • Rebalanced fire rate bonuses on barrel attachments.

DMR 14

  • Slightly increased fire rate.
  • Rebalanced fire rate bonuses on barrel attachments.

Light Machine Guns

M60

  • Improved max damage ranges.
  • Improved movement speeds.
Morgan is an FPS specialist who spends way too much time trying to get his friends into Rainbow Six Siege. He also loves weird stealth games, immersive sims, and having new memes explained to him by his partner.