Call of Duty's 'worst map in all of videogames' is only there by mistake

modern warfare 2019 shipment
(Image credit: Activision Blizzard)

Call of Duty's Shipment map is an absurd, churning meat grinder that's been a staple of the series since the early Modern Warfare days. It's a polarising thing, too: PCG's Morgan Park has called it "The worst map in all of videogames," lamenting that "Spawnkills are constant, survival feels random, and a lack of cover gives dominant killstreaks free rein to murder every living thing on the map". Sounds like a laugh to me.

I've got some heartwrenching news for Morgan: Shipment, the bane of his Modern Warfare 2 sessions, is only there because the devs forgot to take it out before they released the first Modern Warfare in 2007.

In a chat with Dexerto, COD's multiplayer design director Geoff Smith revealed that the inclusion of Shipment in the original Modern Warfare was "truly an accident". It was originally cooked up as a purely split-screen map, designed to host two players using the same cramped, fuzzy CRT screen. Being tiny, easily navigable, and made mostly from shipping containers, it was well-suited to the mode.

But it eventually shuffled over to the broader multiplayer playlist when other devs started using it as a testing space. And then, oops, nobody thought to take it out before putting the game on store shelves.

"Our MP lead at the time, when we went live, forgot to [pull] it out and there was no going back". And so, Modern Warfare came with a bonus map, and 16 glorious years of chaos ensued, to the delight and dismay of countless players. All because someone didn't have a close look at those final playlists.

Joshua Wolens
News Writer

One of Josh's first memories is of playing Quake 2 on the family computer when he was much too young to be doing that, and he's been irreparably game-brained ever since. His writing has been featured in Vice, Fanbyte, and the Financial Times. He'll play pretty much anything, and has written far too much on everything from visual novels to Assassin's Creed. His most profound loves are for CRPGs, immersive sims, and any game whose ambition outstrips its budget. He thinks you're all far too mean about Deus Ex: Invisible War.