CoD: Vanguard Battle Pass - Season 1 Start Date And Preseason Explained

Vanguard's post-season content will bring the return of Shipment for multiplayer, Verdansk Warzone events, and the new Caldera map.

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Call of Duty: Vanguard is out today with a huge amount of content. That includes a full campaign, 16 standard multiplayer maps, 4 Champion Hill maps, and a Treyarch-developed Zombies mode, but Activision's blog post in late October already detailed some of the post-launch content coming to the game. As this is the new era of a unified Call of Duty that includes continued Warzone additions, it's a little bit complicated. And you won't have to wait that long to play it.

Just like Black Ops Cold War's launch, players currently have small "Preseason" to start before the first full season begins. Vanguard's Preseason will run from November 5 to December 2. During this time, Vanguard players can continue to make progression in Black Ops Cold War's Season 6 battle pass, and Warzone's Verdansk and Rebirth Island maps will still be available as well.

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Vanguard's Preseason

Prior to the beginning of Season 1, Call of Duty Vanguard has a preseason period for the battle pass. This adds 24 free Vanguard tiers to the Season 6 pass available now via Black Ops Cold War, and it doesn't require a purchase. You'll move through them by playing both multiplayer and Zombies, and progress via Warzone and Black Ops Cold War counts toward the tiers, as well.

Vanguard's Preseason will also add the fan-favorite Shipment map from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare shortly after the game launches. This version of Shipment arrives on November 17 and will feature a new World War II-themed reskin of the map. The blog post says more details of post-launch offerings would be given prior to Season 1.

Vanguard's Shipment
Vanguard's Shipment

Additionally, two final events were detailed for the Verdansk map before the new Warzone Pacific Caldera map is released with Season 1 on December 2.

First, Operation: Flashback is a special limited-time mode that Raven Software created to celebrate and bring back classic moments from the last 18 months in Verdansk. It's uncertain how this mode will play, but Activision says more information on Operation: Flashback will be revealed prior to launch on November 18.

Vanguard's Preseason and Season 1 roadmap
Vanguard's Preseason and Season 1 roadmap

Then starting November 24, players will be able to collect intel to uncover more information about the upcoming Caldera map with an event called Secrets of the Pacific. This limited-time event will give players intel on Caldera and its various points of interest prior to its launch in December, but only by completing challenges across Vanguard and Warzone. More details on this event are coming in mid-November.

From November 30 to December 1, the Preseason will also include the Last Hours of Verdansk, which is vaguely described as watching to "see what happens to Verdansk before Warzone goes dark to prepare for Caldera." It's uncertain if this is a playable mode or just a cinematic story.

Vanguard's Season 1

Season 1 begins on December 2, bringing new maps, a new battle pass, two free weapons, and more content and challenges for Zombies mode. Here are all the current details of Treyarch's Der Anfang Zombies map for Vanguard. Season 1 also marks the release of Vanguard's integration to Warzone with the Caldera map.

Call of Duty: Warzone is a free-to-play game, but Vanguard players will get 24-hours of exclusive access to the new Caldera map at the start of Season 1. During this exclusive access, Warzone's smaller Rebirth Island map will remain unlocked for everyone else.

Warzone Pacific will introduce a new dogfighting mode called Vanguard Royale. This mode adds planes to Warzone, letting players take to the skies or operate AA guns to combat aerial attacks. Later in Season 1, Verdansk's Plunder mode will arrive to Caldera, which has players fighting to earn the most cash for a win.

While specific details are still vague for Vanguard and Warzone's various events and battle pass content, we'll likely get more details closer to the start of the season. Players can currently get a head start on leveling two Vanguard weapons in Warzone, as the STG 44 assault rifle and the M1 Garand tactical rifle were added as free tiers of the Season 6 battle pass.

Warzone Pacific will introduce the recently revealed Ricochet Anti-Cheat Driver to hopefully help cut back on Warzone's cheating problem. And being built on the same tech and engine as Call of Duty: Vanguard, Warzone Pacific will support fully optimized cross-play, cross-progression, and cross-gen support.

Call of Duty: Vanguard launched on November 5 for Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PS4, PS5, and PC. The new game comes as Activision Blizzard faces a lawsuit from the state of California over alleged harassment and discrimination against women.

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