Heartbeats and Thermals and Lag, Oh My!

The Pursuit of Happiness

Sniper shots ring out in the distance. Bullets fly overhead. Explosions can be heard around the corner. I’m 2 kills away from my tactical nuke. The tension is making me shake and sweat. Trying to keep my cool, I repeatedly and frantically check my left and right. Lucky for me I did, because I catch someone sprinting towards me. Before he can pull up his weapon, I unload my SPAS-12 on his ass and tell him to sit down. Feeling pumped, I check both sides again, anxiously awaiting my next victim… Then I died. From a Grenade Launcher. Fired by UrMom4Dessert, who I murdered what seemed like only moments ago… And that’s when I start yelling at my TV. This is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 as I know it.

Every Modern Warfare 2 player is plagued by certain pet peeves. Some of these peeves are alleviated by patches to the system. But most of them are just a part of the game, whether you like it or not. So it has become our call of duty to find a way to enjoy this game, and for most of us, that means getting a higher kill/death ratio. That said, let’s take a look at all the things that keep us from achieving that high k/d.

Newb Tubes

I hate these things. Even when I use them I hate them. It is by far the cheapest way to kill someone, period. And when someone combines it with Scavenger and Danger Close, things get real fucked up. When this happens, I just switch lobbies. Sure, he or she may not be invincible, but all those double kills and triple kills they get cut off your team’s kill streaks. So even if you manage to ruin that newb tuber’s killstreak, it doesn’t matter because he’s massacring your entire team. The only way to defend yourself is to equip a Blast Shield to one of your classes and hope for the best. And if you can’t beat him, join him- whip out your newb tube class and see how THEY like it.


When I played Call of Duty 4, bullet lag was a big issue for me. I like my bullets to go where I’m aiming at and instantly. That didn’t happen for me in COD4 when it came to sniping. It drove me crazy, and as a result, I didn’t play it much. Thankfully, Infinity Ward has, as far as I can tell, completely killed off this kind of lag in Modern Warfare 2. But hosts are a completely different story. Whoever is host has a crystal clear advantage. You see it whenever you get killed by them- those 3 bullets you fired? They never happened on the host’s screen. No, on their screen you look like an idiot. And he’s calling you expletives. How do you avoid this frustration? Simply play the game more attentively. The reason your bullets never fired is because you’re  looking at what happened on HIS screen milliseconds ago. You’re lagging. If you constantly look around and check behind you, you’re more likely to see him or her before they can see you. This can also be taken as a general tip for anyone who wants to become better at the game.

Thermal Scopes and Heartbeat Sensors

As much as I don’t like thermal scopes, I’d have to say they’re not that big of a deal. The only maps I ever get killed on by thermal scopes are Wasteland and Afghan. And besides, you can just use Cold Blooded to counteract them. As for heartbeat sensors, I’ve fallen in love with them recently. I can totally understand why people hate them- I’m asshole when I use ’em! For some reason people think that perks like Steady Aim and Scrambler are better than Ninja (in non-hardcore matches). Or they figure that not many people use heartbeat sensors, which is true. But Ninja PRO is incredibly good- it makes your footsteps silent. I don’t think I need to explain why it’s so useful. But for some reason, even that’s not enough incentive for most people to use it. If you hate heartbeat sensors, then man up (woman up?) and use Ninja for cryin’ out loud! And for the record, Scrambler sucks.


Akimbo Rangers: At least they’re not using a SPAS-12 which has a much farther range, or Blinged 1887s. Campers: Just be as stealthy as you can! Equip a shotgun, Marathon, Cold Blooded and Ninja, and try and take over their camping spot for yourself. Or just avoid the place they’re camping. That works too. Snipers don’t always kill one hit: Complaining about this is like complaining that pistols aren’t one hit killers when you shoot someone in the head… you know you can shoot again, right? And if you’re really that picky, just transfer over to hardcore. If you want a detailed look at all the weapons, damage multipliers and tons of other useful information, check out this link. It helps to know all the technical details.

In the end, there is simply nothing we can do about certain injustices in video games. Things like care-package glitching are inevitable. And some things are just part of the game. This may come off as harsh, but get over it and try to enjoy the game for what it is- a broken but somehow addicting Call of Duty game.