Call of Duty Ranked Play and Zombies modes temporarily disabled to fix a progression issue that reset player progress (Update)

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 and Warzone Season 2 is launching on February 7 with new maps and modes for multiplayer, battle royale, and zombies.
(Image credit: Activision)

What you need to know

  • Call of Duty servers encountered an error overnight that is reportedly wiping playing progression for weapons, Ranked Play, and battle passes.
  • To combat the issue, the Call of Duty teams have disabled player access to Ranked Play and Modern Warfare Zombies while the bug is under investigation.
  • There is no time frame for how long the issue will take to resolve or whether player progression will be restored.
  • An update was deployed to fix the progression issue and restore player progress across impacted games.
  • All Ranked Play modes and the Champion's Quest for Warzone remained disabled until progression restoration was complete.

Update #2 (Feb. 24: 12:31am ET): Ranked play modes for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 multiplayer and Call of Duty: Warzone are now back online. Players can access Modern Warfare Zombies, and Warzone's Champion's Quest challenge has also been reactivated.  As previously mentioned, a Double XP event had been activated for the weekend. The end of the double XP event has been extended until Tuesday, February 27 and players can also collect double the skulls for the currently active Horde event.

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There are still minor bug fixes for the COD team to roll out heading into the weekend, including an issue with player-controlled cruise missiles in multiplayer patches not behaving accordingly.

Update #1 (Feb. 23, 7:47pm ET): The official Call of Duty social media accounts have announced a fix has been deployed to restore player progression in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, Modern Warfare 2, and Warzone. However, Ranked Play modes and the Champion's Quest challenge for Warzone will remain disabled until the progression restoration process is completed. Double XP has also been activated.

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Original story: Players who logged into Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 or Warzone in the early morning were staring at an unfortunate surprise where their player level and weapon progression had reset to 1. Along with player progression, some found their purchased store bundles inaccessible. Issues were reported across Modern Warfare 3, Warzone, and Modern Warfare Zombies. 

The Call of Duty team has posted on social media that access to Ranked Play in both Modern Warfare 3 and Warzone and player access to Modern Warfare Zombies has been disabled while the issue is being investigated. The Call of Duty: Warzone Champion's Quest has also been disabled, though a fix for loadouts has already been deployed. The issues are actively being investigated.

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CharlieIntel initially reported on Twitter that Skill-based Match Making, the algorithm used to balance matches in online play, had also been affected. According to players, matchmaking rules for Modern Warfare 3 were dramatically relaxed, and matches seemed easier to handle while the issues were ongoing. While it is still possible to access multiplayer (at least at the time of this writing) to try out Modern Warfare 3 without active SBMM, players will likely see unusual behavior with their player ranks and weapon progression if they play during this time. 

Sledgehammer Games, the lead studio behind Modern Warfare 3, recently gave players an explainer of how SBMM works for the massively popular first-person shooter. The developers had even shared plans to create an experimental playlist to allow players to join matches without SBMM, though no date for the experiment had been publicly shared. 

The outage comes just on the heels of Call of Duty being declared the best-selling game of January 2024. The massively popular first-person shooter franchise from Activision is under the wing of Xbox following Microsoft's purchase of the publisher for a record-breaking $70 billion, officially closing last October. In January, Microsoft laid off 1900 employees, including many from Activision and Activision-owned studios responsible for Call of Duty's development and ongoing maintenance. 

Xbox has also had a challenge with adding Call of Duty titles to Xbox Game Pass, partly due to the prolonged legal challenges to the deal that limited collaboration between the companies involved in the merger until the deal was closed. 

This is a developing story...

Cole Martin

Cole is the resident Call of Duty know-it-all and indie game enthusiast for Windows Central. She's a lifelong artist with two decades of experience in digital painting, and she will happily talk your ear off about budget pen displays.