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WEAPON SPOTLIGHT: KAR98K

07-26-2021 | Anthony Shew

Weapon Spotlight: Kar98k

Folks, we're back with another Weapon Spotlight to shine a light on what some may describe as a slightly controversial weapon in the Warzone space. While some find sniping in Call of Duty Warzone to be too easy for the lethality that it delivers, other find it to be a fun addition to the game that allows for a great change of piece from the automatic weapons that are so common to use in Verdansk. Either way, that makes this weapon worthy of a post so here we are.

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First, some quick history.

The Kar is practically an institution in the Warzone community. Because it has been a part of the game since the game's inception, the Kar98k has been dropping bodies since the beginning. Interestingly, the Kar is the only weapon (that we can think of right now, anyway) that has been a part of the Verdansk meta for 100% of the game's existence. To some, this weapon offers too much reward for too little risk or effort.

But, with that said, one thing has remained clear through the duration of Warzone's popularity: Game developers think that the Kar98k is balanced. Through so many waves of weapon buffs, nerfs, and rebalances, the Kar98k has gone untouched through it all. We think that speaks volumes about where this weapon stands as a member of the Warzone meta.

Unlock Criteria

To unlock the Kar98k, a player must reach Account Level 33. While this isn't exactly an instant unlock like some other weapons with lower unlock levels, the Kar98 is worth the wait if you are a player who has enjoyed sniping in other Call of Duty games. Or even sniping in other games, in general!

Break It Down

  • Damage

The damage of the Kar98k, while not the strongest in the sniper category, is great for its use case. While other snipers are clearly meant for standing on top of a roof and preying on longe range targets, the Kar98k actually has a profile that lends itself to being an assault rifle replacement. At super long, sniper-only ranges, the Kar98k can sometimes take three shots to kill. However, at ranges inside of 150-200m, the Kar can deliver two shot kills to the chest and stomach and one shot kills to the head. There is an odd thing that happens, though, with knocked enemies where the Kar will somehow take three shots to kill an already knocked enemy. So just make a mental note that can happen seemingly at random sometimes.

  • Bullet Velocity

Rather than talk about control, we talk about bullet velocity for snipers. In the case of the Kar98, bullet velocity is absolutely not best in class as far as snipers go. Looking at the rest of the characteristics for this weapon, though, this is to be expected. This sniper begs to be used as a run-and-gun (almost "assault rifle-ish") option that isn't meant for the deepest shots on the Verdansk map. This is not to say, though, that the muzzle velocity of this weapon is unmanageable, though. It make take some practice, particularly on targets that are moving across your view, but you can hit some great shots using the Kar.

  • Fire Rate

Fire rates are obviously slower than other weapon types when it comes to sniper rifles - but it still matters a ton when you're talking about lacing up targets downrange! The Kar is a bolt action rifle so you will need to reset your bolt every time you take a shot. However, this action doesn't take too much time and allows for you to recover from your previous shot (and reset mentally, in our opinion).

The only time you're not going to be happy with the Kar is when you need to reload. Each round has to be loaded one-by-one, making a full reload back to 5 shots take a sometimes painful amount of time. This can be mitigated, though, by interrupting the reload with a weapon switch so you can go back to putting rounds downrange with what you've got reloaded.

  • Range

The range of the Kar98k is actually an interesting topic. Depending on who you talk to, you'll get different answers. Some will tell you that the range on the Kar is terrible. However, we think that this answer is coming from people who don't quite understand that this weapon is meant for running-and-gunning rather than for rooftop hawkeye-ing. At nearly every reasonable range in Verdansk, the Kar nets a kill in two shots to the body and one shot to the head.

  • Mobility

Here's where things get fun with the Kar98. For most snipers, mobility isn't really much of a concern. The plan is to stand on a rooftop and hit something really, really far away. However, with the Kar, mobility is crazy high for a sniper. You can Scuf jump, double bunny hop, and slide cancel your way around with the Kar and scope in on targets quickly like any other sniper will not be able to.

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Let's Talk Attachments

As far as attachments go, you can check out our roster of Warzone players to find out what the best Warzone fighters are using.

Building up the Kar98k, 3 out of the 5 attachments that players use are practically universal. Monolithic Suppressor, Sniper Scope, and and Tac Laser (for super fast aiming down sights) all are pretty much must-haves. Barrels can vary depending on what style of Kar you are going to be going for. Basically, the earliest unlocked barrel has the worst range but the best movement while the last barrel has the best range but the worst movement. In our opinion, we're going with the last barrel, though, because the movement is still great even with it. Last, players are choosing between using the FTAC Sport Comb or Stippled Grip. Both provide aim down sights gains but have other more nuanced advantages.

Wrap It Up

To bring up the Kar98k is to start a discussion on the state of sniping in Warzone. Some players love it, some players hate it. We think it's fun - but we definitely understand the other side where it's annoying to get one-shotted across the map. With enough skill and practice, a player can complete dominate an entire quadrant of a map with a Kar98k. Love it or hate it, the Kar is a mainstay of the meta in Warzone and a top weapon in its class.