Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3: Best MW3 Loadouts

The best loadouts in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 can make the difference between living and dying, winning and losing.

Image via Activision
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The best loadouts make all the difference in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. If you don’t have the proper selection of perks, weapons, and equipment for your chosen playstyle, you’ll likely spend more time respawning than getting kills or playing the objective. Your loadout doesn’t need to revolve around your weapon choice, either. There are also best general-class builds you can use if you plan to hop between playlists and modes. We’ll go over our picks for the best MW3 loadouts in this guide.

The Best Loadouts to Use in Modern Warfare 3

First and foremost, the best loadout for you in Modern Warfare 3 might not be the best for someone else. And depending on whether you plan to focus on the objective or fragging, you’ll also want something different. I’ll be covering two loadouts I think are best depending on what role you want to play in a match, as well as a catch-all that you can use in any situation.

The Best Loadout for Objective Play in Modern Warfare 3

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If the objective is your only “objective” in a match of Hardpoint, Domination, or the like, the best loadout should focus on survivability and close-range combat. Most of the objectives in MW3 are in or around closed-off areas with short sightlines, so rocking weapons and gear that make succeeding there is essential:

  • Primary Weapon: An SMG like the Striker or Rival-9 or the Lockwood 680 Shotgun
  • Secondary Weapon: WSP Stinger for additional bullet hose-ness
  • Tactical: Flash or Smoke Grenade
  • Lethal (if using): Frag Grenade or Breacher Drone for removing enemies from the point
  • Field Equipment: Trophy System, A.C.S., Comm Scrambler (in that order)
  • Gloves: Scavenger Gloves
  • Boots: Climbing Boots
  • Gear: EOD Padding or Mission Control Comlink
  • Vest: Demolition or Infantry Vest

With the above loadout, you’ll be able to get where you need to be more quickly capture points more effectively and hold them down. Your goal with this setup isn’t to get the most kills — it’s to ensure your team wins. Don’t mindlessly throw yourself at the objective (like I’m prone to), and because you’re using an SMG or shotgun, you’ll need to stick to the flanks and short-range engagements. Once you’re on the point, though, you can be tough to dislodge.

The Best Loadout for Slaying in Modern Warfare 3

Screenshot by GameSkinny

The best loadout for those who don’t care as much about the objective or prefer deathmatch game modes is all about maximizing your lethality while minimizing your enemy’s awareness. That means suppressors and stealth perks, but you don’t want to sacrifice mobility. The build below has a bit of both worlds but focuses on your killing potential before anything else.

  • Primary Weapon: The best Assault Rifle you enjoy (I recommend the MCW with a suppressor and recoil-reducing perks)
  • Secondary Weapon: WSP Stinger
  • Tactical: Flash Grenade or Battle Rage
  • Lethal: None (see below)
  • Field Equipment: Munitions Box, A.C.S. (for leaving on the objective to help)
  • Boots: Covert Sneakers, Tactical Pads
  • Gloves: Scavenger Gloves
  • Gear Perks: Ghost T/V Camo, Bone Conduction Headphones
  • Vest: Engineer Vest

Lethal grenades are good in MW3, but I find that having an extra tactical for clearing corners or guaranteeing a kill. The extra gear perk lets you use both Ghost and Bone Conductions. The first lets you zip around the map without needing to worry about UAV pings, and the second gives you tons more intel on your enemy’s position. The rest of the kit ensures you’re lethal at all ranges and in all situations, and you’ll always have access to your weapon of choice.

The Best General Loadout in Modern Warfare 3

Screenshot by GameSkinny

While the previous two sections covered specific playstyles, the loadout presented here works no matter what you’re doing or how you want to play. It also gives you easy access to streaks and makes moving around the map less of a chore.

  • Primary Weapon: Your favorite weapon. I recommend the MCW, Striker, or Lockwood 680, but use whatever brings you joy.
  • Secondary Weapon: Renetti. The burst pistol is surprisingly usable in MW3.
  • Tactical: Flash Grenade
  • Lethal: None (see below)
  • Field Equipment: Munitions Box, A.C.S.
  • Boots: Climbing or Lightweight Boots
  • Gloves: Scavenger Gloves
  • Gear Perks: Mission Control Comlink, EOD Padding
  • Vest: Engineer Vest

You’ll need to modulate your playstyle if you’re using an SMG or Shotgun vs. an AR or Battle Rifle, but the rest of this loadout makes playing any mode more comfortable. You’ll also have an easier time getting your streaks up, should that be a priority.

There are tons of other options in Modern Warfare 3, but the ones we’ve laid out here are some of the best loadouts in MW3. Keep in mind that these setups are based on the beta period, so we’ll be updating them significantly once the full game releases. Stick around for more MW3 guides leading up to it.

About the author

John Schutt

John Schutt has been playing games for almost 25 years, starting with Super Mario 64 and progressing to every genre under the sun. He spent almost 4 years writing for strategy and satire site TopTierTactics under the moniker Xiant, and somehow managed to find time to get an MFA in Creative Writing in between all the gaming. His specialty is action games, but his first love will always be the RPG. Oh, and his avatar is, was, and will always be a squirrel, a trend he's carried as long as he's had a Steam account, and for some time before that.