Modern Warfare 3 Maps Strategy Guide

There are a total of 16 multiplayer maps in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 base game and many more from the DLCs. Each of these MW3 multiplayer maps have unique attributes. Some of the maps suit tighter, intense close-combat fights; others are more suited to snipers and long-ranged assaulters, while a few offer equal opportunities for all types of classes. We have compiled the perfect Modern Warfare 3 Maps Strategy guide to help you conquer all these locations and win every match.

Modern Warfare 3 Maps Strategy

Here’s the list of the maps in Modern Warfare 3, with a few general tips to get you started.

  1. Arkaden
  2. Bakaara
  3. Bootleg
  4. Carbon
  5. Dome
  6. Downturn
  7. Fallen
  8. Hardhat
  9. Interchange
  10. Lockdown
  11. Mission
  12. Outpost
  13. Resistance
  14. Seatown
  15. Underground
  16. Village


Arkaden is a SAS vs. Spetsnaz map. It is set in a heavily demolished mall in Germany. As the noun ‘mall’ suggests, the map consists of quite a few tight corners, steep stairways and narrow corridors.

Hence this map is particularly suited to users of Sub-Machine Guns and Shotguns, and of course explosives. The map features both in-doors fighting and out-doors combat, though the former will be more dominant due to the relatively larger in-doors area and its strategic importance.

When it comes to team-based game-modes like TeamDeath Match or Search and Destroy, the SAS spawn in a walkway in the streets of the map. They must then make it into the mall from the front sides, with a restaurant being adjacent to the entrance of the mall.

The Spetsnaz spawn at the other end of the map, termed as the ‘back alley’. Through the back alley, the Spetsnaz can enter the mall either through the furniture area or the café. There’s also a crashed helicopter next to the double-stairs near the furniture room, which can be an interesting position to defend.

Once upstairs, the central area of the mall, which is also the central area of the map is exposed. This is the place where most of the fighting is going to happen.

The main area also has an information booth, which can be a tactically useful position. However, don’t use it too often, as from the enemy’s perspective it can also be one of the most obvious hiding places in the map.


Bakaara is a PMC vs. African Militia map. It is set in a sub-urban rundown African city, with the central area being a crashed helicopter. It has quite a bit of similarity to the map Crash from CoD4.

Due to the open and relatively large nature of the map, it is best suited for long ranged weaponry like Assault Rifles, LMGs and Sniper Rifles.

The PMC spawn nearer to the crashed helicopter, much like in Crash from CoD4. They can then head directly towards the restaurant and neighboring houses, but the best thing would be to abandon the parameter patrol and stay near the crashed chopper zone.

The African Militia spawn near a truck, and have a huge opportunity of covering the borders of the map, provided they have adept snipers and assaulters. The more rush-oriented players can then sprint into the internal area, and the map can be easily defended. However, it is not as easy as it sounds, since a clever opposition will always be ready.

Contrary to the recommended weapons, it is extremely important in this map to actually stay in its interiors, as sprinting near the parameters of the map will make you an easy target for snipers and even assaulters.

It’s best to stick to Assault Rifles in that case (unless you can snipe well), where you have good enough mobility (which is significantly lowered by LMGs), decent range and ability to do close-combat.

Additionally, it’s very important to abandon the sprint button in this map and opt for cover-to-cover movement, checking corners carefully, since a bullet can come flying from just about anywhere.


Bootleg is a PMC vs. Spetsnaz map. The map is set around an Asian town and market place. It is generally large, but due to its almost claustrophobic nature, it is best suited for Sub-Machine Gunners. Assaulters and LMG users also have a role to play, as there are quite a few narrow-but-long areas in the map, suited for such weapons.

The PMC spawn near the market, while the Spetsnaz spawn near the scaffolding. Honestly, neither have a good strategic spawn advantage; which team covers the essential regions of the map first determines the victor.


This map generally has poor visibility due to the color combinations, and the rain noise can be troublesome for those who wish to do some foot-hearing. In fact, this map is generally troublesome for most, as it is difficult to go from one place to the other in this map.

Additionally, there are lots of opportunities for campers in this map. Generally, the map seems awfully similar to Chinatown from CoD4. Your best bet in this map is to flank the enemy once their position(s) is known.

Since getting from one end to the other is a difficult task, it is generally best to cover selected regions instead of trying to dominate the map.

The core of this map is the central building, which has round about six different entrances. It is very unwise to be in the center of that area, unless you have your team covering the entrances.


Carbon is a PMC vs. African Militia map. This map is medium ranged, but has a variety of types of areas suited for all four weapon types.
The PMC spawn near a big pipe while the Militia spawn near a Factory.

The advance for both teams is pretty straightforward, and involves frontal fighting with a bit of cover options in nearby buildings and factories. The best idea in the map is to run and gun, as it is quite straightforward. The only complexity it has is from the different types of buildings.

For aggressive players, it’s all about sprinting from one building to another, and clearing them out. Anyone who can do that in this map is going to totally dominate it.

Additionally, for team games, a sniper or two can assist the more aggressive players by monitoring the open areas, while the assaulters can move forward slowly and take out any flankers or left-behind enemies.

Success in this map depends more on raw combat skills and basics instead of strategy, so this is definitely a map where the real pros are going to shine. Of course there are places for campers here, but campers won’t be too successful as the map is more about aggressive play then it is about hiding and patience.


Dome is a Delta Force vs. Spetsnaz map, and is perhaps the smallest map in MW3. Due to its small and wide exposure, all weapons except Sniper Rifles should do the trick here.

In Dome, Delta Force spawns near a tank where Spetsnaz spawn near the satellites. Delta Force can infiltrate the offices immediately and cover the entire place from there, where Spetsnaz will have to work their way through the center satellites and dome. The dome can be covered by Spetsnaz, but you can expect opposing assaulters to have their eyes open for any sign of movement.

This is an extremely intense map. The best thing here is to remain in cover and try not to sprint too much. The ideal method is to remain steady in the exposed regions, whereas in the offices you should have the shotgunners and SMG users patrolling. The map overall resembles Vacant from CoD4, with intense fighting both in the open and inside the corridor-filled offices.


Down turn is a Delta Force vs. Spetsnaz map, set in a demolished New York City. This is an extremely testing map, as it has both indoor fighting and fighting in the streets.

All types of weapons can be used in this map, but it’s best to use a setup that gives you decent range, has good in-the-face fighting capability, and allows you to be mobile.

Delta Force spawns near a few taxis whereas the Spetsnaz spawn near a truck. Both teams have equal opportunities to enter the narrow underground subway area, which extends through majority of the map.

Both teams also have equal opportunities of occupying neighboring buildings.For anyone who plays Battlefield 3 multiplayer, this map is very much like Operation Metro with a bit of Seine’s Crossing included in it.

The underground areas are great for flanking and on-front gun fights. For anyone on the streets, the dangers really come from the neighboring buildings, like the bank and rental area near the Spetsnaz spawn and the stock traders near the Delta Force spawn.

The key in this map is to immediately occupy the buildings to cover the streets, preferably with snipers, LMGs and/or assaulters. SMG and Shotgun users can try to flank or engage from the underground subway.

Alternatively, assaulters and SMG users can try and go through the streets by using the dozens of car wreckages and abandoned tanks as cover; the choice is rewarding, but there are risks as the neighboring buildings are bound to have snipers waiting for anyone to do so.


Fallen is a Delta Force vs. Spetsnaz map. It is set in a derelict Russian ghost-town. There is a lot of greenery in this map as nature gradually takes over the place. This map is suited for snipers, as there are plenty of high spots and good camouflage.

The Delta Force spawns next to a set of grey apartments, while the Spetsnaz spawn near a playground. The map is quite similar to Overgrown from CoD4, with a lot of opportunities for snipers and plenty of buildings with high story windows.

This map is all about camping in windows if you’re a sniper. If you’re an assaulter, you could follow the same footsteps, though snipers would be a huge threat, or you could do what SMGs can do in this map, which is to stealthily clear out each house, moving from house to house.

Of course it isn’t as easy as said, since transitioning from one house to another will require you to expose yourself for a short while, which can get quite dangerous.

It’s very essential to use the destroyed trucks and in-tact cars as cover, but it’s always better to stay inside where snipers can’t see you.


Hardhat is a Delta Force vs. Spetsnaz map. It is set in a construction site of medium size, and is optimum for SMG lovers and Shotgun users.
The Delta Force spawn next to the trailer, whereas the Spetsnaz spawn near blocks of cement.

This map somewhat has a resemblance to Backlot, especially in-terms of density. It is a map with a lot of cover points, and some open areas for assaulters to have a look at. The key in this map, as was with Backlot, is non-stop motion.

Hardhat requires that you be in constant motion. Unlike Backlot, there are no camp areas for campers here; the ones that do resemble camp areas are quite poorly covered and susceptible to infiltration.

In short, Hardhat is an all-out map, and there is little to do here except not staying in one position. Expect to see the best 1v1 players on top in this map.


Interchange is a medium sized map featuring Delta Force vs. Spetsnaz action. This map is uniform throughout in its open spaces, and is best suited for Assault Rifles and LMGs.

The Delta Force spawn next to some barbed wires, whereas the Spetsnax spawn near crates. Both teams have a great strategic starting region, as they can either advance cover to cover, or attempt to flank each other.


This map is best suited for team-based games, as it has little to no indoor areas. Additionally, just about everything here is destroyed, so you don’t need to worry about exploding cars.

There is a lot of cover in this map for anyone and everyone, and assault veterans who are adept at using cover and firing are going to excel in this map.

The idea here is to advance incrementally. There is little opportunity for hardcore rushers to go straight and attack, as there is ample amount of cover. However, aggressive players can opt to flank, which can be done quite efficiently in this map.


Lockdown is a medium sized map featuring Delta Force vs. Spetsnaz action. This map is set in an urban European city center. Due to its large nature, medium to long-ranged weapons like Assault Rifles, LMGs, and Sniper Rifles will do the trick.

The Delta Force spawn next to some cars, whereas the Spetsnax spawn near a dumpster. Once again both teams have equal opportunities in this map. The most essential thing in this map is to quickly occupy the buildings, whether sniper, assaulter or SMG user.

Why? Because it is very important to make sure enemy snipers don’t secure the buildings, as that could make life for players on the streets very hard.

Generally, if your lost in this map or don’t know what to do, then you are definitely going to feed kills to the enemy team. The map really requires one to be aware of it, because snipers and assaulters await those who are lost.

It’s best to be mobile in Lockdown, but the mobility should be limited to some objective. Without any objective or plan set in mind, wandering will definitely get you killed easily in this map.


Mission is a PMC vs. African Militia map, set in an uneven African colonial settlement. The map’s build is quite unique, as it has an area that is raised while another area that is dug into the ground.

Due to this height difference and the general openness of this map, it is best suited for snipers. In Mission, the PMC spawn in a church while the African Militia spawn near a cart.


This map is great for kill-based game modes like Free-for-all, as it has tons of tight corners and plenty of sniping opportunities. Snipers with good reflexes can move from one position to another, quickly using the slope in the map to their advantage.

Meanwhile assaulters and LMGs can look around corners and take down anyone who needs to be taken down. The general idea in this map would be to not camp at one place. However, that doesn’t mean blindly sprinting either; Mission requires tactful and incremental play.


Outpost is a Delta Force vs. Spetsnaz map. It is set in an icy Siberian airbase, and is one of the smaller maps in Moder Warfare 3. Since the map is so small, the instinctive pick would be SMGs and Shotguns.

However, snipers can also find themselves efficient in this map due to its open nature. In Outpost, Delta Force spawn near a garage, while Spetsnaz spawn near a yellow building.

The idea in this map for both teams – or for anyone actually, would be to go from one warehouse to another. This is an ‘infiltrate and clear every building’ type of a map, so your best bet is try to stay indoors, going from one place to another.


Whether you like it or not, campers can do quite well in this map if they are at a good strategic location. No, you cannot camp inside the fuselage of the half airplane, but there are tons of other places you could.

However, the best player would definitely be the one to enter one warehouse, clear it, and then disappear into the next warehouse, and repeat. Snipers have a few spots like the hangar walkway and a tower, but both of them are heavily exposed.

If you think you can handle it, then this can be a very good map for sniping as well.


Resistance is a GIGN vs. Spetsnaz map. It is a well-lit map with a mixture of area-types. There are some regions which are great for snipers, while many are fantastic for close-quarter combat. You can use any sort of weapon in this map, though shotgunners would need to be a tad bit careful.

The GIGN spawn in the streets, while the Spetsnaz spawn near a café. The core objective of this map for both teams is to make sure they avoid exploding cars, as there are quite a few of them in this map.

There are a lot of silly places to camp here, such as the fountain and some balconies. The balconies can actually be vital places for snipers in team-play, while the assaulters push through the streets and other narrow regions.

You can expect a lot of rocket launcher fires in this map, particularly aimed for the generous amount of intact cars. The places to watch out most are the two roads that run almost parallel to each other.

As stated above, both of them have quite a few cars. The best bet would be to take the subway stairs and go from the pharmacy area instead of using those two roads as your main areas of play.


Seatown is a SAS vs. Inner Circle map. It is set in a coastal town and marketplace. This map is best suited for Assault Rifles, SMGs, Shotguns and/or LMGs.

The SAS spawn in a circular tower, while the Inner Circle spawn near a green door. The Inner Circle spawn gives them a bit of an advantage as the can spread out quickly. The SAS spawn near the outer ring of the map, and must make their way through narrow corridors.


It’s important that a few long ranged weapon-holders quickly take position in the few open areas in this map, while the close-quarter players patrol the narrow alleyways and the notorious market area. This map is all about area domination – taking control of the important areas will definitely earn you kills and success.

The other important thing is this map is the difficulty in flanking. Flanking isn’t impossible, but there aren’t too many routes for it, particularly for the SAS team, as the Inner Circle have a good opportunity to spread out (if they are a good team) in all the important areas.

You could say that in team-focused game modes, this map favors the Inner Circle more than SAS. That doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s impossible for the SAS to respond.

Good sniper support for the SAS team can really destroy the Inner Circle in the extreme left and extreme right regions of the map, and skilled SMGs or shotgunners can bag tons of kills in the middle, provided they have good skills.


Underground is a SAS vs. Spetsnaz map. It is set in and around a London subway station. This is a versatile map, so any kind of weaponry can work here.
The SAS spawn near the streets, while the Spetsnaz spawn near an orange barrel.

Both teams have great chances of entering the central train areas, where intense fighting can be expected. Additionally, both the SAS team players can choose to immediately enter the train station and cover that region.

The entrance to the station is a place where a lot of bodies hit the floor, since the Spetsnaz will obviously look to push forward, while the SAS cover the area. However, this isn’t the integral part of the map.

The most integral aspect of the map is the good amount of flanking chances. For SMGs and shotgunners, it’s best to avoid the main areas like the central train area and the train station entrance, and choose to go through the offices or back alley for flanking.

There is a balcony of sort which will probably house a lot of snipers, and the close-quarter players can take them out easily in a successful flank.

Flanking is the core of this map. In team games, a successful flank could earn your team victory quite easily.


Village is a PMC vs. African Militia map. This map has a variety of terrain types and quite a bit of greenery, so all kinds of weapons can work here.
The African Militia spawn near a tanker while the PMC spawn near a cave.

The PMC can quickly enter the cave and a great opportunity to flank the African Militia. The African Militia can enter the village area directly and try to reply to the flank.


The village is particularly great for close-quarter combat, while the caves are very friendly to snipers and assaulters. It’s very important to watch out in the areas near the large tower, as these will be the most fire-fight focused areas, and have multiple entrances which greatly increase the chances of flanking.

In terms of teams, this map doesn’t offer much chance to either team. The PMC can sit in the caves and neighboring areas, while the Militia sit in the village, both expecting something to happen.

Alternatively, both teams can go all-out against each other in center areas, and just hope luck favors them. The more plausible strategy would be a mixture of these two. Long ranged players of the PMC can use the caves and surrounding areas, while the assaulters try to push forward in the central area. The SMGs can try to flank the Militia.

The Militia can send their SMGs to the village area for defending that region, or flank from the smaller bridge on the extreme side of the map. Additionally, they can send their snipers and assaulters to the center areas.

Content Collection 1 Maps

The first Downloadable content collection which costs 1200 Microsoft Points and contains Four Multiplayer Maps and 2 Spec Ops Maps which are listed as follow:

  • Black Box (Multiplayer Map)
  • Liberation (Multiplayer Map)
  • Overwatch (Multiplayer Map)
  • Piazza (Multiplayer Map)

Content Collection 2 Maps

Costs 1200 Microsoft Points. Contains maps of both Multiplayer and Spec Ops. Here is the list:

  • Foundation (Multiplayer Map)
  • Oasis (Multiplayer Map)
  • Sanctuary (Multiplayer Map)
  • Getaway (Multiplayer Map)
  • Look out (Multiplayer Map)

Content Collection 3 Maps

This collection costs 1200 Microsoft Points and contains both Multiplayer and Spec Ops maps. Here is the list:

  • Vortex (Multiplayer Map)
  • U-Turn (Multiplayer Map)
  • Intersection (Multiplayer Map)

Content Collection 4 Maps

This is fourth and final Downloadable Content Collection and costs 1200 Microsoft Points. Here is the list of its maps:

  • Decommision (Multiplayer Map)
  • Off Shore (Multiplayer Map)
  • Board Walk (Multiplayer Map)
  • Gulch (Multiplayer Map)
  • Parish (Multiplayer Map)

Face off Collection

  • Aground (Multiplayer Map)
  • Erosion (Multiplayer Map)

Haider is a freelance contributor, who loves video games, playing guitar, and aviation. He is a competitive FPS player and also enjoys exotic RPG games like Diablo and Xenogears (his favorite game of all time) ...