For about as long as anyone can remember, Call of Duty has utilized a prestige progression system, but the upcoming Call of Duty: Modern Warfare will replace that system with something that looks more like Fortnite's battle pass. Although players will receive progression-based rewards that they'll get to keep, there will be a separate progression system that can only be advanced within each of the game's competitive seasons.
The prestige system was Call of Duty's bread and butter for many years. Once you surpassed the highest competitive rank, you would "prestige," therefore restarting the same progression system but with a higher rank. You'd then have to reacquire many of the guns and perks you had previously earned as you once again advanced through the game's progression system. Understandably, this became stale after some time, and while the thoughts of mirroring Fortnite may scare some hardcore Call of Duty fans, it may just work out for the better.
When you first begin playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, you'll be introduced to enlisted ranks. Players will be able to level their character from 1-55 by completing multiplayer matches and specific challenges, gaining various guns, perks, and unlockables along the way. The items rewarded while advancing through the enlisted ranks will stay with you, and you'll never have to repeat the process again after reaching the final rank. Instead, completing the enlisted ranks will allow you to unlock officer ranks, where the battle pass system comes into play.
Similar to other competitive online multiplayer games, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare will offer a seasonal progression system, called officer ranks, which you'll only be able to advance throughout each given season. You'll advance through this system the same way you would through the enlisted ranks system: by gaining XP. What also sets the officer ranks system apart though, is the fact that you'll be able to progress from level 1-100.
Additionally, the game will offer officer-specific challenges to complete. Just like enlisted ranks, you'll earn plenty of unlockables throughout your progression, as well as a ribbon next to your online name that will let other players know of your rank. When you reach 100, you'll unlock an animated ribbon and a special gun.
What is great about this new progression system is that, unlike Fortnite's battle pass, you won't have to pay for it. This new multiplayer format combined with what looks to be a compelling and highly realistic campaign should result in one of the best Call of Duty games that we've yet to see. Whether or not that remains to be true will be unveiled on October 25, when the game is released on PS4, Xbox One, and PC.