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Call of Duty Black Ops 2 Tips and How to Play Hardcore Game Modes Online

Updated on November 20, 2012


In this guide I will talk about strategies that you can use to be much more successful when playing hardcore game modes on Black Ops 2. The guide will talk about for general game modes, with weapons, and set ups that will benefit you the best when trying to compete online.

Before I get started let me say that you should feel free to follow me on Twitter @Johnrr631992, or I post all of my guides there first, 24 hours before they become available on Google, and will be posting a LOT of guides for Black Ops 2.

Also you can send me a message on Xbox, @ MKS JohnR.. space between the two, or comment below to ask questions.. Thanks for reading.

ALSO!!! - I am starting a new clan. If you are reading this feel free to message me on Xbox Live, or on Twitter. As of now I am only open to people on Xbox, but will be moving multi-platform in December/January. So please feel free to contact me with questions. Also I will have a Website specifically for the clan, and it will be pretty big.

Hardcore Modes summary

The Hardcore game modes is a popular type of game mode on the Call Of Duty series based for a few reasons. First off, the hardcore game modes gives a more realistic interpretation of the game meaning that bullet are much more effective and powerful, and can actually kill you in one hit. For instance in core, you may have to hit someone two or three times with a shotgun, or 5 or 6 times with an assault rifle to put them down, but in Hardcore you can do this in 1 shot, or two shots.

Another popular reason to play the hardcore game modes is that you are then able to play a game mode without a mini map showing your position EVERY time you fire. In Hardcore someone has to be using that as their kill streak for their team to see you. Overall this game mode gives a more accurate reading, and a more fun and fair game type.

The hardcore game modes are effective, and feature all the most popular core modes there are, and allow you to play them in the same manner. There are somethings that you want to change on your classes and weapons, but overall this mode is very effective for any gun. So below I will talk about the effectiveness of other weapons, and how you should play hardcore to be the most successful.


Okay, so in all honesty EVERY weapon is effective in hardcore. It is simply how you use these weapons. You can essentially one shot someone with a pistol if hit right, and overall it all depends on how you hit them.

The most effective weapons on hardcore game mode, and the most popular are usually assault rifles, and sub machine guns. These guns are very versatile, easily are moved around, pack enough strength to take someone out quickly, and will not slow you down when trying to move about. Overall these are great and effective ways of taking out the enemy is using assault rifles and sub machine guns.

When you are choosing your weapon, you want to choose something that you are good with, that will allow you to play effectively.You need to be smart as well if you want to be successful considering the typical difficulty associated with people who play hardcore. So I would say stick to machine guns, until you start getting good at the game, then experiment.

Also remember that most people who use the pistols, shotguns, and snipers without scopes are usually showing off, or are doing trick shots. This will usually hurt your K/d and even hurt your team as this is not helping the game, but you are simply trying to do tricks, and screw around.

So remember that in Hardcore ALL guns are effective, but its the ones that you choose that will allow you to be more effective, and have better luck..

Strategy for playing

When you are playing hardcore game modes you will have some that camp, and some that run and gun. Usually the two will argue after the game as they both think they're right, and have the only type of playing style. None the less whether you are going to camp or run and gun, just set your classes up accordingly. When playing hardcore you will notice that most people use blind eye, and equipment to help them not be seen. At the same time you will have plenty of people who do the opposite and use perks that will help them find the enemy. None the less most people will spend their games trying to use their own strategy to win and have the best kill to death ratio. When you are going to play you need to spend time to figure out which strategy in fact works best for you. It will be a case of trial and error, but either way you should be successful if you play enough hardcore and learn to use your own strengths to the best of your advantage.

What not to do.

First off.. Do not give yourself away. 99% of the people who play hardcore game modes use turtle beach headsets. This means that is you do not use a suppressor, or make yourself noticeable you will be found and most likely killed quickly.

SECOND - remember to pay attention to things that are not there in hardcore. FOR instance, your ammo will not be shown on screen like in core, so do not get caught with your pants down with 3 bullets in the clip, and forced to reload when an enemy is in front of you. Or remember there is no mini map so you should CLEARLY pay attention to the small details.

Third - IF you want to be successful, then do not use stupid weapons. While it is fun to mess around once in a while. Using pistols, shotguns, snipers, the crossbow are weapons that are used for nothing more than fun. DO not use these if you are actually playing games for the purpose of winning, or being successful.


So overall when you are playing a hardcore game mode you should focus on your strengths, and remember that it is not hard to kill the enemy. That is the main benefit to playing a hardcore game mode is that you will be able to accurately play a game, be hidden, and get plenty of kills and have the most realistic version of a video game out there.

Once again, feel free to shoot me a message in the comments, if you want me to write a guide pertaining to a certain subject. Also feel free to let me know what you think of hardcore, or what you think of the game. Thanks.


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    • Johnrr631992 profile image

      John Reid-Roberts 3 years ago from Boston, Massachusetts

      Come at me with a five seven and ill use any smg, or any weapon that isn't a pistol and show you why i talk down upon pistols..

    • profile image

      Kozah 3 years ago

      Well your full of shit about the pistol being used for fun & trick shooting the five seven is very effective & can be fired almost as fast as an smg if you have the trigger finger for it as we'll as allowing you to move a bit faster than everyone else if you run a pistol in conjunction with lightweight which makes it easier to flank

    • profile image

      pfcchrisnolan 4 years ago

      i can go hella positive with any pistol short of the executioner, and i got diamond snipers in hordcore, because that's where they are most effective. i have diamond smg's but the recoil is never ideal, but the draw rate is. and assault rifles seem to be ideal. i just wanted to point out that this "guide" had no real tactics or game play advice, its simply your preference on weapons. which is flawed. and im no pro at the game, but i come in first for my team every time i use a pistol, so i think the advantages of a quieter, single shot weapon that grants added mobility and precision, that is usually a one shot kill and reloads quickly is very ideal for the game mode. also, cod 4 is full of cheaters...seriosuly...why is that even relevant or comparable. i was playing it the other day and was sniping a guy in the head til i ran out of ammo and then stabbed him twice, til a flying enemy killed me. lol.

    • profile image

      Dragondivvy1 4 years ago

      What a load of crap about mentioning Pistols hurt your k/d ratio as well as your team. I've had games of 20-3 using just a five seven pistol and laser sight. Heck my best games on hardcore involve pistols. The Tac 45 is deadly at any range, the five seven has no recoil at all and can kill in 1 hit, the b23r is fairly easy and accurate to use and the kap 40 is full auto so might as well be an smg.

    • Johnrr631992 profile image

      John Reid-Roberts 4 years ago from Boston, Massachusetts

      Yes, If you do the reload cancel at the right point, it will have reloaded the weapon, and will speed up the reload..

    • profile image

      Wraith 4 years ago

      Actually, one little thing about the reload cancel. I'm pretty sure the ammo counter changes a little bit AFTER the game considers the reload 'done,' sort of like a halfway point between when the reload is cancel-able and the animation is finished. (Well, not 'halfway', more like a few 10ths of a second after its cancel-able.)

    • Johnrr631992 profile image

      John Reid-Roberts 4 years ago from Boston, Massachusetts

      @WARMAN Still getting around to the sharpshooter guide, having trouble myself as I do not play this game mode a lot...

      @Cougar - While I do have a decent headset, and some do.. Not everyone has a decent headset, nor knows how to use their headset correctly...

      Keep in mind that the cancel reload is not what it used to be (At least on xbox 360).. This used to be extremely effective on the Xbox 360, and would work 100% of the time, but they did do a patch to make this a little slower, and to make the game a little more fair as cancelling a reload realistically would not work.. haha.. So, lets agree to disagree on some points, although IF you do want to chat, you can hit me up on xbox 360, or go to my profile for my email address by clicking on my name at the top of the page..

      @Wraith - once again thanks for the help.. Yes COD4 servers... Gotta love em.. haha, but yes there is never a 100% guaranteed answer when playing call of duty.. sadly enough..

    • profile image

      Wraith 4 years ago

      C0ug4rb41t, a few counters to your points, in the same order.

      If you're playing with people who aren't using suppressors, trying to figure out where someone using one is can be quite tricky, especially if your team doesn't have a UAV/VSAT up. This is also true in Core gametypes.

      "3 bullets should be enough to kill someone but not ideal." Yeah... heh. Funny story for you. I play CoD4 frequently, on a Crossfire 24/7 server (yeah, I play on the PC). I have shot ONE GUY from across the map, THREE TIMES in about 6 seconds with the Barrett .50 cal sniper rifle (stopping power and deep impact), through one wall. NO KILL. Think about the math behind that... CoD4 snipers have base damage of 70, stopping power makes it 98, deep impact means that through that one little wooden wall, I still do about 95-ish damage, and players in hardcore have only THIRTY health. So... yeah. Things don't always add up right. Even if I did hit 3 different people, each using juggernaut, EACH shot should've been enough to get a kill. (3 consecutive shots, all at the same spot, 3 hitmarkers, no kills (mine or teammates) or suicides in the killfeed.)

      Sorry for the little rant there... Well, moving on:

      In any event, I'd think the pistols would be pretty damn effective (assuming you've got good recoil control and/or a good spamming trigger finger) in hardcore. I mean, their minimum damage (not including the Executioner) is 19, so they're 2-hit kills in almost all situations...

    • profile image

      C0ug4rb41t 4 years ago

      Hi John,

      Thanks for the tips, think some of it could be stronger and others a little misleading.

      Your first main summary point I don't quite agree with. Regardless of whether your gun is suppressed or not if you have a decent headset you can hear the direction of the shots.

      Your second point is weak,3 bullets should be enough to kill someone but not ideal. You could mention how cancel reload helps save time and various other points that highlight what the details are, happy to highlight these

      I have a lot of good content and happy to put together for you, if you want to post it

    • profile image

      WARMAN7785 4 years ago

      thanks a lot dude i have trouble on that mode ( i lose a lot of matches on it) also do you have ps3?

    • Johnrr631992 profile image

      John Reid-Roberts 4 years ago from Boston, Massachusetts

      Hmm, I may be able to do a gun game guide warman.. give me a couple days to get some stuff for it, and i'll get one out there..

    • profile image

      WARMAN7785 4 years ago

      can you do a gun game guide please.

    • Mr Awbery profile image

      Mr Awbery 5 years ago from Doncaster, England

      Good informative guide on the Hardcore game mode... I will be purchasing at Christmas and am glad to see that the basics are still the same... Nice article :)

      Mr Awbery