Call of Duty: Vanguard takes a different stab at the Call of Duty: Zombies, changing almost everything while also leaving the mode feeling oddly familiar. The latest FPS in the series starts with Der Anfang — and while there isn’t an Easter egg quest (yet) there are objectives. Instead of moving forward through rounds automatically, you’ll need to progress to the next round manually by completing different portal challenges. Teleporting to different sections of the map, you can earn special Covenants by earning valuable heart collectibles. The entire map can be extremely disorienting for Zombies veterans or casual players, so here’s a quick summation of everything you need to know.
We’ve also included some basic tips you’ll want if you want to Exfil as a beginner. With the right weapon and power-ups, completing your very first Exfil should be a breeze — you can even do it solo and still collect all your progression rewards. By selecting generic loadouts, you can actually use locked weapons earlier, and some of those weapons can make your early adventures in Der Anfang way easier. We’ll get into that later. For now, here’s a rundown of everything you need to know about this remixed Zombies map.
Starting Out On Der Anfang
You start the map in the Fountain Square. You’ll find many new resources here, along with portals leading to three challenges.
- Fountain Square Resources:
- Ammo Box: Refill ammo for 250.
- Mystery Box: Randomly rolls for 1 new primary weapon. Costs 950.
- Pack-a-Punch: Upgrades your weapon, makes it more powerful. Costs 7500 for the first upgrade.
- Workbench: Allows you to craft Armor (gives +protection to health), Lethal, Tactical, and Support munitions in exchange for salvage.
- Altar of Covenants: In the center of the fountain square. You’ll earn Hearts by completing the red portal challenges. Return to the altar to purchase perks — you have three slots.
The goal of the map is to complete the three objectives to unlock more areas of the map, and to kill zombies to earn points, salvage, and loot. Each zombie will give you points, and may drop salvage or a random munition. The higher your score, the more likely zombies will drop useful salvage or munitions. Boss or unique zombie types will also drop much more than regular zombies.
Completing The Three Objectives
From the Fountain Square, you can see three objective markers, pointing to three portals. Entering a portal teleports you to a different section of the map briefly. Complete the challenge to unlock the gate, unlocking more of the map and increasing the level of the map. More zombies and difficult enemies will spawn as you increase the map difficulty.
- Blitz: In the closed area, defend against zombies in a small lockdown event. Survive until the timer reaches 0.
- Harvest: Kill zombies to get them to drop Runes. Collect Runes and deposit 5 at the Sin Eater obelisk. You can exit depositing at any time and continue again — any runes you’ve deposited will remain deposited even if you exit.
- Complete three phases to complete this event.
- Transmit: Follow an Aether Orb in a large area as zombies spawn. The orb generates a safe area that you must stay within that grows and shrinks as you follow it. Continue to follow until you reach the end of its path.
As you complete these events, the walls blocking your way through the map will disappear and new event portals will appear. The events in each extended area will be more difficult, so before going to your next event, explore the area you’ve just unlocked and grab the free upgrades.
- PSA: Shoot the red crystal clusters for free resources, and look for crates to open. You can also CLEAR OUT zombies from the Fountain Square and they’ll stop coming for you. Just hold out in the center and they will eventually stop coming as long as you don’t complete another event.
Altar of Covenants
For completing these events, you’ll earn Convent Hearts. Covenant Hearts can be spent at the Altar of Covenants in the center of the Fountain Square. Depending on the color of the altar, you can tell what rarity of covenant is available. Epic (purple) and Legendary (orange) covenants are what you’ll want most.
The available covenants are randomly cycled at the start of each new “round”. Each perk can come in different tier rarities.
- Dead Accurate: Successive shots on the same enemy deal more damage.
- Ammo Gremlin: Stowed weapons refill ammo from stock slowly.
- Unholy Ground: Deal more damage when shooting while stationary.
- Mother Lode: Small chance to keep equipment after using it.
- Brain Rot: Chance to Turn a normal enemy when shooting it.
- Death Blow: Critical kills return a bullet to the clip.
- Bloodlust: Melee attacks do more damage and heal you.
- Splatterfest: Enemies killed by explosions have a high chance to explore.
- Cryofreeze: Chance to slow a normal enemy when shooting it.
Perk Machines have been replaced with demonic altars. These give you powerful permanent upgrades to your character. Using the machine once is free, but all future tier upgrades cost points. All upgrade stations can be upgraded to Tier V and can only be upgraded in-map.
- Demonic Frenzy: Boiler Room – Increases reload speed.
- Aetherial Haste: Theater – Boosts movement speed.
- Venomous Vigor: Panzer Column East – Boosts regen speed.
- Fiendish Fortitude: Main Street – Increases health.
- Diabolical Damage: Apartments – Increases Critical Damage.
At Round 5 you can Exfil — the marker will appear in the Fountain Square on the central fountain. Interacting with the marker will initiate an Exfil Challenge.
- Once an Exfil has begun, zombies will rapidly spawn into the map and swarm you. A number will appear on the HUD — you need to kill this number of zombies to open the escape portal.
- Kill the number of zombies required, and the portal will open in a random spot on the map. You have 30 seconds to reach it — sprint there and use it to exit the level safely and earn a big bonus.
During an Exfil, multiple Sturmkrieger boss zombies may spawn. These are by far the hardest opponents you’ll face. The area is large, so you can weave around the Fountain and use the ruined walls as cover, avoiding them completely until you’ve killed the required number of zombies.
Along with regular zombies, you’ll also encounter boss zombies.
- Boom-Schreier: Glowing red demonic zombies that begin to spawn on Round 3. They attempt to run up to you and explode — shoot them first to detonate them.
- Sturmkrieger: Massive zombies with huge health bars and MG-42s. They can shoot you from across the map, making them very difficult to take down at close range. By far the deadliest zombie enemy type.
- Play through the Blitz challenges early. They’re easier in lower rounds, and they’re the fastest to complete.
- Select the Gracey Auto from the Generic Loadouts. It comes with an already-installed Magazine for faster reloads.
- This shotgun also makes Blitz extremely easy. Go through the portal to the Boiler Room and get the reload speed upgrade.
- Save your points and immediately purchase the Pack-a-Punch upgrade for the Gracey Auto. Don’t waste money on anything else.
If you do this, you’ll easily be able to complete your first Exfil and can enjoy learning the map safely in Solo.