A new map has been released, Himmelmatt Expo, and the competitive community seem generally in favor of it being added to the map pool for Ranked and the CDL. Here's why.
If you play Ranked in MW2, or you watch the CDL, you'll be well aware of how terrible Control is on Fortress. The attacking side usually makes an initial push out to A and get one tick of progress (if they're lucky), then the defenders get a clean four dead and push the attackers back to spawn. At this point the attackers can just camp their own spawn or keep wasting lives trying to get out of the trap (they almost never do).
It's so bad that at Major 3 fans were actually booing Fortress Control whenever the map/mode combination came up. So we need a new map in the competitive rotation to at least replace Fortress Control.
Season 2: Reloaded brought a whole new map into the game called Himmelmatt Expo. Pros and competitive fans have been playing it, and they pretty much all agree it's a good map that needs to replace Fortress Control, and potentially even other maps in Hardpoint and Search. Here's an overview of the feedback we've heard about how Himmelmatt plays in the three competitive modes.
Competitive Community Very Happy With New Expo Map
Within hours of the new map releasing, pros were trialing it out for the competitive rotation on stream, and fans were praising it on social media. As one of the most popular comments in a thread on the CoDCompetitive subreddit put it:
Map just looks good in general. Looks like an actual CoD map and promotes more rotation and fighting instead of camping and spawn trapping.
Pretty much everyone in the thread agreed.
But why is Expo so good? In brief:
- The map is large, but it's not just open, empty space. There are multiple distinct lanes across the map, and plenty of opportunities to hit long routes. This also helps prevent spawn-trapping.
- It's a well-lit map with very little visual clutter.
- There is a good amount of verticality, but all the raised positions on the map have been well-designed, such that the map has very few unintended sight-lines.
But those are just a few general comments we can make about the map. Here is the feedback we're hearing about Himmelmatt Expo specifically in the three competitive modes.
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We have a fairly decent map-pool for Hardpoint right now, so this mode is least in need of a new map. But that said, Hardpoint seems to play quite well on Expo.
Rambo, former coach of Optic said:
I think we have a suitable replacement for Fortress Control and Fortress SND. (Also good for HP, but not enough to take out current maps imo)
While Slasher, main AR for FaZe replied:
Well if people aren’t swimming 50% of the map I’m already convinced it’s better than hydro too.. let’s get it in for all 3
Slasher hates the swimming on Hydro, but so do a lot of fans, so this alone might get it replaced by Expo. But it seems less likely to make it in for HP than for the other two modes.
Search & Destroy
Search and Destroy could definitely do with a new map in MW2, although not as badly as Control. Sadly, Expo is far from perfect for S&D. Specifically, because the A-Site looks unviable.
Ex-pro Nameless identified the problem within minutes of the map's release:
The new map has an explosive vehicle attached to A bomb. Not ideal
This is the A-Site:
It's also right in defender spawn, although to be fair that hasn't stopped other Search maps from working in the past.
Overall, we would be surprised if Expo made it in without them moving the A-Site, but that's an easy change (they did it to Bocage last year fairly quickly).
Boom, the big one: Control. Well, it's the least important mode, but it most desperately needs a new map. And according to a great many pros and coaches, Himmelmatt Expo is a great control map that should be subbed in for Fortress.
Atlanta FaZe's coach, Crowder, put it best while streaming recently:
I think it’s really good for Control in the sense like I think it’s a hundred percent a no-brainer for Control.
He doubled down a few hours later and said on Twitter that it was 1000% better than Fortress for Control:
New map 1000% better than Fort control https://t.co/NWyWKR0p5E— FaZe Crowder (@JamesCrowder) March 15, 2023
With the community thrilled about the new map, now all we can do is wait and see if the CDL agrees to the change before Stage 4 qualifiers begin on March 31.
Hopefully more maps like Expo and fewer maps like Taraq in CoD 2023:
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