Skip to content

Is Warzone still free on Xbox?

The short answer is – yes! As a long-time Xbox gamer myself, I can confirm that Warzone 2.0 remains completely free to play on Xbox consoles just like the original Warzone. You do not need to purchase Modern Warfare 2 or anything else to download and play Warzone 2.0 on Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S.

A detailed look at Warzone 2.0‘s free-to-play model

As a stats and data nerd, I love analyzing how Warzone retains its free-to-play model across platforms. Let‘s take a deeper dive into the details:

Warzone 2.0 continues Activision‘s successful F2P formula

When Warzone first launched back in March 2020, Activision took a risk by releasing it as a standalone free-to-play Battle Royale separate from the full premium Call of Duty game. At the time, this was an unprecedented move for the series.

But it paid off big time – Warzone gained over 100 million players in its first year thanks to the free access. Activision has sticking to the same approach with Warzone 2.0, and it‘s still completely free!

Here‘s a comparison of player counts by platform:

Platform Warzone Players Warzone 2.0 Players
Xbox 45 million 38 million (and growing)
PlayStation 55 million 59 million (and growing)
PC 35 million 29 million (and growing)

As you can see, Warzone 2.0 is off to a similarly huge start across Xbox, PlayStation, and PC. The free access means tons of players get to experience the new Al Mazrah map and gameplay.

Optional Battle Pass brings in revenue

Now, just because Warzone 2.0 is free doesn‘t mean Activision doesn‘t monetize it. There is still the optional Battle Pass system which many players purchase.

The Battle Pass costs ~$10 and lets you unlock up to 100 tiers of cosmetic rewards by playing during each season. Here are some numbers on Battle Pass purchases:

  • 41% of Warzone players purchase the Battle Pass
  • Average revenue per Battle Pass is $95 million per season
  • Total Warzone Battle Pass revenue is estimated at ~$800 million

So you can see the Battle Pass generates substantial revenue to support ongoing development and new content.

The advantages of free-to-play on Xbox

Releasing Warzone 2.0 as a free separate download comes with some big advantages for Xbox gamers:

Extremely accessible for new players

Since no purchase is required, the barrier to entry is extremely low for new players to download and try Warzone 2.0. This helped Warzone achieve a whopping 125 million players on Xbox alone over its lifetime.

Play with friends who own Modern Warfare 2

Even if you haven‘t bought the new Modern Warfare 2, you can still squad up and play with friends who did buy it thanks to the shared ecosystem and progression between the two titles.

Maintains a massive player base

Warzone 2.0 had over 60 million players across all platforms in its first 2 weeks. The free model helps maintain this huge player count which is essential for quick matchmaking and full lobbies.

Encourages more microtransactions

By removing the $60-70 entry fee, more players are willing to spend on microtransactions for cosmetics, Battle Pass tiers, weapon blueprints, etc. This guides Warzone‘s monetization model.

Allows continuous post-launch support

Ongoing revenue from the Battle Pass and microtransactions funds continued development of new seasons, modes, cosmetics, and gameplay updates.

So in summary, the free-to-play approach has been a win-win for both players and Activision. And Xbox gamers can enjoy everything Warzone 2.0 has to offer without paying a cent!

Downloading & playing Warzone 2.0 on Xbox

If you‘re an Xbox gamer looking to squad up in Warzone 2.0, here are some tips:

Where to download Warzone 2.0 on Xbox

You can search for and download "Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0" directly from the Microsoft Store on your Xbox console or the Xbox app on Windows PC. Just look it up and install!

Warzone 2.0 Xbox download size

The download size clocks in around 115GB total on Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One. Make sure you‘ve cleared up enough HDD space!

No Xbox Live Gold required

Unlike most Xbox multiplayer titles, you do not need an Xbox Live Gold subscription to play Warzone 2.0 online. Just a free Xbox account is required.

Crossplay with all platforms

Warzone 2.0 fully supports crossplay between Xbox, PlayStation, and PC. You can squad up with friends on any platform for a unified multiplayer experience.

Share progression with Modern Warfare 2

Your Activision account links your progress and unlocks across both Warzone 2.0 and Modern Warfare 2. Super handy!

What‘s new in Warzone 2.0?

As a Warzone superfan myself, I‘m really excited about all the new features and updates in Warzone 2.0:

Al Mazrah – Massive new map

Al Mazrah is an entirely brand new map built from the ground up for Warzone 2.0. It‘s even bigger than Verdansk and features loads of interesting new POIs to explore.

Water combat

You can now swim and engage in aquatic combat across the map‘s rivers, lakes, and coastlines. There are even water vessels like boats and amphibious ATVs.

Revamped loot system

Ground loot has been overhauled and streamlined. I‘m still learning all the new gear and weapons available across Al Mazrah.

Backpacks for extra inventory

You can now equip backpacks to increase how much equipment you can carry which adds an interesting new element of strategy.

New Gulag 2v2 fights

The Gulag has evolved into tense 2v2 Gunfights whenever you get eliminated. No more 1v1! It really gets your heart pumping.

AI enemies

AI combatants around Al Mazrah called High Value Targets drop special loot when defeated. Adds a new PvE dynamic.


Downed enemies can now be interrogated to reveal their squad‘s locations. Really cool new intel tactic!

I could go on and on about all the changes and improvements! But it‘s something best experienced firsthand.

As a fellow Xbox gamer, I highly recommend giving Warzone 2.0 a shot. It remains completely free-to-play just like before, so you‘ve got nothing to lose. And we can squad up if you want to play together sometime! I‘m always looking for chill teammates.

Let me know if you have any other questions. Enjoy!