10 Worst Modern Warfare Series Killstreaks, Ranked

Killstreaks are the name of the game of the Call of Duty series. There’s nothing quite like going on a rampage on your favorite map, running and gunning until that notification of your hard-earned reward appears on screen. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to give your chosen killstreaks some thought. One can err on the side of caution and go with low cost rewards depending on skill level. Alternatively, the more costly, higher tier, killstreaks are tempting in their own right.

What Are The Worst Killstreaks In The Modern Warfare Series?

Not all killstreaks hit the spot like the tried and true Gunship or a game ending Tactical Nuke. Some killstreaks support the game type that’s being played, be it team based like Team Deathmatch or Domination or round based like Search and Destroy. Applications of certain killstreaks ideally should aid both the individual who earned their reward, and/or carry the efforts of the team. Unfortunately, no Call of Duty is immune to containing killstreaks ranging from impractical to absolutely worthless. In this list we’re ranking the worst Modern Warfare series killstreaks. 

10. White Phosphorus 

The White Phosphorus killstreak appears in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019). It’s similar to the Napalm Strike from Black Ops. On paper, it sounds like this should work. Incendiary canisters of white smoke drop from the sky. The killstreak’s most notable feature is covering the map in a haze of white smoke. Any individual who wanders too close to a canister will suffer burn damage.

The problem, and a point of contention, is that the White Phosphorus killstreak, in team-based game modes, is a hindrance to one’s team. Obscured vision is far from ideal for lining up a shot, especially for those playing long range. The saving grace of White Phosphorus is that the enemy will audibly cough, giving their position away.

9. Cluster Strike

The Cluster Strike killstreak is arguably misleading in its use. Its in-game illustration describes the killstreak as a cluster of mortar strikes upon a designated location. It should be similar to an Artillery Strike from World at War or Black Ops’ Mortar Team. However, the Cluster Strike from Modern Warfare (2019) has a reputation for being rather inconsistent with its propensity to net successful kills. 

This killstreak should be disassociated with the others for the reason that the Modern Warfare (2019) variant has a different area of effect. It’s cone-shaped rather than circular. For many players the Cluster Strike is unreliable in the field but decent on small scale maps such as Shipment or Shoot House. Mostly, this killstreak is better as an area denial tool rather than one to obtain additional kills.

8. Precision Airstrike

The most recent iterations of Modern Warfare have the Precision Airstrike as a featured killstreak. Similar to the Cluster Strike before it, this killstreak is divisive for its return on investment. At the sign of an aerial strike, it feels like instinct to run for the nearest shelter. Yet, the Precision Airstrike has a notorious tendency to clip through some building structures. If you’re hiding out of sight, it can be rage-inducing when you’re taken out believing you got away safely. Moreover, it approaches along the “best available path.” The Precision Airstrike gets a lot of flak for not dropping its barrage as the player had intended. 

7. EMP

Looking back at the EMP from Modern Warfare 2 (2009) it’s easy to see why it was overlooked in favor of other high-tier killstreaks. There’s one of the killstreak’s problems. The EMP requires 15 kills to obtain. When deployed, the EMP can disrupt all enemy electronics including red dot and holographic sights, heartbeat sensors, it disables the enemy minimap, and can take out any active enemy killstreaks save the Tactical Nuke. However, 15 kills for a temporary annoyance to the enemy team seems hardly worth the investment.

For one, players can circumvent the downed electronic sights with the iron sights. Any skilled player can still read the map and get their bearings. Secondly, the AC-130 and Chopper Gunner killstreaks are cheaper at requiring 11 kills. Furthermore, it’s usually glazed over in favor of the Nuke. Go the distance for 25 kills for a far more satisfying, game-ending reward.

6. Attack Helicopter

This killstreak is another one that’s disappointing from Modern Warfare 2 (2009). Both the Attack Helicopter and the Harrier Strike from MW2 require seven kills to obtain. However, there’s a clear winner between them and that’s how versatile the Harrier Strike is. Harriers begin by approaching the map with an airstrike. When complete, the jet then hovers over the map to claim kills from any enemies in the open without Cold Blooded. Harriers also have the capability of destroying enemy Chopper Gunners. 

In comparison, the Attack Helicopter is very inconsistent and often has trouble locating viable targets. Assuming it’s not shot down immediately, which can be done faster than it approaches the map, the Attack Helicopter is lucky to get two or three kills before it leaves the airspace. The Pavelow is a far superior “attack helicopter.” This one is one of the worst Modern Warfare series killstreaks.

5. Bomb Drone

Worst Call of Duty Killstreaks

The Bomb Drone killstreak from the most recent incarnations of Modern Warfare are good for one thing. That would be trolling the enemy team with an underused killstreak. The Bomb Drone is a remote control aerial explosive. There’s not much to this one. It’s a low cost killstreak like the UAV. The Bomb Drone suffers from slow acceleration and it has a distinct audible sound that gives it away. To an attentive ear they can shot down. This killstreak is also easy to bring down with a few well lined up shots. Between the Bomb Drone and UAV, the latter would be a better investment.

4. Guardian-SC

Worst Call of Duty Killstreaks

In Modern Warfare III, the Guardian makes a comeback as a five killstreak. If you’ve played Call of Duty going back a few years you’ll recall that the Guardian is an area denial tool that’s not bad for modes that require capturing a point on the map. This killstreak will generate a microwave that slows enemy movement, blurs vision, and disables the minimap. Otherwise, the Guardian does nothing more. Looking back at its predecessor, Modern Warfare II, the Suppression Mine is a fairer option that does the same thing and is inconspicuous. It’s one of the worst Call of Duty killstreaks.

3. Shield Turret

Worst Call of Duty Killstreaks

In theory, the Shield Turret from Modern Warfare (2019) is a fair concept. You can deploy a shielded turret that protects you from enemy fire and has a decent swivel to it. However, where the Shield Turret truly disappoints is in its durability and rate of fire. Perhaps, unsurprisingly, because this killstreak is very affordable at three kills it’s so easy to destroy. It would benefit greatly if you could adjust its Y-axis. The Shield Turret neither has decent bullet penetration so it’s best to start firing in the open as soon as a target appears. It’s easily one of the worst Modern Warfare series killstreaks. 

2. Airdrop Trap

Worst Call of Duty Killstreaks

Going back to Modern Warfare 3 (2011), the Airdrop Trap is practically a dud. Perhaps in the early days of MW3 this reward may have claimed a decent number of victims who didn’t know better. The Airdrop Trap is a booby-trapped Care Package that explodes once it has been opened by the enemy team. It’s one of the worst Call of Duty killstreaks.

The reason it’s so low on this list is because the trap can be a dead giveaway. A Care Package lies abandoned far away from the opposing team and has stayed there untouched suspiciously long. All it takes is for one person on the team with Sitrep equipped to identify it as a fake and call it out to the team. For its price, Ballistic Vests or a Counter UAV are better rewards.

1. Personal Radar

Worst Call of Duty Killstreaks

Modern Warfare (2019) has a three killstreak called the Personal Radar. When enabled, a support drone will follow you around the map displaying enemies on the minimap along with an audible ping. The worst thing about the Personal Radar is that it gives your position away to the enemy. The drone always tries to hover above your head. It’s hilariously bad. It’s the closest thing to having a sign above your head that says, “here I am, come get me!” Without a doubt, the Personal Radar is the worst Modern Warfare series killstreak.

What’s your least favorite killstreak in the Modern Warfare series? Do you have a favorite killstreak? Let us know in the comments below! Additionally, check out our list on the 10 Best Modern Warfare Series Killstreaks, Ranked.