First introduced in 2022’s Modern Warfare II, Call of Duty currently features a nonlinear battle pass themed like a geographic map. While this allows players to choose what they want to unlock from the pass instead of going through a scripted path, it can be a little confusing to newcomers used to more traditional, linear sets of unlockables. What’s more, the “token” system that CoD uses to unlock stuff from the battle pass can be a little confusing as well, especially if you’re not sure whether you should just let the pass automatically unlock itself by spending tokens for you.
This guide will demystify Call of Duty’s battle pass and help you decide whether or not you should turn on auto-unlock.
Call of Duty’s battle pass explained
The battle pass is made up of several “Sectors,” each of which contains five rewards. Claim all five and you’ll finish that Sector, letting you move on to an adjoining Sector from there.
As you play Call of Duty, you’ll gain XP for finishing challenges and performing well. As you finish matches, you’ll slowly gain tokens for the battle pass from XP (you can also spend real money on Call of Duty Points to skip the grind).
You can then spend tokens on each “Sector” of the battle pass, with each Sector requiring five tokens to complete and granting one reward per token spent (some, like the HRM-9 Sector added during Season 1 Reloaded, might unlock via challenges instead of tokens).
Once you’ve cleared a Sector by spending five tokens on all of its rewards, you can unlock a neighboring sector of your choice and start spending more tokens there.
You’ll notice that the battle pass allows you to either spend tokens manually or leave it on automatic, with the game unlocking Sector rewards in the background as you play. You can toggle this option on the lower right side of the battle pass menu.
Should you unlock Sector rewards manually or automatically?
While auto is a simple way to let your rewards from the battle pass unlock on their own, it’s really only a benefit if you play Call of Duty regularly—like every day regularly. But if you’re strapped for time, it makes more sense to manually unlock the Sectors, prioritizing the ones with XP bonuses and Call of Duty Points as rewards.
Each battle pass contains Call of Duty Points (CP) which can be used to purchase premium battle passes for future seasons. If you secure all of these points, you can sort of get away with only paying for one battle pass, using the points you’ll earn from one to purchase the next.
By manually charting your path through the battle pass sectors, you can prioritize unlocking Call of Duty Points (as well as XP boosts to gain Tokens faster) to spend on future seasons.
Call of Duty’s seasons can fly by if you’re not on top of the game every day. Making the most of your time by spending your battle pass tokens on CoD Points is the best way to prioritize your time.