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The Machete: How to Unlock the New Melee Weapon in Call of Duty®: Black Ops Cold War

  • BOCW

Hack and slash your way to victory with the new Machete melee weapon. Read on for tips on unlocking the weapon for use in Black Ops Cold War and Warzone™.

The Machete: How to Unlock the New Melee Weapon in Call of Duty®: Black Ops Cold War

  • BOCW

Hack and slash your way to victory with the new Machete melee weapon. Read on for tips on unlocking the weapon for use in Black Ops Cold War and Warzone™.

Season Two is here and with it comes a devastating new melee weapon for use across Multiplayer, Zombies, and Warzone: the Machete.

Free for everyone who completes the in-game challenge, the Machete is a broad foot-long blade tempered for maximum toughness and ideal for fighting in close-quarters engagements. Here’s how you unlock it in-game:

Earn a Back Stabber medal (melee kills from behind) in 15 different matches.

Step lightly and move swiftly, and be sure to finish each match to make sure your progress counts toward the challenge. Here are some tips to help you out.

An Alternate Way to Unlock the Machete

Can’t wait to unlock the Machete? There is another way to acquire the new melee weapon before completing the in-game challenge.

Season Two introduces the “River Slasher” Store bundle, featuring seven different items including the Legendary “Backwater Blade.” This Melee Echo Weapon Blueprint sports a camouflage blade and a crocodile leather handle, and it’s ready for business.

You’ll also get the Epic “Backwater Blaster” assault rifle Blueprint, the “Wetlander” Adler skin, the “Struggle Bust” Finishing Move, “Gator’s Smile” Weapon Charm, “Boomerang” Reticle, and the Legendary “Equalizer” Watch, which tracks your K/D.

So if you’re eager to wade into battle with the ruthless Melee Echo weapon family, consider purchasing the “River Slasher” Store bundle. If you’d rather unlock the Machete via the in-game challenge – which is the only way to level up the weapon and progress through its camo challenges – we’ve got some tips to help you along the way.

Top 5 Machete Challenge Tips

5. Stun & Cut. Earning a Back Stabber medal requires using a melee weapon – when hitting an enemy with your gun butt won’t cut it. Here’s a recommended build using the classic Knife that’s sure to make it a straightforward task:

Primary Weapon: Knife

Secondary Weapon: Shotgun of choice

Perk 1: Tactical Mask

Perk 2: N/A

Perk 3: Gung-Ho, Ninja

Equipment: Stun Grenade (Tactical), Molotov (Lethal)

Field Upgrade: Gas Mine, Field Mic

Wildcard: Law Breaker

Using the Law Breaker Wildcard, equip the Knife right in your primary weapon slot so you won’t need to switch to it each time you spawn. Grab a shotgun as your secondary for a powerhouse close-quarters backup when things get hectic.

Move quickly and when you spot a target toss your Stun Grenade. Run up behind them as they’re stunned and attack with the Knife — ding, you’ve earned your Back Stabber medal.

Equip Tactical Mask to protect yourself… from yourself. We’re all guilty of occasionally stunning ourselves, and Tactical Mask will minimize the penalty when that inevitably happens. Using the Law Breaker Wildcard, stack Gung-Ho and Ninja. Gung-Ho lets you toss your Stun Grenade mid-sprint and reduces fall damage, encouraging you to jump down on unsuspecting enemies. And with Ninja, they won’t even hear you coming.

Plant your Field Mic near chokepoints or in tight spaces to better anticipate approaching enemies, and when you need to close off an entry point fast, toss your Molotov.

4. Keep ‘Em Distracted. Jump into location-based objective modes like Domination, Hardpoint, and Control so you know where the action is headed. This focuses the fight to specific areas on the map, improving your ability to anticipate enemy movement and prepare for your own attack. Or try your luck in Kill Confirmed, using tags as bait to lure enemies into melee range.

3. Spring a Trap. Get diabolical and pair up the Gas Mine with Tactical Mask. Set the mine on a path toward the objective and climb up to a ledge above and out of sight. When an enemy sets it off, fall down on your prey and attack them from behind. Head right into the cloud, as Tactical Mask provides immunity to gas.

2. Engineer Your Victory. Another tactic is to equip Engineer for the ability to detect enemy equipment through walls. This is a great way to find enemies holed up in interior locations. While they’re searching out the window for their next target, you come up from behind and land that Back Stabber medal.

1. You Just Need One. Unlike many challenges that require you to earn three kinds of a kill per match, you only need to earn one Back Stabber medal per match for the Machete challenge. If you’re having trouble, take a breath and refocus, or try a different tactic. In respawn modes at least, you’ve got plenty of chances.


Execute the mission.

For more information on Call of Duty®: Black Ops Cold War, check out: and follow @Treyarch, @RavenSoftware, and @CallofDuty on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. 

© 2021 Activision Publishing, Inc. ACTIVISION, CALL OF DUTY, CALL OF DUTY BLACK OPS, CALL OF DUTY WARZONE, and WARZONE are trademarks of Activision Publishing, Inc.

For more information on Activision games, follow @Activision on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

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