Consoles Gaming

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare icons: what do they mean?

Call of Duty Modern Warfare icons
Xbox or PlayStation? Your choice, punk

Last year’s release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare has proved to be massively popular, becoming the most popular Call of Duty game of all time – and that was before the release of Warzone, a Fortnite-a-like Battle Royale mode. In fact, during the recent pandemic lockdown, the game was blamed for spikes in internet usage.

One other thing this game can boast is its ability to be played across multiple-platforms. Sony has limited this in the past, so this is one of only a handful on games that allow, for example, PlayStation 4 owners to play alongside Xbox users.

Call of Duty refers to this simply as “Crossplay”. However, old rivalries between platforms are still present, which means that the in-game icons can be confusing. In this article we’ll attempt to decode what they are telling you.

Which icons?

When joining a game, next to each player you’ll see two icons. The first one represents the control method that they’re using and the second is the platform they’re on.

Here’s a typical example of what you may see:

The control method

This is either an image of a controller or of a mouse (representing mouse and keyboard). Any platform can use either of these (you can use a controller on a PC just as much as you can attach a keyboard and mouse to a PlayStation 4).

The platform

This represents the platform the player is using – PC, PlayStation or Xbox.

What’s the problem?

The problem is that neither Microsoft nor Sony wants to acknowledge that the other one exists. Therefore, on each of these, you’ll get this generic icon representing “the other console”:

In case you’re wondering what the icon represents, it’s a console under a TV screen.

If the other player is using the same console as the one that you’re on, the icon will display as you’d expect. For example, these are the icons that you’ll see, on a PlayStation, for a PlayStation owner using a controller:

PC owners don’t need to worry, though – they’ll see icons for both Xbox and PlayStation.

And if you’re using either console, PC owners will always be represented by the icon of a desktop tower. Here are the icons you’d see for a PC owner using mouse and keyboard:

If we return to the screenshot at the top of the page, we can tell the following:

  • Mr Roye is using a controller on a PlayStation
  • Dynxwar is using mouse/keyboard on a PC
  • Yoda is using a controller on an Xbox

Oh, and I’m likely to be doing very, very badly. We don’t need icons to explain this.

NOW READ THIS: How do I add friends on Steam?

About the author

David Artiss

Works for Automattic Inc., the company behind and Tumblr. Tech geek, international speaker and occasional PC Pro podcaster. Lover of Lego and video games.

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  • Ive been playing cold war lately and all we see is no controller or mouse just the monitor only .with cross play disabled .no xbox controller .what does that mean ?