The M16 is an assault rifle in Modern Warfare 2.
As with previous entries, the Modern Warfare 2 M16 features a three-round burst that results in a high time-to-kill (TTK), particularly when shooting at the chest and above.
With its effectiveness at medium-long range, it is a versatile weapon for various modes.
However, there is a short delay between each burst, making precision a must and close-quarters engagements more or less out of the question.
This page explains how to unlock the M16 in Modern Warfare 2, as well as our recommendations for the best M16 loadout.
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Looking for other suggestions? Our best weapons in Modern Warfare 2 page can help you decide what to use next.
How to unlock the M16 in Modern Warfare 2
Unlocking weapons in Modern Warfare 2 is different from previous titles.
Various weapons, such as the M16, are now unlocked by using and leveling weapons within families known as ‘Platforms’.
In the case of the M16, you must use the 556 Icarus until it reaches level 12. To unlock the Icarus to do this, you must raise the M4 to level 15. The whole process!
Once unlocked, you’ll be ready to start leveling the M16 to open up its customization options; It’s best to use the M16 for a few matches to level up and unlock its accessory slots.
It’s worth noting that many attachments are unlocked by leveling up other weapons, both on and off the M4 platform.
Additionally, if you own the Vault Edition of Modern Warfare 2, you actually have an advantage in this process thanks to the FJX Cinder Pack: with this pack, you will have access to all of the attachments and weapons unlocked within the M4 platform.
Best Modern Warfare 2 M16 equipment and accessories
Since the M16 is a medium-long range weapon, the goal of our recommended M16 build is to reinforce its dominant line-of-sight strengths.
Below is our recommended M16 build for Modern Warfare 2:
- Optics: SZ SRO-7 (unlocks at M4 Lv. 2) / Cronen Mini Red Dot (unlocks at FSS Hurricane Lv. 3)
- Stock: Corio Factory Price (unlocks at M4 Lv. 7)
- Rear Grip: XTEN Grip (unlocks at M4 Lv. 16)
- Under the barrel: Pineapple VX (unlocks at 556 Icarus Lv. 14)
- Ammo: 5.56 Armor Piercing (unlocks at M4 Lv. 9) / Magazine: 45-Round Mag (unlocks at M4 Lv. 5)
As for optics, here are a couple of options: the SZ SRO-7 is best for long-range engagements, especially where there are covers and corners to mount for stability, while the Cronen Mini Red Dot is designed for medium ranges . ranged encounters, especially if you move around a lot, and is a good choice for objective modes like Domination.
Alternatively, there is the Hybrid Firepoint, a scope that can switch between a 4x zoom scope and a holographic sight. With the ability to switch between sights on demand, it will provide flexibility during matches, so it’s something to keep an eye out for – you’ll unlock it by leveling the Lachmann-762 to level 14!
When it comes to stock, there are a couple of options: Corio Precio Factory is a good shout when it comes to longer lines of sight thanks to its aiming stability and recoil control bonuses. However, it affects mobility, but that is where our alternative comes into play.
Sacrificing some weapon stability for several improvements to Aim, Dash, Crouch, and Aim Down Speed (ADS), the Ordnance Ravage-8 is the perfect opposite, a good choice for play styles mobiles.
For rear grappling, the XTEN Grip is useful thanks to its ADS bonuses and sprint speed to fire. When paired with the aforementioned Corio Precio Factory stock, you can compensate for the reduced recoil control of this grip, or you can double the mobility when paired with the Ordnance Ravage-8.
Being able to mount a wall for an attack isn’t always an option, but with the VX Pineapple under the barrel, you’ll have more control over the M16’s recoil. This is especially useful when combined with longer range scopes, where the kick of the weapon is even more noticeable.
While there aren’t many options in terms of ammunition, choosing 5.56 Armor Piercing rounds for additional bullet penetration is a no-brainer for the M16.
A possible alternative to the final accessory could be the 45-round magazine for the magazine slot. While it impedes movement and overall handling speed, having extended reserves with an additional 15 rounds per magazine helps not only for larger game modes, but also for passive play.
Getting stuck in multiplayer? We explain the best weapons in Modern Warfare 2 and how to unlock all weapons and accessories, as well as individual pages on how to build an MP5 loadout, an FTAC loadout, an M4 loadout, a Kastov 762 loadout, a SP-R 208 loadout, a TAQ 56. 556 Icarus equipment, Vel 46 equipment, M16 equipment and FSS Hurricane equipment. At launch, you may be wondering where the Battle Pass and Hardcore Tier 1 modes are, as well as how to claim Modern Warfare 2 Twitch drops. Elsewhere, learn how to turn off cross-play on PlayStation and Xbox, get and use Double XP, level up quickly, get gold camouflage, check KD and unlock all MW2 operators. Replaying the story? We have explanations for the duration of the Modern Warfare 2 campaign and all the safe code combinations.
Modern Warfare 2 M16, best-in-class build, perks and loadout
Here are the recommended perks and gear to create the best M16 class build in Modern Warfare 2:
- Base Perk 1: Excess (unlocks at level 21)
- Base Perk 2: Battle Hardened (unlocks at level 37) / Scavenger (unlocks at level 26)
- Additional Perk: Quick Hands (unlocks at level 8) / Hard Line (unlocks at level 1)
- Ultimate Perk: Quick Fix (unlocks at level 44) / High Alert (unlocks at level 14)
- Secondary: FSS Hurricane (unlocks at FTAC Recon Lv. 16) / Expedite 12 (unlocks at Lv. 9)
- Lethal: Semtex (unlocks at level 20)
- Tactical: Shock Stick (unlocked at level 1)
- Field Upgrade: Portable Radar (unlocks at level 5)
While the selection of perks has changed in MW2, the fundamentals of equipping them remain the same as in previous titles.
For basic buffs, we recommend Overkill and Battle Hardened. The former allows you to carry a second primary weapon, while the latter reduces the effects of enemy tactical grenades.
Together, whether running and gunning or holding down lines of sight, you’ll be less affected by sudden ganks and will have a backup weapon in case you need to reload, especially key now that reload cancel is gone.
Coupled with the increased weapon swap speeds provided by the Fast Hands perk, responding with a secondary weapon is even more effective.
For the ‘Ultimate Benek’, there are a couple of options: High Alert will keep you aware of when enemies detect you, but Quick Fix’s health regeneration on kill is a good option to keep you in the action.
For a couple of good substitutes, Scavenger, which replaces Battle Hardened, is great for aggressive playstyles, allowing you to replenish ammo from dead enemies.
And if you’re willing to sacrifice weapon handling speed, Hardline’s reduced killstreak requirement is valuable, especially if you rack up a lot of kills – a strong alternative to your added advantage.
Thanks to Overkill, you can carry a second main weapon. We recommend a short-range option, namely the FSS Hurricane Submachine Gun (SMG) or the Expedite 12 Shotgun. Both are perfect and cover ranges where the M16 is less effective.
In terms of its lethality, we found that Semtex matches well with the M16: hitting enemies with grenades is not only satisfying, but also allows for greater intentionality compared to a typical fragmentation grenade, which often rolls or bounces, etc. ., resulting in a failed kill. .
An effective combo for Semtex in the tactical slot is the Shock Stick, which sticks to surfaces, electrocutes enemies, and destroys equipment.
They’re good for catching oncoming enemies off guard for a quick gank, or opening them up for a sticky sweet Semtex kill.
Of course, if they don’t suit your playstyle, you can always go for the traditional Frag and Flash or Stun Grenades, all very good in their own way.
Even more than lethal and tactical, field upgrades largely depend on what you want during matches.
We are going to recommend the portable radar, a quick-reloading device that will detect enemy signatures in a small area and mark them on your radar.
Along with some reconnaissance-based killstreaks, like the UAV, this will keep you alert to approaching enemies, as long as they don’t have the Ghost perk equipped, hiding them from the UAV’s sweeps and portable radar.
As with all equipment, such as killstreak selection, choose based on your playstyle and preferences.
Since the goal of this loadout was also to be flexible across all ranks, there is more freedom when it comes to upgrading gear, so feel free to mix and match the different options available.
If you want to learn more about Modern Warfare 2, be sure to check out our other guides, like our recommended build of FSS Hurricane or how to get and use double XP.
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