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The best Call of Duty Vanguard MG42 loadout

How to manage the MG42’s excessive recoil with attachments

The stock version of the MG42 in Call of Duty Vanguard's preview menu

Looking for the best MG42 loadout in Call of Duty Vanguard? LMGs such as the MG42 historically have two significant weaknesses: reload time and recoil management. Unfortunately, there’s not much we can do about the reload time other than suggest that you reload only when nobody’s around. However, the attachments you can equip onto the MG42 can help mitigate some of the gun’s recoil shortcomings.

The new Suppression mechanic in Vanguard makes LMGs more enticing compared to previous Call of Duty games. Suppression fire slows down your opponent’s movement when they’re shot – coordinate with your team to rack up assists by blindfiring at groups of enemies easily. With this MG42 loadout, we’re going to focus on bringing down that relatively high vertical recoil so that you can easily hit your target while firing in longer bursts.

The MG42 has established itself as the best LMG in Vanguard right now thanks to its impressive damage output. There are some slots that we’ve left blank in our loadout, and there are very good reasons for this. We will explain the reasoning behind each attachment that we’ve equipped, any drawbacks that an attachment will give you, and which attachments help mitigate those penalties to the MG42’s stats.

Best CALL OF DUTY Vanguard MG42 loadout

The best Call of Duty Vanguard MG42 loadout is:

  • Muzzle: Scythe Compensator
  • Underbarrel: M1941 Handstop
  • Stock: VDD Skeletal
  • Rear Grip: Stippled Grip
  • Proficiency: Tight Grip
  • Optic: MK 3 Mod. 2 Sunfilter
  • Ammo Type: FMJ Rounds
  • Kit: Fully Loaded

It’s best to go with the Scythe Compensator muzzle as it improves the MG42’s vertical recoil control without producing any negative effects. For the underbarrel, there are quite a few options you could go with, but we highly recommend using the M1941 Handstop. This takes a bit of a hit on hip fire accuracy, but the benefits to vertical and horizontal recoil are worth the sacrifice.

If we’re being completely honest, none of the barrel or magazine attachments on offer are appealing options. The negatives usually outweigh the positive benefits you get from attaching them to the MG42. Therefore, it’s best to stick with the default barrel and magazine. For the MG42’s ammo type, on the other hand, we’ve gone for the FMJ Rounds as there are plenty of destructible environments to shoot through on the Call of Duty Vanguard maps.

For the rear grip, there’s no better option than the Stippled Grip. Not only does it help with recoil management significantly, but it also gives a big boost to the centring speed, which is the speed the gun takes to return to the centre after firing it.

The stock should also prioritise recoil management, and the VDD Skeletal has the fewest penalties, only compromising sprint-to-fire time and hip fire accuracy. It also increases ADS walking speed and idle sway control, making it more effective when aiming down sights. Using this stock mitigates the ADS penalty of using a scope and has more recoil control and idle sway control to boot. The MK 3 Mod. 2 Sunfilter optic is perfect for close to medium range combat, and it even improves the weapon’s indle sway control.

Since you’ll want as much ammo as possible, your best option for the kit slot is Fully Loaded which provides you with two additional magazines. Our preferred option for the proficiency slot is Tight Grip – this attachment increases the gun’s accuracy while firing the MG42, perfect for an LMG.

With these eight attachments selected, that’s all you need to build the best MG42 loadout in Call of Duty Vanguard. We have a few other Vanguard gun guides for you to check out, including the best Vanguard M1 Garand loadout, the best Vanguard Kar98k loadout, and the best Vanguard STG 44 loadout. We also have a Call of Duty Vanguard Zombies guide with everything we know about the Treyarch-developed game mode. Finally, Warzone is replacing the Cold War-inspired Verdansk map, so check out our guide on the new Warzone map, which highlights everything we know so far.