How to Change Operators in MW3 Zombies

You don't get it. I NEED to play as Nicki Minaj to slay zombies.

by Thomas Cunliffe
An operator stood in the Modern Warfare 3 Zombies lobby, sans UI
Image: Activision

When you first try to change operators in Modern Warfare 3 Zombies, you’ll only find two basic options. No Nicki, no Skeletor — nothing. Fear not! All your characters are still playable, and this guide shows you exactly how to change and equip your MW2 and MW3 operators.

How to Equip Operators in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Zombies

Screenshot: Attack of the Fanboy

To equip operators in MW3 zombies, navigate to the Strike Team tab. Here, you can choose a maximum of three operators, each with their own unique inventory. This works similarly to DMZ, but you unfortunately can’t switch Operators without dismissing them.

Unless you want to roll with Ripper or Scorch, select Strike Team Operator: 2 and choose any character. Once you have more than one operator in your Strike Team, dismiss the default operator to make room.

Related: All Mystery Box Locations in Modern Warfare 3 Zombies

Screenshot: Attack of the Fanboy

If you’ve filled all three slots and want to play as your newly earned Burger King operator, you’ll need to dismiss a current member of your Strike Team. That means losing your hard-earned gear, but thankfully not your weapons. Sacrifices must be made for Lilith once I earn enough CoD Points to unlock her. Sorry, Makarov.

Gear tied to your Strike Team operator includes:

  • Rucksack
  • Killstreak
  • Plate Carrier
  • Gas Mask
  • Self-Revive

Which Operators Can You Use in MW3 Zombies?

Image: Activision

Every operator from Modern Warfare 2 and Modern Warfare 3 can be used in MW3 Zombies. While you can’t switch operators without dismissing them, you can change skins and finishing moves at any time.

Players who purchased the Vault Edition of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 will receive the Nemesis Operator Pack: fancy skins for Price, Makarov, Warden, and Ghost. These rather shiny skins react to Kill Counts, gaining a more intense visual effect as you mow down zombies.

For more Zombies guides, check out ‘How to get Aetherium’ and ‘Pack-a-Punch Machine Locations.’ If you’re looking for the raygun, we also have an article on Mystery Boxes. Just like the good ‘ol days.

This guide was written while playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Zombies on Xbox Series X.

- This article was updated on November 10th, 2023

About The Author

Thomas has been a freelance writer since 2021 and considers himself a connoisseur of all things Nintendo, Blizzard, and Marvel. Since amassing 145,000+ followers on a Facebook page about Diddy Kong with a backward hat in 2015, Thomas has become a trusted voice in the gaming community across publications such as AOTF, PC Invasion, and Gfinity. His greatest achievements include catching every Pokémon, completing every quest in World of Warcraft (yes, all of them), and naming his dog 'Mass Effect 3.' Thomas is extraordinarily passionate about the video game industry and its community. He enjoys writing about various topics, including popular games like Destiny 2, Fortnite, and WoW, and exploring the latest AAA and indie titles.