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What is ‘Join failed because you are on a different version’ error in MW3

What does it all mean?

Have you attempted to play MW3 until you wondered what the strange error “Join failed because you are on a different version” meant?

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If you’re trying to figure out how to fix this issue and why it’s happening, we’re here to help. Let’s discuss why you’re getting this error and how to stop it from happening again.

MW3: How to fix “Join failed because you are on a different version” error

If you’re receiving this error message while trying to play MW3, it means that you’re on the wrong version of the game. Sometimes when games update, most players will see the update right away, while others may accidentally boot up MW3 without updating.

“Join failed because you are on a different version” will pop up only to those who are not on the latest version of the game.

What is 'Join failed because you are on a different version' error in MW3
Screenshot: Activision

You’ve either forgotten to make your game automatically update, or you’ve somehow missed an update. Fixing this error is quite easy and shouldn’t take long to figure out. Here are some ways to make sure you’re on the latest version of MW3 depending on your console of choice:

  • Steam:
    1. Right-click MW3 in Library
    2. Select ‘Properties’
    3. Head to the ‘Updates’ page
    4. Set it to ‘Always keep this game updated’
  • Battle.net:
    1. Select the gear icon beside the ‘Play’ button
    2. Click ‘Check for Updates’
  • PlayStation:
    • Press the Options button while on MW3
    • Choose ‘Check for Update’
  • Xbox:
    • Press the Start button while on MW3
    • Choose ‘Manage game and add-ons’
    • Select ‘Updates’

No matter which console you have, these steps should ensure that you’re playing MW3 on the most recent version. This should fix the “Join failed because you are on a different version” error immediately. If it doesn’t, restart MW3 and restart your PC/console if necessary.

If you ever believe that the MW3 Warzone servers are simply not online, perhaps you should check if the Warzone servers are down. That’s also super easy to figure out with the right resources.


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Anyka Pettigrew
Anyka Pettigrew has been a Staff Writer for PC Invasion since November 2023 and a Contributing Writer since February 2023. She is a Canadian graduate of a Bachelor of Arts degree who has been writing in games journalism for four years. Anyka is an avid guides writer but also enjoys writing anything from news pieces, to reviews, and even opinion pieces. Having a never-ending passion for video games for as long as she can remember got her into a plethora of genres like action adventure, RPGs, horror, survival etc. Some of her favorite franchises are God of War, Persona, The Last of Us, Zelda, and Resident Evil. She also enjoys reading fantasy and sci-fi books, as well as drawing digital art. Anyka also regularly listens to podcasts on gaming news from 'Kinda Funny Games', and 'Play, Watch, Listen'.
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Aidan Lambourne
Aidan Lambourne is a contributing writer for PC Invasion, with almost a couple years of experience in the industry. He has written about Roblox extensively, although has keenly covered new releases and indie games. A passionate writer and gamer, he still can't really believe he gets to indulge in both for a career.