- "Hack equipment and care packages, or disable enemy vehicles."
- — Create-A-Class Description.
The Black Hat is a tactical equipment featured in Call of Duty: Black Ops II. It allows the player to hack enemy equipment and scorestreaks by either destroying it or converting it for the hacker's personal use.
The Black Hat can be used to hack Shock Charges, Claymores, C4, Bouncing Betties, Tactical Insertions, and Trophy Systems instantly, converting the enemy equipment into the player's own, making them hostile to enemy players including its previous owner, with the exception of Tactical Insertion, as it is destroyed as soon as it is hacked. In addition, the equipment can be hacked through walls. There is also a limited but considerably long range on hacking player scorestreaks that are on the ground (e.g. Guardians, Sentry Guns, Dragonfires and A.G.R.s), but an infinite range while hacking an enemy scorestreak that is airborne, such as the UAV, Stealth Chopper, Escort Drone, Warthog, Counter-UAV and VTOL Warship. Hacking such scorestreaks will only destroy them, not convert them and some will need two Black Hats to destroy while others will need three. The Black Hat can also be used to hack care packages.
If hacking a scorestreak that uses flares, the Black Hat will detonate the flares and not destroy the scorestreak, requiring a second (or third, depending on the scorestreak) one to be used. If a player calls in a care package and uses the Black Hat to capture it, it will be almost instantaneous. If the player uses the Black Hat on an enemy Care Package, it will be booby trapped and the player receive the owner's scorestreak. The hacker will see the box change into a dark red color as a result. The owner can determine if his Care Package is hacked by looking at the Scorestreak icon above the box: if it changes, for example, from a Sentry Gun into a Guardian, then the player will know it was hacked and avoid it, but only if it is noticed. The Black Hat is also very useful in capturing Care Packages that have gotten stuck on a roof, landed off the boundaries of the map, or ended up in areas where capturing it in person is difficult or impossible.
Before the 1.04 patch, the player could capture a friendly Care Package crate almost instantly with a Black Hat, faster than the owner could without. Since then, it has been patched for the sake of balance.
Obviously, the Tier 3 perk Engineer is extremely beneficial to compliment the Black Hat, as it can detect enemy equipment through walls and ceilings and floors to kill unsuspecting enemies or to clear a booby-trapped area. Such examples are destroying a Guardian or a Sentry Gun in a high-traffic area or hacking lethal and tactical equipment to benefit the player or their team.
The Black Hat will work through walls to a degree. Equipment revealed through walls via Engineer can be hacked, though one must be at a range of 18.75 meters or less. There is also a drawback to hacking equipment, as it is announced to the enemy when their equipment is hacked. Enemy scorestreaks can be hacked through buildings and walls as well, though one must have a direct line of sight when the Black Hat is first used and must maintain a good estimation of where the target is when out of sight. This is useful on such things as UAVs, as they may fly behind a building in the middle of the hacking process. Roughly following where it is through the obstacle will not interrupt the hacking process.
- The name "black hat" is used in reference to black hat hacking, a practice where computer hacking is used for malicious purposes.