1. Map Knowledge
In Escape from Tarkov, the best thing you can take into a raid is map knowledge. Knowing the layouts of terrain and buildings will greatly help you in raid. Map knowledge gives you the freedom of movement which guarantees flanking, rotations, and retreats. Learning the maps will take quite a lot of time if you were to explore the areas in each raid.
We highly suggest that you learn the maps by playing in the “Offline Mode”. For offline mode you should bring an SJ6 Stimulator so you can run around for longer periods of time. While in offline mode you should also practice grenade throwing and creating scenarios with Scavs. Once you think you’ve got a good handle on the map, run raids on it until your loot or fight pathing becomes routine.
2. Gun Sounds & Choosing Fights
“Knowing is half the battle”, is a very serious concept in Tarkov. That being said, if you know what weapon your enemy has, you know what move to make next. If you hear a pistol firing in the building next to you, there is a high chance you win the fight with them. On the other hand, if the guy has an M4A1 or HK416, then you may not want to risk it.
Learning the gun sounds is a very important skill in Tarkov. The most important to learn is the difference between the gun classes. An example, being the difference between shotguns, bolt actions, pistols, assault rifles, and grenade launchers. If you hear a player using a bolt action rifle and you have an automatic weapon, there is a high chance you will win that fight. The opposite can also apply. If you have a pistol and hear an M4 firing off in the distance, you may want to “Risk it for the Biscuit”.
3. Understanding Your Playstyle
No one is the same. We all have different strengths and weaknesses. Knowing yours will let you pick your playstyle so that you will mesh with your team. If you are not the best at close quarters combat, then a more passive supporting roll with a DMR or bolt action may suite you better. Your weapon preference will also pull you into a playstyle. An SMG or Assault riffle preference is most practical in the front or the flank. It’s best to be fluid and adapt to what is needed during the fight. I suggest trying each gun in the game at least once to get a feel of what you’re working with or what you are up against.
4. Lasers & Hip-Fire
Escape from Tarkov is one of the few games where firing from the hip is just as viable as aiming down sights. Hip firing can save you in close quarters or when pushing an enemy. When you are aiming down your sights you will, of course, be more accurate. However, that accuracy comes at the cost of a movement penalty. When firing from the hip, you keep your full walking speed. This grants you the ability to strafe while firing, which makes it difficult for the enemy to hit you.
The trick to hip-firing is knowing where the gun is pointing in its resting positions. The solution for that is to equip your gun with a laser sight. The more lasers you equip the better you will have an idea of the exact point of where the gun is pointing. Multiple lasers will also make the beam more visible which lets you take fights at a further distance.
5. Using the Compass
The compass was introduced to Tarkov later into 2020. It is a vital utility used mostly in teams. The compass is the best item for sharing enemy locations in open areas on maps such as Woods and Shoreline. Pulling out the compass is faster and more accurate than trying to describe what rock or tree the enemy is hiding behind. If you have a compass, force yourself to remember to use it!
6. Time Management
Managing your time in Tarkov should be as important as looking at the closing ring in a Battle Royale game. Within the first 10 minutes on every map, you or your team should have at least located one enemy and have secured a minimum of 1 scav or pmc kill. At 20 minutes into the raid you should also have secured a minimum of 50k roubles worth of loot. After such timing, you should consider one final rotation and loot path before extracting. Once the timer hits its final 10 minutes, your chance for extraction dwindles down. The last 10 minutes is when player scavs and extract campers become on edge. It’s best not to be in raid in those final minutes unless you’re certain your looting area is safe. Complete safety is never guaranteed in Tarkov. On the contrary, some players will avoid confrontation towards the end of a raid due to the risk of losing their profit. This can mean that those final moments are also the safest during the raid. Just make sure you have a plan every 8 minutes that goes by.
Every gun can kill every player. However, some ammo may not affect players as much as others. We suggest checking out the Wiki or a Tarkov ammo chart to understand what is best for your gun. Each bullet has a different penetration, damage, speed, and fragmentation chance. The most important feature is penetration. The higher the penetration the more reliable the damage amount will be. If bullet has low penetration, an armored opponent may not receive any damage comparative to the amount of shots he received.
Bullet damage is usually balanced with its corresponding penetration. You can assume if the bullet does a high amount of damage, then the penetration is very low and vice versa. This is seen throughout the Assault rifle, SMG, DMR, and Bolt Action class ammunition. Shotgun, on the hand, have a large variety of options since most of the shells in that caliber have pellets. We suggest bringing in at least one magazine with bullets of high penetration!
Escape from Tarkov has 6 classes of armor. Each armor has different durability and repairability. Each armored vest, armored tactical rig, helmet, or face visor is made out of a different material. While the material is related to damage reduction, we primarily relate it with its repairability. For example, ceramic vests such as the Gzhel-K have a very low repairability and are not worth repairing more than once. Then, we have the armored steel found in vests like the Korund-VM that you can repair multiple times without losing too much durability. The efficiency of the repair should not be the main factor for using it. The armor class itself should be the deciding factor.
The classes start at one being the weakest and end at the strongest at class six. Classes one through three are only useful two months into the wipe of Escape from Tarkov. During those two months, players won’t be using high penetration ammo and those lower armor classes will do a decent job at keeping you alive. After the two months into the wipe, you’ll need to start wearing higher classed armor. Eventually, you will get to a point where classes one to three are completely useless. Class four armor should be sufficient for every raid. It is not too expensive and will do a decent job at damage reduction. However, if you’re sitting on a pile of roubles, then grab some class six and get juicy!
Stimulators or “stims” are the most underrated health items in Tarkov. While they tend to be a bit pricey, they can give you a huge advantage in raid. Morphine is one of the cheapest and most commonly found. It is a simple painkiller that lasts for 5 minutes. Simple Analgin painkillers is definitely a cheaper option and has more uses. Most stims have multiple purposes. For example, the AHF1-M stimulator prevents you from bleeding and increases your health skill(which lowers your chance of fracture and reduces hydration/energy consumption) for 60 seconds. Regenerative injectors are, by far, the most important to have on you during a raid. These stims are Propitol and the eTG-Change. Propitol offers a painkiller that lasts four minutes and health regeneration at 1hp per second for five minutes. Then, the eTG-Change offers health regeneration at 6.5hp per second for 1 minute but does not act as a painkiller.
Before discussing the other injectors, it is important to know that there are penalties that come with each stim. Referring back to the eTG-Change, its penalty is a reduction in energy and a decrease in the endurance and health skills. Furthermore, we have stims like the SJ1 and SJ6 that give massive boosts to stamina, strength, and endurance which provide longer and faster sprinting. The best combination of stims to carry into raid is an SJ6, Propitol, and a M.U.L.E. The SJ6 would be used at the beginning of the raid to get to you first looting location without having to run out of stamina. Next, the Propitol would be used in a combat situation where you’ve been shot. Last would be using the M.U.L.E., which increases your carrying weight by 50%. This will let you get to your extraction without having to constantly stop to regain stamina due to being overweight.
Grenades are an extremely vital and clutch weapon in Tarkov. There are five fragmentation, one flash, and one smoke grenade. The difference in the fragmentation grenades are its fuse times and explosion radius. The deadliest grenade is the F1 Hand Grenade. The F1 is followed by M67 and RGD-5. The last two of the fragmentation grenades are some of the most crucial due to their low fuse times. These are the VOG-17 and VOG-25. Their explosion radius is much smaller than the previous but they are extremely clutch for quickly suppressing enemies.
Then, we have the utility grenades which are the stun grenade and smoke grenade. The Zarya stun grenade has a somewhat short fuse time so make sure you are close enough to your enemy. A successful flash will have the enemy blind for 40 seconds which should be long enough to make a move. The smoke grenade is bloom is smaller than you would expect but is still large enough to block line of sight in most situations. The smoke grenade lasts two minutes. We suggest always bringing one F1 or RGD-5, one VOG series grenade, and a smoke grenade.