Escape From Tarkov – New player guide for beta

Basic mechanics

  • Factions (PMC) – There are two factions to choose from, Bear (Russian) and USEC (English). Some also count SCAV as faction, but because it is bit different, I don't count it as faction to choose from. Factions are also called PMC (Private Military Contractor). At this point only difference between Bear and USEC is language and character model- one yells in russian while other in english, Bear got black top, USEC got green top. In future factions will have different quests and skillsets. Also might have different traders.

    BEAR/USEC faction character models

  • Skills – Skills in EFT aren't working like they are in mmorpg games. You don't really play to level up them, you just play and they just level up. They level up passively- by running you gain xp to stamina skill. by reloading you gain xp to reloading skill and make reloading faster. Cool thing about reloading is that when you gain experienced at it, your character get new more tactical reloading animation. In beta lot of skills are locked.
  • Character level – Character level kinda could give you edge, as it is one requirment of getting better gear from trader, but level doesn't restrict gear you can use. Any level can use any kind of items. To level up you character you just need to play game. Different action give different amount of xp, but most valuable is finishing raid.
  • Traders – There are 5 traders. 4 o them can be upgraded to unlock new items. To do that you must level up your character and buy items from traders or sell to them. Some trader also require "Good standing". This is gained by doing quests.

    Escape from Tarkov trader

    Each trader buys specific items. If trader doesn't buy your weapon, but should, then make sure you check if there is no bullet in chamber. It very common mistake for new players. Also if you are trying to sell armors, make sure you repair it first. Traders won't buy broken items.

  • Maps (raids)– There are 4 locations: factory, customs, woods and shoreline. We call them raids. Each raid contain X ammount players and AI. To finish raid, players have to find exit location. Ammount of players in raid depends on map size. In future there should be full open map for freeroam.
  • Game Modes – Basically there are 2 game modes. Scav – where you spawn as AI character, with random loot and health conditions. PMC – You spawn with your character, with full heath and with items you have taken from global inventory.
    • Scav play – Idea of Scav is that when you have no loot, then can use this mode to gain some loot. It has cooldown of 30 mins (this changes in beta time to time). As scav you can either spawn and run right to exit point or keep looking for more loot and kill players. If you get to exit point, you can keep the loot you have. Other scav won't attack you if you don't attack them, but be aware there are player scavs who might kill you. Some players as Scav like to kill other Scavs. Scavs killing Scavs is subject to change in future. XP gained by scav won't transfer to your main character.
    • PMC play – This your main character. Before going into raids you can buy equipment from traders or take from your global inventory. If you play solo, then basically everyone in raid is your enemy, even if they are from same faction. You spawn in one of multiple spawn points and have to make it to exit point, while looting as much you want. If you have map in your inventory then you can choose starting area. There are usually 2 starting areas, each having their own exit points.
  • First Aid – When you get shot, then using just bandage might not help. There are basically 3 symptoms: pain, fracture and bleeding. When your arm gets fractured your aim starts to shake more. Fractured leg doesn't allow you to run. While bleeding you lose health and pain just affects vision. Using just bandage won't help, so when you go into raid, make sure you can cure fractures and bleeding. There separated items for each symptoms, but there are also items that cure multiple symptoms.
  • Quickslots and tactical vest – To put things into quickslots you have to first put them into tactical vest or pockets. Also you can't reload weapon with R, if magazine aint in tactical vest or in pockets.

These are mostly things I have learned as I got more experienced

  • Lobby/raids – Understanding how raids work make thing easier. Each time you go into raid you either join a instance or instance is created. There are limit how many players can be in one raid, like 1-7 or 6-12, depends on size of map. Player count is displayed in lobby next to weather or time.

    escape from tarkov map settings

    Each raid has set of time: 30 mins, 60 mins or 120 min. You can check raid time when you join one. When you join map that is 60 mins long and your raid timer shows 55 mins, then you know you are pretty much start of the raid and players before you might be 5 minutes ahead, so be alert near spawn zones. When you 60 min raid, but raid time shows 30 mins, then you can assume that players are pretty much at exit point, but this isn't certain. There can always be players anywhere. To now there is not exactly know what the timefram for spawn. Some say that players have spawned into instance 20 mins after start of raid. Scavs player can spawn anytime.

  • Scav spawn in waves – This means, that even after every scav has been killed, they will respawn again. People say that 2nd wave of scavs come with better gear, but this has not been confirmed by devs and respawn times are not known yet.
  • Doors – Doors won't close themselves. If you see open door, you know someone has gone trough there or might inside that complex. Items won't respawn after they have been looted. Spawning into raid too late might mean that all good loot has been already looted.
  • Tracer ammo – EFT provides many of ammo types. Tracer ammo is one of them. Its an ammo that you can see flying trough air. Technically you don't see the ammo, but trajectory. In real life this ammo can be used by squad leaders to direct his squad fire. In EFT you can use it as signal for yourself that magazine running empty. You can fill ammo into magazines one by one. If magazine size is 30 bullets, then fill like first 10 normal bullets, then few tracers and then normals- This way when you see tracers flying you know you have only 10 bullets left in magazine.
  • Go prone (Z) – It can save your life when walking on road or grassless field. It makes you smaller target and it makes your gun more stable. Players also might think you are dead and stop firing, while you actually are reloading. This has happend to me and also lot of player might be playing dead, so be careful.
  • Firemode – I like to switch firemode based on where I am. In rooms I use full auto and in open spaces single shots. In close quaters you might not have time to aim so precicly, so full auto is choice for me. Double tap on V makes melee strike from knife/axe. Haven't really had any success with V, so I don't really use it.
  • Sounds – When you are new to game, then sounds are pretty much f#cked up for you. Sometimes you hear gunshots that are just like next to you behind the wall, but actually are middle of the map. When you hear sound that is very quit and you think mind is playing tricks with you or its a bug, then be extra careful, because it is probably player near you. Only way to use sounds is to remember where what surface what sound makes.
    PS: The sound system is broken, missing directional sound or something like that. Developers have told they are aware of it and it is in todo list.
  • Backpack inside backpack – If you are low on space on your global inventory, you can put backpacks inside each other, like Russian nesting dolls.
  • Heavy injuries/fataly injured – If you are heavily injured and know you are going to die or there is high chance of dying. Then try find safe hiding place to drop your insured gear. Since your gear is insured it gets returned to you and people don't really look into bushes. So there is high chances that gear you have hidden into bush will get returned for you.
  • Killed enemy but not enough space for loot? – You can drop your insured gear into safe bush and then collect gear from killed enemy into those empty slots.
  • 2 magazine – When going into raid and you don't have much money, then 2 magazines are good enough. You fill those 2 magazines and take extra bullets in secure container. You need 2 magazines, so that you could reload easily. When you swap out empty magazine, you can easily drag and drop bullets from secure container into that empty magazine.