Escape from Tarkov is an incredibly realistic first-person shooter. The developers wanted the player to be limited by what an actual soldier would experience – as much as possible for a game anyway.
Want to know how much ammo is left in your gun’s magazine? This game doesn’t have that indicated by a number in the bottom corner of the screen; no, your character actually looks down at the magazine to see how much ammo is in it. Like most FPS games, Escape from Tarkov has an arsenal of weapons available to players. Using the best weapon (and ammo) is vital to staying alive – and keeping your items.
The Vepr Hunter is a semiautomatic assault carbine; for those who don’t know a carbine is a small rifle. This carbine offers a great balance of accuracy, ergonomics, and rate of fire. This gun suffers from greater recoil and a shorter range than most of the guns on this list. The recoil problem is mitigated a bit by being a semi-automatic gun rather than full auto. With the right ammo this weapon can one-hit kill opponents – even if they have moderately good armor. With a scope and a few other attachments the Vepr Hunter/VPO-101 makes a very reliable semiautomatic sniper rifle.
The FN P90 is an excellent submachine gun, and a great choice for players who prefer getting a little closer to the enemy before engaging them. This compact gun is extremely ergonomic, has a superior rate of fire compared to most of the weapons in the game, and does not suffer much from vertical recoil – horizontal recoil, on the other hand, can be troublesome. The only real drawback to the P90 is the range, and its rate of fire being perhaps a bit too fast (the magazine empties very fast). The short range isn’t that awful though. Your accuracy improves the closer you are to the enemy, and this gun will usually have the advantage in ergonomics and rate of fire versus what the enemy is using.
Springfield Armory M1A
The M1A is one of the most versatile and upgradable guns in the game. Also, with the proper ammo this gun is immensely powerful – it can one-shot kill even heavily armored foes. The M1A is a semiautomatic marksman rifle that is effective at long range and is deadly accurate.
As with most rifles, it has a recoil problem; however, the M1A’s recoil (vertical and horizontal) aren’t as bad as the other marksman rifles in the game. A lot of “best of” list about the guns in Escape from Tarkov put the VSS Vintorez ahead of the M1A simply because it comes standard with a suppressor. The M1A’s stats are better than the VSS Vintorez’s – all of them.
The MP7 is a very well-known firearm among players of first-person shooters. In most games similar to Escape from Tarkov the MP7 is usually a top tier weapon. It’s in the top tiers of weapons in this game as well. The MP7 has a great ergonomic rating, and its rate of fire is higher than the P90. It is comparable to the P90 in most regards – except in two important areas where it excels over the P90. The MP7 has less recoil than the P90, and it has greater effective range. Just replace the iron sights as soon as possible and get a PK-06 red dot sight.
Remington R11 RSASS
There is a lot of arguing among players of Escape from Tarkov over which is better – the R11 RSASS or the M1A. The M1A SASS variant is comparable to the R11 RSASS, but the base M1A doesn’t match up well. The M1A is a lot cheaper, but other than that the R11 RSASS is the better weapon. The R11 RSASS has better ergonomics than the M1A – making its aim-down-sight speed slightly better. When engaging an opponent, that split second difference made by better ergonomics is often the difference between life and death (and losing your gear).
For players who wish to engage the enemy at long range silently there are not many guns better than the DVL-10 Saboteur in Escape from Tarkov. This bolt-action rifle has a surprisingly high rate of fire, and very little recoil for a rifle. It also has great ergonomics for such a cumbersome gun. All these factors act in concert to make follow-up shots much more accurate. The DVL-10 also comes standard with a suppressor, and is collapsible – which helps a lot with this game’s inventory management system. The DVL-10 has a greater range, less overall recoil, and higher muzzle velocity than the M1A, but also a much lower rate of fire.
The AK-74 is a more modern version of the legendary (or infamous) AK-47. This is an assault rifle capable of switching between fully automatic and semiautomatic firing modes. The “N” in the AK-74N stands for night vision capabilities – so this weapon is great for poorly lighted areas. This weapon has a very, very high muzzle velocity. With the right ammo this weapon packs an incredible punch and can make Swiss cheese out of body armor. The ergonomic rating of the AK-74N is not the best, but this can be improved with modifications. The recoil is only slightly worse than the better assault rifles in the game.
The AS VAL is an assault rifle that comes standard with a suppressor. Assault rifles may have long effective ranges, but they are best used at medium range. At medium range having a suppressor is great for maintaining anonymity during the engagement.
This weapon has a very low muzzle velocity – so it doesn’t have much penetrating power. The low muzzle velocity, however, means this weapon suffers from very little recoil. This weapon’s ergonomic rating is only a few points worse than the better assault rifles on this list. The AS VAL is collapsible, making it inventory management friendly.
The final two entries are almost identical when it comes down to the guns’ ratings. The HK 416A5 has a much better ergonomic rating than other weapons; this gives it an edge at the outset of an engagement. It also has a higher rate of fire, is more accurate, and has slightly lower recoil. The HK 416A5 has a good effective range and a great accuracy rating. In addition to all this, the HK 416A5 has a fair number of available modifications. Needless to say, this weapon is a favorite among players.
This is widely regarded as the best gun in Escape from Tarkov. The M4A1 has an almost unmatched set of ratings; its rate of fire, recoil levels, range (for an assault rifle), ammo capacity, and ergonomic ratings are all on level with the best weapons. What this weapon has over the other guns in the game is the number of modifications available for it. The 100 round drum magazine alone makes this weapon so much deadlier than the other weapons on this list- and along with some stabilizing attachments turns the M4A1 into the best light machinegun in the game.
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Graduate of Sam Houston State University — Class of 2011
B.A. in History, minored in Political Science
I have lived in the Houston TX area my whole life; love the winters…hate the summers. I have conducted scholarly research on, and written about, the use of ballooning for reconnaissance purposes during the U.S. Civil War, tort reform, voter initiatives and referendums, the formation of civilization, Ancient Rome, Mesopotamia, and the major religions. I am also an avid gamer and have researched the history of electronic entertainment extensively.
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