Escape from Tarkov

Best weapons and ammo to dominate Escape from Tarkov

by Kamil Malinowski

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There are many different types of weapons and ammo in Escape from Tarkov, but which ones are the best, and which ammo works best for which gun? 

One of the very basics of any shooter is the weapons. If you want to win, you’re going to need to shoot at your opponents – it’s no different in Tarkov, even if the goals differ from the usual FPS game.

There are a ton of different weapons in the game, all of which excel in different areas or at different tasks. It may be difficult to know which weapon is best, or even which ammo is ideal for it, so we’ve put a handy guide together to help you secure some kills and claim even more loot.

Battlestate Games
Escape from Tarkov is an incredibly popular tactical first-person shooter.

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Best Assault & Carbine rifles

M4A1

The M4A1 is a classic assault rifle present in the majority of shooters. It’s known for its reliability and for being an all-round solid choice, and it’s no different in Tarkov.

This gun is easy to handle, quite accurate, and its recoil and damage make it an ideal choice for mid-range engagements, however, it can still be incredibly effective both in short and long-range.

AKM

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The AKM is an improved version of another FPS classic, the AK-47, having less recoil and weight than the 47 version in Tarkov.

This makes it ideal for roaming the map and taking medium-range engagements as it will give you solid accuracy and a good amount of mobility.

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The AKM is one of the most powerful rifles in Escape from Tarkov.

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SA-58

This gun is arguably the most powerful in the game thanks firstly to its impressive fire-rate, but mainly due to the damage per hit.

However, its recoil is one of the highest in the game, making it incredibly hard to master as it’s very easy to miss after your first few shots. If you do manage to keep it under control, though, your opponents won’t stand a chance.

SKS

The SKS is an iconic weapon that many would not doubt have seen in other games. It’s not the flashiest gun in Tarkov, but still deserves a mention as it is easily accessible and can be very effective if used correctly.

Of course, being semi-automatic it doesn’t have the highest fire rate in the world, but it packs a massive punch with a direct hit and is surprisingly strong in mid and long-range battles.

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AS Val

The AS Val is another classic that has unsurprisingly appeared in Escape from Tarkov and become one of the game’s better weapons

Its main feature is that it comes with an inbuilt suppressor, making it the perfect choice for stealthy runs. The high fire-rate and incredibly low recall also help make it incredibly dangerous in the right hands – it’s possible to quickly eliminate a whole squad with the Val without anyone knowing where the shots are coming from.

Battlestate Games
The AS Val is a fan-favorite Tarkov gun.

Best Marksmen & Sniper rifles

RSASS

This weapon is a fan favorite and undoubtedly one of the strongest guns in the game. It’s incredibly accurate, has a high fire rate, low recoil, and does a ton of damage with every hit.

There’s almost no downside to this sniper as it is monstrous from long range and can even make short work of enemies closing the gap. Get ready to dominate the map if you manage to get one in your hands.

VSS Vintorez

The VSS Vintorez is another gun that comes with an inbuilt suppressor and overall lightweight build.

Many consider it to be the AS Val of sniper rifles, as it is perfect for stealthy maneuvers and provides solid mobility. However, the key difference is that the VSS packs a massive punch with every shot making it dangerous at all ranges.

DVL-10

This sniper rifle has a strange position in the game. It is incredibly expensive and has very limited uses as it is a heavy bolt action rifle.

However, it excels in very long-range tactical combat and will no doubt help you win a sniper battle. That is, if you ever manage to find one, as there is always someone closing in on the gunshots in Tarkov, and with it being so heavy, you’ll be left a sitting duck.

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Best Submachine guns

SIG MPX

Unfortunately, SMGs aren’t great in Tarkov. They do very little damage and are quite expensive, meaning most of the time you’re better off with something else.

Although, if you’ve found one laying around or wish to experiment, the SIG MPX is the way to go. It allows the most attachments out of all the Submachine guns and has a very high fire rate, but, just like the other SMGs the armor penetration is abysmal, meaning you likely won’t be killing anyone with it.

Saiga-9

This is a gun you’ll likely find on your first few runs. It faces the same issues as all the other SMG’s, but this one isn’t even automatic, so you’ll find yourself clicking your shoot button like a madman for little to no results.

However, it is the cheapest and easiest Submachine gun to get, so if you want to at least test them out, this is your best bet.

Best Shotguns

MP-153

Much like SMGs, shotguns are very poor in EFT. They do almost no damage against armored enemies, meaning you’ll never really find a use for one.

You’re actually better off using a pistol than a shotgun, but if you do feel like trying any shotgun out, your best bet is the MP-153 – its relatively inexpensive and does the most damage out of all the shotguns. Just remember, aim for the legs, as they’re not armored.

Battlestate Games
Tarkov's MP-153 is the best choice for any shotgun fan.

Best Pistols

SR1MP Gyurza

Pistols obviously don’t have as much power as rifles, but they still have their uses in the game. They’re very cheap, can do some damage, and are very light – making them perfect for quick smash and grab missions.

The Gyurza is the best choice of pistol thanks to its fire rate and damage, although, you’ll still need to get close to someone to take them down with it, which may prove to be a challenge.

P226R

The P226R is your alternative pistol choice. It doesn’t do quite as much damage as the Gyurza, but is still solid for a pistol. Best used when you’re running on a budget.

Best Ammo

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Ammo plays a vital role in Tarkov, you need bullets in your guns to shoot, but there are also a ton of different bullet types, and guns can use multiple types of ammunition.

Having the ideal ammo in your gun can be the difference between life and death. A lot of the time you’ll pick up guns with unideal ammo, so it’s best to load it up with the options in the chart above, that way you’ll do a lot more damage.

The chart may be confusing at first, but it’s really quite simple once you get used to it. Different guns take different sizes of ammo, and those bullets come with different names.

For example, the M4A1 uses size 5.56x45mm, meaning you’d need to look at the Rifle weapon type, find the size, then buy M995, M856A1, M855A1, or 55 HP bullets, depending on how much you want to spend.

Now that you know which guns are best to use and which bullets to load them up with you’re ready to get out there, destroy some enemies, and find all the best Escape from Tarkov loot.