I got my hands on a game I’ve been waiting to play for quite a while now, Escape from Tarkov. The latest game’s update marked the transition to the closed beta phase with keys being administered in waves to those who pre-purchased any of the available packages (so I got one).
In its current state, Escape from Tarkov is a testing ground providing not more than four raids, which are PvE/PvP maps of all sizes part of a world almost built for STALKER’s fans. The selling point for the game is the atmosphere derived mostly from immersive visuals coupled with an extremely realistic gunplay and a hardcore gameplay. Tarkov is a mostly abandoned city, a haven for looters which basically translates in the game being a loot shooter where players scavenge everything with the hop to find better gear. Those who make it out alive from the raids get to keep their loot, the rest turn into loot mules for their killers or join the list of endless victims of the unforgiving (read this as overpowered and cheating) AI. That’s right, Tarkov has AI which is a bit primitive right now, but it’s evolving to serve in the game’s story somewhere in the not so distant future (hopefully).
Escape from Tarkov might seem like an evolved form of DayZ with persistent progression and far more realistic elements that are better put in practice. But at its core the game aims to provide an online narrative driven experience with all the things that entails. After all, the ultimate goal is to escape the city of Tarkov, which at the moment seems like a far away dream. But when this dream will turn into reality, it might be an unforgettable experience, the kind we don’t get that often anymore. But don’t get lost in Tarkov’s seductive charm unless you know what you are getting into. The current content is just a fraction of the full game, mostly a deathmatch/survival experience filled with bugs and adrenaline pumping moments smashed between frustration and joy.