Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (2024)

Escape From Tarkov is not a game that goes easy on beginners. For that matter, it's not a game that is particularly easy for veterans, either. With a ridiculously steep learning curve and a punishingly realistic combat system, it is no doubt among the hardest FPS games of all time. Sometimes, then, it is important for fans of the title to take a deep breath and appreciate some of the nice things that BattleState Games have done.

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One of the best and most beautiful features of Tarkov has to be its simply brilliant FPS map design, with multiple massive swathes of dense, ultra-realistic urban environment for you and your friends to loot through. Whether you're just starting out, or have been around since the early beta days, there is plenty to love in Escape From Tarkov's excellent areas.

Updated by Mehrdad Khayyat on July 5, 2024: Added a new entry, Ground Zero.

Escape from Tarkov

8/ 10

Released
July 27, 2017
Developer(s)
Battlestate Games

10 Shoreline

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (2)

To be the most difficult map in a game notorious for its difficulty is no small feat, but it is one that Shoreline handily achieves. There are a few key details that many of the best maps in Tarkov share, which Shoreline simply doesn't have.

For beginners, there is just nothing to be found here. The map is very open, lacking any major sources of cover, leaving you open to enemy fire almost constantly. Only a handful of tasks actually require you to go into Shoreline, so vets even have very little reason to start raids here. Most loot is localized to small, dense parts of the rather large map, making most of its playable space barren and empty.

9 The Lab

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (3)

The Lab houses by far the best loot in Tarkov, and its small size, being the second smallest after Factory, leads to some truly tense and fast-paced gameplay. This is all great fun and genuinely would earn it a spot as one of, if not the best map in the whole game. There is one key issue holding it back, though.

The area is difficult to even get into. Given Tarkov's cryptic nature, figuring out how to unlock The Lab becomes a high task in itself. In order to gain access to this very profitable map, you must come into possession of a TerraGroup Labs access keycard, which is a particularly rare find early on in your Tarkov career. It is for this barrier to entry that The Lab remains low, despite being one of the best maps for veterans of the game.

8 Interchange

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (4)

Interchange is certainly one of the most interesting maps from a sheer design standpoint, placing you into the bombed-out shell of a shopping mall. There is something particularly eerie about roaming its dark halls, on constant alert for any players that may turn a corner.

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The map handily encourages PVP by holding loot in hotly contested areas and is generally a blast to play through. There are a couple of notable aspects holding it down, though, particularly for newer players looking to get their footing in this intimidating title. The scav boss is easily one of the most difficult to take down in the entire game, and the extraction points have very little cover and are generally a hot spot for player activity, making this a hard map to exit.

7 Lighthouse

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (6)

The second-newest map to be added into Tarkov, Lighthouse does a fine job at showcasing the massive strides towards realism that Battlestate Games have been making. Gorgeous in its visual design, and tightly paced in its pathing, Lighthouse proves to be a fun map for beginners and veterans alike.

It can be quite tough, however, due to the current setup of its extraction point. There is only one extraction location in the entirety of Lighthouse, which means it is under constant surveillance by both players and enemy AI. The extraction zone is the largest in the entire game, though, so it is far from impossible.

6 Reserve

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (7)

Reserve has some of the best loot available in Tarkov, second only to The Lab in that regard. It does not have the latter's barrier to entry, however, and as such Reserve tends to be one of the most raided areas.

It may not be the best map for beginners to the game, as many veteran players drop here in search of top-tier loot. Players will surely put up a more vicious battle with a GPU or Lab Key in their pockets, both of which can be acquired on Reserve, therefore making this one of the most dangerous maps for early raids.

5 Streets Of Tarkov

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (8)

Being the newest, and largest addition to the game, Streets Of Tarkov (why didn't they just call this map Streets?) is easily the most populated map. It is rare to find a raid where you aren't in the middle of a firefight within only a couple of minutes after spawning in.

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That said, they are sure to be some of the most satisfying firefights imaginable, taking place across this map's dense urban terrain. Nearly every building is explorable here, housing multiple floors' worth of loot each. Since it is the newest area, it also has a few drawbacks that other maps (with more time post-release to be polished) don't have. Half of the map is borderline loot-less, with many buildings ending up disappointing to root through. Optimization is also particularly rough, with many players reporting a low frame rate on even the best of rigs.

4 Woods

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (10)

For those of you looking to survive your early raids, while also walking away with a sizable pile of loot, Woods may be the perfect choice. While it is a very open map, being a realistically plotted representation of the Prioksko-Terrasny Nature Reserve in Russia, it is also one of the easiest to maps avoid conflict in.

There are several different stashes scattered around which are often ignored by players, making it fairly simple to go and loot them. To make things even better, there are 16 different extraction points, the most of any map in the game. This is surely one of the best maps for those of you just starting out on your Tarkov journey.

3 Factory

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (11)

Factory is the smallest map in Tarkov, by a wide margin. Though it holds practically no loot, it is absolutely perfect for quick bouts of energetic PVP, to be followed by an equally swift departure.

Those of you newer to this intimidating title should definitely practice gunplay on Factory. It has the potential for quick, easy gear if you can get the kills required, and it has one of the easiest-to-reach extract points in the game. Veterans also have great reason to hop into this tiny wonder, seeing as it can be a great source of scav kills, which are required by a multitude of tasks.

2 Ground Zero

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (12)

Ground Zero is the latest Escape From Tarkov map designed for newcomers, as its name implies. You can think of Ground Zero as a compact and smaller version of Streets of Tarkov, as the map is set inside the downtown area of a city with multiple explorable buildings.

Ground Zero is not similar to maps like Woods or Lighthouse, where you may not come across a single player during your exploration. Confronting other players in Ground Zero is almost inevitable even if you run through. So, it's best for players looking for loot and don't mind engaging in combat with other players.

1 Customs

Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (13)

To have been made by what is ostensibly an indie studio, Customs is just a wonder of workmanship and level design. Breathtaking vistas intersect with urban environments, all placed purposefully to encourage player exploration and meetings at localized hot spots. The potential for an incredible firefight is high here, with multi-leveled apartment buildings often being the stage for battle.

With a fun boss to fight, a vast amount of tasks that can best be completed here, fairly excellent loot, and fantastic battle locations, Customs has more than a ton to offer, certainly making it the best area in a title rife with astonishing design.

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Escape From Tarkov: Every Area, Ranked (2024)

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