|“||Amidst the chaos and lawlessness, scarcity of vital provisions and territories, the first to lift up their heads are shady characters, unembarrassed by excessive moral or ethical restraints or quick to lose them under influence of conditions. They gather into packs, living by dog-eat-dog rules, cutting each other throats over a better piece. This is how yesterday's civilians become Scavs.||„|
|~ In game description|
At the onset of active hostilities in the city, in addition to the predictable humanitarian consequences, a special trend is observed that represents a threat for both civilians and armed forces of the conflicting parties. Due to the tense situation in the city prior to the open conflict, Tarkov has developed conditions attractive for all kinds of criminals and antisocial personalities. In addition, the development of the underworld business, especially in recent years, has encouraged the formation of a certain population stratum previously not directly associated with criminals, but, due to their moral and ethical inclinations, prone to antisocial actions in certain cases concerned with their own benefit. Thus, at this point, the formation of groups actively engaged in looting, robbery and armed attacks can be observed in Tarkov, invariably coupled with violence against the civilian population and even military staff. Recently, these groups have earned a nickname from the locals - Scavs.
The Scav groups are quite varied, have diverse ethnic, social and quantitative composition, as well as the different levels and quality of equipment and varying degrees of sustainability. By far, four of these groups are considered to be the most stable and organized: 
- "Grizzle" armed group. Real name unknown.
- B. S. Pashutin (Boris Semyonovich) armed group. (alias Fiend)
- Y. G. Zhilnov (Yaroslav Grigoryevich) group. (alias Yarik, Yaga)
- B. T. Stoporenko group (alias Lawyer).
Scavs are both AI and player controlled characters. All locations begin with Scavs already populating them, and more will arrive in waves throughout the duration of a raid. During some of these spawn waves, player controlled Scavs will join the match. Scavs and player Scavs can spawn with random various pieces of equipment and loot, including rare objects like lab keycards and marked keys. For player Scavs, what they spawn with is influenced by fence reputation
AI Scavs are, for the most part, not a very large threat. They usually follow a basic patrol route of walking to a position, stopping, looking around a bit, then continuing in another direction, or just standing in place looking back and forth. They will also frequently check their ammo during their stop. These mannerisms are typically a good method to determine if the Scav is AI or a player. They also occasionally stop to "loot" containers and corpses, though it seems they never actuality take anything and the looting animation and sounds don’t play and is most likely just to help mask Scav players better. They also tend to say voice lines in russian, seemingly at random, very often. This is also a good method to determine if a Scav is a player or not, or simply to find out if there are Scavs nearby. In combat, lone Scavs are practically a non-threat, generally requiring one precise shot to the head or a few shots to their typically unarmored bodies to dispatch. In packs, Scavs will pose more of a threat, but are still bogged down by their subpar gear and rudimentary AI.
They tend to be very inaccurate, most likely as a balance and to fit in with the lore, and exhibit a very basic understanding of tactics (using basic cover such as running around a building, waiting around corners or next to doorways, etc).
AI Scavs have very little (if any) situational awareness, making it very easy to get the drop on a group of them. With a moderate amount of stealth, one can find a suitable spot to pick them off. The size of the groups they travel in vary widely, especially given the size of the map, but they typically patrol in groups of 3. Scavs will generally stick around landmarks and other important places, but will sometimes roam around the map instead, or pursue tagged and cursed players.
However, scavs should not be marked off as a non threat entirely. They have been shown to have random moments where they are incredibly accurate and perfectly shoot a player in the face, can “drop-shot” players, and can spawn with powerful weapons with AP rounds. While this is not common, it is typically a death sentence when a scav exhibits this level of intelligence, since they acquire targets incredibly fast, dodge your attempt to shoot them, are not hampered by things like sight lines and muzzle flash, and can shoot you in the head instantly before you can even register they’re on screen. So while they typically are a non threat, some level of caution should still be exhibited. (Note: this is for normal scavs, even though higher level AI scavs such as rogues and raiders typically always exhibit this level of intelligence and skill).
There are 3 different health presets Scavs can have.
Scav game mode
Playing as a Scav is like playing the game without rules, one where the players can experience quite different gameplay with a focus on reckless abandon. The Scav player is spawned together with AI Scavs. For example, the player Scav will spawn part-way through a raid in one of several set spawn points. Scav tactics change up the overall style of raid gameplay, and in most cases, complicating the lives of BEAR and USEC players, while also fighting among themselves.
When you join a raid as a Scav, you are neutral with all normal AI Scavs. That means they will not shoot you or react negatively in any way. However, if you attack any Scav you become a "traitor" and all nearby AI Scavs will become hostile. You won't become a traitor if you attack or kill a player Scav who attacked you first, or was already marked as a traitor to nearby AI Scavs. Scav Raiders, as well as Bosses and their followers won't bother you as long as you don't get too close to them.
The most important thing about playing as Scav is that if you get killed in the raid, you will not lose anything from your main character's possessions, and if you survive, you can add whatever you looted to your stash. In other words, this is an alternative way to find and save items and to take part in combat, but without the risk of losing everything brought into the Raid.
Your Scav character is progressing separately from your main PMC character. Level and skill progress carry over between raids, even though the character names imply different persons. The skills and overall statistics of your scav can only be viewed in-raid currently.
Upgrading the intelligence center in your Hideout will allow you to reduce the cooldown timer for the Scav game mode:
- Level 1 Intelligence center: -15%
- Level 3 Intelligence center: -20% (-35% in total)
Similar to operational tasks for your PMC character, there are also daily tasks for your Scav character. They can be obtained from Fence after you built the Hideout module "Intelligence Center". The rewards for these tasks are largely randomized and can give a variety of items and Scav karma. If you do not want the task you have been given, you can pay some Euros or take a Scav karma penalty for a new random task. The objectives are highly varying, and can solely be done with your Scav character.
Scav karma is a system that was implemented to incentivise cooperation between player Scavs rather than shooting each other on sight. Different actions cause different changes to your karma level. Your current karma can be found as Fence trader reputation.
Note: If you have +6 karma or better, the penalties are multipled by a certain amount.
|Extract as a Scav||+0.01||Extract on any location.|
|Use a co-op extraction as Scav or PMC||+0.25 first time||Subsequent extractions are calculated by |
|Use a car extraction as PMC||+0.25 first time||Subsequent extractions are calculated by |
|Complete a Scav task||+0.01 - +0.04|
|Kill a PMC as a Scav||+0.02 - +0.03||If the PMC killed at least one Scav, you get +0.03.|
|Kill a traitor Scav as a Scav||+0.03||If the traitor killed at least one Scav, you get +0.03.|
|Help a Scav||+0.02|
|Help a Scav Boss||+0.05|
|Kill a Scav as a Scav||-0.05 or -0.1||You become a traitor Scav for the rest of the raid.|
|Kill a Scav Boss guard as a Scav||-0.05 - -0.06||You become a traitor Scav for the rest of the raid.|
|Kill a Scav Boss as a Scav||-0.2 - -0.5||You become a traitor Scav for the rest of the raid.|
Your Scav karma affects the following things:
- Fee amount for car extractions (e.g. "Dorms V-Ex" on Customs)
- Scav case turnaround time in the Hideout
- Fence's payout for items sold to him
- With a karma level of +6, players get access to an additional sales tab on Fence that offers a 30% discount
- Scav game mode cooldown
- The amount of available extractions in the Scav game mode
- The quality of your gear set in the Scav game mode
- The chance that AI-Scavs follow the player's commands (Follow, hold position etc.) in the Scav game mode
- With a very high karma level (6+), AI-Scavs will support player Scavs by attacking their targets and bosses will be considered allies
- With a very low karma level (-5), AI-Scavs will attack the player on sight
The effects mentioned above change every whole number (+1, -4 etc.).
Note that the primary weapons can have numerous mod variations and those shown below are examples.
|Tac-Kek FAST MT helmet (replica)||1|
|TSh-4M-L soft tank crew helmet||1|
|PSh-97 DJETA riot helmet||2|
|ShPM Firefighter helmet||2|
|Kolpak-1S riot helmet||2|
|6B47 Ratnik-BSh helmet||3|
|SSh-68 steel helmet||3|
|Shattered lightweight armored mask||1|
|6B34 anti-fragmentation glasses|
|Round frame sunglasses|
|Dundukk sport sunglasses|
|RayBench Hipster Reserve sunglasses|
|NPP KlASS Condor glasses|
|Pilgrim tourist backpack|
|LBT-8005A Day Pack backpack|
|Flyye MBSS backpack|
|LolKek 3F Transfer tourist backpack|
|VKBO army bag|
|Tactical sling bag|
- In Russian, Scavs are known as 'Savages' or 'Wild'.