Escape From Tarkov PMC or Scav?


Ezequiel M.

Writer and Storywriter


When you go into a raid you’ve undoubtedly noticed the option to play as either a Scav or a PMC. Both of these options make up the core gameplay of Escape From Tarkov, and they both provide their own advantages.

Escape From Tarkov PMC or Scav?

In short, your PMC allows for long term growth and investment while Scavs exist for carefree runs (or… the closest thing Tarkov has to offer) as well as a source of easy money with zero investment.

Escape from tarkov scav or pmc what is difference?

The PMC option allows you to play as your character, the one you’ve equipped in your hideout and who’s skills you can level up over time.

Playing as your PMC allows you to choose what gear to go into the raid with, shows your name in the feed when you score a kill, tracks all the various little statistics viewable in your hideout, allows your account to level up, and actually increases all the various skills associated with the character.

It can take a long time for the various skills to level up, but they can be very useful and impactful in the long term.

tarkov gameplay

The Scav option is a character with randomly generated gear that is available free of charge. Using a Scav means your actions won’t contribute to leveling up your skills, and you won’t be able to use any of your personal gear from your hideout.

Scav gear is of a random sort and quality, you can be given a single handgun or a fully kitted AK with decent armor. Either way, you’re usually given a healthy amount of ammunition and might even be given medical items, headsets, bags, or even an assortment of loose loot which can actually include expensive items like TerraGroup Labs access keycards.

Playing as a Scav also has a few other benefits and differences from playing as a PMC. As a PMC all NPC Scavs are immediately hostile to you. As a Scav, NPC Scavs will not engage you until after you’ve harmed another player or NPC Scav. Some players disregard this benefit and kill Scavs on sight just for their loot, but often NPC Scavs can be utilized as a form of protection and early warning system against other players.


Scavs have different spawns and extraction options as PMCs and have a chance at spawning into a game that’s been going for several minutes, or even almost over. While some extractions on some maps are universal between Scav and PMC players, there are certain extraction points that are only available to Scavs. In addition, not all Scav extractions are available each run and are chosen at random each raid.

If you extract as a Scav, you will have the ability to transfer the entire inventory of the Scav over to your hideout inventory. This includes gear you spawned with and anything you found in the raid. If you die or if you extract, after the raid the Scav option will be on about a 20 minute cool down. For both new and old players, using Scavs whenever possible can be a massive source of income as even dying holds really no cost other than your time, and you have a chance at all the same loot you would have gotten from a normal PMC run.

Which map is best for Scav runs?

Just as a side note: Shoreline is a great map for doing Scav runs, as basically every loot location has a high chance of spawning Scavs, and some can build up a good number of them just a few minutes into the game.

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