A discussion on how to improve Scav Karma System

I'm making this post after initially replying to another thread(https://old.reddit.com/r/EscapefromTarkov/comments/r1joxb/had_this_player_scav_very_obviously_trying_to/) and it made me want to have this discussion.

Most people's response to this was generally "you shoulda killed him sooner" Why do people need to get punished when forced into someone elses playstyle? There's no way to avoid a scav who does this and if you didn't milk free karma during a weekend event with minimal effort then its kind of a pain in the ass to raise it up legitimately.

I'd like to have a real actual discussion about karma from a balance perspective and in an attempt to foster suggestions on what could improve it to make it better. OR why you think it's fine as it is. I'm open to having my mind changed, but i'll need some actual reason and logic to do so. Telling people "it's free loot, don't cry about it" isn't really an answer or defense to this either. While the run is free, our time invested is not. That's like a kid building a sandcastle all day and another kid coming and stomping on it. It didn't cost him anything to build, but the 2nd kid is still kind of an asshole for ruining his experience and wasting the first one's time.

Last I remember it was -0.1 rep for killing a player scav and you only earn .01 rep for extracting. Thats 10 more raids, at least, just to break even. Also assuming that you extract from all of them and don't have another traitor following you doing the same thing again. At a minimum of 5 minutes per factory spammed raid which, thats at least an hour to break even(real time) per player scav kill. People are acting like its not that big of a deal to be setback an hour on progress when you were FORCED to do it.

Now I'm really not doing this to be another "scav karma whiner". I can handle the system as it is just fine, but i truly think its flawed and unbalanced. Aside from unbalanced it just doesn't feel fun or skillful either most of the time. I think when people think of Tarkov they think of intense firefights, outmaneuvering your opponent and map knowledge/cover for advantages or the dopamine and adrenaline hits from 1v2's or 1v3's. In comparison, following someone behind their back who can't shoot you without a penalty first and who hesitates because of it is boring.

I feel the same way about weapon malfunctions and misfires as i do about scav karma. Players have little to no consequence for going traitor atm. I believe players should be free to play as they like, but it's still on BSG to balance or adjust mechanics in game to help shape our experience. These Mechanics in a game should be there to enhance and intensify gameplay and provide ways to create unique and interesting scenarios, and not just an rng "you lost" or you're penalized for protecting your loot because of a flawed and abused system.

Example of RNG screwing someone over from another thread i just saw https://streamable.com/4bpua6 (link to thread also – https://old.reddit.com/r/EscapefromTarkov/comments/r1d0z4/click_this_poor_man/).

Stuff like this isn't fun or interesting when it happens to you and can't be countered or outplayed by knowledge and preparation. While it was funny and I laughed at it, the player who died wasnt unnecessarily holding 'W' key chadding it up through Factory. He died when he got pushed by the mechanic people universally seem to claim is intended to stop people aggressively pushing. These kinds of mechanics are only aggravating when it happens to you and rewards other players for making bad plays or doing nothing at all worth earning a kill (OP of that video in this case, he should have died).

Scav Karma could definitely be tweaked to be more interactive. I'd really like to see some implementation of some mechanics to identify traitors to dissuade them from playing like this. Someone mentioned giving them a dunce cap as a joke for failing to kill, but that's honestly not a bad idea. Maybe rework the system to give scavs a specific "traitor" mask or skin to identify them by for the next scav raid only if they left the previous one earning negative karma or shot at a player first who wasn't a traitor. Players with this skin would be ffa for any other player scavs to shoot and kill and not get a karma penalty. This would enable people like OP to defend themselves from serial traitors in a more balanced way. This also wouldn't kill the playstyle of being a traitor that people enjoy as well. It just ensures they cant constantly do it without repercussion because they'd have to spend every other raid in a traitor skin. You could even spice it up and give a karma bonus if the player scav can survive the raid with the skin on to negate the karma hit he took. This would definitely increase the risk/reward and satisfaction ratio of playing scavs imo and kind of soft counter the boring lootfest that is scav life, because you'd have to engage an active threat as a scav since most pmcs are gone anyway.

This is what i'd like to seriously discuss:

Why do you believe the system is currently in a good or bad place?(Give examples)

What are it's advantages or disadvantages?

What are some possible ways to balance Karma to make it more viable and engaging realistically without breaking the gameplay and staying immersive? Adding more objectives or giving incentive for more action in raid is a plus.


Traitor scavs are boring. Give traitors a skin or mask for the next raid only that's visually distinguishable and let them be FFA with no karma penalty to have more balanced and engaging gameplay. How would you try to improve the karma system??

Source: https://www.reddit.com/r/EscapefromTarkov/comments/r1xiwq/a_discussion_on_how_to_improve_scav_karma_system/

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