A Lurker’s Manifesto.

TL;DR Get over it. It's a game, and people that camp aren't cheating. If you're excessively upset over dying to a camper or 'rat' as so many seem to pejoratively call them, it frankly says more about you than anything else. Perhaps that other games may be more conducive to your desired vision of FPS.

I want to start by establishing a few things.

  • First, these are my thoughts and not representative of anyone else's and I'm welcome to legitimate discussion, but strongly prefer that people remain civil, because this is a conversation about a video game. I write this to be at least one voice speaking out for some feckin' decency.
  • Secondly, I'm not calling out anyone in particular, though there is an image of a conversation I had this morning with someone that I intend to share as an example of the kind of rage I feel some people need to address. This individual is far from the only one who behaves this way, and I hope we can all agree we shouldn't be talking to one another this way over video games.
  • Third, I know this isn't going to 'solve the problem' overnight, but if one person sees this and thinks "Damn maybe I should chill out and take a break when I start tilting in Tarkov before I end up talking to someone like this" then I feel like this post has been a success.
  • Lastly, Tarkov is somewhat distinct in it's persistent loot and scoot PVP/PVE blended realism-based game-play, and I would make the case that Tarkov is an MMO-FPS-RPG. Each player is given the opportunity to set their own 'Win Condition'. That last part is crucial to what follows.

Rather than rant about myself, I'll just say I've played FPS games for a long time, specifically the Counter-Strike series. In CS, the team dynamic lent itself to the following roles:

  1. Entry Fragger (Shift+W Chad)
  2. Sniper (AWP Man)
  3. Lurker (Identifies as a Ninja)
  4. Support (Here, Take All of My Grenades!)
  5. IGL/In-Game Leader (Big Brain)

In CS:GO, I often IGL'd for my teams which required thinking about more than just the immediate gunfight in front of you, so I also naturally gravitated towards being a lurker so I could focus on comms and enemy movements, and predict where my teammates needed to be.

I've played so many FPS games this way, because at this point it's just the space I excel at.

Tarkov can be played legitimately any number of ways and if 'camping' is something BSG is concerned with then it is frankly up to them to discourage the play-style. Until said changes are implemented, it stands to reason that the Devs do not see this kind of play-style as counter to their vision of the game.

Between Tasks, skill gains, and money sinks, the game itself heavily encourages certain play-styles at certain points in the season. But again, the 'win condition' for each raid is determined by each individual player.

  • Early Season: Everyone except hardcore streamers/players runs around with pistols and other various scav weaponry while trying to scratch together loot for basic hideout amenities and completing early tasks. Insanely high population of players means shift+w is likely to result in risky and dangerous situations, so I often play raids long (read: camp remote locations) to increase the likelihood of success in completing the quests because that's how I personally want to approach it.
  • Mid Season: Majority of quests start dropping, gear starts accumulating. Some people quit Tasking at 40 for maxed traders. Others are stuck behind various bottleneck quests for Kappa, the players start to have more individual preference on where/how to play. Top tier hide-out upgrades are significant money sinks, especially for standard account players working towards EoD stash. Even before the Found in Raid changes I would often find strategically defensible positions to ensure I was quickly progressing through The Punisher to unlock the Epsilon container, as well as to consistently grow my stash value and build the high end Hideout upgrades.
  • Late Season: PvP Time. Wealth Generation. Flexing. Meme'ing. Maxed traders with quests out of sight and out of mind, kappa achieved, or just playing however you want from day one. As long as it's profitable enough to afford your next kit between scav runs and you're not cheating, who really cares how you play. Some people like to loot. Some people like to hunt down PvP. Some people like to Sherpa other newer people. Some people like to create funny content. Some people like to camp exfils (and to clarify, it's extremely rare that I do but also irrelevant because again, that's up to BSG to address).

What's so amazing about Tarkov is that almost none of those things are mutually exclusive even within a single raid, and absolutely none are mutually exclusive across a season. Whatever play-style you choose could be valid, but it IS a choice and "I'm not patient enough" is valid, but just an excuse.

We all win some epicly, and lose some pathetically in insanely frustrating ways, and everything in between. I respect the hell out of aim-star entry fraggers with top tier-movement that invoke their inner blood hound to seek and destroy everything in the lobby, but that is unequivocally not the only acceptable way to play the game.

All that said, I killed a guy on Labs this morning with a 5-7 and his friend failed to kill me. I had also killed him yesterday with a 5-7 as well as all of his friends (okay I killed the 4th with his friends M1A). After I killed him today, he added me and had this to say.

Imagine being told 'kys' before lunch, over a video game.

Both raids I walked out fully looted and at a hefty profit, which was the goal for me. I felt no shame, because I don't cheat. I earned those kills and survived using my skillset.

Rather than accept that he had made poor decisions that lead to his deaths such as:

  • Staying into the raid too late out of greed
  • Holding Shift+W with a seek and destroy mentality
  • Spreading far enough from teammates such that they can't easily trade out the pistoling

This player refused to accept any responsibility for the outcome; instead every bit of toxicity was mustered and directed at another player.

Be frustrated when you die in a shitty situation, we get it, but how emotionally fragile must you be to seek out and say things like this to another person over your legitimate death in a loot-based Survival-FPS game.

In conclusion, camping, tactical zone defense, bushwookying, ratting, being the big dick in the long shadow, it's all acceptable within the framework of the game, and the obvious conclusion encouraged by many of the built in objectives.

I encourage all people who feel tilted by the fact that it exists as a common enough play-style in Tarkov to take a long unbiased look at what Escape From Tarkov is, and ask yourself if it's really so unreasonable to approach the game that way.

If this overly-long rant does nothing to change your mind, so be it. But hopefully it does, and someone out there will be less inclined to address someone else this way in the future as a result, because holy fuck.

Cheers y'all. Frag hard out there.

Source: https://www.reddit.com/r/EscapefromTarkov/comments/iescyl/a_lurkers_manifesto/

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