- Most importantly, learn the maps! Learn the pmc spawns, scav spawns, extracts, loot concentrations and HIDDEN STASHES (super underrated). On Interchange for example, if you do a stash run you can make on average 400-500K per raid with minimal pmc and scav contact since most rush Ultra off spawn for TechLight and other tech spawns. You can find tech items in stashes. Also, stick to one or two maps in rotation until you know them well enough before moving to the next one or two maps to learn (I'm level 45 with 25mil and only started playing Reserve yesterday).
- Play slow. Sprint only when you are absolutely sure there is nobody around you. There is honestly nothing wrong with walking the entire map, in fact it is a viable strategy if you don't want to gain any unnecessary attention. Hold an angle and be patient. Just because there is silence all of a sudden with the angle you are holding, doesn't mean the guy isn't there anymore. Chances are he's holding your angle so if you rush out, you are at the disadvantage. You will eventually learn when you can and can't sprint for the most part as you gain more confidence and experience. You will learn where the high density pmc zones are for each map (usually at primary loot locations) and you will also learn the areas where nobody usually goes so it is okay to make some noise if you want.
- Figure out keybinds that work best for you (IMPORTANT!!!). I personally found the default keybinds very strange compared to what I'm used to. Certain keybinds also give you an advantage based on certain situations. For example, I have my lean keys bound to V and B instead of Q and E. This allows me to have my three middle fingers on WASD at all times without having to shift one of them to lean. Another example is that I have my scope magnification bound to a mouse button. Changing the keybinds makes quality of life so much better and makes the game feel more natural, which results in more natural movements and just a more controlled experience. I also have a lot of the actions that I know I will never use as unbound to avoid anything unintentional.
- Certain optics and sights are broken. This will obviously never be told to newbies straight off the bat, but there is a reason streamers and seasoned Tarkov players use a very select bunch of optics within the game. The optics are also inconsistent based on you FOV but there are a few that are very reliable, like the cobra sight. An example of a broken sight is the MRS reflex sight. The red dots appear lower than the "crosshair" of the actual sight lens so your bullet will nearly always impact far above the red dot with short to mid ranges regardless of the zeroing distance. On a side note: Do not use zeroing as it doesn't take into account the bullet speeds, making them extremely inconsistent. Just leave it on the default zero distance for each gun. My advice would be try and buy one of every sight and test them on your favourite gun in offline mode with no scavs. Shoot against a wall and see where the bullet impacts for each sight in relation to the red dot/cross hair. You will find some things that will shock you as to how certain sights have been broken for nearly two years without being fixed XD.
- Bullets are more important than the gun!! BUT, certain bullets are good for certain situations/maps/play styles. Choose the correct bullet for the correct occasion and map according to what you plan to do for that raid. The highest pen and damage bullets are not always the best choice for a given situation. For example, 5.45×39 7N39 bullets may have the best pen and basically ignore cat 6 armour, but they add 15 recoil meaning you will hit less shots at certain ranges. BT rounds on the other hand are worse pen but have way less recoil meaning you will hit more shots. There have been many times when I was still starting out where I equip the top ammo for a regular raid and get gunned by someone with cat 3 armour simply because I didn't realise the recoil most of those top ammos add. So if you know you are going to go up against fully geared pmcs, then yes use the 7n39, but if you are doing a quick loot run and not willingly going after pmcs then a cheaper ammo with less recoil will be more effective.
Would appreciate an upvote on this because I feel that it will help out a lot of people starting out in the game.