Escape from Tarkov: Arena, the standalone session-based multiplayer FPS based within the Escape from Tarkov universe, will be a “mediocre in-between” game, according to its director, Nikita Buyanov.
Buyanov, who serves as the head of Battlestate Games and also directed Escape from Tarkov, told GamesRadar+ during Gamescom 2023 that Arena is being made to simply “have as many players as possible”, and furthermore, get more gamers “familiarized with Escape from Tarkov”.
“Escape from Tarkov is a really interesting game, and we always wanted to get more players to it,” Buyanov explained.
He continued: “We decided to make something mediocre in-between, some mid-core game that increases attention, and will lead to more players playing, and being familiarized with Escape from Tarkov."
The director stated that Arena will be “a little bit simpler in terms of matches”, although it will remain “complex in terms of gameplay features and mechanics”. This certainly sounds like it will make Arena a little more approachable for anyone who’s not super familiar with Escape from Tarkov.
In his preview article, TechRadar Gaming’s editor-in-chief, Jake Tucker, described Arena as “a recruitment poster rather than a unique mode”. He wrote: “It almost feels like Arena is, if I'm being cynical, a way to get arena shooter fans looking for something different to try and convert them into Tarkov players.”
At the time of writing, Escape from Tarkov: Arena doesn’t have a set release date, although it is currently available to pre-order - those who do so will also unlock Ryzhy’s gear preset from the Chronicles of Ryzhy series. It’s worth noting that anyone who already bought the expensive Escape from Tarkov: Edge of Darkness Limited Edition will get access to Arena at no extra cost, so they don’t need to pre-order.