What is the Most Realistic Shooter Game? (2023)

In this post, we show you what today’s most realistic shooter game is. Then, we’ll explain why shooter games are so popular and what they still lack compared to reality.

Escape from Tarkov replicates almost all realistic features in the game, except for real physical pain for the player. As a result, it is considered the most difficult first-person shooter game on the market to learn and master.

Videogames have been around for over four decades now. What started as a simple yet relaxing leisure activity has continued to grow and improve over the years. Compared to the 90s shooter games like Doom and Counter-Strike, recent games like Call of Duty and Escape from Tarkov have dramatically increased immersion and realism. Bearing that in mind, let’s look at what our most realistic shooter game is and what makes it realistic.

Note: This article was written in English. Translations into other languages may not provide the same linguistic quality. We apologize for grammatical and semantic errors.

What is a Realistic Shooter Game?

As mentioned before, shooting games have been around for quite some time now. But shooter game is a broad term for defining or categorizing all such games. The shooter genre has several subgenres. For starters, you have probably heard of first-person and third-person shooter titles. The main difference between these two is mainly the viewpoint or the viewing perspective. And while you might think that’s all there is to the shooter genre, that isn’t the case.

Tactical shooters, or realistic shooter games, is another subgenre of the shooting-game archetype. These games heavily emphasize the simulation of realism, strategizing, and fast reflexes compared to the average shooter. Developers even go as far as taking different real-life military elements and using them in these games. It wouldn’t be a stretch to call these games ‘Mil-Sims’ — military combat simulating titles.

Alright, that’s great and all, but what exactly is a realistic shooter game?

Well, in a nutshell, anything that has the same consequences and outcomes as real-life would be a realistic game. I know that’s a little too vague for an answer. You have probably seen or played games that take ages to kill enemies or other players. You might empty fully loaded magazines of ammo but still fail to eliminate the target.

Very unrealistic, right?

So why not create a game that kills the enemy with one shot? But, of course, that means the shot area must also be the average human’s critical area, like the head.

Moreover, similar factors like stamina, slow-paced action, and more challenging gameplay can boost a game’s realism. Likewise, the guns and their mechanics will also make or break a game’s realism.

Take Counter-Strike as an example and compare it to Call of Duty. While CS may have the best reproduction of recoil, it lacks the bullet-drop mechanic. And on the other hand, Call of Duty has little to no recoil but a decent portrayal of bullet-drop mechanics.

Here is a shortlist of so-called realistic shooters:

Realistic Shooter


America’s Army: Proving Grounds

United States Army

Arma 3

Bohemia Interactive

Escape from Tarkov

Battlestate Games

Insurgency Sandstorm

New World Interactive

Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds

PUBG Corporation, KRAFTON

Rainbow Six Siege


Red Orchestra 2

Tripwire Interactive


Offworld Industries

Sniper Elite 4

Rebellion Developments


M2H Blackmill Games

World War 3

The Farm 51

There are three dimensions regarding realism that these games implement more or less:
1. Representation of the game world
2. Behavior within the game world
3. Story of the game world


Point one is relatively easy to explain. The more realistic the virtual game world looks, the more the player feels connected to what is happening in reality.

Point two aims at what the player can and cannot do in the game world. Can he jump off a skyscraper with his human character and not suffer any damage? Unrealistic. Does the game character get short of breath when diving? Realistic.

Point three deals with the narrative logic of the game world. Is the common thread of the game coherent? Do AI-controlled game characters seem real in their behavior? Are there logical breaks in what happens?

For a more in-depth look at the topic, we recommend the scientific article “Digital War: An empirical analysis of narrative elements in military first-person shooters.”

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Realistic or tactical shooter games have good reason to be popular. Although almost every videogame comes with certain unrealistic aspects, the mere fact that developers are striving towards more realism is proof that the public demands realism in their games. This is mainly because immersion and realism go hand-in-hand when it comes to a game’s success.

I mean, why else would you continue to play a game if it doesn’t keep you glued to the screen?

However, sometimes, too much realism would take away the charm of a game and make it no different from real life.

Simply put, if a game were completely realistic, it would no longer be fun in many cases. For example, a single player character taking out hundreds of enemies would be completely unrealistic, yet this is common practice and certainly what drives many players to play the game in question. No one wants hour-long missions where you end up taking out 1-2 enemies, but this would certainly be much more in line with most military operations nowadays. But at least in terms of mechanisms, many games are trying to get closer and closer to reality.

And that is precisely why the tactical shooter subgenre is so popular. Of course, most players, if not all, can’t just go out and pull off these acts in reality. But their dream to become a legendary soldier or mercenary can be fulfilled through these games. After all, games are meant to serve as an escape from our daily life problems.

Moving on, pair a fun game concept with realism, and you’ll have an insanely popular game that has good reason to be addictive. Competitive games, especially shooters, have been known to be the center of all Esports competitions. Although these games have evolved over the years, moving from quick multiplayer matches even to battle royale mode, shooters will always be fun and remain popular because the gameplay requires excitement, cooperation, coordination, tactics, and speed.

Why Escape from Tarkov is the Most Realistic Shooter Game?

We have chosen Escape from Tarkov as the most realistic shooter game at the moment. I know you might not agree with our choice, but of course, opinions can vary greatly. However, Escape from Tarkov offers a very high degree of realism, even if it’s not 100% realistic yet, of course, but we’ve already explained that that’s what the player wants in some areas of a game. EFT definitely offers a very different take on first-person shooter games, especially in terms of realism.

I mean, no one would want a completely realistic game now, would they?

Battlestate Games, the development team of EFT, has made numerous strides to make the game incredibly realistic.

Body damage in Escape from Tarkov, for instance, is super unique. You can take some shots to the legs and continue to walk. But, take too much damage, and your character will blackout and die from excessive bleeding. The same applies to arms, as they can tank some shots but still die out if you don’t deal with the bleeding. And though headshots are the primary source for one-shotting enemies, Escape from Tarkov takes that another level by considering other organs’ importance, like taking shots to your belly will damage your stomach, kidneys, intestines, and much more.

The weapons and visual fidelity of the game are flawless. The guns look close to what you’d find in real life, as well as the scopes and reticles that come with each gun attachment. The guns are also costly, and finding ammo can be rather tedious, as you’d expect in a real-life survival scenario. The game requires extensive planning and tactics rather than charging into the enemy with guns blazing.

Escape from Tarkov was also knighted by the king of FPS games “Shroud.” If you don’t know who Shroud is, take a quick turn to our article “Is Shroud the Best Gamer in the World? (+FAQs answered)“.

Which Features Are Missing for an Even More Realistic Experience?

Escape from Tarkov provides a near-perfect balance for realism and thrilling gameplay. And though the developers can undoubtedly improve the game in different aspects, too much realism can backfire instead. However, if you want to know how the experience can be made more realistic, then there are certainly a few things that the developers can do.

The development team needs to deal with bugs and mechanics that break the game’s immersion. For example, the in-game character is incapable of jumping over any fences or climbing. The developers should also make it possible for the players to swim in the water.

Likewise, various other mechanics could use some refinement to bring the game to pure realism. For example, the character’s mobility can also seem rigid sometimes, so much so that even a kid can move more freely in reality.

While the body damage mechanics seem flawless, the developers could also polish the mechanics even more by throwing in some added features and animations. For instance, if the player gets shot in the arm, they should not lift an assault rifle like the AK-47. Similarly, the player should have experienced hunching when shot in the legs rather than just moving forward.


In choosing the most realistic shooter game, we looked at the market, and Escape from Tarkov has the most remarkable connection to reality to date.

Weapons, equipment, physics, health management, or movement, Escape from Tarkov is based on real-world effects.

Of course, even this game can’t break the natural boundaries of a computer game, but players are as close to reality as possible with this game. There are minor details that the manufacturer could make even more realistic. However, EFT is also still a very young game that still has some updates ahead of it.

There’s still something to come! :o)

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GL & HF! Flashback out.

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