Battlestate Games Escape From Tarkov brought many new features and changes in patch 0.13 and among the long-awaited Streets of Tarkov map and about a month into wipe they made big changes to the current meta by doing two things: removing a lot of the previous "best in slot" ammo and changing (buffing) the recoil system for a lot of the guns.
Now, that doesn't mean that the meta guns and ammo types changes necessarily. 7.62x39 BP paired with a MK47 Mutant or RD-704 or 7.62x51 in either semi-auto SR-25, RSASS & M1A or the MDR will still be the best guns in the game - but because of the unavailability of the ammo which you can now basically only find or craft (and buy m62 in small quantities) it DOES make a lot of other calibers and guns viable purely because of their ammo availability.
For the sake of this article, we are leaving purely leg-meta (flesh damage) ammo out of the equation. We will compare and rank ammo types based on, how to obtain the ammo and what guns make this ammo so strong. For every point, the ammo will receive a 1 - 10 scale score and therefor a total rank.
For availability, we will only review rounds here that you can straight up purchase or barter from traders per reset. For dollars, 1$ equals 120 roubles.
Love it or hate it! Many hate the 5.45 caliber because of the low flesh damage, but it does still deserve a place here because you can still obtain the best available ammo by doing a barter with prapor. The 5.45 guns are the perfect budget builds too, with minimal attachments you can make any AK-74M, AK-74N or RPK-16 very usable since the recoil changes and if you go all-out and mod one with the new waffle suppressor you got yourself a lazerbeam penetration machine only held back by its relatively low flesh damage.
You can barter 5.45 BS from Prapor LL3 for approximatly 1300 per round for 60 each reset.
Flechette is not to be overlooked this wipe, however it will never become a top tier ammo type because of it's caliber. The best option is the saiga-12, although both MP-153 or MP-155 work just fine. You can aim center mass with flechettes and deal massive damage up close, but mid-to long rong is where this ammo type severely lacks and will not come out on top. Flechette is like buckshot, but with knives. If you are close and hit multiple knives, you can guarenteed shred through any armor class making it a very solid budget option.
You can purchase flechette from Jaeger LL3 for 334 roubles per 100 rounds each reset. You also need to complete The Huntsman Path - Forest Cleaning to unlock this ammo.
SB193 is severely overlooked ammo type since the changes. SB193 was always the P90's and 5-7's second best ammo but never received much love. Combined with the recoil changes and a stunning -24% recoil stat, it makes the P90 an absolute laserbeam. P90 is cheap and effective: buy the gun, a sight, the silencer, grab a bunch of 50s and you are good to go. The biggest downside here is the quantity, which will not last you for more than one raid and the armor pen value, which make this gun reside alot on headshots, but that shouldn't be an issue with the recoil stats.
You can purchase SB193 from Peacekeeper LL4 for 3$ per 120 rounds each reset. No quest needed to unlock.
Another overlooked ammo type mainly because there is only one gun in the game that uses this round - the MCX. The MCX used to be very bumpy, but it's firerates compensates for that making it a more cqb-focussed and versatile AR platform gun. With the recoil changes it is alot more controllable, and i'm suprised we don't see this gun much more. The downsize is that you pretty much need to mod it out completely for it to work - there's no "mid tier" or "mid traders" builds for the MCX available.
5.56 meta is back! Well, somewhat... If you have been playing longer than this wipe, we all remember the absolute dominance of M4 and HK at some point with it being absolute (point fire) lazerbeams. 60-rounders packed & available, in the pouch and labs we went. With the changes to recoil 5.56 as a platform definetly rises to the top again, even the MDR & long-barrel MK-16 being super usable (and more budget friendly) only held back by the super limited ammo count. Put a timer on peacekeeper reset too, because this ammo is sure quick to sell out. With having no other option than to go M856A1 as secondary ammo, which lacks in my opinion and will lead to many hitcount no kill, you need to make sure those rounds count.
You can purchase M855A1 at Peacekeeper LL4 for 6$ per 90 rounds each reset.
FMJ SX might be the most sold-out caliber if you don't purchase it straight after peacekeeper resets and rightfully so - with the recoil changes we got a new-old kid on the meta block and it's the MP7. Granted that you need max traders to build this gun effectively with the silencer and 40 rounders- a MP7 paired with FMJ6 has top PvP potential and nothing can stop it. If you haven't been using MP7's yet - you're missing out and you should try it out.
You can buy FMJ SX from Peacekeeper LL3 for 3$ per 190 rounds each reset. No quest unlock.
.366 was always a great ammo, but with the removal of some of the other top tier ammo's, this might be one of the better armor-penetrating rounds that is currently straight up for purchase. It's held severely back by its limited gun choice though with only the VPO bolt-action sniper and the VPO AK platforms using it. If you want to go budget but still want to have ammo that can kill every armor possible in 2 or even 1 shot in the thorax, this is the go-to ammo widely available.
You can buy AP-M from Mechanic LL3 for 519 roubles per round per 180 each reset. No quest is required.
I think not only PS but basically all 7.62x54 ammo's are included here. With all the removal's, together with AP-M PS is probably the best available straight for purchase ammo that will penetrate every armor class. Its popularity is only held back by the fact that it's only used in the bolt-action mosin & SV-98 snipers - but I think the SVD is severely overlooked with a 2-tap thorax guarenteed against pretty much every armor. It's probably also your best bet against Killa if you still need him for your quest, since PS12B isn't available anymore.
You can buy PS from Prapor LL3 for 805 roubles per 120 each reset. No quest is required.
Perhaps you thought that M62 would be here? With it being quest locked, 4 times the price over m80 and only 50 per reset, I don't think 3 extra armor pen points is necessarily worth it over M80. Yes, M80's too is moved to peacekeeper 4 and limited to 100 now - but you just can't beat 7.62x51 and it's guns.
Early on the RFB is a budget-monster and with a bit more cash the SR-25, RSASS, M1A, MDR & MK17 are among the absolute top guns in this game. Heck, even the SA-58 seems to be making a comeback with the changes! Bring the juice cannon!
You can purchase M80 from Peacekeeper LL4 for 4$ per round for 100 rounds each reset. No quest unlock is necessary.
Both the AS VAL & VSS are old time favourites and SP6 coming out as top contender will make a lot of the CQB PvP enthousiasts very happy. 9x39 as a whole is a really strong caliber, but the guns where too rough for these rounds to be competitive enough against the 7.62 Meta that we saw in previous wipes.
This wipe with this ammo being straight up purchasable, this might be the new king of CQB - it does come at a hefty price though, but you CAN craft it in decent quantities (compared to 120 bp and 60 m61). You can also back this up with SPP which is cheaper and is still a very competitive round, too!
You can buy SP6 from Prapor LL3 for 1255 roubles per 120 per reset. You can also craft sp-6 - which takes quite the long 9 hours but is only about ~ roubles and gives you 300 rounds. Not bad, eh!
Craft in workbench level 2
Top 10 best available ammo types in Escape From Tarkov for patch 0.13
Resources: Tarkov Wiki, eft-ammo.com