Here’s where to find cultists in Escape From Tarkov and how to beat them

By Nicholas James


Feb 20, 2022

Reading time: 2 min

Escape From Tarkov cultists are some of the rarest enemies in the game, here’s where to find them and how to fight them.

The presence of cults in the game’s fictional setting has steadily ramped up throughout the game’s progressive rollout. From mysteriously marked rooms to a secretive implementation in the game, here are all the details on Tarkov’s strangest enemies.

What are Escape from Tarkov cultists?

Cultists are a type of scav, the AI enemies who pepper the various maps in Escape From Tarkov. The trouble is they aren’t content to wander the map shouting voice lines and engaging every well-kitted PMC that crosses their path. Cultists can only spawn in certain locations on specific maps between the hours of 22:00 and 06:00, even if the raid does not begin during those hours.

Cultists can spawn on Shoreline north of the swamp village, at the health resort itself, and in the river gorge that runs from the power station below the health resort to the gas station. On Woods they will only spawn in the ruined village or around their ritual markers around the forest. On Customs they will only spawn on the scav stronghold, and they can appear anywhere during a nighttime Factory raid.

Cultists spawn in groups of three to five scavs, led by a cult priest. Cultists are armed with guns and knives, and the priests have special poisoned knives. Cultists will first try to run up and stab PMCs with their knives. Once players open fire on them, the cultists will engage with guns and grenades. It’s especially important not to be stabbed by the cult priest, as his unknown toxic will deal damage over time and cause pain unless you have an xTG-12 injector or Augmentin pills.

How to fight Tarkov’s cult

Given that cultists spawn at night, night raids that pass by relevant areas should be extra cautious. Cultist warriors can pack serious firepower, including toting an SVDS, AS VAL, SR-25 or SKS. One wrong encounter with cultists can scuttle a night raid and players should approach cautiously. Thankfully, developers haven’t implemented to the “lose your save progress if you die” mechanic that they’ve admittedly considered.

Don’t rely on fancy gear to locate them either, as Cultists will not show up on thermographic vision equipment. Fight from a range with plenty of cover and hopefully bring some friends with you if you need to scuffle with these strange zealots.


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