Tactical rifle scopes are meant for tactical situations where the importance of the first shot hitting the target is much higher than consistent pinpoint accuracy. Tactical - scope also offers the possibility of range estimation or shifting of the aim point in the reticle to compensate for bullet drop or wind drift.
A special case of Tactical - scope is also MIL/MIL scope, which could be described also as fully tactical - scope.
Delta Optical Stryker HD 4.5-30x56 Tactical rifle scope
The tactical scope is a scope that features tactical (exposed) turrets, which is the one basic criterion. But there are more.
a magnification between 5x to 25x,
uncapped turrets on the riflescope,
an illuminated reticle,
riflescope with the reticle in the first focal plane, and
on more expensive models, a zero stop.
Delta Optical Stryker HD 4.5-30x56 riflescope - Kahles K318i 3.5-18x50 riflescope - Leica PRS 5-30x56i riflescope
Hunting riflescope is, of course, meant to be used for hunting, whereas a tactical scope is intended to be used in all tactical situations. A hunting scope features a lower magnification range, so hunters can also use a scope in poor light conditions. A tactical scope, however, features a magnification that is on the upper side of the medium range.
Hunting scope is also the only type of scope that can be mounted with rails. The reticle is in the second focal plane, which is not the case with tactical scope, as they have a first focal plane reticle.
The turrets on hunting scope are capped low-profile hunting turrets, whereas tactical scope features uncapped turrets.
Kahles K318i 3.5-18x50 tactical rifle scope
As mentioned, the purpose of the tactical scope is to be used in all tactical situations. Target scope, on the other hand, is meant for precision shooting. Compared to tactical scopes’ 5x to 25x magnification, target ones have an extremely high one, which is up to 55x.
The tactical scope features a first focal plane reticle, and target scope a second focal plane reticle. What is more, with a target scope, if the user has enough knowledge and experience, they can also use it for hunting.
The characteristics of tactical riflescope (the main one being the FFP reticle), make them suitable only for tactical shooting purposes.