Camping bags & packs are solely designed to be very lightweight, highly visible in some cases, and consume all the essentials needed while hiking or camping. Military designed Tactical bags & packs on the other hand, are designed to securely stow tools, gear, and equipment compartmentally, while ensuring comfortable, long term wear for the user. Tactical Bags are designed around the incorporation of firearms, radio & communication equipment, medical supplies, etc., into a conformed, confined space, and are extremely durable. They also utilize heavy duty zippers and clasps not widely found on commercial gear, and are designed to take a fair bit of regular abuse.
Tactical bags & packs are ideal when utilized for the purpose(s) designed. These bags are usually very well thought out, and are designed with unique features incorporated with hardware that the everyday consumer might not comprehend or feel they need. Many of the pouches are sized for specific items that Military end users want or need, making these bags ideal to fill those niches. While these bags are adaptable enough to take on additional roles beyond the intended use, they truly excel in fulfilling the mission they were originally intended for.
To select the right bag, the user needs to identify what it will be used for, as well as the environment it will be used in for the majority of the time. For example, a user may be looking for a "Mission or Patrol Pack" or a " 3 Day Pack", etc., so by selecting a Medical Bag, usually the right size and dimmensions, might not offer the neccesary stowage or compartmentalization required for the end use. Wide variations of colors and patterns allow these packs to blend with other equipment and clothing worn, whether in the woods, or in civilian clothing on the streets of a city.
On the contrary, there are a few noteworthy disadvantages with these bags & packs. First hand, people notice a tactical bag as having a "Military style" look to them, especially one with "MOLLE" attachments. This is compounded when the bags or packs are designed to blend into the woods/ desert, and instead, used in an urban setting. It just glaringly stands out and works in the reverse as well. Another thing civilian consumers might notice, is that these bags tend to be slightly heavier than commercial bags due to the more ruggedized construction.