Have you thought of a 308 or an old fashioned 30-06 for a light duty close quarters rifle? As in out to 4 or 500 yds? To bad you moved that Tikka down the road. I learned long ago, every 1/2 moa rifle I own get's a life membership to my vault.
You are now (or about to) learn that lesson too.
You should have sent the scope down the road and put one on that Tikka with turrets if that is what you were looking for.
My most recent LR scope purchase was a NIKON Monarch-X 30mm 4-16x50mm MD scope. I am getting along with it very well, I was a little paranoid about knocking the exposed turrets out of alignment/zero. But that proved to be of no concern. But I while continue to be vigilent and careful.
You are on an interesting track with that Savage action preference. They are reported to be very easy for an ameture to swap a barrel. Have you given any thought to locking in on a long action rifle build and picking up a pair of bolts? One with a standard cartridge bolt face (308 & etc) and a 2nd bolt with a magnum cartridge bolt face (300Win & etc). I know this sounds a little "unconventional" but there is a measure of flexibility in building with this way.
FWIW, I have a Tikka T3 Lite in 270 Win, it has a simple 2-7x33mm VXI scope on it and it shoots under 1/2 moa. I would never hessitate to take a deer sized animal down out to 650 yds (or so) with it. Bottom line you do not need a cannon to put a deer or an antelope on the ground. I like a minimum of 1000 ft/lbs for deer - 1600 ft/lbs for elk.
You need a rifle that you have trained with and know it inside and out. For beginners I like to have them dry fire once, prior to taking "the shot". I want them to see the site picture as the hammer drops, if it is wobbly or unsteady they can adjust and try again. It builds their confidence and results in a much higher 1st shot hit factor.
Keep us posted on what you decide and how it works out for you.