Just like any sport, paintball has its share of people who, whether they mean to or not, are actively making the game less enjoyable for everyone else. While in most cases, this is an awful lot like the “defining pornography” debate (“I shall not attempt to define it, but I know it when I see it—Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, paraphrased), there are a few solid types of behavior that are just marks of a bad paintball player. If you find yourself doing any of these things, it’s a good idea to take a step back and correct yourself; whether it’s an accident or not, it’s still bad form that might be making you less fun to play with.
After a certain point, you may find yourself growing a bit bored with your standard paintball games and scenarios. Sure, paintball is a fun game, but after a while, all the team-on-team shootouts start to feel kind of similar. Fortunately, pickup paintball is pretty fluid on the rules and offers a lot to anyone who wants to try something new. Whether you want to make a big change or a small one, mixing your game up a bit can keep you entertained for much longer, and also keep you learning new things about your paintball style. Here, we’ve got a list of some absolutely unique types of paintball game that you can try the next time you and your team are out of ideas.
One of the great things about paintball is the fact that, unlike other sports, you can really load yourself up with huge varieties of fancy equipment, all designed to give you a situational edge. You can specialize, you can generalize, you can set up your market to fire exactly the way you want, and you can anodize it to give you a distinct style. Of course, the same thing that makes this sport so cool can really work against you if you’re not careful; with the huge variety of aftermarket pieces and instructional know-how on the internet, it’s incredibly easy to spend a lot of money on cheap pieces you don’t understand and don’t work. Whether you’re a novice or a veteran paintball player, here are a few solid rules of thumb to make sure your gear doesn’t get in the way of your game.
We’ve all been there at one point or another; right in the middle of an important game, your visor goes all white and you can’t see anything but blurs of color before you get tagged. It’s called mask fog, and it’s a natural part of wearing a mask in paintball. When you sweat or breathe in your mask, little bits of water get out and condense on your lenses, which mess up your vision. Unfortunately, you can’t simply get rid of the mask, because playing without one is incredibly dangerous. Rather than simply putting up with the occasional mask fog and getting tagged out, you can actually do something about it. We’ve got a list of some of the best techniques here, but if you’d like to see the whole video, it’s right here.
Option 1: Keep It Clean and Dry
First off, having the right after-market equipment makes all the difference. While most of the masks you’re able to buy right now have some kind of anti-fog coating on them, no coating can completely prevent fog. This can be fixed by the Pathogen AR Kleen Goggle Cleaner Spray, which, in addition to cleaning the lens off, will also keep it dry and slow down fogging in the future. Simply spray a bit on a micro-fiber cleaning cloth (to prevent scratching and protect the coating) and rub it on the inside of your visor. This is probably the simplest way to keep your mask from fogging up, and all you need to do is clean your lens up between rounds.
Another option you can consider is putting a small fan inside your mask (in the video, they use the JT Vortex II model). While it may cost some money and not move a lot of air, it will move enough air through your mask to keep condensation out. If you find it works for you, it’s a really great investment.
Option 2: A Better Lens
If the first options aren’t working well enough for you, you can try moving up to a better double-pane lens. Most companies make these, and the premise is actually pretty simple; a strong outer pane to stop paintballs, a flexible inner pane to fit to your mask, and a cushion of air in between. While it may not seem like much, this sealed pocket of air keeps the temperature on both lenses a little more constant which, as you know, is one of the reasons your mask fogs up in the first place.
Option 3: Some Home Remedies
Feeling creative? Try some of these home remedies that we’ve heard at Hustle Paintball:
- Put a little foam shaving cream inside your lens, then wipe it off. The remaining residue should be easy to see through and prevent condensation.
- Do the same thing, but with soap or Vaseline.
While nothing can completely stop fog, using any or all of these techniques will certainly make it much less of a problem for you, particularly in the middle of a good paintball game.
While paintball markers tend to replicate a firearm in most respects, new players may initially be confused by one thing above all others the double trigger mechanism. Instead of a single curved trigger for your index finger, you’ll see a much longer trigger indented for both your index and middle fingers. This model, much more common on tournament-grade markers, is an easy way to increase your rate of fire, reduce fatigue on your trigger finger, and generally make your marker easier to fire. But why? If you want to see the video, we’ve got a link for that here.
Have you ever wondered what a real, professional paintball player’s collection looks like? Not just of the most current markers for each style of paintball, but a real honest-to-God collection, pieces that are both works of art and representatives of their age. Fortunately, as one of the first posts of the new year, we’re going to show you what a real professional collection looks like by showing you the forty-five marker collection of two professional paintball players, Eric and Matt Tinnin. These two twins are members of Team Odyssey, a Viper team based out of Houston, TX and LaFayette, LA, with over twenty years apiece worth of paintball experience, so you know that when they say something is “professional”, it literally is. We’ve got the highlights of this video here, but if you want to see the whole collection, you can see the whole thing right here.
If you live out in a rural area, you’ve probably toyed around with the idea of making your own paintball field. After all, if you have the land, you’re halfway to making your own field anyway. However, once you get started, you could find that your project, while fun in the beginning, has turned into an irreparable money sink that you can’t even play on. Whether you want a small private field for you and your team to practice on, or you’re going to try something ambitious and open your own commercial field, here are a few good tips on how to do it affordably.
Paintball is big – I mean really big. And like all sports that get big and incredibly diverse, you occasionally get some weird ideas for markers. What starts out as a project in some guy’s backyard has become a real passion for some paintball enthusiasts and, special thanks to the Internet, we all get to enjoy and buy these wonderful products of a slightly twisted imagination.
For the sake of believability, we’ve only included paintball weapons that you can actually buy. True, there are some great plans on the Internet for everything from paintball flamethrowers to a remote controlled helicopter that drops paintballs – that, unfortunately, is true for everything the Internet touches. Let’s get to the list!
If you got a mil-sim marker for the holidays – or you’ve just decided you want to put away your speedball marker and start playing a military-style – one of the first things you’re going to notice (read: be overwhelmed by) is all the customization. Mil-sim paintball is all about scenario play, and every scenario has its own particularities: a tight corner here, a clearing there, and a window in just the right spot can change the tide of any good game. This is where all the customization and honed, personal style of play can be beneficial. You may find that you’re better at certain elements of mil-sim paintball, and want to make the most out of your talents. Fortunately, we at Hustle Paintball has plenty of gear to help you along, all on our website here.
But before that, figure out you’re role for yourself by reading the list below.
Now that the holiday season is nearly over, some of you should have new markers and, hopefully, a few new players ready to start playing with as soon as possible. Perhaps you’re still looking around for some great after-holiday accessories for your brand new markers, in which case I have to point you to our main site here, where you can find everything you need to dominate the paintball field right from your first game.
This article, however, is really aimed at new players who’ve just gotten their first marker. Depending on the marker you’ve received, you may find that you prefer some styles of play over others. While you can easily slice paintball up into hundreds of different sub-categories, two of the most popular ones are woodsball and speedball. Below is a quick overview of both, so you can get a feel for which style you want to try first.