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Jan 19, 2023 | 10:46 am 572 0

What is the difference between paintball and airsoft?

What is the difference between paintball and airsoft?

We all have a routine life that, sooner or later, consumes us. We wake up at specific morning hours and perform mechanical tasks that we do not even notice in everyday life. We get in the car, rush to catch a train in the subway, check the news feed or listen to music. Then the whole working day. Mental, physical, and psychological stress, and from the beginning of the week, we have been waiting for the weekend. Even if you love what you do, it does not mean you cannot get tired of the routine.  In any case, we are all human. And from time to time, we need a reboot. 

Each person chooses their form of relaxation based on their preferences. It may be just a desire to be in silence, to go to the forest to rest and remove the sounds of the bustling city. Or maybe, on the contrary, someone lacks some interactivity. An active game that could awaken new feelings in you, cause adrenaline, make you take the initiative, stir up your brain, invent some tactics and think through a strategy. The second option already sounds like a call and an offer to participate in some game. The main thing is that there are options. 

If you still belong to the second category of people who prefer outdoor activities, then you should pay attention to such games as paintball and airsoft. Because, in general, these are two team games. The main thing is that you can share the emotions in the process and the game's result with your friends. 

But before you call the players to battle, you need to understand the difference between these games. How to prepare, what you need to have with you, the rules, how many players can participate, and so on. 

The difference between paintball and airsoft rules

Airsoft and paintball are thematic team games. Participants are formed into teams; they have specific tasks to perform, each of them has a weapon, and his goal is to hit the opponent so that he drops out of the game.

At first glance, the games seem highly similar to each other. However, this is far from the case. So what is the difference between them? 

The differences start with the ground on which you compete in teams, the weapons you use in the process, the "bullets" you shoot, the plot, and so on.

Paintball is a team game that consists of a competition, the purpose of which is to put opponents out of the game. This is achieved with the help of a marker (a weapon used in paintball) and balls with paint, which, when in contact with an obstacle, break and paint it. Features are divided into mechanical and electronic. They differ in several parameters, the main of which is the rate of fire, which can be more than 15 shots per 1 second.

Before the start of the game, the teams must decide together which story they will play. After all, the game offers different levels and sets specific tasks for them. For example, to capture the enemy flag, catch or release a hostage, accompany a VIP person, and so on. At the same time, try to reduce the number of players on the opposing team. A player is considered injured as soon as a ball of paint hits him. After that, he must leave the "battlefield." Compliance with this rule is guided by a referee who closely monitors the game.

Today there are two main branches of this game. There are sports and tactical paintball. The first has stricter and more regulated rules. And it requires more meaningful and thorough preparation from both the organizers and participants. It is not just about playing for a few hours. It is about purposeful training and financial investment in good quality personal equipment and competition. If you do not have such a goal and want to try to feel the adrenaline for the sake of good memories, then you will get to tactical paintball. It has less strict rules and all the equipment you just rent. Tactical paintball is played on various sites: inside structures and buildings, in the forest, etc. 

It is difficult to say precisely how, when and under what conditions this game appeared. But the first "competition" occurred in New York in 1981. A demonstration shootout was arranged in the presence of many journalists. Only a year later, the game began to gain popularity. The first markers were used to mark trees and livestock; balls were not used, just oil-based paint was sprayed from the barrels of the "weapons," which was almost impossible to wash off. A little later, gelatin balls were invented, and the first commercial tournament was held in 1983. So such rapid popularity of the game contributed to the development of the rules and means used during the battle. And it gradually grew into a sport. Today, many pneumatic markers have been developed, established practices, and paintball championships and tournaments are held everywhere. 

We have already mentioned some of the rules. But we would like to focus on essential warnings. Participating in the game must be responsible for the preparation process and listen carefully to the rules and instructions. One of the most critical laws in pain is not to remove the mask that protects your face thoroughly. You will be disqualified if the referee notices that you are trying to do this during the game. It is also important to remember that everything the referee says is the law for you. If he says to do something, you do it silently; if he says you have to leave the game, you go to it. Be very careful when using the marker. It is strictly forbidden to shoot it outside the field. Have respect for the enemy, do not shoot at point-blank range, and keep your distance. If you managed to sneak up on the enemy unnoticed, you should offer him to surrender, saying, "Out!". Of course, it is strictly forbidden to play paintball while drinking alcohol.

Now we turn to the rules and features of airsoft.  The purpose of this game is to "shoot" the enemy. This game uses soft pneumatics - very similar to a real weapon, which is driven by an electric motor, carbon dioxide, or gas mixture; the role of "balls" is performed by light plastic balls. Because the hit of the bullet has no markings, the game focuses on the honesty of the players. After the participant feels he is "killed," he must raise the weapon above his head, having previously tied a red bandage, and leave the game area. The duration of one game can be from several hours to several days. To hold these competitions, larger venues are organized, training grounds that simulate actual combat events. Everything is more realistic here. You can pick up the wounded, devise a strategy, and develop tactics. This is a complete immersion in another reality. There are several versions of the origin of this game. But they are united by the country, thanks to which it became popular. And we are talking about Japan. 

According to the first version, the ancestor of the toys that shoot plastic balls was the Japanese company Daisy, which began to produce such "weapons" to give office workers something to do at work. After some time, due to the increasing number of cases of eye injuries, a set was created that includes not only a gun and balls but also plastic glasses. Another version of the game's origin is that Japan could not conduct training using real weapons after World War II. To maintain the combat capability of the army, airsoft toys were created. 

This game has stricter age restrictions in contrast to paintball. Paintball is played by children who are 12 years old. A person under the age of 18 is not allowed to this type of entertainment. 

Fans of absolute extreme can test their abilities in night airsoft. This is for those desperate players who want to fully enjoy the battles during the day and in the dark to pump their night vision and hearing and learn to navigate without light. 

These games can be large-scale - airsoft teams come from different cities and are divided into 2 or 3 camps, depending on the game's theme. The organizers indicate the article – often, it is a reconstruction of famous battles, adjusted for the unknown outcome of the fight in this case.

It will be challenging for new airsoft players to participate in night battles, but the gained night experience will help in daytime battles. Beginner night strikers are advised to stay in a pair with someone more experienced and observe more than act. At first glance, the onset of darkness will give you an advantage because it is much easier to hide or sneak up on the enemy. But only some things are so clear. The slightest rustle, crack, or change of sounds of silence will give out your opponent's location. Such conditions activate the powerful work of another sense organ - hearing. But this also means that you have to be more careful. Fans of night airsoft pay the most attention to the correct movement. Steps should be smooth; it is better not to take your feet off the ground or go as if on skis. So there is less chance of being detected due to carelessness. Running in night airsoft is also out of the question, except for short runs in open areas where there is no risk of catching on trees. 

The difference between paintball and airsoft equipment

To play paintball, you have to buy or rent essential equipment. First of all, a mask is issued. This is a crucial element of your weapon. Because bullets, due to speed, volume, and weight, can cause serious injuries. Upon contact with any barrier, the ball bursts, and the paint remains on you. If it gets on your clothes, it can be washed off. But it would be best to protect your face and eyes from injury. 

Of course, you will need a "weapon" to eliminate the enemy players. The design of the marker includes two tanks. One with air, and the other contains the balls themselves. When you press the trigger, the air pushes the balls and makes a shot. 

Before paintball, it is better to take care of clothes in advance. Even though you will be given equipment, wearing a tracksuit under it is better to be comfortable moving. Shoes should also be comfortable and durable. You will choose shoes depending on where the competition will take place. In any case, it should not be slippery. Paint will be spilled everywhere. Therefore, you must be prepared for falls. Paintball ammunition is more severe and should cover the whole body because it is a more traumatic game. 

Since the game creates a model of actual combat operations, the equipment must be appropriate. In paintball, you must wear a mask covering the face and neck; in airsoft, you are given only goggles that protect your eyes. In the game, participants use rifles and assault rifles made of plastic or light alloy, which are accurate models of real weapons. If you decide to play night airsoft, you will also need thermal imagers, night vision devices, and binoculars with laser rangefinders. Advanced strikers use radio-controlled reconnaissance drones that transmit images to a phone or tablet. With such a device, you can learn about the location of enemies without leaving the bushes. In addition to all of the above, it is essential to remember that at night it is much colder than during the day, and you should dress warmer - during night games; you will not be able to go to the location for a jacket. You can take a thermos with tea, but it is an additional weight.

Flashlights can be helpful for you. Not to illuminate the area. But to disorient the players of the other team. You can shine them in the face and make a shot. On the one hand, this is a good trick that will allow you to eliminate the opponent. 

On the other hand, it is considered not very fair. Therefore, you can often find such a restriction in the game's rules. At the same time, it is the light turned on in the time that can bring victory. For example, in the "horseshoe" maneuver, the players on the flanks turn on the lights and direct them at the opponents, and the team is firing dense fire.

In addition to "firearms," airsoft can use a rubber knife. It is a great option to eliminate the enemy in close combat. 

We can talk about the features of these types of leisure for a long time. But it must be different from the fact that you will gather your team, try your capabilities in real time, and feel everything yourself. These entertainments aim to take you to the world of adrenaline, creating tension, mystery, and quest. Although let's be honest, despite the many advantages and the fact that an unforgettable experience, in the end, is guaranteed, you should always consider the risks and remember about safety. Stepping onto the field of play, you take responsibility for yourself and your comrades. A fair fight is a respect not only for your teammates but also for the opposing team. Remember that you are not in a real war; everyone must leave the site unharmed. Of course, none of us is immune from emergencies. But do everything consciously. 

Thanks to these games, you will wake up your inner warrior. Airsoft and paintball train strength, endurance, agility, and patience. And also the ability to accept defeat with dignity. But be careful. Many people are addicted to these games. You came once and rented weapons and equipment. And then you do not even notice how you participate in sports competitions, and a collection of ammunition is created in your closet.

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