Wednesday, December 22, 2010

PRE-PAINTBALL: The Airsoft Years

Royce on bottom, winter of the AK 47s, see the clear shotgun?

       Actually, there were no years, but instead just a few short months before I was converted quite thoroughly from being an airsofter to an avid paintballer, but believe it or not, without airsoft I never would have even tried paintball. I actually met the guy who first shot me with a paintball gun through a guy I met while organizing airsoft games in my hometown! Crazy.
Airsoft in my town was a bunch of us young kids with lousy, clear airsoft guns from Canadian Tire going off into the woods to shoot at each other. These were spring powered, no gas blow back or anything fancy, we had to cock for every shot but despite that it was a total blast at the time, likely because I had nothing to compare it to till later that year.
TSD L96 Sniper, pretty economical novice rifle
       My entry into airsoft was in late 2007 and coincided with the release of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and I caught a pretty bad case of the ghillie suit flu as a result. My first attempt was lousy but I've become pretty good at pumping out ghillies since then and know what works well, more on this later. In my obsession of bigger is better, expensive is better, which I had even before paintball, I moved on from a clear M16 and purchased a TSD L96 which was a pretty wicked sniper for the price and certainly helped me live up the sniper role in our rag tag group of plain clothes airsofters. The rifle gave me range and accuracy over the other little pistols but being bolt action meant I had to cock it every time and reload more often since my gun didn't have a wind up reservoir of rounds in the magazine which helped even out the play field. 
Younger member with my M16, I'm taking the picture in my ghillie
       We founded a facebook group quickly and were quite passionate. We wanted to get other people interested so desperately but we actually failed quite miserably. Getting games together in this crew was really hit and miss, new people would say they'd come and never show, regulars would do the same, it was a disaster most of the time but it was still fun when we'd get something going. Come summer, paintball just started to sink it's talons deeps into me and I was drifting away. A bad omen for the crew given that I also was in charge of organizing games for this group. I think the largest game we had among ourselves was 6v6 and that's a generous estimate of the amount of people that showed. Myself and several others let it die, people were gone for the summer, but some die hards didn't see that we couldn't get something going and it actually caused some dissent in the 'ranks'. Nothing did come of it. I was unsure of our club's future though and ended up selling the L96.
My most effective ghillie yet and that give-away clear M16

       After my first highly addicting season of paintball, winter came, and a friend, Royce, and myself decided to give reviving the group over the winter a go. Again, couldn't get much going. We had a few nice outtings and acquired a few more toys in the process, Royce a MAC 11 and Kraken AK which we lightly sanded a grain into and painted to look like wood, myself another L96 and an AK as well, this one of the tactical variety. I lost hope for airsoft when it failed a second time though, and opted to cut my losses and sell the Kraken but kept the L96. It would seem that every time I had no airsoft stuff I suddenly needed it again. Royce bought my Kraken and even though there's no scene for it in Williams Lake where we're from, he continues to buy airsoft stuff for props in movies he makes for his youtube channel. Cool stuff! Royce is also the guy who bought the A5 SAW off me and I recently helped him sell it as well, it's in the states somewhere now. I certainly do owe Royce for being such an awesome customer.
        Would I play airsoft again? If I could get a hold of the crew in Kamloops you bet! They exist but they aren't easy to get in contact with. I'm ready to go with them though, so much of this tactical stuff I've acquired in paintball could easily translate to a good airsoft set-up but I think paintball will own my heart for a long time.

No comments:

Post a Comment