What turns people away from paintball?

Before I begin I would like to apologize for the unannounced hiatus which resulted in an almost month long absence of material produced on this site. Things have been real busy with the launch of the IshmaelPB Youtube channel (check it out here) as well as other real life factors which are causing me to limit my playing time. Rest assured however that everything will carry on. The Facebook page is slowly growing, and so far the videos put out so far have been well received.

What will be known henceforth as the IshmaelPB community is starting to take shape, and I want all of you for the support that you have given me.


Now, onto the main talking point. This is something that I have gone over briefly in previous writings but recent actions that I have witnessed while playing recreational paintball have pushed me to devote an entire post into covering this subject. To begin, I am going to single out the players who mainly play tournament ball. When you are out at a practice/event playing against teams of the same caliber as you, shrieking at the top of your lungs for an opponent to get out is understandable due to the amount of tomfoolery that happens in the tournament world (wiping, playing on, etc). However, when you are out at a small mom and pop field playing against kids who are holding a marker for the first time actions such as these are unacceptable. The kid you just shot in the rental pod-pack has no idea that they are eliminated, and when someone twice their size with a gun that shoots MUCH faster than his/her rental 98 starts screaming like a madman for them to “Get the f**k off the field!” then the chances of said kid returning plummet and consequently the field loses a customer. It doesn’t even have to be a kid. Imagine how a full grown man might react to such behavior?

What goes on off the field also impacts whether or not a person returns and supports their local field. Making fun of a players equipment is a prime example. Paintball is an expensive sport and if you are just now showing interest in it then you aren’t going to buy a Luxe right off the bat. If someone shows up a Spyder MR1 and a cheap mask, praise them. They paid for that out of their own pocket and supported the industry as a whole. If they stick with it and decide that this is something that they want to do then they will start putting money towards new equipment. Just remember that we all have to start from somewhere.

Lastly, wiping. Again speedballers; what goes on during an event is a completely different animal. I am stating right now that it is my honest opinion that tournament wiping is akin to holding in football or tripping an opponent in soccer. There are referees whose job is to monitor games such as these (Ill go over this more in a later post).¬†However, it is inexcusable to wipe in a recreational game against first timers. All that you are doing is taking away the excitement of them getting their first kill and replacing it with a mentality that “Oh all paintballers must cheat”. What is even worse is when the wiper goes after a new player for wiping themselves. Well why shouldn’t they? You did the same to them so why can’t they do it to you? It’s hypocritical, ¬†and does nothing but hurt your reputation as well as the fields.

3 thoughts on “What turns people away from paintball?

  1. I think your description of a Tournament player is very very skewed. I’ve never once run onto a proper tourney player who does that to any new players. We want to get people involved with the sport, and tend to treat people quite nicely and teach them the rules before they head onto the field.

    I’ve never once heard of someone being made of for having cheap equipment on the field, and wiping I’ve never seen happen on a mom and pop field other than by the people that have the attitude you seem to show in this blog. The people that seem to resent tourney players and say “They’re all wiping cheating slobs” or say “They’re bullying newbies” etc.

    1. Tazay,

      Where we differ is that I have run into a proper tourney player(s) who have done everything previously mentioned in the blog post to a new player, recently in fact, hence why I wanted to write this article. Every example mentioned above is something that I have witnessed first hand while playing rec.

      As for players being ridiculed for what the type of equipment that they have, I can tell you for certain that this happens because growing up I was one of those who has been made fun of for carrying around what was considered “sub-par” gear. I was just getting into the sport and didn’t have access to the most high quality equipment on the market and was laughed at and constantly told to be put on the other team by players who strutted around the field with the latest and greatest from Planet Eclipse.

      I commend you for helping get people into the sport and for showing them the ropes before a game and sincerely hope that you continue to treat those that you mentioned the same way that you do now.

      1. Guess its just the communities we participate in. The players here are all friendly towards everyone new and old. We usually have equal parts renters and owners. A lot of the owners have the newest and greatest thing, but we all appreciate the old, cheap, and lame. A lot of us will play with a Tippman 98 custom rental just to have a blast with the renters or to just have a challenge.

        You must have a really crappy recreation group in your area if thats happening. Someone should go in there a kick some asses off the field for that. That type of stuff I haven’t seen anyone here stand for. Had a kid last weekend playing with a old spyder and wearing sweats and a walmart mask. He was really eager to play, and we were glad to have him. He saw what we all had, and was super excited to get to where we were all at. (Shot him in the butt. Felt pretty bad as it hurt him a bit >< But he took it like a champ.)

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