Engaging in the Sport of Airsoft
Airsoft is very similar to the popular game of paintball. Participants in airsoft engage in military simulations with weapons that are modeled after popular military weapons such as the Colt M16. While paintball uses paintballs as ammunition for its guns, airsoft uses special sphere like BB pellets which are made out of molded plastic. Although the guns look very similar to their real life counterparts, the BB pellets that they shoot are actually quite harmless. The pellets bounce harmlessly off the target, protecting against the risk of serious injury occurring. The game of Airsoft began in the 1970s, during a time when Japanese law prohibited the use of guns. This simulation of combat sports and military tactics entertained players for hours at a time. Love of the game spread, and is now popular in North America and Europe as well.
Participants usually choose a wooded area in which to play. They choose any open space that will provide many places in which to take cover from the opponent or sneak up on an opponent. Teams are formed into military units who then fight against each other. Players wear clothing similar to military clothing and may also use camouflage as part of their strategy. Military-like tactics are used in order to capture and eliminate the members of the other team.
When a person has been hit with a pellet, he is expected to declare himself to be dead and he is then out of the game until the next one begins. Once killed, the player typically waits in a safety zone in order to avoid getting hit again. The game is over when one team has either been completely eliminated or they have all surrendered. Players tend to become very involved in this sport, and a typical game can last all day if the participants are experienced Airsoft players.
In order to ensure the protection of all of the players, certain rules must be adhered to. All participants are required to use only Airsoft guns, which must fall within the muzzle velocity guidelines stipulated by their country. Participants are also required to wear protection on their eyes, such as goggles. When playing airsoft professionally, a full face mask is normally required for legal reasons. Although not a requirement in casual games, full facemasks, pants, gloves and long sleeve shirts are recommended for additional protection.