Gaming reality vs airsoft
Team work is essential.
Somewhere around 2010, I felt a boom of new airsoft teams appearing every now and then. I think it results from the natural observation that can be made during many airsoft games. Namely, the strongest weapon is teamwork. If, like me, you sometimes watch airsoft movies on YouTube, you will probably quickly come to a similar conclusion. For the most part of the recordings I saw, the band that operated with a focus on communication and cooperation dominated. Of course, one can argue that the films were probably edited in such a way as to show the domination of the heroes of the movies in order to increase the attractiveness of the clip. The problem is, in fact, this principle also applies. On the one hand, it is very good to watch a team that works like a well-tuned mechanism, where each player knows their place and tasks. On the other hand, there is nothing more frustrating than the lack of basic communication within the team which leads to bizarre situations where several people are running behind the same cover because they have not agreed on their positions before starting the attack.
Czasem nawet najlepsza drużyna musi nadrabiać sprzętem.
And the same is true for computer games, especially those with a multiplayer game mode. It happened to me more than once when a team completely ignored teamwork. In such situations, instead of achieving the goals of the game, staying in a group and using at least basic tactics, everyone acted on their own and quickly allowed themselves to be eliminated. Most often, games are not won this way.
Exercising your reflexes.
When speed matters, switching to a pistol is faster than reloading.
Everyone who has ever played FPS games in the last 15 years has heard this phrase "switching to a pistol is faster than reloading". If you know this quote, you probably know that it appears in one of the levels of the popular computer game, which consists in going through an improvised obstacle course, which is mainly intended to explain to us, as players, the basics of game controls. The availability of this level even after completing the game and the fact that the game measures our time during it was an incentive for me to spend countless hours on training there. I remember this feeling of pride as I watched better and better transitions over time, when on the one hand I learned by heart the layout of the rooms to be walked on, but also when my reflexes improved.
Similarly, to the above example, in real airsoft competitions, I notice a significant improvement in my performance when I have the opportunity to train. And here, both in terms of knowledge of the game area and training in the use of equipment. If I do not go to shooters for a few weeks, my memory disappears after some time, which helps me to quickly assemble the shot or reload it efficiently. Similarly, if I don't run a computer game for a similar amount of time, I notice a decline in skills. Sometimes I forget important key combinations or convenient locations on maps.
Deathmatches and CTFs
Sometimes different game modes require us to use props.
Sometimes when I wonder how much airsoft takes from other areas of life probably the first example that comes to my mind are game mechanics that originate from the world of computer games. In both cases we are dealing with an attempt to transfer the battlefield to a more conventional platform that would be, let’s say safer for players. The difference is that in airsoft we have the simulation in the real world without the use of computer technology.
On the back of the above-mentioned analogies, both in airsoft and in computer games, we will deal with rounds, respawn points, with a certain number of "lives" per round. The game modes would also be similar. The most popular ones that come to mind are those mentioned in the title of the paragraph, i.e., deathmatches where we have to eliminate members of the opposing team without getting shot or capture the flag (CTF) where teams take over the flags scattered on the field when. However, the similarities do not end there. We are dealing with other modes, such as those involving the neutralization of a bomb or other target placed on the map, or domination modes, where the time of having a certain object within one round counts. Moving on, airsoft players often count the number of their "kills" or hits, just like virtual ones.
What are we going to get out of this?
I always react with a smile when I see comments from avid reenactors on the Internet, who complete their equipment very carefully and do not accept that airsoft has a lot in common with computer games. What's more - for some it may also have a lot to do with sport, but that's a topic for a separate article. Both in terms of gameplay mechanics and what gives a real advantage, we can find many analogies between airsoft games and computer games. It is worth remembering this and, simply speaking, transferring proven tactics from one sphere to another. I often play cooperative games with people with whom I go shooting, thanks to which we can easily practice communication. In addition, I sometimes play games aimed at practicing my reflexes and eye-hand coordination. I think that the most important conclusion that we can draw is not to close ourselves in our beliefs and look for a way how one of our hobbies can improve others.
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