Thursday, April 30, 2009

What is paintball?

When it comes to promoting paintball, we always try to promote the positive aspects of the game. It is the same when you go for a job interview and your potential employer ask you "Tell me your best qualities" And you go on ranting about all the good things that you have done and experienced. Likewise, when someone asked me "What is paintball?" You can see the lights in my eyes with these few thoughts coming through my mind: "'s my chance! let him know all there is to know about paintball" or "should I go all out and bored him with stuff that he has never experienced before?"

Usually, I will start off by saying that paintball is an excellent teambuilding game which focus on self confidence, communication and people working together. But really, if you have never try paintball before, its really hard to explain to you the positives of playing the game. I will then elaborate on the different kinds of paintball, from recreational game, scenario woods game and speedball. And by the time I reach this part of the explanation, I realised that 80% of the time, they get pretty bored with the information overload. So this is when I will take a step back and just tell them to try the game and experience for themselves.

I was reading the latest copy of FACEFULL with great interest as the famous XSV paintball icon, Rich Telford brought up an important point about creating paintball awareness and getting people to work together for the good of the game. One of the things that he mentioned, and I quote "If there is a local tournament and you dont play, go out and check in see if you can help". I think this is important for paintball to grow and develop, not just for local paintball but for everyone who loves the game.

Creating awareness for paintball is not just about one or two individuals. It comes from everyone, anyone can be a good ambassador for paintball if they promote paintball in a positive way. If there is someone that you know who wants to try out paintball, get them to try it out. Hey! Its all about having a good experience.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

SPNS 2009 Leg 2 Team Preview

With SPNS just around the corner, a preview of the participating teams is something that we need to spice things up. In no random order:

Seek Family - This newly formed team has a big "Heart" when it comes to playing paintball. In heart, I mean the heart to learn, the heart to practice and the heart to listen. It has been a while since I last saw a team with such dedication. Made up from a group of army friends and friends of friends, this team is driven by the passion to learn and play. This is their first time playing in competitive paintball. Everything learnt is a big step towards something bigger. Some wins in the prelims will see this team play more and promote the game we all love. Captain Rudi is the driving force in the management of this team. Player to watch is a secondary school boy, Adam, who absorbs like a sponge when it comes to marker handling and posture.

Kamikaze - Having lost out in SPNS Leg 1 and dropping everybody's expectation, Kamikaze has come out strong this time. With almost a new team set up, the Kami boys added Mark (SPNS 2008 Leg 3 Champion), Delusion and Nicholas into the squad making the lineup look much stronger than before. Having won the MY-NPL Leg 2 Division 4 Runners Up, the new inclusions are not here to make up numbers. With SPNS Leg 1 MVP, Shadowknight leading the way. This team is surely a dark horse with tons of playing experience.

EVIL Avengers – A transformation of the former Hot Fuzz team, this team is all about experience. With most if not all of its players playing in the SPNS since the series formation, we will be expecting this team to showcase the best of paintball from the fundamental skills of snapshooting, bunkering and winning games. SPNS 2009 Leg 1 showed the team coming close to Round 2 qualification but with the inclusion of Shah who was a former SPNS 2008 Leg 1 Champion with Redlords and a SPNS 2008 Leg 2 Runners Up with Red Shadows. The question remains…

Contract Killers – Starring the same lineup, the SPNS 2009 Leg 1 Runners Up added depth to the team by recruiting Dragonfly for this leg of the competition. A “natural born killer instinct” is how I will describe this team, on their good days, they can beat any team that comes their way. With a good stronghold from their reliable back players, Benguin and Shark has form a formidable back partnership in becoming the backbone of this team. With the intention to change their name to Mastadon United, will this team be stronger than before?

Ares – Little is known about this team. Formed by a team of international students, this SPNS will be a first for everyone in the team. Led by Chris Hampton, this team can shoot a lot more paintballs than you can ever imagine. Working their way into their first competition, this team trains regularly at the field and is hoping to see their effort pays off in the field. Player to watch out for will be Chris who displayed good leadership on and off the field.

Dark Militia – Coached by Houdini, Dark Militia made their mark in the last leg by winning the 2nd Runners Up in their first SPNS appearance. Houdini who plays for Team Damnation a Division 3 team in the Malaysia Paintball Official Circuit (MPOC) will be the team’s player-coach in this leg of the series. Player to watch out for will be Abdullah who plays on the snake side of the field.

Red West – With 3 of its players playing in the Red Sevens team, this team is surely strong on paper, but we all know that even with the best lineup in the team, sometimes you just need that little bit of luck. Vincent who played with the team in last leg of the tournament has left the team leaving the team with a void to fill. However, with the team’s new inclusions such as WarLorD and spacemonkey, who are both playing in the back position; this team is able to find a good balance in agility and stability. Player to look out for will be Ryan Stoll who is versatile in playing all positions. Yes, even the snake…

Wargh!Cook – A newly named team from the former Wargh!Nuts, this team is one of the longest supporting guardian and ambassadors of the SPNS. Formed by a group of best buddies who went through the army together, they know what tough times are. The Semi Finalist of SPNS 2009 Leg 1, Wargh!Cook will be one of the teams to look out for. Known for their defensive tactics, Wargh!Cook will be sure to kick some ass! Commonly known to the paintball community as Chak, he will be bringing the game to the next level.

MLC – Yes, they took the paintball community by storm and surprise when they first participated in the 3rd leg of the SPNS series in 2008. Don’t be fooled by their age and looks, they might not look like the ordinary paintballer but hell these guys are aggressive on the field. They think fast and they move fast too. Just to add to their credentials, these guys won the SPNS 2008 Leg 3 1st Runners Up in their first competition beating teams such as PSG Warfreakz. So yes, they mean business. Target man to look out for will be Kay, who thinks fast and acts fast, yes some say shoot fast too.

Rebels R Us – You might not have heard of this team before but they have been around. Painting and training mostly in Malaysia, this newly formed team will be vying their skills against our local lads. Don’t be mistaken, this is a true Singaporean team but little is known about them.

So there you go…the registered teams so far. More reviews of teams will be posted if there are new inclusions. SG Troopers, Ice Cubes, Death Mavericks…

Surely, these are just my personal observation of the teams. You will be a fool to believe what I wrote, so just take it with a pinch of salt.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Red Sevens Random

"I swear to god" The best Red Sevens lineup ever... maybe not...hmmm...

Our sponsored Furious Barrels..."I swear to god" they shoot well!!!!

"I swear to god" he was singing and dancing...

"I swear to god" he is picking a song and not something else...

"I swear to god" we felt as though we won the championship...

"I swear to god" he is better in paintball...

"I swear to god" Ryan is of legal age and drinking Jolly Shandy...

"I swear to god" he is in shape...round is a shape.

The best outing... not from the games! MPOC 2009 Leg 3

The best Red Sevens lineup so far in one of the team's worst performance. This proves to show that anything can happen in paintball. The team started off with high hopes of repeating the same feat from our last 2 tournament but it turns out to be a nightmare for. We won only 4 out of 10 qualifying games (1 win was from a bye) and shot an amazing 8 boxes! We usually shoot 13 boxes in day 1 but this round we shot amazingly little... we lost a few bodies early in the game, we had some decent game plans but never really seemed to be able to finish and close the game. Yes, it was a disappointing result but all is not lost as we spent a good weekend together with dancing, music, singing, darting, pooling and of course all the joking. I truly enjoyed the weekend. We came in 13th short of the qualifying spot (thanks to someone...yes, Mr. XPOC). But yes, we dont deserve it... we know we can do better.

This could also be the last time that Zach and Ryan will be playing with the team as they will going back to States for good in June. Yes, we will missed them but who knows we might be competing again. ISSC anyone? Final game together?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Red Family - Red Sevens, Red Fraction, Red West and Red Dynasty

Yes, the Red Family... 4 different teams but all part of the Reds.

Red Sevens, one of the earliest team in Singapore to play speedball. Perhaps I should say, one of the earliest team in Singapore which was learning how to play paintball. Formed in 2006, the team has been an ardent fan of the Malaysia paintball scene and also doing their part to promote this game to the local paintball community. Competing for about 2 years and still nowhere close to playing at the top level, this team is trying its best to maintain a regular squad. Since formation, there has always been a daunting task trying to keep all players together. Of course, players come and go and have different priorities in their life, so its pretty hard to get everyone together to play paintball. Till today, the team is still competing and keeping pace with this fast adrenaline rushing game and of course along the way, the team learns how to play paintball better. Since 2007, the team has played in 20 paintball tournaments (all overseas) and about 230 competitive games together (and counting), so surely there is a lot that this team can offer to people who are keen to take up this sport on a regular basis. No, Red Sevens is not a National team as many claim. And yes, the team is always on a lookout for potential players to join them.

Red Fraction, supposingly the junior team for the Red Sevens, it still is. The team was formed from the local paintball community, all strangers from different walks of life. People with passion who wants to know more about playing paintball competitively. During its formation, the Red Fraction has gone through intensive training conducted by members of the Red Sevens in hoping to translate all they have learnt onto the field but anything can happen in paintball... with the team playing together for the first time, did not perform to expectations. But still good enough to see the players wanting to play more to improve their skills. SpaceMonkey joined the Red Sevens in one of the MPOC outings. But the last time Red Fraction played together was about 3 months ago... so is the fire still burning within? I am unsure. For now, 2 players are missing in action and the other 2 of their players recently made an announcement to leave the team. A building process is now in due. Anyone keen?

Red West, a team formed for the purpose of participating in the SPNS was crowned the 2009 Leg 1 Champion. With only 2 training sessions together, the team "clicked" on their first meeting. Who are the Red West? 2 students (Zach and Ryan) from the Singapore American School, a National serviceman (Edi) and a few other phantom players. As the american boys will not be in Singapore for long, the idea is to combine Red Fraction and Red West for future SPNS series. Zach and Ryan who has been playing tons of woodsball in the States before moving to Singapore with their parents has played for Red Sevens on numerous occassions. Edi, a former player from Team RAG was recruited to the senior team for his paintball potential. A recent inclusion into the team is Paul, who will be playing as a back player for Red West.
Red Dynasty, formed by staff who works in the Red Dynasty Paintball Park. A mixture of good talents from local teams such as Kamikaze, Carnage, Contract Killers and Red Fraction, the Red Dynasty is an iconic Div 4 team which has since participated once in the MPOC and NPL with top 4 showing in both competitions. It will be in no time when all of them start thinking about playing in the higher division.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Paintball Vs Laser Tag - Promote it the right way...PLEASE!

Heard of Laser Tag? Heard of Combat Skirmish? Basically, it is a tagging game that uses a beaming device (often a shaped liked gun) that when triggered, emits IR beam and if you are "hit" by the beams, you are considered as tagged. I have played this game countless times when I was still studying... pretty fun, lots of adrenaline rush... I was doing a route march with my NS unit the other day at East Coast Park but cannot help to notice big banners hanging from the lamp posts about this game. Surely, this teambuidling game is not new to most corporate companies and are creating lots of awareness to the public.

There used to be a laser tag centre in the old Marina Square called Laser Quest. It was the in-thing at that time, people would pay as much as $15 (about 12 years ago) for a game as short as 5 minutes. Surely, at that time, I was thinking must be a total RIPOFF! Firstly, there are no expandables, secondly, the game is amazingly short. Pitch dark playing field and you cant really see whats going on and who shot you and the next thing you know, its over. Yes, similar to playing paintball in the night. Talking about fogging...

Laser tag operators (across the world) will often promote their game by 1) indicating that paintball can cause bruising and laser tag cant, 2) there is no age limit imposed on participants, so everyone can play and 3) the game can be played everywhere, even void decks, gardens, parks, CCs, schools!

There are a few laser tag operators in Singapore too, but I was shocked when I went to their website and saw the way the game is being promoted...they were basically comparing the differences between laser tag and paintball. And saying some of the most "horrible" things about paintball: "paintball cause bruising and unsightly marks, paintbball "burns" your pocket, paintball leaves you painful, there's no need to wear a goggle (yes, we all know...), there is no age limit, 5 years old also can play, paintball players have no integrity and fires 10 shots in a few seconds....this is the amazing part: and this results in the opponent being DISABLE!!!! WOW....disable....WOW... I didnt know that... (isnt hard to find the website on the internet). Is that how people do business nowadays?

Okay... so much for the comparisons.

Since laser tag operators often compared with paintball with their game. Perhaps we should compare paintball with the "real thing". goes, shooting kills. Bullets cost about 30 cents, some more expensive than the others depending on the calibre, shooting makes people feel sad...(you know what I mean). Surely, there are some who promotes both: Laser Tag and Paintball... must be a "conflict of interest" as one likes to put it so conveniently. Oh... did I mention that the good people from paintball came up with this:

So maybe no more conflict of interest. I do remember seeing some of these in the store... perhaps perhaps.

In summary, just promote the game that you love in a way that you do not short changed other games.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Invitation to World Games 2009 Paintball Demo Event

Once again, we are invited to 2nd Asia Paintball Invitational Tournament in Taiwan. Only this time, this event is one of the official demonstration activity for World Games 2009. Last year, our team was in Taiwan too, it was more like an event to impress the World Games organizers that paintball is not only a recreational game but a sport. News are that, teams which were in Taiwan last year will be there...with a few more inclusions. Maybe a few teams from Malaysia, Iran and the Philippines. Resources told me that there will be 2 Japanese teams and Ironmen might be in too. Hmmm... Red Sevens versus Ironmen? Wow... what are the chances?

More about the event later...

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Area 685 - Paintball place in Singapore

Fresh from the oven... Area 685 located in Sembawang, Focus Challenge.
The day has arrived for the Allies to launch their attack on the Axis with a frontal attack across the battlefield.