Thursday, February 9, 2012

The art of pressing the buzzer

Photo from

4 Singapore based teams will be travelling to My-NPL next weekend for the 1st leg of the Malaysia tournament. These 4 teams are Raving Lunatics, Team Karma, SKIN and Team Enraged and they will be participating in the Division 3 category which is newly revamped in 2012 from a M5 format to a Race-2 game format. This is indeed good news for Singapore based teams as they challenge themselves to playing the Race-2 format. The Race-2 game format is widely used in the USA and European countries and is very popular with paintballers where game strategies are involved. Gone are the days where you have one single game plan for the entire tournament. With the Race-2 format, there are a couple of things that teams will need to be aware of in order for them to shine before the rest. In view of this new Race-2 adventure for these 4 teams, I have listed a few things which might be useful for everyone's reference:

1) Buzzer is KING
It is not about shooting all your opponents on the field but who is faster in pressing the buzzer. Don't get disillusion with shooting everyone out of the game. The faster hand to press the buzzer is the winner.

2) Make sure you have 2 of everything
With back to back games, it is important for the team to have enough paintball equipment. Make sure you have 2 paintball markers, 2 paintball tanks... well... basically 2 of everything. Teams with limited budget can use a common pool of equipment by sharing. Do remember to have a squeege if you are returning to the field for the next point.

3) Air vs paintballs
If you have no more air in your tank, you cannot shoot anymore paintballs. Therefore, it is important to fill your air first before looking around to fill your harness with pods of paintballs. You can bring in loads of paintballs but without air in your tank, you are nothing.

4) Watch out for statues
"Statues" are players who won the game but choose not to press the buzzer to declare the win. Often then not, the losing teams are busy podding and filling air that they fail to take note that "statues" are just standing in a freezing position next to the buzzer. What comes next is just seconds for you to win another point. Don't let them lose your precious time.

5) Understand the 30 seconds rule
The rule is simple. Get a penalty in the last 30 seconds of the game and the game is forfeited. Teams that are hungry to draw the game would usually do crazy things on the field. Crazy enough but keep the penalties to yourself.

6) The other buzzer
The coach buzzer is not for the faint hearted. We have seen teams losing precious points when the buzzer was wrongly pressed. Throwing the towel at the right time can be effective and surely time saving. Pressing the buzzer for the wrong reason can only see you regretting your decision in choosing a smart coach.

7) Crew
Call them whatever names you want but without them, you are screwed! Crew members are the most essential in any Race-2 game. They get you drinks, fill your pods, collect your empty pods, pump your guns and wipe your hits off.... all in the space of 2 mins (MPOC) and 1 min (MY-NPL). So make sure you treat them humanely and reward them whenever necessary.

8) Money, money, money
Don't plan for just enough, plan for the future... If you have no paintballs in the Finals, don't come crying for help because most of the teams would have already took off after a long day. And don't think your opponents are going to help you. 3 boxes per player budget is a MUST!

9) War map
Unlike M5 where you only play one game and rest of the next half an hour. In the Race-2 format, you will need to have multiple game plans. Plans for offensive and defensive strategies can bring the team a long way. With only 1 game plan and your snake will be wondering what wrong did he do to get shot out so easily... you have been warned. Hint: Don't waste time resting in the players area... take notes and watch some games will allow you to have a head start.

10) Coach
A coach coaches... he will provide the necessary instructions for the team. He plans the game and take his own notes so that he can always derive a counter measure plans for his team. A coach is not a reporter... A reporter tells you where your opponents are. "Snake 1, snake 1, snake 1... are things of the past. Be a coach not a reporter.

There you have it... 10 tips for the Singapore teams! Good luck to all participating in MY-NPL. Bring back the glory and lift your head high!

All good things must come to an end. A new beginning awaits...

This team was formed in 2006. The purpose of forming Singapore's first competitive paintball team was mooted with a sole objective of "representation". It was not long when a few strangers with a common interest came together and talk paintball all day long. There was no benchmark to follow, there was no pressure to perform and members of the team were just happy coming together every weekend satisfying their hunger for paintball games. Fast forward 6 years and this team has become a household name in the regional paintball scene. Having won the Singapore Paintball Series Open Division Overall Champion in 2011 and the Malaysia Paintball Official Circuit Division 2 Overall Champion in 2011, the team was on fire. Great battles were not won overnight neither were Champions. Members of the team took pride in donning their team jersey every time they step onto the field. Soon it was not just about being able to represent... it was about winning. It was about getting that difficult win every time we step into the field, it was about standing on the podium every time we represent, and it was about all the pride, glory and honour that make us a name to be reckoned with. But nevertheless, all good things must come to an end. Great teams fall after winning championships, great leaders pass after great battles... we knew that it was only a matter of time that all the good will start to fall apart. Like they say, all good things must come to an end. It takes great pain and suffering to see this fall. Once we were playing more than 12 paintball events a year and the next, we became strangers. Emails were sent with no reply. Dinners were arranged with no turn up. Trainings were scheduled with no players. Things just change. Life commitments start to hit the team hard... we had plans to move to Division 1 in 2012 but it never materialized. Players were going back to school, some had bills to pay, some chose to focus on work, some never really knew what's happening, some were out of jobs and lastly, some ended up being in a team without team mates. It is sad to see how things actually turn out for everyone. Well... life goes on. The world doesn't stop spinning. The sun continues to rise. The heart still continues pumping. It will be a matter of time that things will get back on track again. Until this day, we are ready to revamp the team like how a few strangers first got together. Perhaps, it is easier keeping things simple and gets everybody back to basics.