Sunday, October 13, 2013

Confucius Art of War - Paintball Style

The Sun Tzu’s Art of War… one of the most famous and ancient Chinese military strategy of all time which has been used for over 2000 years. Many Great War generals, strategists and tacticians have adopted the use of these great strategies to win battles and conquered great terrains. In modern times, big corporate organizations have used these strategies to influence business expansions. Since paintball has this little piece of war theme ongoings, wouldn’t it be great to use some of these famous tactics on the field and see if they really work!

As I ran a search on Google with keywords such as “Paintball” with “Sun Tzu’s Art of War”, I was unable to find similar results with these keywords and so I thought… why not an article on this, since I belong to the great descendent of the ancient Chinese and has fine Chinese blood running through my veins but more importantly, I play paintball too! And for disclaimer purposes, I am a Singaporean and no great tactician of the game, like it or not, here goes:

1)    If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles.

In another words, have you profile your opponents? You can train a thousand days but all you need is to play a great game in 8 minutes. While you can train and train and train… are you able to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your opponents? I have heard this a million times on the field and the conversation usually goes like this: “Which team are we playing next?” and someone from the team will usually reply: “Let’s not care about who are up against, let’s just do your best!”

Are you sure, you don’t want to know who you are playing against in the next game? The great saying always tells us to plan early. This is because, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Knowing your opponents always allow you to set your mental game plan and know who you are up against. Study every single moves of your opponent. Understand how they dive, crawl, shoot, run, slide… every single move must be on your finger tips.

2)    The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.

Ever seen the giant tanks and warships parading in front of the crowd during a National Day Parade? Never knew that these military weapons ever existed in Singapore? The real purpose behind parading these great war machines during peace time is what we commonly known as psychology defence. In another words, it serves as a form of deterrence to hostility and thus ensuring security peace and harmony. So how is this related to paintball?

Don’t just think of what you can do to win games during events but instead think of what you can do outside of tournament days to promote your team so that your team can have half the battle won before the buzzer goes off. In summary, let your team name strike fear into the hearts of your opponents. If you are a great fan of the English soccer, how does it sound to play against the once great Manchester United Football Club?

3)    Opportunities multiply as they are seized.

I like to relate this as “move whenever you shoot a player out”. Great players seize this opportunity to move and play the game to their advantage. If you shot a player in the field, it is always the best time to move up the field. And why is this so? Personally, I guess this is the time (maybe 5 seconds frame) when your remaining live opponents are unaware about his teammate being eliminated and might not have his eyes onto you thus allowing you a space to bump up the bunker.

4)    Regard your soldiers as your children, and they will follow you into the deepest valleys; look on them as your own beloved sons, and they will stand by you even unto death.

In summary, train your players hard and well before any event. I have seen many teams falling apart after many good years together. They started playing the game together but often than not unable to see each other out until the end. Many teams come and go and some only playing whenever there is an event and thereafter players go missing for a couple of months only to catch up again 1 week before the event. To keep a team together, more has to be done off the field. Everyone has to eat somehow or another… but not everyone allocates a time to eat together as a team. Sad story… Meet up more other than just meeting up at the field might help the team to bond and get their act right in the field. Know your teammates better and half the battle won.

5)    Prohibit the taking of omens, and do away with superstitious doubts. Then, until death itself comes, no calamity need be feared.

“I have a feeling that the referee is marking me”
“The base referee is very particular about my marker touching the frame”
“The referee is new and he makes bad call all the time”

Sounds familiar?