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The Saviours of UK Paintball ?????

Discussion in 'Paintball News' started by Robbo, May 2, 2017.

  1. Mark Vickery Member

    Mark Vickery
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    Also, I confirmed with Ainsley that CPPS is not going anywhere, so whatever happens with NXL, players will always have a choice.
     
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  2. Hansel So Hot Right Now.

    Hansel
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    EPBF.
     
  3. Spikerz Well-Known Member

    Spikerz
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    I heard it shall be called NXL Pro Europe.
     
  4. QBaller Member

    QBaller
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    Hi all. Been inactive for a while and this thread really piqued my interest. Robbo made a very strong opening statement and I'd like to share my perspective as the balling situation north of the border (west of scotland specifically) is in dire straits.

    I used to ball fairly regularly with my cousin. My interest has largely been with the rec/scenario and his the tourney side. The current situation where i am is that there exists limited locales to play the rec/scenario side and nil for the tourney side. There have been three good sites that have closed within the last three years, Major Day at Stirling, Scottish Paintball Centre at Kilmarnock, and Prozone at the borders. This is a key problem for seasoned rec-ballers who are looking to play but have nowhere to go. I have always wanted cross over to give a go at the tourney side, but business and family commitments prevent time to travel to events.

    Robbo mentioned rec/scenario and arena as distinct "factions", which to me reads as "us vs them". It also mentioned the "evolution" and "transition" out of the woods. This mindset I would argue is counter productive as I believe there exists value in development of both sides for the future development of paintball. The latter half of this thread has been somewhat disappointing as the rec/scenario scene has been all but ignored. Per my cousin, the rush you get from each side is different. From a business perspective, there are two distinct products on offer which should be explored, developed (subject to the financials making sense) dare I say in collaboration with each other to introduce the cross over aspect.

    Robbo mentions the trip to nostalgia lane, flirting with the past and the (older) age of woodballers and that this renaissance will be superficial at best. I'm not convinced. Due to the locale circumstances, I have recently crossed over to airsoft and I make no apology in doing so. What i witnessed was a burgeoning scene that I haven't seen in paintball for a good while. Players young and old alike having a good time together. I don't see why this cannot be replicated in paintball as well.

    The cost of playing and the exorbitant prices of gear has also been duly pointed out. At the end of the day, balling is a recreation which is subject to financial limitations. The sport is competing with all other recreational activities and subject to the same cost(time/money)/benefit constraints of players past/present and future. This means other sports, the cinema, video games, day trips, an overseas weekend away etc etc. The bang for buck of balling just isn't as strong given the economic climate and the "premium" of paintball just hasn't got that luster anymore.

    Whilst I've made reasonably investment in airsoft, I have no intent of giving up my paintballing kit either and await the time paintball in my vicinity will rise from the ashes. Given that the heart of paintball lies south of the border, I even had a fleeting idea of purchasing a plot of land to develop for like minded individuals to band up and play. However, i will resign myself to sharing my perspective to this forum.

    Thanks for reading.
     
  5. Hansel So Hot Right Now.

    Hansel
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    I understand where you are coming from, @QBaller. I've recently taken up airsoft with my son, and it's ridiculously cheap compared to paintball. And yes, the airsoft scene is booming.

    That said, I'm not giving up paintball. The people you meet and friends you make keep me coming back.

    I have seen quite a number of Scottish players and teams attending regularly at CPPS, and I take my hat off to them - they must drive upwards of 500 miles there and back, then pay for a hotel, entry & paint on top of that. That's a big wedge of cash to spend on a day's play.
     
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  6. crumbla146 Well-Known Member

    crumbla146
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    Unfortunately I have done the same, Airsoft over Paintball. Although I must admit its boring playing the same airsoft field several times whilst a speedball fields actually give you something to learn for a bit. But even so, I could go airsofting 5 times before I hit the personnel cost of 1 tournament. Its all relative to the individual, but I found speedball fields that charged £30 - £90 for a single day for even training. The prices are all over the place.
     
  7. Garcelle More paint please

    Garcelle
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    I'm gonna try my best to type this up from a different perspective.

    Yes, I'm new to paintball so don't jump on me and rip me pieces to badly if I say something out of place.

    I've been paintballing under a year but I have been involved in another hobby for 18 years that has gone from boom to "so far, so good" to nearly complete collapse the later taking just over 3 years to happen. The hobby? Remote control helicopters.

    Perhaps the biggest difference between the two hobbys is the size. Even in its glory days the UK Heli scene could only pull 110-120 pilots at the biggest events. This year the largest event pulled just over 50 pilots, considering this was one of only 3 events now held in the UK you start to get an idea of the scale of the hobbys demise.

    Why has it happened?

    A few points I think. As others have mentioned, cost, helis arn't cheap. 3k in a single model is very common now. Events went from £20 including your supper to £80 for a chance to rough it in a field over the weekend. Some of the European competitions got rediculously expensive, my last several years ago tipped the scales at £400 for the entry fee (that's not a team, that's one pilot with nothing included and no money for the winner) add to this the rise in fuel and hotel costs and holy cow can you kiss some cash goodbye quickly. Needless to say the cost got rid of some. Anything that I think affected the competition scene was a stagnated winners circle, barring model failure you can name the top three pilots at any UK event before it even takes place. Yes there is the point that they are the best so they should win but after 8-10 years of not winning it can really turn a pilot off. I think more than fair few pilots have fallen foul of this over the years.

    As I've said to many an event organiser, I'm here to fly helis, not watch other people fly. Watching helis flying is like watching paint dry. And I'm much the same with paintball. I want to play, not watch others playing.

    Robbos comment at the start about it feeling like everyone's waiting for the first one to blink is exactly what happened. This year one club did a back to basics flyin. £20 per pilot to cover bogs and bins. Come to our club, camp all weekend, drink, fly, and have a fun time. It turned out to be the largest flyin this year. And was very well received by the pilots which only bodes well.

    By going back to basics they acceived something no one else has managed for 5 years. To get a full field the first event they held.

    Just leaving for home, I'll carryon once I have a proper computer to type on.
     
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  8. Robbo Owner of this website for my sins ....

    Robbo
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    Great post as far as I’m concerned .....
     
  9. Garcelle More paint please

    Garcelle
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    Back again at last,

    I'll start off with the helis again and things that really rub me up the wrong way about the hobby.

    Sponsorship, this is my number one pet hate about helis. I'm not talking about the honest guys that are taking a discount off the shop and really do help people out etc but those horrible plastic people that take the stuff for free and then sing the praises of it to high heaven only to be slagging it off next month when they have a better deal from someone else. RC helis are riddled with these guys. Some (very few) are genuinly honest and will tell you it's crap and they only use it cause it's free.

    In fighting, every hobby has it. Some call it politics but fighting is all it is. I've always tried to keep my nose clean in my hobbys. I'm fairly proud of the fact that I can attend any event and not feel alienated like some people or groups.

    Judges, we know biased refs exist in paintball and biased judges are rife in RC helis. Most of the big comps are rigged to some extent. It's only if the pilots boycot the judges decisions does it get reversed, and it has happened. In Holland a whole comp was brought screeching to a halt because the pilots and crowd didn't agree with the judges scores.

    Anyway, those are my personal views.

    Now as some of you read that above I'm pretty sure some of those points will start to look familiar to you.

    Here's a few things I've noticed about paintball.

    Cost, I'm not talking about the equipment. Markers cost what you want to pay. I'm talking about the perceived cost of paintball by rental players. I still go along to the odd rental day to run around and loose some paint and a common point I hear off people is the cost. They look at the cost of a rental day as a normal days paintball. I always try to inform them of the walk-on days done by clubs as a way of reducing cost and to show the real cost of paintball. £50 quid for a days walk-on isn't to bad.

    Closed off, once you've got a marker and done a few more rental days it seems very hard to get any more info about paintball. Teams, groups, sites etc seem to be a little closed off, at least to me it does (guys at warped have been great)

    Somewhere to practice, sounds daft I know. But I'm not on about playing other teams down the air ball park. I'm on about somewhere to go and shoot balls off, practicing snap shooting etc with a couple of team mates(been scratching my head about this one, need to talk to some people)

    Good stuff (it's not all bad let's not forget that)

    Paintball is probably the friendliest hobby I've ever had. Nothing like working a flank with group of people you've never met before to build friendships.

    The age range of paintballers really surprised me. Again, I've never had hobby where 14 through 60+ age range all play together. It seems that if you can walk and pick up a marker you can play paintball.

    I'm rambling, I'll re read and see if I can understand my own post.
     
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  10. Tom Tom

    Tom
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    Fantastic stuff - so many parallels

    Sponsorship
    One of the great mysteries
    The real value in sponsorship whether that is just a basic discount, some freebies, or full on support - it’s the relationship
    Anyone can get some form of ‘sponsorship’ but if it’s just saving money on a big team purchase at the start of the year or formation of a team then you may be able to find your way just as well waving a wallet as to signing up to an exclusive deal for the year
    Work out what you can offer to that company by playing under their logo and name, and what they can offer you. If it’s hard to work out what those are then just ask for the discount on buying x number of items for the team.
    When you have faith in the company / product and they have faith in you then even a little start today leads to a happier path in the future

    In fighting, every hobby has it. Some call it politics but fighting is all it is.
    Tell us about it! From petty little issues, to full on major situations
    Some is business rivalry - but any businessman with a brain works out when to compete as rivals when to co-operate as an industry
    Not everyone does, and not everyone on the sidelines who continues a brand rivalry whilst the real names behind them are trying to work together for the moment

    we know biased refs exist in Paintball
    Yes - but also sometimes the player doesn’t help, a perceived heated view in the moment might not match the reality - or honest mistakes can happen
    Or it could still be real bias

    perceived cost of paintball
    One of my bandwagons
    Get people a taster in the punter world, but also inform and get the knowledge out and available
    Not to kill off punter paintball which subsidizes the existence of sites so that we have a game to play, but make it sustainable so those who get bitten can find a way

    Closed off
    That’s what cracks it
    When I discovered there was more than punter ball it was a culture shock to hit walkons hard - but i wasn’t entirely scared off with enough to increase the adrenaline and also realize it was a bit of a leap with my Spyder clone. But at the same day also met people who loved the game and had scenario paintball opened up to me
    It’s the people who make this happen

    practice, sounds daft I know.

    Doesn’t sound daft at all. Stepping across to tournaments taught me one key lesson - in 10’years I had learned skills and then cast them aside, stepping on the sup air field instead of the woods showed I couldn’t get away with bad habits, and had to put back into practice skills i had already learned long before

    I see many players going out and their idea of training is to just play game after game on the new layout up against just whoever happens to be there. That possibly tests if an idea might or might not work - but only up against those players at that moment
    I went in with people who did play those ‘practice’ games, but also watch and analyze, then photograph and analyse, film and analyse
    Also repeat one mid game move, one skill, make training plans and go off for the week sliding in the Park, ducking in front of mirrors, gun fighting against traffic cones etc
    Analyze the skill - decide how it can be repeated
    When it comes to trigger time support your local independent, they don’t need the latest layout, you’re after practicing the key skills. That also puts the ‘expert’ player into the local field and in sight of the random punter player - a visible friendly presence willing to say hi and tell you there’s more to paintball out there
     
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