Oh boy. I can already feel the controversy in the air and the disapproving comments rolling in. Everyone relax for a couple seconds. There is no arguing that airsoft is a quickly growing hobby. We are not saying it is better than paintball. I myself am a paintball player and would much prefer playing paintball instead of airsoft. That being said I still think airsoft is a great thing and has much to offer that you will also find in paintball and even some things you will not.
One of the biggest reasons airsoft is becoming so popular is the “cool factor”. The equipment is much more realistic than paintball gear. Since the guns shoot a much smaller projectile they can be designed almost at a 1:1 scale. Simply put they look and feel like the real thing. We have had real firearm collectors purchase airsoft guns because they were modeled after something they could not legally own. Generally speaking most people who play airsoft also like to play more “tactically” than most paintball players. Of course you get the occasionally player who thinks he is Rambo and runs up the entire field but the majority of players stay calm and cool and treat it much more seriously.
Im sure someone is going to disagree with me on this one but……..airsoft does not hurt nearly as much as paintball. Sure at close range or on bare (or minimally protected) skin it does hurt a little the majority of shots aren’t too bad. You can get shot up all day and still want to come back again the following week. In paintball getting shot a few too many times can determine whether or not a player comes back again. Since there is less of a risk of injury players have more gear options. You do not need to wear full face mask (although it is HIGHLY recommended) which many players like. This allows for easier use of optics and headgear. It is also much more comfortable. Personally, I would be wearing a full mask since I prefer to keep all my teeth but everyone has their own opinion.
Airsoft is cleaner. Just getting right to the point on this one. Since there is no paint splatter to clean up off your gear everything stays looking fresh for much longer. Because face it, it is all about looking cool. Airsoft can also be played in more places as the gear makes much less noise and the BB’s obviously do not leave as much of a mess.
Just about any sport out there is expensive to both get into as well as play every weekend. Luckily airsoft is fairly cheap compared to paintball. The average gun is roughly the same price ranging from $200-500 with a few going much higher of course. But besides a battery and charger that is it. no HPA tank, no electric hopper, no expensive goggle system. A decent pair of goggles and you are ready to go. Of course you can spend $1000 on other gear and accessories but you dont HAVE to. The biggest money saver is the ammo. You can purchase 5000 top grade airsoft bb’s for $25. This is a much more affordable compared to the ~700 paintballs or 25 first strike rounds this will get you.
Exercise. I know, that is a dirty word many of you do not want to hear. The truth is though everyone needs to get more exercise and airsoft is great way to do it. It is a fantastic way to work on your cardio and get that heart pumping. Much more exciting than running on a treadmill (and probably less expensive). High adrenaline activities such as airsoft are proven to be effective and keep your body – and mind – sharp as well.
At the end of the day paintball and airsoft are both great activities. Each have their own pros and cons and I suggest that everyone gets out and gives both a try. Who doesnt want another excuse to shoot at their buddies?