Who can play Airsoft? [Beginner’s Guide]
The beauty of Airsoft is the fact that it’s a sport for any age, any skill and ability levels. Throughout my airsoft experience so far, I have played with players that range from 10-year-old kids, role-play enthusiasts to actual war veterans. Yes, you read that right, I was once ambushed by a Falkland War veteran who was 64; what an experience!
Why do people play airsoft?
There is no one specific reason why people pick up airsoft; some couldn’t enlist for the army due to medical conditions, some came back from a conflict and airsoft is a way for them to deal with that, some are simply fascinated by the military, some want to play out their gaming fantasies, some enjoy the role-play aspect of it, some are there to just have a laugh with their mates.
It simply comes down to whatever individual reason a person might have to join. I personally joined because my mates kept banging on about how much fun it is and I always enjoyed First Person Shooter games and the competitive aspect of such games, hence why I decided to try Airsoft. Since then, I have fallen in love with it. Whatever your reason, just give it a go at least once and don’t worry about your skill or experience!
Any age requirements are often in place to protect the young ones; at the end of the day, Airsoft is a physical activity and has potential health and safety risks. However, there is no maximum age limit for the elderly; you can be 100-year-old and still be rocking your airsoft replica.
Most sites allow kids from between 12-14 to play with the supervision of adults. However, some sites even go as low as 10 year olds. It simply depends on the policies that each and individual site run and what they allow on the field; therefore, make sure to check these before you attend a game to avoid disappointment.
Overall, airsoft can be a great way to engage people with disabilities and give them an extra hobby on the weekends; it’s a great way to spend a Saturday and join a very positive community. I have previously played with autistic teenagers who absolutely loved the sport and an adult with cerebral palsy who simply took it slow and played in a sniper’s role which meant he could hide in one spot and shoot at people from a distance, yet he was still involved in the game and had the potential to play a crucial role! Finally, here’s an example of a player who’s mates have built a “tank” cover for his wheelchair, how epic is that!
Potentially you might be worried that it is absolutely necessary to be incredibly fit to play airsoft; especially after seeing certain instagram airsoft celebrities or youtube stars. That is not the reality, any fitness level is welcome and good enough to play airsoft. If you are fit enough to be sprinting between objectives and getting into cover quickly, good on you, but that is not necessary if you’re playing for fun.
Due to the nature of Airsoft, you can take it slow, which is in fact advisable in some situations and keep your distance from the enemies; especially if you are using a DMR or a sniper rᎥfle replica. This will allow you to take good, sneaky positions where you can lay and simply pick people out. This of course will require skill and experience, but do not worry about whether you are fit enough or not; just come along and give it a go!
We have jotted down some exercises that you could use to improve your airsoft game in our article here.
As mentioned previously, the community is made up of so many different players from different political, racial and economic backgrounds with a huge spectrum of reasons why they got into the sport in the first place; it is actually quite remarkable to see everyone getting along so well!
Airsoft – Connecting People
As you begin to play at a variety of sites, you will find that there are always a few welcoming local players who on most occasions will give you tips and hints about their site. You will most likely also meet the local tech who will be happy to help and repair and of your replicas in case anything goes wrong.
On top of that, the community outside of the actual game sites is also incredible. Many sites, shops and players create charity events and organise donations for war veterans and other chosen organised charities. As you can imagine, there’s a decent online airsoft presence. Anyone can join airsoft groups on facebook and other mediums such as Reddit or forums; there you can find anything from airsoft banter and helpful teaching advice. Here are a couple of groups that we think are worth mentioning.
UKAC, UKAC 2.0, USA Airsoft Community, Airsoft on Reddit, C3 Airsoft, Airsoft Sniper Forum are few of the ones we use.
Finally, there are festivals and events. National Airsoft Festival hosted in UK annually boasts around 3 – 4 thousand people every year! There is music, bbq, camping and airsoft games all throughout the weekend. It an amazing opportunity to simply have fun and get to know more airsoft fanatics. Otherwise, there are also tech events etc. such as:
Unfortunately there is a common misconception that airsoft is an incredibly expensive sport which puts many people off. Yes, Airsoft can be expensive if you do decide to upgrade replicas, get top of the range products and generally go all out. However, if you are only there for regular fun with your mates and you’re not interested in flashy gear or looking like an operative, do not despair!
Here’s one of our Beginner Guides which describes the initial costs of Airsoft and advice on how to start the sport on a budget.
Airsoft can actually be quite cheap, all you need is decent boots, camouflage clothing, plate carrier and one replica. Of course there will be extras such as batteries, mags and potentially accessories like a red dot. However, all in all, these shouldn’t amount to more than £300-£400. Once you make that initial investment, all you will have to worry about is paying game fees and purchasing more BBs which most likely cost you around £40 a month, depending on how often you play.
If you are wondering what replicas to purchases, here’s our Top 5 starter replicas for Airsoft article. Check it out!
One of the reasons why we started Airsoft Ranch is to make Airsoft more accessible and popularise on the internet. Therefore, this article was in fact very important to get the message across that Airsoft is for everyone! Regardless of who you are and where you come from, the airsoft community is welcoming and most often an incredibly positive experience. At the end of the day, our most popular rule for this sport is simply: don’t be a dick! On most occasions players adhere to that and allow for everyone to have a great time!
Peace out Ranchers!
p.s. check out @frisian.viking Instagram feed for more awesome airsoft photography such as the cover image in this article!