Wondering what Airsoft is?
Want to know all about airsoft?
Why not take a look at our Airsoft FAQ
- What is Airsoft
- What do I need to play
- What is UKARA
- What is a RIF
- What is Two-Tone
- How old do you have to be to play airsoft
- How fit do I have to be
- How much does it cost
- When can I play airsoft
- How long do games last
- What ammunition do you use
- Can I come along alone or do I need a team
- Doest it hurt
1 Q: WHAT IS AIRSOFT?
A: Airsoft is a military / film / game simulation game, that uses replica imitation firearms which fire 6mm plastic bio-degradable BBs (Ball Bearings) at an opposing team or player.
2 Q: WHAT DO I NEED TO PLAY?
A: All you need to play Airsoft is;
- Appropriate clothes. This is really down to personal choice and can range from full military or film load outs, to comfortable clothes that are worn underneath camouflage overalls or uniforms, to a good thick pair of jeans and a T-shirt. We dont tell you what you can or cant wear but most people opt for a basic set of camouflage gear. Its also worth bearing in mind that for open games we don.t restrict clothing some special events may have minimum kit requirements so its always worth checking. Most sites will be able to supply a few basic bits of clothing for you as part of the hire package if its your first time.
- Eye / face protection. Airsoft approved eye protection is essential at all sites and comes either as a full face mask (We recommended full face to ALL players but it is mandatory for anyone under 18 and preferred for beginners – we have them available for hire / as part of the hire package) or wrap around glasses with toughened lenses.
- Good sturdy footwear is also recommended, army boots or the equivalent should be worn to support your ankles across the rugged a varied terrain at most Airsoft sites. Trainers don’t give enough support to the foot or ankle and tend to have less grip on muddy or uneven ground
- A gun is also handy to have in a fire fight and can be hired on the day or can be personally purchased from recommended Airsoft suppliers. The variety of available weapons is vast and so you can select the weapon that best suits your requirements. If its available as a real gun there is probably an Airsoft version out there. From uzis to mini guns, the choice is yours! There are limitations to purchasing and owning Airsoft weapons that are regulated through the UKARA scheme. (see below)
3 Q: WHAT IS UKARA?
A: UKARA is a group of Airsoft retailers who formed an association to protect their businesses and enable the sale of Realistic Imitation Firearms (RiF's), to the newly restricted recognised and approved customers resulting from the Violent Crime Reduction Act (VCRA). Under the new act it is the responsibility of the seller to verify that the purchaser is approved, and they may be prosecuted if they fail to do this with due diligence.
To qualify for UKARA (or similar defence) a person must be a regular skirmisher (i.e. skirmish three or more times in no less than two months, and typically at one site) in order to be registered the Airsoft site they register/skirmish at must hold public Public Liability Insurance. Once a skirmisher is registered, they receive a membership number and must produce this before buying or trading Airsoft firearms from these retailers, although this is not a legal requirement.
There are several other schemes other than UKARA running in the UK, UKARA is simply the most widely used and recognised.
4 Q: What is a R.I.F?
A: RIF stands for Realistic Imitation Firearm. A RIF is any airsoft gun or item that looks exactly like its real world and is painted in realistic colours. To Purchase a RIF you must be over 18 years of age and have a valid defence within the law which can be verified by your retailer.
5 Q: What is Two-Tone
A: Two-tone variants of the Airsoft Guns are also available in bright red, bright orange, bright yellow, bright blue, bright green, bright pink, and bright purple. These colour variants allow for the purchase of an Airsoft Gun in the UK from an Airsoft distributor without the need to be registered. To purchase a Airsoft gun even if it is a two-tone you must be over 18 years of age it is illegal to sell an Airsoft gun to anyone under 18.
6 Q: HOW OLD DO YOU HAVE TO BE TO PLAY AIRSOFT?
A: Gunman Airsoft Midlands allows players from 11 and above to join in our games (there us no maximum age limit).
Players aged 11 - 14 years should have a parent of guardian on site with them preferably also taking part in the game
Players aged 14 - 16 years should preferably have a parent or guardian on site with them or no further than a 10 minute drive away from site with contact details left with the game team.
Players 16 - 18 require written parental or guardian consent to participate.
All first time players must sign a waiver on their first visit with us - if the player is under 18 then this must be signed on their behalf by their parent or guardian
7 Q: HOW FIT DO YOU HAVE TO BE?
A: A certain level of fitness is helpful to partake in a day of Airsoft. There is plenty of running, crawling, ducking, diving, shouting, climbing, shooting, throwing and hiding to be done so to get the most out of it( and not be too exhausted after 5 minutes) higher fitness levels are better.
However we have a wide range of players taking part in the game with an even wider range of abilities, levels of fitness and needs. We try to ensure that all players no mater their physical limitations have as much fun as possible and we always advise payers to get as involved as they feel physically able to.
8 Q: HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
A: Airsoft can be an inexpensive hobby, especially when compared to its closest alternative; Paintball. Game Fees at Gunman Airsoft Midlands are only £27 walk-on for those who have all their own gear and who pre-book (see our prices page for detail). If you catch the Airsoft bug (which you will after visiting with us!) you can look to purchasing your own gun and camo gear, so a whole days fighting can be less than a night out on the beers.
The cost of a decent gun varies drastically, and tends to equate to the cheaper the product the worse it is. Always purchase from authorised sellers and get some advice on what to buy depending on your own individual style of play, or the type of Airsoft site you go to regularly. For example you don't want a great long barrelled M16 if your going to be doing lots of CQB (Close Quarter Battle) gaming. But a mid length carbine with a folding stock could be more suitable.
A good quality rifle of this kind from a reputable manufacturer ranges from around £150 to £450 so you want to choose the right one! Read up on maintenance, battery life, ammo capacity, build quality, authenticity and reliability on your weapon of choice.
9 Q: WHEN CAN I PLAY AIRSOFT?
A: Airsoft is not a seasonal game and some of the best games can take place in torrential rain or even snow, so its an all year round hobby. Which site you play at will dictate how often games run and on what days. Gunman Airsoft midlands Run games (normally) on the first and last weekends of the month - we also run games Midweek during half term breaks with special events taking place during the summer holidays. At Grange Live Gaming our indoor CQB site they run games Wednesday evenings, Sundays and the last Friday of every month.
10 Q: HOW LONG DO GAMES LAST?
A: This all depends on the scenario set out for the game. Some can last half an hour some can last all day or even whole weekends.
11 Q: WHAT AMMUNITION DO YOU USE?
A: We ask all players to either purchase the site BBs or make sure you bring a high quality minimum weight 0.2g precision grade polished BB with you to all our games.
12 Q: CAN I COME ALONE TO A GAME, OR DO I NEED TO BE IN A TEAM?
A: We welcome anyone to Gunman Midlands; new blood or old veteran. Individuals or teams. You will always find friendly staff and trusty comrades in arms on our sites, and we fully encourage first timers along to get an experience of the most fun you can have with a gun without being arrested!
13 Q: DOES IT HURT?!
A: Not as much as paintball! It does sting when you get shot, especially on exposed skin or delicate areas, but you can equally get hit and not even feel it so its not too extreme.
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