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 What is airsoft?

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Sergeant Major

Number of posts : 353
Location : Auckland New Zealand
Registration date : 2008-12-26

PostSubject: What is airsoft?   Sun Mar 01, 2009 10:05 am

Airsoft is a modern combat sport or recreational hobby in which participants eliminate opponents by hitting each other with spherical non-metallic rounds launched from a compressed-air gun (or airsoft gun) powered by gas, manual spring-load, or electrically powered gearbox.
Airsoft participants organize meetings at dedicated airsoft battlefields often manipulated to provide walls, bunkers, trenches, buildings, and other similar man-made field enhancements to offer realism analogous to real war environments.
Airsoft games vary greatly in style and composition depending on loction, budget, and quantity of participants but often range from short-term skirmishes, organized scenarios, military simulations, or historical reenactments.
Combat situations on the battlefield often involve the use of common military tactics to achieve the objectives set in each game. Participants typically use varying types of non-lethal weaponry designed as replicas of real firearms, tactical gear, and accessories used by modern military and police organizations.

Airsoft has roots in late-1940s Japan, where firearms were difficult or impossible to obtain due to local laws; gun enthusiasts were seeking a legal alternative to use while enjoying their passion.[citation needed] Airsoft is still today most popular in several Asian regions, such as Japan, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, South Korea, and to a certain extent, the Philippines and Indonesia. The vast majority of airsoft guns, accessories, and after market upgrade parts are also manufactured in these countries.[citation needed]
There is also a growing interest in North America and Europe, especially in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Spain, Poland, Slovakia, Lithuania, Portugal, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Italy, Belgium (which is also visited by Dutch players, as the game is illegal in the Netherlands), and Denmark.[citation needed]
The first airsoft gun was made in the 1950's by Mattel as a children's toy named Shootin' Shells.
Today airsoft continues to be a sport widely associated alongside paintball. Advancements in manufacturing of replica airsoft guns have entirely evolved the sport and greatly deviated it from the all-plastic toy guns of the past.

quoted from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airsoft

Methods of play : please refer to Forum index, under General discussion : airsoft game types Very Happy

Honor system
Airsoft play employs an honor system whereby the players rely on each others' honesty to admit to being hit, because unlike paintballs, airsoft bbs do not leave visible marks on clothing.
The effect of a marking bb on the honor system is an addition to the game but in no way does this remove "honor" from the game as it still remains with the player who chooses whether or not to call his or her hits. Instead, it simply allows for verification when the need arises. For instance, depending on the muzzle velocity of the gun and distance from the shooter, the targeted player may not feel the impact, ie- very long ranges, the player is distracted, or running strenuously, or the pellet simply grazes an area of little to no sensitivity (shirt sleeve). Also, marshals or referees are important to fair game play regardless of ones choice in ammunition and honest admission of hits is still a game requirement for it is impractical to monitor what happens to every player on the playing field.
Respecting the honor system is also a requirement as players are discouraged from calling out hits on an opponent, as this can disrupt the game as a whole and may lead to a much larger issue between players and leaves little room for mistakes or unfelt impacts. Instead, to be fair, the players are expected to signal a marshal to judge how effectively they have hit their opponent. Simulated 'knife kills' can, at the venue's discretion, be recognized when a player touches or taps an unaware opponent. This prevents the player being forced to shoot him or her at point-blank range. Similarly, a 'courtesy kill' occurs when a player refrains from shooting an opponent at close range while enforcing that opponent's surrender. Players are usually prohibited from firing blindly when not able to see their target, especially around corners. Players are expected to avoid the shooting of an opponent who has already admitted to being hit. Harsh language and forceful physical contact between players is strongly discouraged and even penalized. Players are expected to resolve disputes politely and with proper decorum.
All airsoft players are required and expected to acknowledge being hit even if they are in doubt. Those who acknowledge being hit are generally expected to do the following: (1) shout "I'm hit" loudly, and (2) raise their hand or gun high and/or display a 'hit indicator' while walking back to the safe zone. MilSim oriented teams often encourage a dead or 'wounded' player to lay upon the ground as if dead, often employing medics for realism. Paintball style "speedball" games may include the aforementioned hit markers. A hit indicator can be either a bright-colored cloth during daytime or a blinker or mini-flashlight when in dim light or darkness. Dishonest players who fail to follow the rules or acknowledge their hits run the risk of being labeled and ostracized by the local airsoft community. From then on they will be observed more carefully by the marshals, or possibly even be banned from playing in the area.
Another form of cheating occurs when an active player gains an unfair advantage by pretending to be an already-hit player in order to avoid being shot. During night games, active players have been known to turn on their blinker lights to move casually and then to turn them off for combat. Cheating also takes place when an eliminated player reactivates himself within the same game without permission from a marshal. Players can also gain an unfair advantage by spontaneously joining a game (without authorization) some time long after the game has already started, thus being in fresh condition and in a position to surprise their opponents.
Due to the nature of the honor system, many feel airsoft requires high moral values and honesty to play well without the need for distinguishing hit marks or strict marshal's calls.

Eye and face protection
An unofficial standard governing safety guidelines and equipment has evolved in the airsoft community to protect the eyes and face. The minimum safe level of gear required to participate in most games includes a pair of impact-rated goggles or shooting glasses to protect participants' eyes. Traditional prescription glasses and sunglasses are not accepted, as they will not prevent serious injury. Goggles not designed specifically for use with airsoft or paintball guns may break or shatter upon being struck, causing eye damage.
For this reason, many airsoft player groups and fields require that eye protection fully seals the area around the eyes, and also meets or exceeds ANSI's Z87.1-2003 goggle standard for eye protection, namely, the ability to absorb 3 joules of impact energy without damage. Some players instead opt for paintball goggles, which are held to a higher impact rating standard, ASTM's F1776.[4]
According to ANSI publications as of June 2006, The ASTM is currently developing a more specific standard for airsoft, ASTM Z1535Z – Standard Specification for Eye Protective Devices for Airsoft Sports.[5]
The best overall protection is currently offered by paintball masks. These masks provide an additional level of protection by covering the face, teeth, and ears, greatly reducing the risk of injury to these body parts and the chipping of teeth. The lens is a solid piece of impact resistant plastic. Some airsoft masks are made with mesh screens, though these screens do not offer protection from cheaper or bio-degradable pellets that sometimes fragment upon impacting hard objects.[6] While masks offer superior protection, they can interfere with the use of scopes, so a player might have to settle for safety glasses.

quoted from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airsoft

* no goggles, no play!!!!
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