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The Basics  Shooting  Movement  Positions  Signaling  Commands  Flanking  Images 

The Basics

       Here are some of the basics for playing paintball, I hope you find them useful. First of all play by the rules, no one likes a cheater, especially around here as we pick on cheaters until they stop. Secondly know who your teammates are, as they won't be very pleased with you when you shoot them. Also get your bearings, so that you don't end up on the wrong side of a river when attempting to return a captured flag ect. Finally know how your marker works, because it will malfunction at the worst possible moment and you will want to be able to quickly correct the problem.


       Although you may not know it, shooting a paintball marker is not as simple as you may think. Before you start blazing at anything that moves you must remember a few key things. First of all you must have a source of O 2, N2, or CO2, and the cocking knob must be pulled back. Next you must check to make sure that the paintball is falling properly into the breach. Once that is done you can aim the gun and get ready to shoot. If you have a sighting device, then use it, but if not you must aim along the side of the barrel. Once aimed at a target you must pull the trigger to shoot. While pulling the trigger you should not be breathing, but don't hold your breath too long. At first you probably won't hit the target, this could be because of the natural inaccuracy of all paintball guns. Your aim won't be perfect even pro's miss. Like anything it takes practice. Also it is important to be able to use both hands to shoot with for instances like shooting around obstacles. For pictures of a basic diagram of how a paintball gun works check out the images section.


       In paintball movement is very important. If you don't move you don't stand a chance, but on the other hand the human eye tends to notice any movement, so it is important to learn how to move quietly and inconspicuously. First of all you should try to keep low to the ground. Also you should watch where you step to try to cut down on the amount of noise. It helps to move in areas of dense growth, because the more that is blocking there view of you, the better. When you do have to move through open area you should run from cover to cover. Whilt moving you should try to keep an eye on the actions, and your marker pointed that way to. There are only a couple more thing that I can tell you, experience will help you to determine how to move, and everyone has there own style.

Team Positions

Note: These positions are for a five man team, if you have a different amount then improvise.

       First you should assign position to all the people. You will need a pointman. The pointman will look forward and will be responsible for watching his 3 to 9 o'clock area, but he will be keeping low. They must be ahead of the rest of the squad and he has to look back to the team leader repeatedly for hand signals. The person given this position should be a veteran player, because they are responsible for leading the squad around and they are most likely to be the first shot at. For demonstration purposes under the lets call the pointman pm. Next is the team leader, who we will call tl. The team leader will also watch the 3 to 9 o'clock area, but he will stand a little higher than the pointman and he will be back a ways. The team leader must also keep an eye on all of his teammates. The team leader is responsible for giving all of the hand signals and controlling what the team does, therefore he should be the most experienced player in the unit. Next is the heavy gunner, which we will call hg. The heavy gunner is usually the person with the fastest trigger who can lay down the most paint in a hurry. They are responsible for covering the flank which the enemy is most likely to attack from. There also is the sniper, who we will denote sn. The sniper has to be the person with the most accurate shot. He is to cover the opposite flank as the heavy gunner, but during a confrontation he will take cover and shoot at whomever he has a good shot at. Finally there is the tail gunner, which will be called tg. The tail gunner is responsible for covering the rear, and due to the fact that in paintball you are often attacked from the rear he should be the second fastest trigger. Who ever is the tail gunner must be frequently watched by the team leader, as he must give hand signals as to what is going on back there.


       Communication in paintball is crucial to your success, and one of the best ways to communicate is by hand signals. The following are my suggestions for what to use for hand signals. The following signals may need to be repeated until your teammates catch on.

  1. Flank = Semi-circle with your arm on the side you want them to go.
  2. Enemy in Sight = Point two fingers at your eyes, then the enemy.
  3. Cover Me = Point hand at your chest in a gun like formation.
  4. Take Cover = Open hand swinging downward.
  5. I See = Point to your eyes then to the object.
  6. Listen = Cupped hand around your ear.
  7. Stop = Open flat hand held upward.
  8. Rally = Hand waving in a circle.
  9. Look = Point to the object.
  10. No = Thumbs down.
  11. Yes = Thumbs up.


       Sometimes it is necessary to use verbal commands instead of hand signals. In instances that require speed, not stealth, or when you can't see the person, you should use some verbal commands. Here are some examples.

  1. Observe = Watch what's going on, but don't shoot unless necessary.
  2. Shoot = Attack whichever enemies that you can see.
  3. Down = Drop to the ground immediately.
  4. Crawl = Crawl to your position.
  5. Dash = Dash for cover.


       Flanking is the most basic, yet one of the most useful tactics in paintball. The idea of flanking is to attack the enemy from as many angles as possible. To flank you need at least to people, one to draw the enemies attention from in front, and another to circle around to the side of the enemy and attack with an element of suprize. If you have more people you can send someone to the other side, or even have multiple people on each front.


How a paintball gun works.