Any game that relies on the honor system to play is going to come with the possibility of cheaters.
Airsoft is one such game and it trusts its players to be honest about their movements in order for the match to continue on fairly. There are some essential cheating tactics you’ll want to avoid in the game of airsoft to give yourself and others a fair playing field.
So, what constitutes cheating in the game of airsoft?
The most obvious way that people cheat is ignoring the honor system and not calling their hits to let other players know they’ve been struck.
Other common forms of cheating include:
- Pretending to be hit just to avoid enemy fire;
- Trying to reenter the game before the allocated time out is up.
We’re going to look at the rules of engagement when it comes to airsoft so you can be a fair player and not get yourself kicked out of your local airsoft field.
With an understanding of what makes a cheater and how to handle it, you’ll be less inclined to try it for yourself and better equipped to call out those that do.
What Is Considered Cheating in Airsoft?
We’ve all come across those people in an airsoft match that seem to think they’re bulletproof, never admitting to any of their hits, but what actually constitutes cheating in a game of airsoft?
Airsoft is a game that relies on honesty and players will have to commit to the honor system if it’s ever going to work fairly.
The most prominent way that people cheat in airsoft is by not calling their hits.
This means that they’ve been struck with a pellet from another player and fail to call attention to it. By doing so, they are trying to stay unfairly in the game and not sit out for their penalty period, effectively moving around the match like some undead zombie shooter.
Finally, a cheater could be taking their allocated time out for a hit and decide to reenter the game early. Each match will have time limits put in place by a game referee or the field or facility you’re playing at, and you must honor them down to the very last second.
Secondly, you might find some players cheat by doing the total opposite and pretending that they have been shot.
Their reason for doing this is to stop drawing attention to themselves and not be a target of enemy fire if people think they’re out of the game.
Airsoft players who are found guilty of cheating can receive a number of punishments, and it’s up to the discretion of the facility and the other match participants.
Some places might even implement a lifetime ban on you every returning, so it’s simply not worth it for the extra advantage you think it might give.
What’s Not Considered Cheating But Is Still Frowned Upon in the Airsoft Community?
Just like any other sport, there are some things a player can do in airsoft that might not technically be cheating, but they are still frowned upon by the community.
To enable a fair game and ensure that other players want to continue actually versing you in a match, you need to be aware of the potentially taboo behaviors that aren’t appreciated.
- Additional gear: Standard gear like guns, helmets, and goggles are all accepted and encouraged in the game of airsoft, but using something like a riot shield is generally going to be frowned up.
- Lack of communication: Airsoft relies on communication between teammates and enemies, and failing to speak up isn’t going to get you very far in the game.
- Not knowing the rules: Whenever you play a match at a new field or facility that’s unknown to you, it’s your responsibility to learn their rules. Every facility will have its own rules and these can differ greatly so take some time to brush up on what’s allowed and what’s not to be a better player. Rules can include what weapons are permitted, time of matches, and special rules they’ve put in place for combat.
- Clothing choices: Airsoft clothing should be comfortable and protective, but some matches and parts of the world encourage people to dress up. While coming in costume might be okay in some places it can be discouraged in others, so avoid flashy and distracting outfits unless you’ve been given the go ahead.
Why Is It Paramount To Obey Rules of Engagement?
In a game where you want to let your inhibitions run free and get into the realistic feel of combat in airsoft without thinking, why is it so important to follow the rules?
As we mentioned earlier, airsoft is a game that works on the honor system and it means that for a match to run fairly and smoothly, everyone must be committed to adhering to that system.
Without obeying the rules of engagement, you’re effectively ruining the game for yourself and others. You’re cheating yourself out of learning any new skills because you refuse to play fairly and you’re not giving yourself a chance to get better and adapt to the mistakes you’ve made.
Not only does disobeying the rules hurt you, but others as well.
Airsoft is not just a game but a community, and it relies on everyone being on board with the rules of engagement and fair play. If everyone decided to make up their own rules or cheat and not admit to being hit, the game would go on forever with no real obvious winner.
Even if you’re tempted to cheat or not follow the rules, you usually won’t last very long. Other players will gladly call you out on your wrongdoing and any CQB facility or field you’re playing at will penalize you, and possibly give you a lifetime ban so you can never return.
To ensure the game is fair and enjoyable for everyone, you have to be committed to following the rules.
How Should You Deal With Cheaters in Airsoft?
There are going to be cheaters found in any sport or competition, and airsoft is obviously no different.
Because the game relies on the honesty of players you might even feel that cheating is a more common occurrence than you’d like to see, and are wondering what can be done about these cheaters if anything?
The first thing to remember with airsoft is that it’s hard to determine exactly what’s going on at all times when you’re in the middle of a match, so calling out a cheater with absolute certainty is tricky.
You might assume that you hit someone or that you saw a hit take place, but it didn’t actually happen at all. Other times, it could be that someone was hit but didn’t feel it due to their protective gear.
You want to be absolutely positive that someone is cheating before you call them out.
Some participants suggest trying to hit them again, this time in a more exposed part of the body that they’ll definitely feel, and if they still don’t call it then you can safely assume that they’re not playing fairly.
When you’re certain that someone is cheating or not obeying the rules of engagement, you can take one of three approaches.
- Ignore the player and have faith that a referee will no doubt see what’s happening for themselves.
- Call out to the player who was hit to let them know what happened and see how they respond.
- Get the attention of a referee and explain the circumstances.
Playing fair is an important concept during airsoft games and matches rely on everyone obeying the rules of engagement.
These are some other frequently asked questions about cheating and the rules that could help a first timer out.
Why Is It Easy to Cheat in Airsoft?
Aside from being a game that relies on everyone, to be honest for their own actions, being hit with an airsoft pellet doesn’t leave any obvious signs as it does in paintball and other combat simulation sports.
People might not even be aware they’ve been struck due to the heavy-duty feel of protective wear and it can be hard to identify on yourself.
What Restrictions on Guns Are There?
Depending on where you play, there may be restrictions in place on the guns you can use.
For example, it could be a requirement that only semi-automatic operation is allowed or a maximum velocity on a gun up to a certain FPS.
How Do I Find Somewhere to Play Airsoft?
If you’re new to the game and looking to take part in your first match, there are dedicated fields and QCBs in most states.
To ensure you follow the rules, take time to understand what each facility requires of its players and what their specific rules of engagement are.