Rules of engagement vary from site to site. For the sake of the safety and enjoyment of every person on the airsofting site, it’s important that you read and understand the rules of engagement. Here are some of the more common rules you’re likely to come across in the UK.
Age of Participation
It is illegal to sell airsoft guns to people under the age of 18, but you can possess one from as young as 10. Individual sites post age restrictions, so make sure you’re the right age before heading to your local site. Most sites opt for 18+ for solo play, with younger people requiring chaperones.
Most sites forbid contact altogether. No one wants to see a fistfight in the middle of a gunfight. Exceptions can be made for CQB skirmishes and knife kills. Knife kills usually involve a specific action, such as touching the knife to the shoulder to signify a silent kill.
Airsofting can get hectic, so it’s important to remember to call your hits. In the spirit of honourable play and fairness, call out when you’re hit – don’t expect your killer to call it. Be honest when you’re hit and call out. Then learn from your mistake so you don’t get shot next time!
Minimum Engagement Distances
Some sites exercise a policy of minimum engagement distances. This means that you must always keep a certain distance between you and your opponents. This ensures safety and prevents injury. Site policies vary from declaring both combatants dead to requiring the offending combatants to retreat and reengage. Again, the rules vary depending on the skirmish and site rules.
This is the most universal rule. When on-site, you treat your weapon as if it were the real thing. Aim the barrel down at all times when in safe zones and keep the safety on. If you pop a magazine, remember there’s still one in the chamber, like a real gun. Weapon safety on-site is the single most important rule of any airsoft site, so remember to use caution at all times.
Airsoft isn’t actual war, it’s an exercise in teamwork and tactics. There is no place for swearing, off colour speech/jokes, crass conversations, derogatory comments, trolling, or trash talking. Every person deserves to be treated with respect and not to be exposed to behaviours and talk they find offensive. So don’t be that person and don’t encourage those that act unsportsmanlike. Good clean conduct is vital to the health of the airsoft community.
Each site has its own rules for equipment, so before jumping to thinking about your loadout, see what your limitations are first. Common restrictions include FPS on firearms, use of specific kinds of firearms (semi-auto only is common), and use of accessories such as knives and grenades.
These are our top tips for the airsoft rules of engagement, but remember to check with your site first. The rules are there to make sure everyone has a good time in a safe and healthy environment, so remember to stick to them!