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There are two types of attitudes with which rookies normally view their first paintball game, safe and slow or loose and fast. I have seen very few with the latter. Is that bad? Yes, but no. First everyone must understand that for the most part that each players' style is an extention of their personality and instinct. That said, I've never witnessed anyone jumping into a pool not knowing whether or not they can swim. What this means is that although a person does not know how to swim it doesn't mean they can't become a great swimmer. The advantages of playing aggressive are that your learning curve is steep, you are actually playing and you may shoot someone. This seems to be good until you look at a glaring disadvantage, getting shot early in a game. Why is this such a bad thing, mainly because you don't learn anything on the sidelines, time spent in the bus is time lost.
Looking at the flipside it would seem that conservative play would be the way to go, not nessecerally. First of all do not confuse conservative play with snipering, being a sniper is a skill. Conservative play has the advantage of allowing a player to stay in a game for long periods of time, but what's the point if you don't move or shoot. My personal feeling is that the best way for a player to learn is to follow better players, that's how I learned. These attitudes do manifest theselves into styles as a players' skill developes. Sniperism, Kamikaze, Floating, Run n' Gun, Ambush, General Lee, Treetop, Lastman, Dynamic Duo, Lone Wolf and Terminator, these are all distinct syles which people grow into although most do not prescribe strictly to one. Whatever the style of play is, it is easier to learn from a veteran, than learning on your own.
The player who prefers slow stealth to clumsy running. Prefers the close accurate position rather than the forced long shot. Good at causing mayhem at crucial points of the game. Can play an offensive positions but more suited to just behind the offensive front, picking off enemies trying to cross over. Rarely shot but usually low on kills.
The opposite of the sniper. Prefers to catch enemy off guard with fast charging tactics. Has the potential to create high enemy losses. Hides only when necessary. Very useful playing style although a player with this style will be shot early and often and sometimes throw a teams' timing off.
A skill where the combatant moves from one battle area to the next trying to aid comrades under severe duress. This player provides immediate firepower by using kamikaze and run n'gun tactics. Helps push team ahead but creates holes in skirmish lines when he/she leaves one area to help in another.
Somewhat of a constituent to floating, in that the thought process is very similar. The idea is basically to shoot and move in order to obtain increasingly better position in large chunks and to move without totally giving up stealth. Hard to do when confronted with multiple enemies who know your position but a very effective way to kill enemies and capture flag.
This may seem very similar to snipering but it's really not. The player in this instance seems to enjoy the thrill of waiting until the last possible moment in order to startle the opponent and the applying paint in generous proportion. Not the most effective strategy for persons who are going for the flag, instead this would prove to be better for those who are defending their own flag. This player's casualty rate is dependent upon the number of flies who fall into his/her trap, much, in this case, like the sniper.
General Lee is a field commander he wants his troops to move efficiently. The player who exhibits this style attempts to create structured assaults on the opposition. Dislikes the Kamikaze, Lonewolf and Terminator styles due to the lack of team work. General Lee can over analyze a situation until its too late. Never really hurts the team though.
Treetop: Always takes the high ground, whether in a forest-fort or in a combat-tower he like the added height advantage. Great at holding a position. Does not mind letting the paint fly. Keeps enemy at bay. Can be rendered useless by crafty veteran players and have the tendency to have problems on the ground.
The job or style few have the patience for. Requires that the player becomes the last line of defense. This player must be accurate, stealthy and patient in order to defend the flag. Has to be able to hold out until the cavalry arrives or until the game ends. The player who exemplifies this style is very rare. Players are usually stuck in this position by veterans due to lack of skill this is a very important position though. Does not have to inflict large amounts of casualties in order to be effective.
The Batman and Robin of the group, normally friends off the field. These players play so much together that they begin to rely on one another heavily. Great team work. Overall usually above average players. Able to hold positions and advance. Good offensive ability. They tend to lose it when companion is taken out. Strength in numbers, not too many weaknesses.
You know the type, one man armies at their best. Usually a very good overall player. Can hold positions. Good for offensive maneuvers. Can throw the paint accurately. May have a hard time working with the rest of the group but not always true. This style can encompass sniping and kamikaze and various others. Really a very strong player.
This style of play goes beyond any other style, when it comes to sheer attitude. No matter how good or bad this player is he refuses to hide behind bunkers and normally runs out of paint half way through the game. The advantage of this style, if the player has enough paint, is that he can cover an entire front by himself. The disadvantage is usually being shot early.