It did not take long for paintball strategy and tactics to evolve to the point of designated player positions that can make or break a game. While some positions seem relatively straightforward, they can become muddled as players are removed from the field or when more complicated woodsball games are played. For those that are ready to take their team to the next level, here is a closer look at the basic positions and what skills are needed for each.
The frontsman, also sometimes referred to as the “front,” is a speedball position that requires tenacity, speed, and the ability to completely trust in one’s teammates. When it comes to paintball strategy for speedball or tournament play, every single player must trust one another, but the fronts take the most aggressive stations and are typically blind to a vast majority of the field. They must rely on the skill and communication of their team to make hits and refrain from being slaughtered.
The mid player for tournaments is generally seen as the most difficult position for a variety of reasons stemming from paintball strategy. They need a versatile setup that will allow them to lay down suppressive fire for extended periods while still being fast enough to take on a front position if needed. They have to be exceptionally accurate, very athletic, and will be confident in calling out and relaying orders in the heat of a game.
The Back Player
Paintball strategy for the back player is a little more relaxed than the other two positions, but they must be prepared to shoot and yell the entire game. Most back players will never move past the first few bunkers unless the game is very lopsided. They “close down” lanes by laying down fire nonstop and must call out positions, hits, and movement at all times. They are often the last line of defense when a majority of the players are off the field.
Also referred to as specops paintball, woodsball, and scenario paintball, the teams are much more similar to military units. While many positions are optional, each team must have a strong-willed and knowledgeable leader that can organize games, teams, and squads. Tournament teams have captains as well, but the captain will often take over the role of just another player when the starting horn has been blown. Woodsball players will also need a good amount of riflemen that are a blend of offensive and defensive players with good overall shooting skills and athleticism. For larger fields and games, the role of sniper may come into play with more of a focus on concealed movement and communication than long range kills.
In the end, most players will find themselves playing any mix of positions in order to understand greater paintball strategy and tactics as a whole. It is also important for all players to understand that positions are not dictated by body size, gun style, or the ability to unload thousands of paintballs per match. Instead, these positions are more closely tied to the mindset of the player and their own unique approach to the game.