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Airsoft for Beginners: A comprehensive Beginner’s Guide

Seeing the geared out pros with their camo clothes, guns and gear worth thousands of dollars may seem overwhelming. In reality, with solid information you can get started fairly cheap and fairly quickly, so here’s everything you need to know about Airsoft for Beginners.

If you are just getting started, the first thing you need is not an airsoft gun or BBs, but a bit of basic knowledge.

Trust me, I have seen enough geared out new players running around cluessly getting a one-way respawn ticket within 5 minutes. So here is everything I can say about Airsoft for Beginners.

What is Airsoft?

It is a game similar to paintball, the only differences being

  • Airsoft guns use 6mm plastic BBs, much smaller than paintballs. These plastic palls leave no marks, and should not break on impact
  • It is a more realistic game, since some guns are 1:1 replicas of the real thing
  • Most rifles are powered by eletrically operated springs (AEG), while many pistols are CO2 operated just like Paintball

Just like any sport, Airsoft has rules and best practices. See our Airosft Rules and Recommendations article for the kind of rules you can expect at organized games.

Types of airsoft guns

All of the guns you will come across come in 3 different flavors:

  • Electric

AEGs (Automatic Electric Gun) are by far the most common. Most, if not all automatic guns are electric. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, from SMGs to Assault Rifle type models. A low-end rifle migh only set you back $40, while the best ones on the market can go for thousands of dollars.

  • Co2 / Gas

Co2 or Gas operated Airsoft Guns are mostly pistols and less commonly, rifles or shotguns. Pistols come in 2 variations, Blowback (GBB), or Non Blowback (NBB). This simply means that the Blowback version simulates some of the recoil you would experience on a real pistol. In contrast, Non Blowback pistols have no recoil and therefore feel a bit less realistic.

  • Spring

Spring guns, except for high-end sniper rifles, are usually the lowest tier Airsoft weapons. You could probably find some for as little as a few dollars, as the design is extremly simple. Before each shot, you need to pull back the bolt and cock the gun, and only then are you ready to fire again. Naturally, that pales in comparison to AEGs that fire hundreds of BBs per minute. However, Spring Airsoft Snipers are no joke. Snipers do not need to fire quickly, so a good spring powered weapon with optics does wonders at long ranges.

All in all, they can make for good beginner weapons to see if you like it before spending on a better gun.

Airsoft Game Modes and Game Scenarios

You will come across a few popular game modes in the Airsoft world. That being said, the options are basically limitless, and you can put your own personal twist on a game mode and customize it if you’re playing with just a few people.


How do airsoft games work?

Free for all:

A simple game mode in which there are multiple common spawn points. Each of the players chooses a spawning point, and as the name suggests, you are all on your own. It is everyone versus everyone, so you need to eliminate as many other players as you can. After you yourself are out, you “respawn” after a set amount of time and continue the action. Simple, fun, but not easy!

Team Deathmatch:

Similar to the previous Game Mode, but with teams instead of the lone wolf chaos. Since you will be working with a team, you need will need to watch their back, and hopefully they’ll do the same for you.

Capture the Flag:

Two teams, one flag in the middle. Your objective is to take the flag, and bring it back to base safely. If someone spots and engages you while carrying the flag, you must drop it as soon as you are hit. A teammate would then need to pick up where you left off (literally), and hopefully bring the flag back safely. Once a flag is in your spawnpoint, or other designated flag drop point, your team wins the round.

Now that some of the basics are out of the way, lets get to the actual Things to bring to an airsoft war.


What to bring to an airsoft game?

1. A primary Airsoft Gun

This, in most cases, is either an Assault rifle style gun, Sniper, SMG, or a bit less commonly a Shotgun.


Assault Rifle AEGs – like the AR 15 / M16, AK 47, M4 

Probably the best bet if you want balanced gameplay. $100-150 will get you a solid Airsoft gun, and will ensure you can engage in almost any encounter other than long-range duels with optic-mounted snipers.

Airsoft Station probably has what you are looking for, provided you live in the us.

SMGs – MP 5, MP 9, P 90, UMP 45

These little Airsoft guns are very similar to the Assault rifle family, since they are also electric and have high rates of fire. The key difference is that these ones are much shorter, thus making them a bit less accurate at long rage. They are however much easier to use in a small enviroment, so if you are going into a small field or arena, you can’t go wrong with one of them.

Sniper Rifles – L96, M24, M700

A solid spring Airsoft sniper could be your for $100-130, but you would almost certainly need to get a solid Co2 pistol as well. Why? Well, as long as you have an AEG with enough ammo and juice in its batteries, you are ready for anything. Meanwhile, with just a sniper and no sidearm, you would be doomed the moment someone sneaks up closer to your position,

Snipers are great for staying hidden and picking off opponents from the shadows, but I would personally not recommend one for very new players.

2. A really good Mask! 

Since your eyes are the most sensetive part of your body, getting a solid Full Face Mask is a no brainer. Sooner or later a BB will hit you spot on in the upper part of your mask, and that’s when you will be thankful you have it.

3. Some common sense Clothes

Not as important as the previous point, but playing in pants and any kind of jacket will result in less pain when you eventually get hit. Closed-toe shoes are obviously are also a must, especially if it is a Woodland game. BBs and your opponents are not the only hazard in the woods.


Those are the absolute basics, but we recommend checking out our full Airsoft Recommendations Article if you want to be 100% prepared for the game ahead. 

I hope you have found my article helpful, and as usual, keep an eye out on the Airsoft Section. New useful info is being added all the time.

Nick L.

Nick has been an outdoor enthusiast since he could walk. A passion which started with Camping and Hiking then led to an Airsoft and Woodball Phase. Nowadays, he does his best to share some of the things he has learned to help other Outdoor enthusiasts like himself!

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