Many apologies to the sniper faithful for being a bit less sniper lately. I’ve been busy with my team doing milsim stuff and learning how to fix aeg’s. Interesting, and something different but a lot more time consuming than expected.
But, back to the day job and back to another Tuesday Thinkings. And after a few unsavoury incidents recently, and the clickbait crap still keeping pace, I offer my take on cheaters. I know the big YouTube channels can’t let go of them because it generates activity. Some bloggers like stirring up controversy too so it’s always a hot topic.
Maybe it just gets blown up too much. It’s disgusting seeing airsoft channels showing it constantly too, which casts airsoft in a bad light, stirs up arguments afterwards, and generally makes us all look like asshats. I know of one Youtuber who deliberately goes to sites looking for cheaters to feed their clickbaity videos.
I think the most common form of cheating of course is the non hit taking. Trying to pretend you’re too good to get shot. Or too lazy to go respawn. Or maybe, and most won’t admit it, the shooter isn’t as good as they think they are…
Non hit taking can be the fault of either party, or neither party. From the shooter, that bb eventually will lose energy and drop out of the sky, especially if you’re at the further end of the guns range. And a lot of players really do overestimate range; we’re not rangefinders either. It still looks like it’s heading to the target, but the drop off and depth perception isn’t easy to judge. Solution – learn to get closer. Be more decisive with your shots instead of trying to optimistically hit with suppressing fire or hope for a new distance record with your gun. If you’re going to take a shot, make sure it counts.
From the target, I’ve heard the old “it must have hit my plate carrier” excuse a thousand times. “I didn’t feel it”.
Of course they did. If it hit. Even through a foam filled plate carrier you definitely hear the sound of a bb smacking off it, if nothing else. Assuming the shooter is within range and makes a good hit. Everywhere else should be felt too. The one time I’ll give the target the benefit of doubt, is if they’re running, because movement can be enough of a distraction.
Sadly however, it’s more common to be deliberately ignored, especially by players with cameras on. They don’t want to look bad in front of all their “fans”. So too at competitive games that reward a winner, such as a recent event I attended that had a trophy for the winners and was dependant on scoring points; I watched my friend light up a bush containing six or seven enemy, at about 30 metres, with a box mag fed machine gun like the scene from Predator. Bear in mind it was December and there weren’t any leaves, after a bit of flinching this enemy squad lived and continued to their objective. Its probably more frustrating for the sniper who watches the flight of the bb down a zoomed optic. We know exactly when you’ve been hit (not like we’ve got much else going on around us other than watch the one bb we could fire).
“What do you do to cheaters?” I was asked a few days ago. I think the expected answer was to shoot them in the head or somewhere else delicate – easier said than done when you’ve got factors like wind, terrain, range, consistency of bb, trajectory (which isn’t perfectly flat), and shooter judgement. There are unfortunately some among us that thrive off such a cheap shot, deliberately trying to cause pain or at least get a reaction. Do I run up and start shouting at them? Do I complain to the site owner or marshal and try to get them thrown out of the game?
No. None of the above. I’m a sniper. I have way more patience than that; it comes with the role. All I do, is calmly take a second shot in case something was wrong with the first. And if they still don’t take it? Their honour, not mine.
Ultimately, I play to be the best I can be, for personal satisfaction. If the target doesn’t take either hit, then at least I know I did my job well in getting into a position to take the shot, and knowing I got the hit. In a sense, I made a good play. Getting vocal is just going to give my position away too, and I’d rather keep my head down and melt back into the surroundings without people discovering my location. More valuable to get your own game right, than to cause a scene flagging up others getting their game wrong.
The third option, that it could be the fault of neither, is simply things that we can’t control. Wind, maybe against the shot. Vegetation getting in the way and causing slight deflections. Defective bb’s – there’s always the odd one that flies differently in every mag. Even airflow over the terrain. That’s just something we have to play with and learn to play with due to the limits of airsoft guns. And it’s something a lot of players forget.
The thing I hate most, outside of ignoring hits, is dead men talking. Another example from a recent event – my team of about 7-8 took out an enemy position, a house, secured it and set up a perimeter. Nicely done. Covering a corner, I saw an enemy player sneaking up and took him out only a metre from our perimeter. He took it, and held his hand up. Then his other hand reached for his radio PTT. The guy then slowly walked around our perimeter, noting everyones position and overall strength of our team, and radioed it back to his own team rather than going back to respawn.
If you’re dead, you’re dead. Accept that you made a mistake, do the right thing and shut the hell up whilst you head back to respawn.
The problem I guess now is that we’ve become too competitive in airsoft and everyone is playing to “win”, rather than accept mistakes and learning from them, which is the best way to avoid it happening again. There are a growing number of players who are not interested in improving, simply finding new ways to break the rules so that they can feel like they’re good players.
For the rest of us, don’t waste energy on them. Concentrate on your own game. And don’t resort to cheap headshots to try and dish out retribution.
Aim for the hands. Because damn those fucking knuckle hits.