The Big Bullet has been running a series of teases / announcements regarding a new pump woodsball league that is in the works. While I begrudge no man (or woman) the brand of paintball they want to play--with the exception of the wackiest of the wacko fringe Rambo wannabes. (Oh, how I miss the days when the magazine would get those big bold misspelled letters written in crayon.) I'm wondering if there is a real market for tourney woodsball and from which branches of paintball they will come. Will they be mostly Old Skoolers? Or dissatisfied scenario guys or disenchanted competition ballers?
I'm also curious what this conception of tourney woodsball is gonna look like. There's already the SPPL out there which is more of a scenario lite hybrid and UWL which (at least sounds like) tends more toward the tourney end of the spectrum but I don't really know how it plays out. And now the National Pump League wants to go further back into the past. Kinda.
Another thing I wonder is if the lessons learned in the tourney game in recent years can be undone in a woodsball environment, particularly in a pump game. How will the skill set priorities change? Will they change? And then there are some of the "problems" that were endemic in the woods. Chief among them unbalanced (unfair) fields and the virtual impossibility of reffing as it's come to be understood and largely accepted in the competition realm.
What about current technology? Sure, they can return the game to low tech, low paint but there's lots of peripheral technology out there that could influence games. Stuff like walkie-talkie phones, companies that can provide yours or others GPS coordinates via your phone, tiny radios, Bluetooth, text messaging and who knows what all else.
Aight, enough with the pessimistic vibe. I guess my point is that you can't really go back again. That tourney paintball in the woods was always something less than the Golden Age of paintball, maybe. Or that cherished memories seldom, if ever, recall the refs or the price of paint or that lousy hole-riddled pallet nobody could live behind. Most of the best memories of paintballin' past revolve around moments and friends. Some of elation and others of frustration. If the NPL can recreate a few of those memories all of Paintball will be the better for it.