I played again last night and due to inadequate head protection, both natural and artificial, I got a bit of an owie.
This was due to friendly fire, which some may refer to as not-so-friendly fire. I didn't realize it was a team mate who nailed me, but as I'd accidentally shot my own team mates more than a couple of times throughout the night maybe it was less a case of friendly fire and more a case of street justice, airsoft-style. If so, I had it coming. No quarter given, none expected.
The guy who shot me was eliminated shortly afterward and joined me in the staging area where I was holding a bloody handkerchief to my head (head wounds bleed like a stuck pig). He sat down next to me and apologized and admitted it was him who shot me. Maybe it was an accident, maybe it wasn't. Maybe he saw me bleeding all over the place and felt guilty. Either way, I accepted his apology. It's all part of the game and if I'd had my head covered up it would have stung but not cut (it wasn't the first headshot I copped that night), so it's as much my fault as anyone else.
A few people on the other team seemed to have money to burn the way they were almost constantly shooting on full-auto, literally hosing down the barrier you were hiding behind. You could pop out and try to hit them with a brief burst but the constant rattle of bb's against the plyboard sounded painful, and discouraging (it made you unhappy ;)
Then there were the barrel-mounted ultra-bright LED flashlights, which seemed intended more to blind you, the target, than illuminate the area.
Given this unsportsmanlike behaviour, is it any surprise that I suspect a couple of them were also not calling themselves out when hit? And apparently I wasn't the only one thinking this.
One of the Officials mentioned to Mike and me when we sat out one game that they had a "Throw your team mate under the bus" policy, where if you ratted out a cheating player and the Refs caught him cheating you got a free Pass for another night. The only reason I can think of for why he'd mention this is that even he & the Refs suspected some players were cheating, they just hadn't been able to catch them.
On the way home the boys also said there were people not calling themselves out. That they'd shot people who just kept on playing. Mike (a 15-year airsoft veteran) said when that happens you just keep shooting at them until they do. I said I would have done that...if I hadn't been hit myself :P
Despite the possible cheaters and the head wound (which occurred during one of the last games of the night) I still had a great time, more importantly so did my son. His vest blocked a potential nut shot in one game, but in another he got hit multiple times in the upper arm and wound up with a bruise. Despite that, and the possible cheating, he still insisted he enjoyed himself and still wants to play again. I think I may have created a little monster there, too ;)