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Starting a Scenario Paintball Team

OK so you got a taste of scenario ball and now you are thinking about starting a team -- good for you. First lets get something team straight. Tournament paintball is about winning - and you need to think about teammates who can help you win. Scenario paintball is about fun - when you recruit, think of who is likeable, easy going, fun loving and plays with honor. A bad sport or player with a bad attitude makes your whole team look bad - especially when you get uniforms. Think about this when you recruit.

The teams that last are always focused on having fun. And yes, its that simple. Now what..

STARTING A TEAM : TEAM NAME : You need a name - and preferable something cool and unique. Way back when you could register with Medallion - but these days a good place to go look is http://www.scenarioball.com - register with them and then cruise their team names database and register your team name with them. Its free and easy.

STARTING A TEAM : OFFICERS : Many teams use "Captain" some use several "Co-Captains" - Here is a bit of advice: A captain may not be able to make all events, and it is usually good to attend what the team wants to attend. This means you need Co-Captains.

STARTING A TEAM : Patches / Uniforms / Jerseys / Banners : It is nice to look similar and to be able to spot each other on the field. Think about it, figure out what you want to look like and then do it.

QUESTION : What would be the best thing to get to start off to show that we are a team?

MY ANSWER: On the cheap and easy:

T-SHIRTS : I would get some matching T-Shirts with the team name silk screened on it. 2 shirts per player recommended. Add matching BDU pants and that should work for the field.

CAMO : Stepping it up a notch would be matching tops and bottoms

DEW RAGS : Also take a look at matching dew-rags. -- wholesaleforeveryone --these are available by the dozen and less than $2/ea.


STARTING A TEAM : TEAM FORUM : Having a team forum is killer - and greatly helps in the exchange of ideas. I highly recommend PM'ing PBJUNKIE on PBJUNKIE.COM and ask Rich for a free private team forum.  This is far easier than maintaining a website

STARTING A TEAM : COMMUNICATIONS : Being able to regroup and coordinate on the field is critical - technically this is what defines a team. Don't assume you will always be together - infact, assume the opposite. I would stick with the widely available FRS/GRMS radios you can find just about everywhere. Best Buy carries a good variety and lots of accessories. I would get the most powerful Motorola sets I could afford.

NOTE: The refs for an event will likely be using FMS/GRMS radios, as will most teams there.

STARTING A TEAM : TEAM SCHEDULE : Set up a schedule and start planning. There are tons of games in the South East.

Make a list of all that you would like to hit and then get the team together and vote on what ya'll want to do. Your team forum can help with "votes and polls" - allowing all to comment. Or the captain can just make his opinion policy - but the voting thing works well.

Anyway, look at the events you want to hit and then work towards them. Work in some practices - and don't forget to have fun.


SCRIMMAGES: Around TriggerTyme there are a few teams that practice "scenario" style - These include Worrpath, Knightfall, Team CF, SC Riot, ect.

Practices once every few weeks at TriggerTyme -- here are a few drills we use to hone our members into a team.

Rec Ball Drills

Getting teammates together to practice is pretty tough - especially if you want to practice regularly - but weekend recball/woodsball opportunites happen frequently. This "any given Saturday" drills can be run during any game presented.

KILL TEAM : The two man team described in the 1 and 2 man tactics article that are fluent in the art of the BAIT and TRAP can dance and take out numbers many times their size. Search and destroy and jail break are ideal for stressing this team. Get your teammates that are at recball and offer to go 2 on 8, 4 on 20 etc. set up in pairs with a fall back plan - and work together and fall back together using the Tree Dance, J-Hook, Bait and Trap, Castle and Sleeper tactics. Always stay close to your WINGMAN when running this drill. Winning the game is not important. Building the trust and communications skills with your WINGMAN is.

For two flag recball games, send everyone one way and you and your wingman stay together and work together - drilling on becoming an effective KILL TEAM. Flanking together, insane up the middle charges together, what ever. Just focus on knowing exactly what your wingman is doing at all times and playing off that knowledge to advantage.

DRILL : Secure and hold.

Scenarios almost always include "secure and hold" missions. Usually for 20 minutes - or at a specific time. Its great to think the objective will be unoccupied when you get there, or that you will have enough troops to withstand any attacks - but drilling the opposite will come in handy.

Drill Duration : 8 minutes.
Common starting point.
Red team spawns at starting point.

Game start - the blue team gets a 1 minute head start - secure and hold at 8 minutes from drill start.

Red team: secure and hold at 8 minutes from drill start.

The red team should be 2 to 3 times the size of the blue.

Sniper Variation: one red player gets a 1 minute head start. One minute later the blue team inserts. 1 minute laker the rest of the read team inserts.

Spy Variation: one extra blue player may play trailer - leaving late & trailing but not engaging the red team. His mission is to report their strength and direction and anything they find - avoiding being spotted.

Assassin Variation: one extra blue player may play trailer - leaving late & trailing with the mission to assassinate one specific red player.

Member on both sides should focus on working in KILL TEAMS and as a team. Flanks may be pressed in moderation - keeping in mind in a real scenario, wandering far from your squad hurts the squad. This isn't recball where the number of bad guys is predictable, and fairly well know. Assume more bad guys than there are against you to make this drill work.

Red Team squad leader should focus on keeping his troops together, massing and moving as a team, flanking with caution - and keeping less experienced players in the center of the force and moving.

Sample Drill for TriggerTyme - Stage out of the remote staging area (road) and use each of the following as objectives : No Mans, Fuel Depot, Pizza Hut, Monolyth, Jeep, Ft Apache.

DRILL : Sweep and Clear

In scenarios there are always bad guys - and in the least expected places. This little drill focused on two things:

  • For the BLUE TEAM - setting up and executing a coordinated ambush against a larger force.
  • For the RED TEAM - moving to an objective as a team and dealing with stragglers and snipers.

Drill Duration : 10 minutes.
Common starting point.
No spawn.

Game start - the blue team gets a 2 minute head start - so set up an ambush between 2 points in the woods near a road or trail (no buildings)

Red teams mission is to stay together near the road, move to the objective at the end. Secure the objective and then sweep the area.

Spy Variation: one extra blue player may play trailer - leaving late & trailing but not engaging the red team. His mission is to report their strength and direction and anything they find - avoiding being spotted.

Assassin Variation: one extra blue player may play trailer - leaving late & trailing with the mission to assassinate one specific red player.

Member on both sides should focus on working in KILL TEAMS and as a team. Flanks may be pressed in moderation - keeping in mind in a real scenario, wandering far from your squad hurts the squad. This isn't recball where the number of bad guys is predictable, and fairly well know. Assume more bad guys than there are against you to make this drill work.

Red Team squad leader should focus on keeping his troops together, massing and moving as a team flanking with caution - and keeping less experienced players in the center of the force and moving.

Sample Drill for TriggerTyme - Stage out of the remote staging area (road) and use Ho Chi Mihn Trail - between Ft Apache and Sherwood, or the road to the Jeep.


DRILL : Sweep AO

Holding a large area is a difficult matter. Clearing the AO of bad guys is no pic-nic either. Keeping it clear is likewise tough. This drill focuses on all the above - in a meat grinder of an exercise.

Drill Duration : 10 minutes.
Separate starting points
Endless Spawn

Game start - the blue team gets a 1 minute head start - to secure the AO. The must try to have at least 1 man in each objective.

Red team's mission is to work together and systematically sweep the area clear and secure each objective and then keep the AO secure..

Member on both sides should focus on communications and teamwork


Sample Drill for TriggerTyme - The blue team stages out of the staging area near the grave yard (RS2) . The red team stages out of the one on the road.

The objectives are Fort Apache, The Fuel Depot and The Jeep.



Stuff to bring with you -- 6.24.2005 --
When planning your scenario load you should consider the following:
On your person..
  • A good pair of light boots and wool socks - you will be doing some serious walking. Plan on getting your feet wet - and the rest of you for that matter.
  • A good digital watch w/ easy to use stop watch. Sync w/ official time and learn the mission assignment schedule.
  • a radio to stay in touch - consider a pouch or some device to keep it handy and safe
  • a reliable marker that is proven in battle
  • a quality paintball mask that you like and is comfortable
  • wool socks to wick water away from wet feet.
  • water : (a 12oz bottle of water in a pod holders is smaller than a camel pack and usually just enough for a 2 hour LRP.)
  • field map
  • compass - not as useful in the day, but come night can be a real asset.
  • paintballs - consider loading toilet paper at top to minimize rattle. And a way to haul them quietly.
  • a pack of gum to keep from getting cotton mouth.
  • a spare battery for those who carry radios.
  • a bandana for splatter on goggles.
  • at night - consider a small flash night.
At staging area
  • EZUP & TEAM BANNER & TABLE: to put your teams staging stuff under and on.
  • COOLER w/ ICE : for drinks and snacks and to sit on.
  • CAMP CHAIRS :- to sit on.
  • PAINT : paintballs - out of the sun and weather -- softside cooler?
  • small pump spray bottle: w/ 1/2 water and 1/2 iso. alcohol for googles, barrels, etc.
  • push dowel for barrel cleaning.
  • hand towels.
  • roll soft paper towels.
  • roll soft toilet paper.
  • BATTERIES : spare batteries for everything
  • a few bananas - energy bars - red bull - gum
  • ibuprophen bottle
  • Trash Bags - police your own area
At camp area
  • A lantern -- its gonna get dark
  • Tarps and rope : to make a nice dry shady spot to sit and relax.
  • Cooler or storage box for dry goods - to keep stuff out of weather and out of site.
  • Spare boots and clothes -- Change your boots and socks at night and again the next day.
  • a spare marker - that is chronoed and ready to go. Keep it locked away until needed.
  • Tent / sleeping bag / pillow / eating utensils / food / lots of liquids
  • Trash Bags - police your own area
  • Deodorant - Toothbrush - Toothpaste - Bug Spray
  • If you are grilling out - some one needs to bring a grill - matches.
  • A spare mask -- Your main mask will likely get all sweaty - its nice to have a spare.


:: Scenario Training 101 : Mission Faqs --  6.24.2005 --

Scenario games usually are won by the army which can accomplish the most missions. Eliminations are usually not worth anything. (Generals may be an exception).

Missions cards are issued to opposing generals usually every 20, 30 or 40 minutes and frequently synchronized with each other.

These cards are read by the General (or XO) and then he will call on a squad leader to execute the mission. The squad leader reads the card at the base and then forms up his squad, picks up the necessary walk-ons and stragglers he deems necessary and then moves to accomplish the mission.

These missions usually have a destination and a time component.

Typical mission types follow:

  • Hold Objective Location for 20 minutes.
  • Hold Objective Location for 20 minutes and sweep area for intelligence and return intelligence items to base.
  • Hold Objective Location at time 2:30pm.
  • Sweep coordinates X/Y looking for intelligence and act on intelligence.
  • Patrol road from X to Y for 20 minutes.
  • Ambush - Set up an ambush in area between X and Y and wait until 2:30 (Usually goes with Patrol).
  • Set up Listening Posts (Supply Chain) at X, Y, Z and hold all at time 2:30pm.
  • Blow up Objective Location with satchel charge before 2:30pm.
  • Meet person X at Objective Location and hold at 2:30 for info.
  • Escort person from A to B and hold B until 2:30pm.
  • Take route A, B, C, D and hold each for X minutes.
  • Assault Objective Location for 20 minutes.
  • Photo Recon : With camera take X photographs of location objective and return to base. Points awarded for quality of pictures.
  • Sniper Mission : Send sniper team to Objective Location and shoot target X before time.

Enemy Missions - A hint

Since the event producers like action, missions are frequently synchronized to conflict - meaning you and your enemy are issued the same mission - or very similar - such that a conflict will certainly to occur. Another variation is where the two armies have side by side mission objectives or mission objectives where your paths will cross.



Moving as a squad --  6.24.2005 --

If you are never at your base, you may never get a mission card or a mission assigned to your team. Go there and let the XO know you are a mission team and ready to go! Also let him know what Channel you are on.

And If he thinks your team capable, he will issue your team a mission card. If he issues it to another team, you may want to take your team along for fire support to protect the mission team. You are relatively expendable in this case.

But NOW you have your mission card and know what you need to do - now what?

Rally your troops - get on the radio and let your team know you have a mission and look around for available stragglers you may need. Brief every one on your mission objective and to be quiet.

Squad sized vary from 1 man to 24 men but around 8 is typical. You would be amazed at the percentage of one man missions accomplished.

Your goal should be to get there first and quietly - Mission objectives usually have a piece of cover, bunker, or building associated with them. If you can get there first, you deny the enemy the cover and you can use the cover to buy time to reinforce the position. This means your squad needs to move with a purpose. Veteran scenario teams frequently use a forward team and a rear team, moving the forward team to the objective very quickly and letting the rear team reinforce (with mission card in tow).

Keep your squad together - try to avoid conflict - go around enemy activity in the way and keep moving. As a squad leader it stinks to leave base with 10 and show up with 2 and not know where your squad went. Lead your squad and keep them moving together and on purpose. If you have a lot of pick-up players, put your vets and teammates on the edges to help keep the squad together and moving.

IMPORTANT : If you get eliminated, you may pass the mission card to a squad member to carry on.

When moving, the common squad formations are the the horde, the single file with point man, and the inverted wedge. The squad leader and or mission card holder should not be on point. They should ride in the pocket or middle if possible. The guy in the back is called " security" and should be responsible for looking backwards and listening for anyone moving up behind you or trailing the squad.

Veteran teams use the inverted wedge or a very skilled point man way out front. Hordes grouped together are a sign of poor leadership and they make for a tasty ambush target.

The squad should have a plan for what to do when you encounter an ambush. Typical plans include a heavy gunner to lay down fire to help your point guys return to safety and the rapid deployment of flankers.

When moving, don't bunch up and do shut up. Your squad should move without sound. Veteran teams make good use of hand signals while moving through hostile territory.

Don't shoot for no reason. Its classic for scared new players to randomly shoot while on patrol - if you think about it, what better way to advertise your squads position and your movement direction to the enemy.

If on-mission you find some allies doing nothing, you may want to invite them to join you. Its a judgment call on the squad leaders part.

-- You arrived at your mission objective - now what?

#1) secure the area. Have your team fan out and secure the area. Don't just stand there in a group chatting. There is a good chance an enemy team is on the way. Consider putting out a distant listening post with radio in the likely direction of enemy travel to radio enemy movement and strength. This may buy you a minute or two to deploy well before they spot your strength and positions.

#2) Read your mission card carefully and double check your map and make sure you are suppose to be where you are. Ask a ref if you are not sure. He may or may not tell you.

#3) Find the mission ref in the area & make sure he reads the card - - ASK HIM HIS NAME and REMEMBER IT and introduce yourself - and ask him to verify you are where you are supposed to be and that the mission has started, and "start the mission".

As a mission ref, in this situation I tell the squad leader:
"My watch has started - you have X minutes remaining"

Mission cards usually have a TIME STARTED space where the mission ref is to write in what time you got there. Most times the mission ref will hold the card. Use your own watch and start a stop watch. NOTE: if you used the forward team technique, you may be able to argue the point with the ref that you started earlier. Your forward team leader should have made the proper communications to the ref when he arrived, and he likewise should have started his stop watch and made the ref make note of the time even though the mission card was not on location yet.

#4) HOLD THE AREA : If the area is secure, and you feel good about the situation you may want to sweep the area for props - gold, maps, documents, bombs, etc. Its your call to return what you find. if you find an ammo box or similar - be warned that it may be booby trapped with a paint grenade or special explosive card. Carry this type prop away from your mission objective before opening, and then with a minimum of troops open the box - and NOT YOU. The squad leader should not open any booby trappable items.

#5) DOWN PILOTS - If the mission has a down pilot - check him for intelligence - I've seen and heard about special underwear, voice recorders, hidden maps and special cards with instructions. You may need to act on the intelligence - but before you leave the area - make sure you don't have to hold it to complete the mission. Ask the ref - he may not tell you, but he wont lie to you. It is your job to read and understand your mission card - and some do get tricky.

#6) UNDER ATTACK : You are holding the mission objective and you get attacked. Duh - I told you missions are written to conflict - well here is your conflict. It's likely the attacking force has the same or similar mission. If they have a ref in tow, that's a clue that they are on mission. This means HOLD YOUR GROUND and if possible call for reinforcements. If the mission has a big piece of intelligence, get it out of there. If you are sure to be swamped, radio the situation to your XO for advise.

As a mission ref, in this situation I may walk near the squad leader and whisper:
"X minutes remaining" or I may hold up the number of fingers representing minutes remaining.
Or in situations where enemy is near by, I may pretend to use my radio and report "X minutes remaining"

REFS : To do not bird dog the mission or give away positions. If you feel you may - walk away to a different area and paintcheck a tree or a bunker.

#7) MISSION COMPLETE - Communicate with Missions Ref: once your watch is close to mission complete, ask the mission ref "how much longer ref" and resynchronize. If you are way off - say "my watch says X minutes" - but don't press the point. Note: If the mission ref left the area and is not there to sign off - get on the ref channel and call for the mission ref that has your card - and be nice. Once the mission is complete, visually make sure the ref signs off on the card. Usually the mission ref holds on to completed and failed mission cards.

#8) Radio your XO : Call your XO and report mission complete - or mission failure - report your strength and position and ask for instructions.

#7b) MISSION FAILURE If your mission is a failure - turn your card into the nearest ref and tell them your mission failed (this does not make you neutral)

#8b) Then Radio your XO and report the failure, your strength and position and ask for instructions.

#9a) After the mission and in the absence of orders - return to base or radio your teammates at base for mission assignments. With good timing and communication , you may get a jump on the next mission. Sweep the area looking for props during your return.

- OR -

#9b) If you see and enemy squad on mission, attack and deny them their mission - it is just as good pointwise as accomplishing yours.


Communications --  6.24.2005 --

RADIOS : If you have a scenario paintball team, you should have good communications with your teammates and ideally back to the XO and or General. Good commo will allow you to stay together and fight as a cohesive team. If you need to split up, good commo will help you coordinate movement. Once a few of your teammates get shot and have to reinsert, you will need radios to get back together. Veteran scenario teams will all have excellent communications. Another important usage for the radio for the squad leader is to 1) to be able to call the XO for reinforcements, or to report large enemy movements - and 2) if there is not a ref at your mission objective you may switch to the ref channel and call a ref to your area. Radios are necessary to function as a mission team.

RADIO DISCIPLINE : Team your team to restrict commo to the bare essentials. Once you get more that a hand full on the same frequency, the traffic becomes annoying and your stealth guys will turn the radios off - and that compromises your squad and your mission.

PRIVATE CHANNEL -- Try to find a private channel to operate your team on. Many veteran teams will switch channels periodically to throw off anyone monitoring their channel.

CODES -- In case your mission team is being monitored, consider using codes for things like : I see something, I hear something, enemy, allies, I'm shot or out of paint, enemy spotted, all quiet, take cover, halt.


:: Scenario Training 101 : PROPS : FAQS :--  6.24.2005 --

PROPS : The event producer will likely distribute props (maps/bombs/documents/gold/missile parts etc) on the field - and likely at more than just one time. If you find a prop - it is likely worth points - and some times a lot of points. Example: If a mission is worth 100 points, then a bar of gold might be worth 20 points and a missile part worth 100 and a map worth 50.

You are out on patrol and you found the prop - now what?

PROPS : THE PICKUP : If you are on mission, the mission is usually the priority. If you have a man to spare, and know a safe route back, send the prop back to base with a runner and continue on with your mission. Radio your XO to let him know "something" is in route and he may send out an escort , that is if you trust your commo and your XO.

BEWARE: Spies love props..
PROPS : SCORING : If you don't trust something in your chain of command you may choose to hide your prop for retrieval at a later date. But all props must remain on the playing field. You may not take a prop out of bounds or stash in your car.
IMPORTANT : Props maybe recorded for points during certain windows of time during play - don't leave a prop in your base or hidden on the field and miss one of these windows.
PROPS : GETTING SHOT : If you get shot carrying a prop - you must drop it where you got shot. This includes gold and maps. (A mission card or special weapons card is not a prop)