The need for extreme activities that are capable of raising our adrenalin levels and truly make us feel alive have been popular for a very long time. There is something innate in us humans that makes us want to test our abilities and put ourselves in certain amounts of danger for the purposes of fun and challenge. This is how extreme sports were born, but different feats of strength have existed for centuries. In the modern world, apart from the regular extreme sports like snowboarding, BMXing, or skating, there are also team based activities that mimic warfare.
Among them, airsoft is currently the most popular variety. Although paintball remains popular too, and other types are slowly on the rise like bow and arrow activities, airsoft is a clear winner and the most popular of these war-like games. You have probably heard about airsoft already on numerous occasions. Maybe you have wanted to try it out with your group of friends. Chances are you may have even tried it yourself and scored some nice shots. Considering how big it is and how quickly it is becoming a global extreme sport, you need to know a lot more about it if you want to stay in touch.
So what is airsoft exactly, and what makes it different than other shooting games? The goal is simple. You need to eliminate the opposing team by shooting them with mock air weapons. These are known as airsoft guns, and they shoot spherical plastic projectiles that can really hurt if proper gear is not being worn. As mentioned, it is similar to paintball both in the concept and in the overall gameplay elements. However, there are no markings on the targets, at least not the type that is visible on the gear. Instead, the honor system is used where the players who have been hit call it out and exit the field.
Airsoft makes for some truly spectacular fights and anything can be a battlefield. Close quarter combat in abandoned construction sites and demolished buildings, or larger battles outside in forests or fields, anything goes as long as it is properly secured. There are also different military tactics, both improv and real, that the players need to use in order to win. Different match types exist similar to what you can find in popular video games. Capture the flag and team deathmatch are two of the classics that most people like to play. Skirmishes are more fun when they are large-scale, but they can also be very tense if it is a 1v1 showdown where you have to be witty and show different skills.
Apart from the protective equipment like helmets, bandanas, goggles, gloves, and bodysuits, the players obviously need guns. Airsoft guns are usually magazine-fed. They can either be battery powered with a spring-piston pump, or utilize old-fashioned pneumatics and compressed gas. The guns are replicas of real, live round weaponry and it is often difficult to tell them apart.
Players get all the basic gear they need when they rent a field and come to play, but if you are serious about airsoft you will need your own. Protection is not hard nor expensive to get, but the gun needs more careful planning. In the following section we talk about the best airsoft guns under $200, which should be more than enough for you to dominate the battles. Learn more about all things airsoft by checking out softair.blog.
G&G Combat Machine CM16 Raider CM16 Raider – $184
The first gun we talk about here is among the models that have been continuously present at the very top of most lists that review the best weapons for the sport. Between the four different models you can choose two barrel lengths. The short one meant for indoor matches gives you the velocity of 330-350 fps, and the longer one meant for outside is 370-400 fps. The hopups are adjustable, the stock has 6 positions, and the magazine holds 450 rounds. A durable and reliable gun, it is fully metal and heat treated. It also has a smart charger. Needless to say, it truly looks professional and real.
Lancrer Tactical LT-15 Gen 2 – $169
With the choice between tan and black, you can combine this great and affordable gun with the rest of your gear no matter what you have. The magazine holds 300 rounds, and the collapsible stock comes with 6 positions. The iron sights are pop up, and they are among the best on the market. The suppressor is mock, but it does look amazing. Velocity shifts between 320-350 fps and 370-400 fps depending on the barrel length. Both the gearset and the gearbox are metal and the hopup is adjustable. Just like the previous gun on the list, it comes with a NiMh nunchuck battery and a smart charger.
Elite Force H&K MP5 A4/A5 Competition – $185
The MP5 is among the most iconic of weapons and everyone knows it. While the previous two guns were assault rifles, the MP5 is more of an SMG. This means that it thrives in close combat situations and is not meant for mid or long range. The velocity is 330-350 fps, and it has interchangeable stocks, one retractable skeleton with 3 positions (A4) and one full (A5). It is an ambidextrous gun too, which not many others can say. Fully made of metal, it also comes with 2 high capacity magazines that hold 200 rounds.
CYMA AK47 AKM Airsoft Gun – Under $200 on Sale
Is there a more iconic gun that the famed AK47? Well, not really, which is why airsoft needed its own variety. The great thing about it is that the wooden elements are not mock but real, which does give it a very special feel and look. The rest of the parts are full metal and very sturdy and durable. It is on the heavier side though, but it also has the second-largest magazine size on the list with 500 rounds. The velocity is 380-420 fps, great for mid- to long-range encounters. It is the most expensive model and usually out of stock everywhere, but it is also among the best you can get.
Echo1 AK47 RIS Airsoft Gun
If you want a more modernized, black and metal version of the AK47, here is the gun for you. It is still amazing at long range with its 380-400 fps velocity, but it beats any other gun on the list in terms of mag size. It can hold an amazing 600 rounds. There is also an integrated rail system, as well as adjustable iron sights. It also comes with a madbull hopup in the pox. The body is polymer, which makes it lighter but also less durable than the traditional AK47. The battery is 8.4V and there is a regular, “dumb” charger. The pistol grip is agronomical and it is a comfortable gun to hold and carry.