Whether you are an experienced player or a beginner trying to find your bearings, learning and implementing the proper strategy can set you up for consistent success. Airsoft is a sport built around teamwork, communication, and, most importantly, tactics. However, with endless information available, what exactly is worth learning?
The first airsoft tactic proven to work is establishing your team’s organization. Without designating essential roles, your fire team will lack clear communication and positioning. Planning for the terrain and using traditional battle formations are other great ways to carve your path to victory.
The rest of this article will discuss tested airsoft tactics that work, including team organization, using terrain/cover, and utilizing established formations in more detail.
Build Your Team
Before you can start imploring more complicated strategies, you must fill out the roles of your fire team.
As previously mentioned, airsoft is a team-based activity played with at least 6, typically eight players or more per team. Assigning your team members roles and responsibilities will help streamline your communication and set you up for proper formations.
Task organization refers to the team leader giving each member a title and job to perform during a battle. Much like many aspects of airsoft, a fire team’s roles mostly mirror actual military practices (with a few minor adjustments). If you’re working with a large group, it’s worth noting you will need to split them into multiple fire teams for greater success.
A typical fire team is split into three major roles: squad leader, fire team leader, and rifleman. Each position covers a specific need on the battlefield and sometimes requires special equipment. It is up to a good team leader to asses their members’ strengths and weaknesses to match them with a task they can excel in.
- Squad Leader: The squad leader acts as the team’s overall leader. They are typically the most experienced members employing various strategies to win. They speak directly with the fire team leader(s), who then communicates with the rest of the members. Their main goal is to ensure the team stays focused and organized.
- Fire Team Leader: The fire team leader takes the given orders and information the squad leader provides and executes them in real-time. They work directly with the other team members to ensure the plans go through. While communication is a big part of the role, they also must participate in tasks like flanking, clover fire, and clearing structures.
- Riflemen: The riflemen are there to get the job done, no matter what it is. They take their orders directly from the fire team leader and work together as a unit. Confronting the enemy, fighting in the trenches, and clearing rooms all fall in the riflemen’s wheelhouse. They are assigned roles and expected to follow, not work as lone wolves.
Although these positions are the most used, it doesn’t mean they’re the only option. The next group of roles, sometimes called special teams, are much less versatile and identified by their gear. These roles include grenadier, medic, heavy infantry, and sniper.
- Grenadier: Grenadiers are ideal when you’re looking for more firepower. They are riflemen with a grenade launchers, making them perfect for clearing bunkers and other structures. Grenadiers are also great for starting ambush tactics.
- Medic: Medics are a specialized role that can revive fallen players. The game’s rules determine the extent of their abilities and typically see use in matches with higher player count.
- Heavy infantry: Heavy infantry or heavy machine gun is a dedicated support role, providing a steady stream of suppressing fire for the enemies. This role allows your teammates to travel more safely.
- Sniper: A sniper uses range and concealment to protect your team’s flank and take out high-priority targets. While a must in the real world, snipers are a rarer role in airsoft as it requires security and is often challenging to execute. However, if you’re looking to improve your sniper performance, there are plenty of ways to boost your success rate.
Learn the Map
Although required for larger maps taking time to learn the map you’re playing will help you get better at airsoft no matter the size or, at the very least, won’t open you to a significant disadvantage. With a clear idea of the field, you can use any elevation or brush against your enemies.
You can also note physical barriers like cover or structures that you can use to minimize firepower and give you the drop on your opponent.
Understanding the map also gives you more insight into how the opponents will move during a match. It gives you a clear view of the areas they will be playing in and any holes or ambush angles in your defenses. If you can navigate these locations effectively, you can properly locate and track your opponents and implement other strategies quickly.
With roles established and a solid understanding of your map, you can move to more advanced tactics like using set squad formations.
These formations allow your team to handle specific tasks easier and quicker. It is worth noting you will only be able to experience their full effect with proper practice.
Line formation is a fundamental airsoft strategy to dominate the game. From my research, and watching dozens of hours of airsoft strategy videos, I’ve learned that a solid formation can go a long way in helping you achieve your objectives.
A line formation refers to all fire team members moving to the front with the leader (squad or fire team), forming a horizontal line facing the enemy. It is ideal when under attack as it moves all your firepower to the front while protecting your rear and flank.
Line formation allows your leader to assess the situation deciding whether to attack or retreat.
Other common squad formations include column and file. File formation is typically used when moving through close terrain and focuses on flank protection. The column formation has the benefits of both line and file with more versatility and movement options.
Airsoft is a military simulation sport that requires quality communication and teamwork. Although very physical, you can see more success by using simple strategies. Tactics like task organization, understanding the field, and using formations are proven tactics that work regardless of members of field size.