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8ight Monday, June 6th, 2005
Period of
Field Use:
Just once
Date There: N/A
6 months
Other Fields
in the Area:
TreeHuggers Paintball - Sullivan, IN
Out Numbered Paintball - Paris, IL
Silver Spur Splat Paintball - Princeton, IN
Review: This is, without a doubt, hands down, no questions asked, the crappiest paintball field this side of the Mississippi... probably the other side too. I'm going to break this review down so it is a little easier to read rather than my normal rambling. I do this because I feel it is important to know how bad this place is.

Background - We played at Dark Armies for a friends bachelor party with a party of about ten to twelve guys. Two of us, me and another friend, brought our own guns, masks, and whatever else.

Arrival - You first walk down a very dark stairway and then to the front desk. When we got to the front desk we filled out a form about who we are and what equipment we would like to use along with prices. First thing I noticed was $22.00 flat fee per person to play!?!?! Holy crap! I ignored the gun prices because I had brought my own. However, the paint prices sure jumped out at me! As stated in an earlier review, $18 for 200 or $5 for 50 rounds. I explained to my less experienced buddies that $40 would normally buy you 2000 rounds, they too became annoyed. My total bill for the field fee, 400 rounds of paint and a lock for our locker was $62.00!!! After we finished playing that day a few of us were talking about our experiences we figured out that the two of us that brought our own guns saved a whole $5 over the guys who rented one!

Training - Oh the dreaded training video. As described in other reviews, you are taken to a room with bleachers for your lesson. Above you find two old, jumping, flashing, psychedelic TVs attached to a computer. It's actually not even a video, but a PowerPoint slideshow that is broken up in to three parts. A number of the parts are skipped past because to do not apply any longer, such as areas of the field that are no longer there. I can't remember much about it, other than wear your masks and sock (barrel condom) your gun was stressed. I do remember rolling my eyes quite a bit and looking around in disbelief at how retarded it all was. One of the rules I could not believe was "NO HEAD SHOTS". What? Huh? are you kidding. That's the number one exposed area of the body and that's why we wear masks! Getting hit in the head is the best because it doesn't hurt. Now getting hit in the back of the head is a different story, and who could tell what side of the head your shooting at in this dark dungeon. This is surely why they have the rule but come on... I'm shooting at heads regardless.

Field - My of my what a disasters field this is! Our bachelor party gets thrown in with another group of guys. Unfortunately, the bachelor himself gets thrown on a team with two other guys from our group... everyone else is on the other team. I was told by an employee that the reason this happened was due to the computer picking teams automatically upon sign in. Back to the field. The field is just a concrete floor with wooden boxes and walls setup in various formations to form a "city". No incandescent lights were on in the field of play. All that is lighting the field are black lights hanging from above. I understand the effect, the coolness, the originality they're going for here... but it doesn't work! One thing about paintball is that you need to see where your previous ball shots to make adjustments to shoot again at your target. This technique does not work here, the simple reason being that it is entirely too dark to see much of anything, let alone your own paint. This stinks because you have to fire a good five to ten shots at someone to make sure you get them. After you light them up they start complaining about shooting them so much. Hell, I couldn't tell... I just keep shooting until they put their hands up in the air and walked off. So the field is dark, but the real kicker is what everyone has to say about this place. The field is so slippery. I was lucky enough not to crash and burn, although I came close quite a few times. Friends of mine were not so lucky. I thought it was funny that the training video states they haven't had an injury in over 70,000 players. No freaking way!!! Someone, sometime has got to have busted their head here. Don't expect to run at this place. You are either going to walk or if you walk fast you'll have to take small choppy steps. It was really hard for me because I suffered a completely severed ACL injury in my right knee just about five years ago. It has been surgically repaired and I never have a bit of trouble with it now. I run, play baseball, tennis, roller hockey and even racquetball and I have never had a bit of pain or discomfort in it. That is until I played here. I could feel so much stress on my knee and my ACL when I had to quickly move behind a bunker while standing in a pool of old paint that has built up. It felt a lot like the time I injured it when my foot slipped out and my knee buckled in. I was very careful not to reaggervate my injury... I could tell it would have been easy to do though. The one last thing about the field I have to say was the awful layout of the re-entry points. Once you get shot you have to walk down this long hall, touch the counter where you got your gun and go back down the hall to the field. This wouldn't have been so bad if it was just one team that had to do this, but it was both. They need another entry point for the other team on the other side of the field. It was such a cluster there at the tunnel entrance all the time. They would tell us not to camp out and take people out that just came in, but that was also the exit. So when we found the cone (flag) we were looking for we had to take it out that same tunnel. That thing just seemed like such a mess. Another thing I disliked about the field was the heat and humidity in there. I have a very nice JT mask with a thermal lens and it began to fog up after I played for awhile. Keep in mind, I didn't do any running due to the floor. That was a pain to deal with. There were two times that I just went out to wipe it down and stick it in front of one of the fans outside the field of play area to clear it up. This doesn't have to do with the field so much but one of the things you have to wear on the field. I'm talking about the hard plastic yellow or orange vest they give you. It really hurts when you move your head around quickly and catch your chin on the edge of it. I hated that stupid thing!

Employees - The employees were mostly kids. I'm 27, so they're kids to me. They were probably more like 16 to 20 year olds. One guy, surely the owner or manager was older. I did feel very uncomfortable around him due to the obvious flamer he is... seriously. The employees, as stated in another review, did talk down to the players. Being and avid player and quite a few years older than most of them I was annoyed by it. They are probably alright kids, but they are very much less than enthused about being there. Also, I wouldn't exactly call them refs. I'd more like to call them two guys that stand at the entrance of the field and talk. The one thing I did like about these guys that I have had problems with at other fields is that they made sure you understood what the object and rules of the game is that is about to be played. Now, they didn't present the object and rules to you well, but they told you about three times before the game started. Once in the "control room", once at the middle of the playing field and once over the loud speakers right before the game starts. One other thing that really stunk about this place was that they do not fill compressed air. I was not shooting with compressed air but my friend was. He was worried that he was running out and asked for it to be filled. They explained that they don't deal with compressed air because it is too expensive. Huh!?!? A paintball field that does not fill compressed air? He then asked if he could rent a CO2 tank if he happens to run out. One of the employees told him no, he would have to rent a whole gun package and use the tank from that. Now that's just weird.

Departure - After we were rushed off of the field (there were still three of us left in an every man left for himself final battle) we went through the checkout line. The one thing I couldn't believe was that the employee took my gun out of my hands, opened my hopper and poured the remaining 40 or so rounds into a container. He then turned around and did the same thing to my buddy and his 70 some rounds. We asked why they take the paint that we paid for (no refund is given) and the guy responded with "I don't know". I've heard of stories of places doing this, but never thought I would have seen it. Other than that, the checkout process went alright.

Overall - Crap. Don't play here. Save your money! This is not a field where a real paintballers would ever play. This is some place that generates business from advertising on local radio stations (they ask you your favorite radio station on the sign in form) and draws people in that would normally not play paintball. This is obvious by the training video and the dated equipment and corny field set up. That's sad beacuse these people that don't normally play think that this is what paintball is like after they've played here. I'm not from around the area so I don't know of any other fields to recommend... but whatever you do, steer clear of this trap.

Highlights - Expensive, dark, slippery, less than friendly staff, hot, poor field, slow guns (less than 220 fps), silly chest protectors, steal your paint when you're done, corny training "video" and cheap equipment.

1 out of 10 (lower if I could)
Last edited on Monday, June 6th, 2005 at 6:51 am PST

Review Comments
witchraven Saturday, October 8th, 2005 | 6:49 am PST
I just recently got the paintball bug and thanks to the previews here I will not be checking out Dark armies which "was" at the top of my list due to its close to where I am at but after reading what others have said it will not even be considered

8ight Monday, October 10th, 2005 | 6:40 am PST
I just recently got the paintball bug and thanks to the previews here I will not be checking out Dark armies which "was" at the top of my list due to its close to where I am at but after reading what others have said it will not even be considered

Very good idea witchraven! I totally forgot about this mess of a field. I just went back to read all my old reviews and noticed you had just recently commented on this one. If there was ever a paintball field to not go to... ever, this is it. Enjoy the paintball bug!

spydadude Saturday, October 15th, 2005 | 9:45 pm PST
I will say this right now: You Freaking Rock. If I could type that all out, I would. I've been there around 3 times and am never going back. You Rock.

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