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patRIOTik Sunday, November 4th, 2007
Period of
Field Use:
Just once
Date There: November 3rd, 2007
Paintball
Experience:
More than 5 years
Other Fields
in the Area:
The Shack in Lompoc, CA-
The Shack is only a few miles from my house, but I generally try to stay away from there. The fields are small (there are two, airball, and 'scenario'). The airball field is your standard inflatable bunker operation. Nothing special there. The scenario field is almost prohibitivly small. You can tell that it is very influenced by the 'speedball' mindset during it's construction. When there are more than about 6 people per team, you start getting piled up in bunkers, and have very little room to manuver.
From my experience, Gladiator was better in every respect.
Directions
to the Field:
The field is right past Cuesta College on Camp San Luis. Very easy to find if you follow the directions on the website.
Review: Three of us, myself and two others decided to check out Gladiator this weekend, and we're very happy that we did. One of our friends just bought an E-tek Ego and wanted to play. We decided that Gladiator was worth a shot, so we packed up and went for it. We live in Lompoc, and it's about an hours drive from where we are.

Upon arriving, I was surprised by the size of the fields. They were so much larger then I was used to. When you're used to playing on a cramped field, this is a godsend. The first of the fields that we played ("Spools") had some large water and septic tanks (clean of course) for cover, along with spools, tire piles, wooden obstacles, a school bus, boat, glider fuselage, etc. There was enough to hide behind, but not too much to feel cramped. If you wanted to, there was always somewhere to advance. I had a great time on this field, and fared rather well. Most of the players there were first timers using rental Model 98's, and seemed to be having a great time as well.

The second field we played was called "Walls". Walls is a speedball-esque field made of standup wooden barriers. We played our first game, and immediately fell in love with this field. Very fun for trying to snapshoot, and fun for advancing. Only a few spots where it was hard to get out of. Got a few take-home welts here.

While talking with the staff, we found that 4 additional fields (For a total of 7) were being constructed, and should be running in the coming months. can't wait to come back and check them out!

Fields aside, the best thing about this park is the friendliness of the owners, administrators, and the referee's. If you've ever been to a major park, you know what I mean when I say that the Ref's tend to be jerks. Not here. The refs were very friendly and talkative, and found it important that we were having a good time. Most of fields I play, I get a really cocky attitude from the Refs. One of our guys acciedentally laid a burst on a ref, and after a quick apology, they laughed it off. The attitudes of the people here alone merit another trip or five.

It seems like everyone who works there is just friendly in general, and they are very good at doing their job, not sitting around talking when you're waiting to get a fill, a box of paint, or a snack at the snackbar. The guy manning the CO2, HPA, and Paint booth was really friendly, and didn't mind filling our tanks whether they were empty or at 2500psi. Nice people.

We got to talking with the field's owner and his brother, and they are both cool people. Made sure we were having a good time, and made sure that everyone understood the rules. Be careful, they chrono at 300 here, so if you get his close up, you're going to know about it.

All in all, I will for sure be coming back. I had a blast, and look forward to returning in a week or so! If you live in SLO or SB county, it's worth a drive. Show up around 9:00 - 9:30 for best turnout. We came on saturday, and there were about 40 people, maybe more. Two private parties which we were allowed to play with.

FIELD PAINT ONLY! Be ware. You may be able to bring Cryptic or Pro-Ball. Call to find out for sure.

See you out there!
-Rob
 

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