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TheGrtEqualizer Friday, October 30th, 2009
Period of
Field Use:
Just once
Date There: September 15th, 2006
Paintball
Experience:
More than 5 years
Other Fields
in the Area:
Hidden Sights (now out of business)
The fields here are much better due to natural terrain (glacier carved features including a tiny rock valley) and better bunker design. Its set up for woods/scenario rather than speedball, which in my opinion makes it a lot more fun.

The staff were friendly and helpful. If you had a problem with a marker they would wait until the end of a game and then help you fix it or get another player to give you a hand. Great with new players, often telling them how to improve their performance for the next game.

Williston Indoor Paintball (leveled to build a bank)
Not a great field. The plywood bunkers were set on industrial carpet, which became a virtual skating rink after a few weeks of paint. If you played enough there you could slide across a 3rd of the field. Bunkers would often move when you hit them.

Again great staff, helpful and friendly. Would assist with repairs. I was even there a couple times at closing where the staff didn't feel like going home. They closed to the public and let the players who were already there play in the dark with strobe lights and a fog machine borrowed from the night club next door. Note: paintball is hard when your playing under foggy strobe lights.

Rutland Indoor Paintball (No idea if they're still in business)
Small indoor field set up in a dilapidated factory building. The floorboards were all buckled from water damage. Not a great playing environment and not a lot of cover.

Staff was friendly and helpful.
Review: Safety- No problem. They made sure you had your mask on.

Fields- If you are into speed ball this field is at least a little more interesting than a Sup Air field. I'm not a speed ball fan so I really didn't enjoy the open field and limited bunker cover. Its mostly pallets and I feel they could get some local players to come in and renovate the field with little effort.

Hours of operation- No issue here either. Pretty standard hours for a field.

Prices- High. Quit a bit higher than the other VT fields I've played on. To be fair, I don't remember the exact prices but I remember buying paint and thinking that I got it for a lot less the previous weekend at Hidden Sights (of course maybe that's why Hidden Sights went out of business). What really shocked me was how they treated some poor little kid who had issues with his marker, telling him he could leave it there to be repaired later for a fee (I'll comment more under Services/Proshop).

Rules- They posted standard rules, but the ref wasn't that concerned with the players (some of whom seemed to be his friends) actually following those rules (see ref comment)

Services/Proshop- So the kid I mentioned before went up to the guy running the place and said he had trouble with his marker. The guy told him he could leave it there at the pro shop and the tech guys would have a chance to look at it in the next few weeks and he wasn't sure what it would cost to fix. He also offered to rent the kid one of the field markers so he could keep playing. I took the kid aside, field stripped his Spyder and removed the paintball shell that was jamming his bolt. It wasn't a pro shop issue. I've never been to a field where the refs and/or managers won't give you some help or advice when your gun breaks. I frequently saw refs at Williston Indoor and Hidden Sights help a kid (or new player) field strip a gun between games. I still can't believe how this kid was treated.

Staff/Refs- In this case the guy taking cash and handing out guns and paint was the ref. I believe it was the owners son, but I'm not sure. You can read the Service/Proshop comment above to see how Newbies were treated. When the actual games started the ref stood next to the safety area at one side of the field (rather than off to the side on the center line of the field). He ignored calls for paint checks, most of which were against people he seemed to be friendly with. He had no problem with the same people who ignored hits shooting the new players repeatedly once they stood up with their barrel plugs in. It was clear that one of the players markers and two of the field markers were shooting well over 300fps and the ref kept telling us they were fine and didn't need to be chronoed. The ref got pissed at me for repeatedly pointing out the problems with the guns and some of the players.

Players- Most were new players. The experienced players who seemed to be friends with the ref were jerks, shooting dead players and ignoring hits. The ref didn't seem interested in making them follow the rules. I've seen players like that get kicked out of other fields.

Facilities- Not great, but I don't think that matters on a field. I go to play not to order chili dogs and lounge around. I can't remember whether or not they had a porta-potty.Hidden Sights didn't and that was a big negative when nature called.

Equipment- They had 98s and Pro-Carbine's set up with HPA. Other than the 2 Pro-Carbines that were shooting too hard the guns seemed to work well. Tippmanns are a good choice, but I would not want to be the guy who had to strip and clean 20 clam shell 98's at the end of a game.

Bottom line, even though Colchester is pretty close to where I live, I think I'll drive the extra hour to check out Champlain Valley Paintball the next time I want to play. I'd love to hear that the field has improved (or changed hands) and maybe then I'd give it another shot.
 

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