For my sixteenth birthday I went with a bunch of my friends to paintball. My parents were paying for everyones rentals so I could only bring so many people meaning our teams were four against four causing them to take forever and the number of outs significantly lower.
My friend suggested Hogback because he hated Pevs. I, personally, avoid Pevs as well due to the fact that I like woods ball more than speed. We got there a little late even though John told us we had to be there at one. He didn't seem to mind though and went through the briefing very quickly. I've heard a lot about the briefing slow and obnoxious, but ours took less then five minutes.
Once my friends got all their gear we waited for our ref and headed straight up to the fields. I have one thing to say about getting up there: Dear Lord, what a hike. I'm in shape and everything, but I'm also a severe asthmatic. I sounded like Darth Vadar on crack. It was ridiculous! When we got up into the actually playing area and dead zone, my asthma was perfectly fine due to the elevation. I was able to run around like crazy when usually running makes me pass out.
Our ref was really cool. With eight obnoxious teenagers you kind of have to be. He set up a tab for us when my friend broke all her balls and let us play were we wanted despite the fact that a lot of the people playing had never done it before. He was patient and helpful and when I go back, I'll be sure to say hi.
Our first game on Castle took forever. We had no outs and despite the flag being captured, it was never brought to the opposing team's side. Our ref then told us we would be playing on the inside walls just because we were a small team which made it a lot better.
Anywho. Moving on. The fields were great. I especially loved Jungle, Valley and Castle. Despite the hike from each field, it was fun and worth the wait.
One problem I did have, was other players. When someone rights a list of names and team on boxes just to say: Hey, this box is mine! No touchy! Don't touch it! Someone stole my friend's broken bag, someone else stole over half our box and someone nearly took my rescue inhaler! If I hadn't caught them in the act it would've been gone! This was with our things being hidden in a little corner too. You'd expect people to be courteous and not touch your things, or at least for the refs to stop them but they didn't! There weren't many refs though where we were playing so I understand that it was difficult to stop people from taking other peoples things.
The safety rule was heavily enforced. They saw you without a mask: You got yelled at and got an X on your wrist band. Barrel cover off, same thing. Closer than 20 ft, same thing. They weren't as strict on profanity as we expected they would be, but if you started swearing like a truck driver, they would mark your band and eventually send you home.
Prices were much better than Pevs, but they don't have a pro shop. Gun breaks? Oh well. Try and fix it or go rent a gun. The players were pretty cool too. They were fair and willing to help if you had a question.
Honestly, I'll be heading back to Hogback before I go to Pevs. :)