If you live in the Tampa Bay area, you know the other fields...
OK, I went to Orbital for the first time this past weekend (11/01/03) I found the staff to be very courteous, the refs were very helpful. Did a good job of controlling our games. ( I played with the woods group, that is I played woods ball all day. Games got started a little late, around 10:15 or so, which was fine by me since I was slow getting ready anyhow. After the games got going, there was no more wasted time, once a game was over, the next one was starting 10 minutes later. Just enough time to refill hoppers, or get more air. Very nice. I also feel the need to mention how nice the players were, even after a few pretty intense firefights opposing players were leaving the field chatting it up with each other like they were lifelong friends. Don't know if it was just a lucky day or not, but when all the players behave like they did last Saturday it sure does make for an enjoyable experience.
Well, enough of that crap. On to the good stuff
Prices: Very good, $10 field fee / $10 all day air $60 case PMI premium (You are allowed to use your own paint at no extra charge)
Facilities: So, so They are currently operating out of a converted trailer (about the size of a horse trailer) that doesn't really bother me, if it keeps prices down I'm all for it. Bathrooms consist of a portolet, well until they get some kind of a permanent structure the portolet will be as good as it gets.
Fields: Only played on the woods fields so my comments are directed at them. The fields are interesting, long and narrow. Not much room for horizontal maneuvering, but plenty of space for a outnumbered team to use delaying tactics on the enemy while waiting for time to expire. As a matter of fact in one game last week 1 guy was able to hold back 6 attackers for almost ten minutes. He would take a couple of shots, then fade back into the next defensive position. It almost worked, the team of 6 was able to eliminate him finally with just a little over 30 seconds remaining in the game.
The fields also have numerous natural and man made defensive points on them, which forces attacking teams to utilize effective cross fires and flanking maneuvers in order to dislodge a determined defender. One curious thing about the field was the placement of a fairly elaborate 2by4 and plywood base in the center of a large pit. what is weird about this is, if you were to try and defend that base you would find yourself surrounded by an enemy able to fire right down into it from the encircling ridge. Meaning that in order to effectively defend this position you need to hold the surrounding ridge. If you hold the surrounding ridge, you would have no need to be inside the base. therein lies the quandary, why build a base you can't effectively defend unless you leave the base????
Whew, got myself going there.
In the end I would highly recommend this field to anyone who enjoys good sportsmanship, great prices and interesting fields.
I am giving this field a very good rating of 10, not because it is perfect, but because it is the best in the area.