Scopes, Sights, and Lasers
By Jerry "Kan Man" K.
Official Tech for No Show Paintball LTD

I see Newbies trying to sound smart about this all the time, but have no idea. Therefore Iím going to settle this once and for all.


The Red-Dot sight
Many players say they are useless, I on the other hand, strongly disagree. The most common argument is that the hopper or feed neck is in the way, this is wrong. Well, if you look through with one eye closed then it will be in the way, but thatís not what you are supposed to do.

Have you ever done those optical illusions where you put the paper towel roll over one eye and look forward with both. If you put your hand in front of your face, it starts to look like you have a hole in your hand. Thatís because each eye sees something different. When you look down a Red Dot sight, you look with both eyes open. The sight should be in front of one eye, and you should be looking at the target. Now one eye sees the dot, the other eye sees the target. Once this gets to your brain, it splices the two images together. Therefore you see a nice little red dot on your target. Easy enough.

Second most common argument is that you donít have time to look through the site. Once again, wrong. In woodsball, you have plenty of time. The whole reason behind having a sight is to make sure that the shot hits him right? Well, if youíve been hiding for the past five minutes and a guy is coming, you want to make damn sure that you get him. And since you are hiding, you can easily look through the site and pick him off. Its not like you have to adjust it, just look through. In speedball, they are still useful, snap shooting, pop out, see where his head is, go back in, have your gun ready to go to that spot again, you can have a lot more precision with the red dot. Therefore it is still worthy for use in both woodsball and speedball. They are even more applicable for pump users. We canít dish the paint like you semi shooters. We sure as hell want to make sure our shots hit you the first time.

And then the whole Sniper debate comes into play. We will all strongly argue that there is in fact Snipers in paintball. But what usually comes along with this is the Ďone hit, one tagí, who said you had to only shoot at them once while using a site. So, that argument is incredibly pointless.

The Scope. Biggest argument is that balls donít go far enough or accurate enough. Well I have to agree, but not completely. When most people hear scope, they think of the sniper rifles in the video games they play. Well, those scopes are huge, and expensive. Most scopes paintball players would use is going to have the equivalent zoom as low end binoculars. So its not like they are trying to shoot across the field.

So, if some one gets a scope with a super high zoom, well yah itís pointless. But if itís just a low zoom, still useful.

The major problem is, since youíre looking through a scope, you get tunnel vision, donít pay attention to the other things around you, leaving you open to attack. Also, some scopes you have to adjust, which would slow you down. But if you had the ones that are set to one zoom, it wouldnít take long.

Also when looking through the scope, if your shot misses, you canít really see where it went to make for a correction. Also, when making long shots, you have to aim your marker up a bit. So your scope is looking over the players body, making it pointless.

So you can come to the conclusion that scopes arenít the most practical sighting device. But, they can be used for something else. In fact they can be really handy. If you guys ever played a real game of woodsball, youíd know that sometimes youíll see something, and not be too sure if itís a mask, or a leaf, or just a tree. Well, with a scope, you can get a much closer look to make sure. I find that they are excellent for that. So, for being used for that purpose, scopes are very practical.

Bottom line: Scopes are only practical or impractical judging on the purpose they are used for.


The Laser sight. Basically a laser pointer. Projects a beam of light, usually red. Arguments for this include that they are poorly visible in the day light. True. Especially from far away, in daylight it will be pretty hard to see the dot on the target. When close up you can see it, but if you are that close, you probably will be able to hit them without using any kind of accuracy aid. However in darker conditions, such as night games or at dusk it is easier to see the dot.

And personally, I think lasers modded onto markers are sweet looking. No different then you players and your fancy anodizing and pretty drops.

One main problem, and the reason they arenít allowed at many fields, is the same reason they arenít allowed at school. When shone in you eye they really hurt, bug the hell out of you too. Since the beam of light goes so far it is very concentrated, and very bright, your retinas donít like it at all.

Bottom line: Only practical in the right conditions and can be dangerous.

So as you can see, sights, scopes, and lasers are all useful, given the proper conditions and purposes. Now after this I hope that there is no more stupid debates about them, and you consider the facts before you just flame someone who wants one.