Deep in the west coast?s tangle of rainforest and foliage, paintballers skulk across 100 acres of playing ground divided into six fields. They hide behind mammoth tree stumps, traverse bridges over streams, and navigate themed battlegrounds such as The City populated with abandoned shacks and beat up pickups. Players can bring their own equipment or rent gear onsite; however, paintballs used during gameplay must be purchases at Maple Ridge Paintball.
Owned and operated by a cohort of passionate paintball players since 2001, Ambush Paintball's three recreational fields, with a fourth opening May 27th, constantly undergo grooming to ensure their safety and to accommodate new, challenging obstacles. A 200-foot-long tire wall, two-storey clock tower, and 50-foot easel for target practice adorn the massive 450'x250' Ambush City Field, whose square shape and symmetrical layout prevent either team from naming their strategies after famous couture dresses. Meanwhile, two mobile homes, nicknamed the Redneck Fortresses, shelter participants on the Grassy Mounds Field when they're not navigating the trenches and maze-like grassy paths on the outside. More paths abound on the 5-acre diamond-shaped Lost Forest Field, whose tree forts and barricades have hosted as many as 200 players at a time. Elsewhere, a celebrated speedball park hosts a range of guests––from first-timers to pros of the sport––for tournaments every Sunday.
At Panther Paintball, tall cedars and thick brush help to conceal the tactics of opposing shooters, who dive into the real-dirt trenches and other hiding spots that characterize the facility's 57 acres. Drop-in players as well as party groups can sling their BBs across no fewer than 12 variously configured battlefields strewn with tires, beaver-dam bunkers, dirt mounds, and other obstructions. The fields lend a realistic ambience to Panther's scenario-play events, during which vigilant referees oversee themed play. Panther recently added airsoft to its arsenal, which doesn't weigh down players with big hoppers or bulky air tanks.
Darting out from behind a tree, the marksman sidles up behind a barrel before swiftly aiming his Tippmann 98 marker at an unsuspecting opponent crouched beside a stack of firewood. Such are the tactics that Go Big Paintball referees—themselves dedicated paintballers—witness at each bout on the outdoor field. The refs distribute players of all skill sets and experience levels between two teams before sending them off to fire 100% biodegradable paint at one another across more than 21 acres. Between rounds, the indoor facility facilitates reenergizing with air fills and concessions. Go Big also hosts birthday parties and puts together customized packages for groups that want a little more time or ammunition during their adventures.
At Millionaire Paintball, players disappear into a world of strategic combat and colourful ammunition. Referees oversee games to ensure fair play, but that's cold comfort when you're being stalked by your enemies across 10 acres of woods, walls, and bunkers. Each four-hour session splits into 10 to 20 games?more than enough to learn an opponent's strategies or try out a few action-movie catchphrases. Walk-on paintball games welcome players 10 and older, while private games can be held for kids as young as 8.
Richmond Indoor Paintball lets competitive sharpshooters live out intricate battle strategies in 25,000 square feet of barricades, abandoned buildings, and streets made to look like a real town. Open year-round, the facility’s graffiti-splattered walls surround the field, and the beat-up old cars littered about offer cover. Players find only premium rental equipment, paintballs, and all elements of play kept feeling as though they were plucked straight from a video game. The space accommodates up to 60 guests from noon to midnight each day except Tuesday, when the facility closes for cleaning and community art-history lectures. Click here to view a virtual tour.