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Old 12-02-2012, 03:11 AM #1
dude1it
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What would you consider the perfect paintball field?

Pretty self explanatory...just looking into some things...have been talking about the "perfect field" for the industry with friends for a while...then looked around and realize we haven't had an extremely successful field in my area for a while (though I'm expecting this to change with a new field opening soon).

What would you consider the perfect paintball field??? - within reason...let's not pretend Bill Gates is looking into building something.

-Would it be open to airsoft as well?

-How much property would it be on?

-Days open?

-How many fields would it have?

-What types of fields would it include, how would they be organized/formatted? Perfect rentals? Both speed and rec*
--Would the airball be open in winter? Lit for night play?

-Pricing, while still being profitable yet not scaring potential customers away?

-Would it need a bangin' pro-shop, or have online sales taken over to the point where less is acceptable?

-Types of events and number of events? Big prizes larger entry, small prizes smaller entry? Both? APPA ranked events?

-Interaction with sponsored team(s)? One or many? Extent of sponsorship?

-Would they control tournament/rec player interaction? If so, how? When would competitive teams practice without taking away from rec play times (revenue in this area is important), for how long, and should discounts be applied to these teams traveling?

--PERSONALLY, I think it's extremely beneficial to have a successful, or at least nationally competitive sponsored team at your field...they bring other teams to practice, and give new/rec players something to look up to (should they practice, they get better, move up...friends start to play, take their place...one big cycle). I know of many fields that just cater to rec players with fear of tournament players being insensitive and scaring newer players away...I feel this doesn't need to happen...both tournament and rec play can be profitable if run correctly - both have different things to bring to the field (tournament = players/teams from out of town, role models.....rec = friends, player base, feeders to tournament players).


These are just some of the points I'd like you to consider in your posts - feel free to bring any more to the table. Thanks in advance, I look forward to reading your responses.
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Old 12-02-2012, 04:58 AM #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dude1it View Post

-Would it be open to airsoft as well?
Personally I don't like airsoft, paintball already has an uphill battle image wise and they make us seem even crazier. Moms dropping their kids off to play might be a bit put off by wanna-be Rambos going off to war... Plus if they dont use biodegradable BB's they get everywhere!

-How much property would it be on?
CPX in Illinois and Splat Tag in Hudson WI have pretty good sized fields in my opinion (not sure home many acres?), they have plenty of space to roam but they're not so big that you can get lost like Skirmish or Oklahoma D-day.

-Days open?
Unless there is tons of demand I wouldn't see much sense in being open anything other than Saturdays and Sundays. I would do weekdays by appointment only.

-How many fields would it have?
It's nice to have some variety so you can move around a bit, plus when tons of people show up for open play at facilities that don't have enough fields then it gets really crowded. Maybe 7-10 different fields that could at least support 10 vs 10 recballers.

-What types of fields would it include, how would they be organized/formatted? Perfect rentals? Both speed and rec*
To me variety makes fields significantly more fun to play at, of course there will always be speedball fields, but sometimes I just want to mess around with my friends and the themed fields (Castle/fort, WWII, Urban, old style woodsball, bridges, trenches, etc...).


--Would the airball be open in winter? Lit for night play?
I dont like playing in the winter, makes the paint brittle and it's harder to keep my markers running well. Night play is bad *** though and it would expand your hours. One of my favorite games of all time was D-day back in 2006 (I think that was the year) the night game was in coleville and they had it lit with one of those industrial construction site lights, so much fun!

-Pricing, while still being profitable yet not scaring potential customers away?
Whatever you need to make a reasonable profit, people are going to ***** no matter what.

-Would it need a bangin' pro-shop, or have online sales taken over to the point where less is acceptable?
Don't care, I go to play not to shop. Maybe basic stuff like tanks, hoppers, packs, and low-mid range markers. Not really a big deal for me though.

-Types of events and number of events? Big prizes larger entry, small prizes smaller entry? Both? APPA ranked events?
Smaller entries and smaller prizes would probably convince more new and younger players to show up and to play more for fun. Its nice to see fields with a variety of creative events, young beginner tourneys, mech only, maybe old school markers only events, meet-n-greet randomly assigned teams, charity events, big games with lots and lots of people.

-Interaction with sponsored team(s)? One or many? Extent of sponsorship?
Dont care about sponsored teams or sponsorships. I just want to play and have fun.

-Would they control tournament/rec player interaction? If so, how? When would competitive teams practice without taking away from rec play times (revenue in this area is important), for how long, and should discounts be applied to these teams traveling?
I think it's ok for tournament and rec players to play together as long as the tournament folks arent douchebags about it.

--PERSONALLY, I think it's extremely beneficial to have a successful, or at least nationally competitive sponsored team at your field...they bring other teams to practice, and give new/rec players something to look up to (should they practice, they get better, move up...friends start to play, take their place...one big cycle). I know of many fields that just cater to rec players with fear of tournament players being insensitive and scaring newer players away...I feel this doesn't need to happen...both tournament and rec play can be profitable if run correctly - both have different things to bring to the field (tournament = players/teams from out of town, role models.....rec = friends, player base, feeders to tournament players).


These are just some of the points I'd like you to consider in your posts - feel free to bring any more to the table. Thanks in advance, I look forward to reading your responses.
Other thoughts.


-Easily accessible drive and parking lot (One field I used to play at had such a rough driveway that I lost my muffler to it!). The parking lot certainly does not need to be paved, but being close to the staging area is a HUGE advantage when you have a ton of gear to unpack.

-Access to free potable drinking water is nice.

-Basic concessions are nice (even microwavable burritos keep my friends and I happy).

-In the staging area covered picnic tables are really convenient, they keep your stuff dry if it rains and keeps the sun off you when it's hot.

-A good air compressor is a must. It's a massive pet peeve of mine to have a 4500psi tank and only get it filled to 2500psi.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:01 PM #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dude1it View Post
Pretty self explanatory...just looking into some things...have been talking about the "perfect field" for the industry with friends for a while...then looked around and realize we haven't had an extremely successful field in my area for a while (though I'm expecting this to change with a new field opening soon).

What would you consider the perfect paintball field??? - within reason...let's not pretend Bill Gates is looking into building something.

-Would it be open to airsoft as well?
If you want to make money yes. As a paintball idc for airsoft because its different. Airsoft is people trying to make it seem like its real.
-How much property would it be on?


-Days open?
Weekends. Weekdays by appointment. Unless you are in a busy area then maybe weekends and wed-friday evenings. You also have to face the fact if you have nightball its very hard to clean the bunkers in speedball.
-How many fields would it have?
CQB(Especially for airsofters), at least a trench or dunes field. Hyperball. and a speedball field.
-What types of fields would it include, how would they be organized/formatted? 180x100 for speedball(atleast) Perfect rentals? Tippmann 98's. As for electropneumatic i am not sure. I have heard buzz about the GOG enemy. Both speed and rec*
--Would the airball be open in winter? Lit for night play?
Depending on location. Remember if open late it is hard to clean them. Also Valken paint dries almost like a plastic so if you use them keep that in mind. And people love nightball! And keep in mind the fact if it is windy you will need a windbreak.
-Pricing, while still being profitable yet not scaring potential customers away?
Do not price high. You can get people by advertising. Church events bring money as well as birthday parties. that will start you off. Keep prices reasonable. Not too high, keep paint under 50. 40 is great.
-Would it need a bangin' pro-shop, or have online sales taken over to the point where less is acceptable?
gun sales make you very little money. as well as most apparel wont make much either. But online sales can make you money. Also being able to order in stuff for people is great. we have a catalog and they order from there.
-Types of events and number of events? Big prizes larger entry, small prizes smaller entry? Both? APPA ranked events?
If you have events make them range from large to small. You can get more experienced people in and the newbies. Recball events such as scenarios are also great for business.
-Interaction with sponsored team(s)? One or many? Extent of sponsorship?
If you have a sponsored team it is best to have them be decent. Sponsored teams bring regulars for people to play with. so this allows more traffic.
-Would they control tournament/rec player interaction? If so, how? When would competitive teams practice without taking away from rec play times (revenue in this area is important), for how long, and should discounts be applied to these teams traveling?
It really depends on if they are a god team. Traveling a D4 team is pointless. We allow them the full day control of speedball. And if rec ballers want to play they can when the team is not.
--PERSONALLY, I think it's extremely beneficial to have a successful, or at least nationally competitive sponsored team at your field...they bring other teams to practice, and give new/rec players something to look up to (should they practice, they get better, move up...friends start to play, take their place...one big cycle). I know of many fields that just cater to rec players with fear of tournament players being insensitive and scaring newer players away...I feel this doesn't need to happen...both tournament and rec play can be profitable if run correctly - both have different things to bring to the field (tournament = players/teams from out of town, role models.....rec = friends, player base, feeders to tournament players).


These are just some of the points I'd like you to consider in your posts - feel free to bring any more to the table. Thanks in advance, I look forward to reading your responses.
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in the mean time I present you with this:
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:54 PM #4
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Gracias.

I've been involved with fields that have had problems with the paint you've described, and as far as night play - was involved with a field that did that as well...really was a neat thing (Wednesday night lights they used to call it) - people actually showed up. Then again, that was in 2005/6 haha.
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Old 12-03-2012, 12:12 AM #5
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Gracias.

I've been involved with fields that have had problems with the paint you've described, and as far as night play - was involved with a field that did that as well...really was a neat thing (Wednesday night lights they used to call it) - people actually showed up. Then again, that was in 2005/6 haha.
Yeah, it all depends on the people who have time.

Nightball is alot of fun.

Advertising the field will help. And advertising for paintball does not need to be that expensive. Groupon. Living social. Facebook. Your website for the field. As well as post in your locations section on pbnation.

Now to get rentals(which is where you will make your money) you will want groups. Birthday parties. Church groups. team building(business get togethers) and advertising in movie theaters could also help. It will get expensive alot of people go to the movies.
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:10 AM #6
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IMO the biggest single reason not to do business at a place is based on who plays there. dBags kill businesses and fields a like.. focus on family friendly services at all levels.

Using a golf outing for example:
If I want to play a round of golf, I will enjoy my self more with my friends as opposed to your friends. The experience is more about interaction with my friends than playing the game itself... I think paintball fields forget this when the staffers mix the private groups with the walk-ons loners or up-charge the private groups for the privilege of being private.

This consideration should supersede all others. Family friendly, group focused.
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:01 AM #7
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Only problem I keep running into it some field is the forget that older adults play too, but they still design their fields for kids and teenagers like the bunkers being way too small.
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:50 AM #8
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Yeah, it all depends on the people who have time.

Nightball is alot of fun.

Advertising the field will help. And advertising for paintball does not need to be that expensive. Groupon. Living social. Facebook. Your website for the field. As well as post in your locations section on pbnation.

Now to get rentals(which is where you will make your money) you will want groups. Birthday parties. Church groups. team building(business get togethers) and advertising in movie theaters could also help. It will get expensive alot of people go to the movies.
Truth...and when paintball was booming I'd see flyers and signups for team tryouts in our local sports stores. THAT helped wonders. Advertising is not hard, everyone makes it seem more complicated than it really is.

Quote:
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IMO the biggest single reason not to do business at a place is based on who plays there. dBags kill businesses and fields a like.. focus on family friendly services at all levels.

Using a golf outing for example:
If I want to play a round of golf, I will enjoy my self more with my friends as opposed to your friends. The experience is more about interaction with my friends than playing the game itself... I think paintball fields forget this when the staffers mix the private groups with the walk-ons loners or up-charge the private groups for the privilege of being private.

This consideration should supersede all others. Family friendly, group focused.
Which is where the recball comes in. I agree, it should be very family friendly - why would you drop your kid off somewhere if you're not comfortable at that location? However, you need to take care of ALL of your customers (groups, rec players, tournament players). All parties can be taken care of - they probably would be playing at different times/different fields (parties vs. rec/tournament). I'm still big into taking care of the tournament players and not leaving them hanging as well (see cycle).


Quote:
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Only problem I keep running into it some field is the forget that older adults play too, but they still design their fields for kids and teenagers like the bunkers being way too small.
Haha, well trees only get so big, and airball bunkers are fixed sizes. As far as pallet and village sized bunkers go, I could see that being a problem in some cases.
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Old 12-03-2012, 12:50 PM #9
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Hard to tackle what the perfect field is but here are some problems or things that would be nice.

-Good pro shop, always great when you can get what you need if your missing an O-ring or something, or just to shop a little
-Plenty of refs, sucks waiting between games because there aren't enough refs
-proper number of fields to visitors-you dont need 14 different fields but you need enough so its not too crowded
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:32 PM #10
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..Which is where the recball comes in. I agree, it should be very family friendly - why would you drop your kid off somewhere if you're not comfortable at that location? However, you need to take care of ALL of your customers (groups, rec players, tournament players). All parties can be taken care of - they probably would be playing at different times/different fields (parties vs. rec/tournament). I'm still big into taking care of the tournament players and not leaving them hanging as well (see cycle).
I heard an ad on the radio where subway now is offering pizza... stupid.

point is: focus on too many things and nothing will be done well - and the business will loose ground to those business that do focus their attention.

Tournament players OR family groups etc.. pic one and focus. To try to serve both and expect to do well is stupid unless the local market is absent of any competition.
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:16 PM #11
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are you going to try to start a new paintball field or was that just a question?
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Old 12-03-2012, 05:43 PM #12
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Ideal for me:
Split the field. An NPPL/PSP field one one side, indoors and heated for the winter. This would open year round, all week.

The other side, a total scenario field. Maybe an abandoned school, lots of places to pop out. This school would be set in the middle of the woods, with multiple buildings to take and hold. Lots of cover around. I'd make that open only on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Weekdays by appointment. Also, airsofters can play in the weekdays as well by appointment. And definetly nights. That would be legit.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:19 PM #13
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Like said above you don't need 15+ fields like cpx does. I play there all the time and they only call 5 fields a day mostly because others are under construction or there just not in demand. I have been playing there for 5-6 years and I have only played at 7 fields
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:17 PM #14
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I heard an ad on the radio where subway now is offering pizza... stupid.

point is: focus on too many things and nothing will be done well - and the business will loose ground to those business that do focus their attention.

Tournament players OR family groups etc.. pic one and focus. To try to serve both and expect to do well is stupid unless the local market is absent of any competition.
I see what you're saying, I simply don't agree. I've seen fields cater to both just fine that have made it through the tough times. I go back to my belief that the cycle will take over (not in all cases obviously, but I've seen it happen time and time again and think it's relevant and proven). If you have room for both, cater to it. I know a field that caters only to rec players...it's fun to play rec - but the area supports a bunch of tournament players that now have to drive over 3 hours to play on mediocre teams because this field will not invest in the tournament scene. Talk to a bunch of rec players... guarantee you will hear "I'd love to play tournaments someday" repeated all day. Why should these players have to travel to another field to get a decent tournament scene, when it could be provided from that very player base? Not saying that every rec player will want to do this...it's not for everyone - but many do.
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:55 PM #15
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Oh, btw on the proshop deal:
I think it would be ok not to have a hugely stocked proshop. Maybe some tanks. But make sure to have masks. Lots of them, especially stuff like Dye i4's, Proflexes, V-Force Profiler, etc.
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Old 12-04-2012, 06:16 AM #16
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I see what you're saying, I simply don't agree. I've seen fields cater to both just fine that have made it through the tough times. I go back to my belief that the cycle will take over (not in all cases obviously, but I've seen it happen time and time again and think it's relevant and proven). If you have room for both, cater to it. I know a field that caters only to rec players...it's fun to play rec - but the area supports a bunch of tournament players that now have to drive over 3 hours to play on mediocre teams because this field will not invest in the tournament scene. Talk to a bunch of rec players... guarantee you will hear "I'd love to play tournaments someday" repeated all day. Why should these players have to travel to another field to get a decent tournament scene, when it could be provided from that very player base? Not saying that every rec player will want to do this...it's not for everyone - but many do.
I love a good burger and I love a good pizza. But why would I go to a burger joint if I wanted a pizza?.. Simple: I wouldn't.. Recball and Tournament ball may share clients that enjoy both flavors but that does not mean that once business should try to please everyone. Pick one, focus and specialize in being the best at that one thing.

I suggest the 22 Immutable Laws of Branding by Al and Laura Ries.
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:56 AM #17
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A HUGE field with hills on both sides, and creeks down below between the camps, so that each player HAS to cross at least one creek to get to the other camp. Lots of large trees, and NO huge bunkers to camp behind. Real woods, fast play, and a great group of players, that play with honor, and call themselves out when hit.

Fires at both camps in the cold, and free water and cookies. And an outhouse in case it is needed.

Oh, and all of it FREE.

And in my backyard, so I don't have to drive anywhere.


Oh wait, I just described Trails of Doom...
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Old 12-04-2012, 03:18 PM #18
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I thought about this for some time.

I'd have a larger fort (80x120) with 4 or 6 towers. Two enterances.

Inside the fort, I'd have an indoor air field. This would be in the center of the structure, and other than a couple of small buildings/offices, this would be my main building in the fort.

The fort would act as security to hold airtanks, rentals, property of the field.

A hyperball field would be someplace 300' from the fort. Something that can support 10 on 10 with large black pipes.

I'd also have a cressent shaped woodsball course on 18 acres of all wooded pathways with platforms overlooking certain sections.

For urban assault, if there was a 100' road, leading towards with small 2/3 room buildings with no roofs (say 10-12 on each side) with a push personelle carrier to move down the road for the invaders. It allows for non-motorized veichles to be played in a setting that resembles the video games kids play today.

For my last place, I'd use a barn, two sides, large open are, make it three stories. This way there are 2 games indoor and 4 games outdoor.
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Old 12-04-2012, 05:50 PM #19
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I love a good burger and I love a good pizza. But why would I go to a burger joint if I wanted a pizza?.. Simple: I wouldn't.. Recball and Tournament ball may share clients that enjoy both flavors but that does not mean that once business should try to please everyone. Pick one, focus and specialize in being the best at that one thing.

I suggest the 22 Immutable Laws of Branding by Al and Laura Ries.
What about a cheeseburger pizza?

I'd say a field with turf/grass with a couple different airball setups (PSP/NPPL). If its meant as a field for everyone, then a few other type fields such as hyberball and tires or what not.
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Old 12-05-2012, 01:46 PM #20
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A Jimmy Johns in the pro shop would be nice also.
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Old 12-05-2012, 02:02 PM #21
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A Jimmy Johns in the pro shop would be nice also.
They would deliver to you on the field mid game
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