Tuesday, August 14, 2007


After finishing the summer semester, I organized to go with my friends to go and have a team-building experience: paintball!. I had never played this "game"before and was a little anxious about it, and I think all my other friends were as well.

We drove about 20 minutes out of Pittsburgh and arrived to this outdoor field full of nice props. It was raining throughout the trip so this would add some interesting realism to the game. After getting our gear (a gun an a mask) we were explained the rules of safe playing and where taken to our first game. The game consisted of one team trying to run uphill through a forest and reach a fort where we had to plant a flag. The other team had to stay in the fort and repel the attack. I was in charge of taking the flag.

After we reached the top of the hill we started getting shot at. I remember that I was worried about that point if I would "get into the game" and duck into the bushed and dirt. Ohhh boy did I crawled into the mud. After trying various strategies, we decided that I was going to have covering fire to help gain a higher ground. After I started running I received my first shot ever. In that particular moment you know if you like the game or not. The pain lasts only about a second, but I didn't care, all I wanted was to get there again with my team.

We played all afternoon in different scenarios: old scrapyard, inflatable obstacles, etc. Some had different rules like trying to get the other team out while others where more strategic in which you had to capture the enemy's flag.

I've posted some pictures (others are available here), but you have to get a feeling of what it is like to have 14 Software Engineers trying to shoot each other. Everyone has a strategy and think they are the smarter player, until they get a couple of shoots out of nowhere. Then every team start getting their own natural leader that organizes the assault and trusting the wisdom (and firing coverage) of the group.

All in all, it was an amazing experience and I had a blast. I can't wait to go play this again.

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