Getting to know “The Player”

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copyright - Sheldon Carless Photography 2015

There's always space for shenanigans as long as they are well within the rules. Photo Credit - Sheldon Carless Photography 2015

Photo Credit: Nikolaus Bonnay Photography

Photo Credit: Nikolaus Bonnay Photography

Photo Credit: Sheldon Carless Photography

Photo Credit: Sheldon Carless Photography

Photo Credit : Sheldon Carless Photography

Photo Credit : Sheldon Carless Photography

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He's arguably the biggest Dye fanboy out there...

Thanks for noticing, but here's the truth behind this.  I'm relatively new to the sport, as I've only been playing for about 5 years or so, and in those 5 years I can say that I've shot my fair share of the milsim flagship markers out there from all the big name manufacturers, and I wasn't thrilled with any of them, as I required 3-4 of them to accommodate my varied playing style.

It took me 2 years to find a solution to my multi playing style dilemma. I wanted a marker that I could use in any kind of game style (magfed or hopper fed), a marker that could use a hopper for regular paint but could switch to a first strike mag at the flick of a switch, a marker with multiple firing modes, a marker that was comfortable to use with a mask on
(which is surprisingly not the case with many paintball markers), a marker that was customizable in many ways, a marker that was consistent enough that I could sling paint accurately as well as gog(gle) somebody 250 ft away with a first strike. KxfbSm6I  wanted a marker that would grow with me and my ever evolving playing style, and this was the one that worked best for me. And like anything I own that I'm passionate about, I studied it inside and out. I came to really understand how it works, what makes it tick, how to trouble shoot it, how to improve its performance, and how to maximize my utilization of it.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that the Dam is infallible, or the best marker out there. No, no way.Track me down on the field and I'll be quick to point out what I consider to be its shortfalls, and where it needs improvement. It is the first version after all... (Can't wait for v2 btw). Every marker has it's pro's and con's, and every player has their own needs, wants, and expectations of a marker. The Dam was the marker for me.

There once was a one point in time where  I was obnoxiously promoting it. Heck, I used to troll the hell out of the Empire D'Fender community and insult their choice in similarly priced markers every chance I could (back when they were comparable in price).Once it was  brought to my attention that I was being an obnoxious p-o-s, I immediately tried my best to stomp that out. It took me a while to figure out, but not everybody in milsim wants to play magfed, as its all personal preference.  I hate the mag-fed elitist type of players out there, and I made it a point to stop, as it wasn't beneficial to anything this small, tight knit, community stood for.

Later, decided to focus my attention on more positive things, such as helping out fellow Dye Dam users in the community. In a matter of months I unknowingly became one of the go-to guys, the unofficial authority, on various Dam user issues. My facebook notifications were starting to be too much for me to handle,  and to save my sanity I registered damdatabase.com where I began to compile the most common user questions, tips and tricks in efforts to provide fellow users a better overall experience.

3 years, 2 Dams, 2 box rotors, and many mags into my arsenal, I was contacted by somebody at Dye, and they brought up my website in conversation. The second they mentioned the database I instantly thought I was about to be sued for something like trademark infringement and immediately told them that I would take the site down, but instead I was laughed. It turns out they they noticed how much time and effort I had put into the brand, and that they wanted me to get officially certified so that I could legitimately fix them for people. Needless to say this was a huge relief, and an even bigger honour. They went on to say that if I passed DM15 and Dam certification that they would gladly sponsor me, as long as I keep providing users with support that is.

So if that makes me a fan boy, then so be it, I'm a Dye fanboy.

This guy is so full of himself, he loves the attention, and is always promoting himself...

I'm not too entirely sure how I feel about this statement. I'm sure this sentiment is shared by players some out there, but I'm going to take advantage of this self authored, media rich, scalable, multi platform, world wide website to prove them wrong... Dough!

Well here's the truth behind all of that. I am one of the lucky few paintballers out there that live in proximity to some awesome fields, but moreover some of the most incredibly talented, self sacrificing photographers out there. When you have guys like Sheldon Carless, Jennifer Cobierski, Pixie PicsDarlene St. George, Nikolaus Steven Bonnay, Eoin Pollock, Callum Rutherford, Adam Kattis, Judi Nelson, etc. taking some incredibly candid bad ass pictures of you in during a battle, you almost don't have a choice but to share them with people, whether it's via facebook, or any other forms of social media.

YNHkWXxThe photographs also serve a practical purpose too, for example, when a question is posted that asks about "the best chest rig" or "how do you - blah blah blah", I'm going to post a picture to explain it quick and easy. Does it get misconstrued as bragging or showing off, yeah sometimes, but thats not always my intent... well unless, that is, I'm posting to a  "show off your gear"/"pics of the best setup" thread, then yeah, thats down right showing off, but that is the time and place for it after all.

So this all begs the question, if I'm not full of myself, or love the attention, and am not trying to constantly promote myself, then why the Youtube page, website, and instagram account? Well the answer is simple, I went to school for graphic design/multimedia/web design,  and even though I've decided to deviate away from that career path, I still want to keep those skills, because as we all know, what you don't use you lose. You can search long and hard, and aside from my first 2-3 ever made videos circa 2012, you'll never see me begging for subscribers or views. I simply don't care for them. Yes, I'll share some crazy or cool game footage in a recent game, but not much more than that. I don't care for internet points or putting the time and effort into youtube ad conversion dollars. I'm busy enough as it is.

Buddy always posts pics of him and his Dams...

Actually, I've always posted pictures of my markers ever since I first started playing a good 5 years ago. Looking back at my facebook account (before it got shut down for a harmless S.A.S. April fools prank on Steve Kaltenbach where I changed my name to his and proclaimed I was ordering all of SAS to sell off their markers and switch to airsoft, which he thought was hillarious btw.), I remember posting many pics of my beautifully staged and decked out TM-7 with bipod, an ungodly amount of crazy unnecessary attachments and grossly unnecessary 8x crosshair scope.  Then there was my T8.1 with hundreds of co2 cartridges, my empire Trracer, Spyder E-MR5, my M17, yada yada yada.eraseThe difference is that I'm a little more knowledgable, and involved in the community than I was 2-3 years ago, and that ends up making the photos as well as my presence a little more pervasive than before and than other users. It's easy for people to say that I always post pics of Dams and that I'm a huge fan boy,  but the truth is I only own Dam's, and they are more noticeable because of it.

Yes, Dams are pricey. Yes, Dams are considered to be higher end. No, there is no good reason for anybody to own 3 of them, but here's my justification for doing so (not that I owe anybody a god damn explanation for anything I do. Its my hobby, its my money, I can do anything I damn well please with hit, so deal with it... but I digress). I own three of them. Two were acquired for the sole purpose of having the ability to Dual wield.12144693_1636334013304112_7476597331091852869_n Why? Because its fun as hell, and I love doing it. And as for the third? Ever since becoming "the dam guy" at my local fields, people started asking me to try my gear out, and me being fairly protective of my gear, I figured why not grab one just for that reason. It's a loaner. The custom tag says so itself. The decision was especially simple to make since I've made the necessary connections to obtain one at a greatly subsidized price for promotional purposes, and its done its job, as it's convinced many players to go with this platform or give mag-fed paintball as a whole a try. Everybody wins in the end.

Regarding my two main markers, I got both of them through trades, or selling my other markers.  The first one was a product of selling a TM7, T8, Tracerr, and E-EM5... All for profit. It's amazing what people will pay for a well maintained, spit shined marker paired with a half decent red dot sight. The second I ended up receiving in a rare trade opportunity. I randomly stumbled  across a craigslist paintball ad where a user was looking to ditch his brand new, used once Dyecam Dam for an M17. Reason being? He didn't like having to buy batteries, and didn't want to risk a battery dying on him in battle.erase So he ended up taking my brand new $330 Milsig M17, 8 Mags, and a couple hundred bucks for a marker worth a good $1,850 at the time, with 4 mags, and an upgraded bolt.

The second dam I bought used, and ended up paying something along the lines of $700-800 for it, and the box rotor for $200-300 for. These items - new - go for a combined price of around $2,650 taxes in. Getting them for less than half of that made it a no brainer.

The way I see it, as long as they are all being used, and sometimes even all at the same time, then its justified. Otherwise, they can be viewed as merely being a "status symbol" (which is ridiculous), and that stuff doesn't bode well in my books. I'll be sure to sell them the minute they aren't being utilized the way I intended.

Pet Peeves, what are they?...

I've got more than I care to share, but here's a bunch, and in no particular order.

Milsim/Magfed Elitists.

Ok, we get it, magfed is the best in the world. One shot, one kill. Takes more skill to be magfed. Hoppers obstruct your view. Speedballers dress up in bright coloured clothing and look silly. You save money by only shooting one bag of paint a season. Your new 8x scope will allow you to reach out and touch somebody 300 feet away, and your new team patches are gods gift to man.

It all comes down to personal preference. If I had a nickel for every time I saw their eyes light up once a speed baller showed up behind them, only to  basically rescue them from being pinned down, I'd be able to afford a brand new barrel bag. Shut up, and play.

Players who don't RTFM.

Being somebody that regulars at a bunch of marker community pages, I've been exposed to various examples of proud ignorance, and gratuitous levels of entitlement. Players that demand answers to questions which can be solved with, quite literally, a google search rank lower in my books than wipers.  Yes, its possible that some of these players sometimes used markers without manuals, but you can access those too - for free - online.

Players with an overwhelming sense of entitlement.

"What the hell, I ordered this part 2 weeks ago, where the hell is it? How long does it take to get me a ______". I've got a question for them, aside from the build a salad bar at pizza hut, when is the last time you designed or produced anything? Do you really know about the design process? Do you know how many suppliers go into making something? What their shipment dates are like? Odds are, no they don't. And yet, they are quick to pull the trigger on bad mouthing paintball companies, and 1 star reviewing their pages. This right here is one of the reasons paintball companies come and go as fast as they do.

"But Milsig sent me a defective o-ring, and now I can't go to X-Event, they are the worst company in the world". Why not borrow a friends marker? But then again, being somebody that whines and complains about everything, you probably don't have any.

Semi-Only rules at games where all marker classes are allowed.

I guess I've saved the best for last on this one. How the heck is it fair to limit an already limited rate of fire (single trigger markers) and provide an advantage to speedball markers (double trigger markers).

Here's what I'm using

Helping each client reach full potential

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