Saw woodsball paintball on ESPN in the mid-90's which sparked an interest with my brothers, neighbor and I. We picked up some cheap BE Tiger Sharks playing outlaw in the woods behind our houses that we built up with random wood from old tree houses, pallets, felled trees, old road signs and dug out ditches/mounds. We also played on some old slag/cinder piles down near the local tracks.
In middle-school we went to spectate at the '99 Zap IAO here in Pittsburgh (I remember because Spyder Cup was the following year). I bought a Model 98 with 14" ss All American barrel and 24oz chromoly CO2 tank - literally 4' long, a damn walking stick. My bros and friends then bought an F4 Illustrator, Piranha, Autococker and Micromag. I eventually bought that Ultra Nickel Micromag and my brothers pre-Vision Impulses. We played regularly with a local team throughout high school.
I collected several Model 98s (Model98.org was a favorite of mine as well) but got more into 'Mags and other inline mechs after joining the Army in '07. Exposed to MCB and AO around then as well. Went on hiatus in '12 while stationed in Hawaii due to my gear all packed up in a storage unit and multiple deployments. I did get out a handful of times while on island playing at the old Bellows Air Force Base.
Recently moved back to PA, going to school, bought a house and just unpacked all my old gear last fall. Going to hit the local fields this year - thankfully there are several good ones and a local mech/pump contingent.