Battle Creek Paintball, West Milford, NJ
My thoughts (text version below):
Full disclosure: My team, Zombie Defense Force, ran a big game at Battle Creek in October of 2012, and as a result, members of the team who worked that game. myself included, received a number of days of free play and paint. I want to have that in the open, lest there be any concern over a possible conflict of interest.
Safety is pretty good. Not the best, but it's not a place I have to worry about holes in the netting or something. No briefing, but daily chrono checks. Refs are generally on top of masks and barrel covers, some are better than others as far as attentiveness and paint checks, but nobody's taking a break for a smoke during the games or anything.
The fields are also good, and much better than they used to be. Some legit woods fields are open now, there are also some more hybrid fields, and in the last couple of years a nice speedball setup, if that's your thing. Between reopening fields that the previous owners didn't use, and adding a new field, there are now about twice as many actual fields as there were under the previous owners, and they are generally more built up and better maintained then they were.
I didn't mention this in the video, but the field has started running big games/scenarios (3 in the last 6 months or so), and while there are some growing pains associated with hosting 150+ players, the effort to attract more players through those games is admirable.
The price is on the higher end of the spectrum in the area, $35 for entry and air, BYOP. This is the same as On Target, less than Top Gun, and more than Long Live Paintball, Cousins Paintball (Manchester and Staten Island), and ABC Paintball, which are the main fields in the general area. So, higher side of the spectrum, but not unreasonable, especially for BYOP.
My problem is with the players, specifically one of the home teams. This is a group that like to stomp on the new players, does not calibrate their play (or paint expenditure) to their opponents, and does not split up to make the teams even. Not cool. And since they're a home team, they're buddy buddy with the refs, and nothing changes even when people point out the problem.
Are you talking about Wolfpack?
I think if he was looking to call them out by name he would have...
I was referring to the Blackhawks. I didn't see the need to name them because I figured if you play there regularly you would know, and if you don't play there, then it doesn't matter anyway. But that's who it is.
I thought the Blackhawks were gone with the old management? They were a bunch of spray-n-prayers and wipers from way back then. A bunch of us witnessed their evil ways the last time we played there when it was still New Breed. I thought that everyone was wise to their ways and wanted nothing to do with them. This news makes me want to go play there now -- to shoot up some cheaters and the refs as well if they think it wise to cover for their buddies. I'm not a big fan of speedball in the 1st place, but players like these validate the generalization that they're all the same -- arrogant, cheating, overshooting bullies.
Played there in January (I think) for a small scenario, since it was being produced by another team I'll limit my feedback to field/management issues...
Reffing: this may have just been one bad apple, but there was one ref in the parking lot who decided that, instead of helping us to lash down our tent that kept catching the wind, was going to stand there watching us and yell at us to do a better job or he'd make us take it down. I don't pay good money and drive an hour and a half to get scolded by someone who's job is, technically, customer service. This was before we even hit the field so regrettably, it did set a pretty crappy first impression. Once on the field, refs who knew what was going on or were willing to do anything regarding a paint check were few and far between.
No dedicated chrono area... In fact, the chrono station moved a few times through the day and wasn't very well enforced after the initial pre-game check.
Air situation was terrible. By the middle of the day we were lucky to be getting 2.5K fills. Not a big deal when you're running a big tank but since I only have a 48/4500, it put a big cap on how much paint I could carry onto the field. This was with roughly 200 players so I'm sure on a rec day the air would be fine, but figured it was worth pointing out anyway.
Uneven sides/teams switching sides- Basically management didn't seem to track what sides had what numbers. One side clearly did a better job recruiting but then several teams who were trying to help even things out wound up overkilling it by switching to the other side, and the people in the registration area didn't seem to have a clue as to what was going on or what to do about it.
The place just generally felt unorganized, which I'll grant could have been because of a big showing at a relatively small field. I've never played recball there, but as far as scenarios go I'd be more inclined to spend my money elsewhere, to be honest.
My experiences have also been that the place is generally unorganized... I like Liberty paintball more for rec woods play and scenarios.
I have friends on Wolfpack - they're usually great about helping newer players etc.
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