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Different Types of Airsoft Games You Can Play

Posted by Matt Meraz on 2nd Jun 2022

Different Types of Airsoft Games You Can Play

There are many titles for airsoft games out there.  With so many different people hosting and putting on events, what's the difference?

When I started playing about 15 years ago, we started off getting a group of people together to play a small game.  At that time, there were no formal airsoft fields in Colorado, so we would make do with what we had: National Forrest Land or Private Property.  We played a series of 15 minute games, including elimination, hostage rescues, ambush scenarios, or capture the flag.  The game types were constantly evolving to bring a new level of challenge to all of the players.

I attended my first multi-day national operation in the year 2000 called AS2K.  This event was far different than our weekly "recreational" games.  We played objective-based scenarios that lasted 3+ hours.  The field was also substantially larger than our typical 5 - 10 acres and expanded out to 100.  There were about 120 players at our first Op from all over the country.

There are 3 major types of airsoft games

As the games have evolved over the years, we now basically classify our games into 3 types. These are:

1. Recreational Airsoft Games

2. Mission or Skirmish Games

3. Operations 

Recreational Airsoft Games

The recreational game consists of a series of shorter length games, usually 15 - 30 minutes.  This game type is very simple - it has a very basic objective to win and is great for younger players or for anyone who just wants to have a good time slinging BBs.  These are the types of games you'll see at the Flat Acres Farm Airsoft Field.  

Recreational airsoft games are played between two or more teams with the objective of eliminating all opposing players. Players typically wear protective gear and use replica Airsoft guns to shoot at each other. Airsoft pellets do not typically cause serious injury, making the sport suitable for younger players and beginners.

Mission Games

The Mission is a longer more complex objective-based game.  Scenarios in a mission might be 2 hours or more.  The mission will have multiple objectives that will take a team substantially longer to achieve them.  

This is a great game if you're looking to challenge yourself as a player and go beyond conventional recreational play. Mission style airsoft games are a type of airsoft game that simulates military or law enforcement missions. Players typically divide into teams and attempt to complete objectives such as rescuing hostages or capturing enemy territory. These games can be played indoors or outdoors, and often use specially designed airsoft arenas with obstacles and cover to provide a realistic experience.

Airsoft Operations

The last type of event is an Operation.  A great example of an Operation is the Lion Claws series of Operations around the country.  These are multi-day events that take place on amazing AOs (Area of Operations).  

They are designed to challenge players physically, tactically, and strategically.  There are multiple objectives and elements in play that require a command structure in order to effectively manage the players and keep them on mission.  This is type of play is the pinnacle of airsoft, and it's what keeps me coming back for more.  

Here is a video from Operation Lion Claws:

No matter what type of game you're playing, make sure to be safe, have fun, and keep the integrity that is the cornerstone of what we do.

About the Author

Matt Meraz is one of the owners of Fox Airsoft. He has been playing airsoft over 20 years including leading one of the oldest and most experienced airsoft team's in the country - Swamp Fox 12. The team has attended over 40 major national and international operations.

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