In typical airsoft skirmishes, each player will take on a different role to tackle the battlefield in various styles and tactics. Roles are often redundant in close quarter battles, however in larger skirmishes and military simulation combat zones, adopting a specific role and duty is essential. The following is a list of standard airsoft roles you can find at your local field.
- Support gunner
- Combat Medic
- Designated Marksman
As a support gunner, you can expect to get through around 600 rounds a game as you provide covering fire and keep enemies pinned with heavy fire. Due to the aggressive nature of the role, larger machine guns are required to keep enemies at bay with high amounts of BB pellets fired. To be a good support gunner you need to be aware of your enemies and make sure they feel under threat from your advances. Take cover and keep suppressing their movements with cover fire whilst your team makes their move.
PRO TIP: Hit metal covers where the enemy is hiding to create loud distracting bangs to keep them aware of your presence.
Often a favourite with beginners, this role is actually intended for those with experience and higher-quality equipment and skills. Without a good rifle and scope, it is hard to achieve the distance shots needed to be an accurate and effective sniper. A good sniper will tactically place themselves in a position where they can pick off enemy targets to support the main team. Some skirmish sites may not have slopes for stealthy shooting, so a good sniper should be ready to take enemies out alongside the main squad.
PRO TIP: Don’t forget to account for the effect of wind on pellets when firing from great distances!
The rifleman is the front line gunner, leading the charge and often taking the hits. This means this position often sees the most action, making for a fast-paced and more intense skirmish. The rifleman is expected to keep eyes on opponents as they push the team forward, sweeping for traps, ambushes and generally making sure their team is safe. This role can also be dedicated to a scout, or in collaboration with one, either way, the rifleman will be at the forefront of the battle.
PRO TIP: The rifleman doesn’t often carry a sidearm as they rely solely on their rifle, the pistol was only introduced for Spec-Ops style players.
The explosives expert. The grenadier is responsible for utilising explosives for the best possible tactical advantage. They sit in a support position behind the front line players and have a few key roles. The first role is to break up large enemy groups by launching or throwing grenades to send them running. The second role is to flush out enemies from buildings if they are holding out somewhere. The third is to intimidate. A true grenadier with launcher is a force to be reckoned with and many groups will change tactics if their opponent has one in the squad.
PRO TIP: Carry a revolver or other small firearm as true grenadiers will get through explosives at a quick pace.
Combat medics are only required when medics have been allowed in the milsim airsoft skirmish. Some games will use the medic scenario whereby players once hit will have to shout for medics or stay on one knee until healed. This can be useful if players are behind cover and shot in the arm for example, then a medic can navigate the field healing players. In this sense, the loadout needs to be light enough to run with but heavy enough to defend yourself with. The medic will typically carry a small rifle and will often be required to have a medic kit for immersion purposes.
PRO TIP: Stay out of fire! A dead medic means a dead squad and a quick end to the game.
Those playing the designated marksman (DM) fall in behind the main firefighting squad and pick off enemies at a distance, typically with a modified AEG rifle. The modifications allow the AEG to shoot further with more accurate sights like a reflex or red dot sight. DMs are required to call out targets and weaknesses in enemy’s defences whilst shooting just behind the main squad.
PRO TIP: Keep in with your squad enough to not get hit. Shorter players have a tactical advantage as a DM!