One of the most satisfying moments in an airsoft game can be found through defending a well thought-out base. As you lay down suppressive fire on the enemy from a well protected position, you get the feeling of a special sort of superiority that can’t be found in any other situation on the field.
Bases can be constructed or found in many ways, and may not even be thought out ahead of time. I have had many instances where the certain configuration of cover and brush has lent itself to becoming an impromptu defensive base of operations during a game. I have taken advantage of these “natural bases” to give my team the edge on the field.
Sometimes my bases have been more planned out, but this doesn’t mean they were complicated facilities. During a game, I established a hasty base with a battle buddy using just some logs and a ghillie poncho that I had in my pack. Although it wasn’t the most tacticool or best laid out bases I have ever used, it accomplished its purpose to protect and camouflage us while we laid down fire on the enemy team.
(Gear Note: I highly recommend picking up a ghillie poncho if you get the chance. They are way faster to get on and off during a game and can be adapted to provide a temporary source of soft cover for camouflage or to hold gear like a net. Although not as stealthy as a full set of ghillie gear, the price and function is perfect for airsoft!)
Back to the primary purpose of this post, how to defend your base effectively. Below are my main tips for keeping your base as secure as possible and general tactics you should use while defending.
Get a Location with Cover
No matter the size of the base, or the amount of time you have to set it up, focus on finding a location that will give you maximum cover. Even if the base is established, move around it and get an idea of the shooting angles it will provide to both your team and the enemy. If possible, try to get a look at it from the enemy’s perspective. Sometime by simply looking at the outside of the base, you can find weak points to avoid or fortify.
While you are in the base, see if you can add cover or adjust the current cover to provide better defense and shooting angles. Tables, logs, and even brush laying around can all provide adequate cover to keep the BBs out of your base.
Set a Perimeter
Once you are in the base, get an idea for how far you can hit enemies, where they will be coming from, and what kind of defensive positions you have outside the base. By “thinking outside the base” you can find better locations that will provide “mini-bases” to hit the enemy from without letting them walk right up to the main base. By having a few team members in forward positions, they can provide better firepower and surprise the enemy. When the enemy begins to overwhelm them, they can fall back to the main base. This was a very common tactic for German machine gun operators in World War 2. They would slowly fall back from multiple firing positions, maintaining strong firepower and making the Allies fight for every foot of ground.
Know When To Leave
Not every fight can be won. Sometimes you have to give some ground to win the overall game. If your position is about to be overrun, use an escape route (preplanned if possible) to deny the enemy any satisfaction from putting you out of the game. Fall back, regroup, and fight the enemy on your own terms.
The good news is, if you need to recapture the base later, you now have significant knowledge about the base and can use that to make the offensive operation easier. 🙂
All in all, base defense will always be a tricky thing to pull off effectively. However, when done correctly, it is one of the best things in airsoft to experience. Thank you so much to my faithful reader, Delta 1, for giving me the inspiration for this post through a message on the official Airsoft Warrior Facebook page. If any of you have an idea for a post, please feel free to share it with me either through the comments here on the blog or through any of my Airsoft Warrior social media!