Zombie paintball hayrides are popping up all over the place during Halloween as the new fad in haunted house rides. These games are safe for all ages and a super fun way of learning how to shoot a paintball gun. This style of zombie paintball is simple; everyone gets in a hay wagon with a loaded paintball gun. As the riders are driven through a course, they shoot at people dressed up as the undead. In most games geared for the general public, the zombies are not armed so they do not shoot back. The poor zombies in this game are basically scary pieces of meat you get to blast with paintballs. As a worker in the trenches, the job of being one of the zombies leaves much to be desired. However, if done correctly with lots of effort into props, details, storyline, and the right equipment, the zombie hayride can be a scary and exciting experience you will never forget.
Fortunately, you don’t have to wait until Halloween to play zombie paintball. There are several other game variations that are even more fun. These games can be played any time of the year in the field behind your house. If you’re a paintball enthusiast and play frequently, try some of these zombie game variations for a different spin on the same old game. You can also play zombie paintball as a Halloween or birthday party theme your guests will never forget. When playing recreationally, you won’t need a lot of extra paintball supplies like a professional field or business would have. However the more elaborate the costumes and props are, the more fun and memorable your game will be should your budget allow. When you don’t have to cater to the general public, you won’t need a giant hay wagon to carry around players. You can also have the option of arming the zombies with paintball guns so they can shoot back for a much more interesting and exciting game.
To play zombie paintball, you will need at least 8-10 people, however the more the better. Games with more people equal more zombies and much more fun. Split up into two teams with numbers specific to the game variation you decide upon. One game has two teams, zombies vs. humans, each armed with paintball guns. Obviously, each team tries to eliminate the other but the spin is this… zombies can only be killed with head shots, they can be hit in the body repeatedly without being eliminated. If a zombie shoots a human, the human is incapacitated for a period of time (5 minutes) and then can continue to play as a zombie trying to eliminate humans. No matter how good the human team is, eventually the zombie team overwhelms the humans nearly every time. This is because head shots are very difficult in paintball if you don’t know what you’re doing or don’t have a precise enough marker. Considering this, split your teams up in the beginning with slightly less players as zombies and more players on the human team.
Another fun variation of zombie paintball is best played with a larger group. This game divides the players up into three teams; two human teams and one zombie group. The two human teams are divided into one with guns and the other without. It’s the job of the gun carrying human team to protect the unarmed team while they travel through zombie infested wasteland. The zombie’s jobs are to eliminate the protectors so they can eat the unarmed humans. It’s best if the armed human team outnumbers the unarmed players whenever possible (for example, of 8 players; 3 are unarmed, 5 have guns and protect the 3). This game is super fun and requires strategy from both sides if they want to win. A good rule to follow is zombies must shoot the armed humans to eliminate them but are not allowed to shoot the unarmed group, they must have physical contact with them for elimination. While this can be a tap on the back or a full on tackle, this adds a whole new level of excitement to an already fast paced, adrenaline filled game.
Besides the usual individual gear, you will not need a lot of extra supplies to play zombie paintball. However the zombies will require a few specifics. No matter how you decide to play, zombies are going to get hit with the most paintballs, so their protective equipment must be a priority. If you’re setting up a paintball hayride, your zombies must wear protective gear from head to toe. This includes shin guards, knee/elbow pads, protective vest and/or armored shirt, arm/forearm padding, gloves, neck protector and goggles. For zombies, paintball goggles are best to wear rather than full face masks so the protective eye wear doesn’t interfere with face paint if you use this. If you decide to go with scary masks instead, goggles are the best choice to fit over the mask. Choose zombie masks knowing you will also be adding protective eye wear. For example, either choose a very loose mask so paintball goggles can be worn underneath or a very tight mask (or face paint) for outer wear goggles. Cheap vinyl paintball jumpsuits are also available and great for covering zombies up for a unified look and also offer a bit more protection.
Before playing, decide on other fun details of the game that determine skill level of the players. For example, do you want fast or slow zombies? Slow zombies that lumber around are easy targets better for beginner players, but very hard on the zombie players. Fast zombies is much more fun and scarier but make the game better suited for the adventurous type. One of the biggest decisions is what you want your zombies to wear so you can distinguish them from the human players. Will they wear scary Halloween masks, face paint or simple colored bands around their arms? Obviously the arm band option is the cheapest and easiest route, but spending time, effort and money on the details will create a game that will never be forgotten. The vinyl coveralls come in either bright hunter orange or camouflage. Orange makes your zombies stick out and easy to see, while camo helps them hide for a much more challenging game. Finally, glow in the dark paintballs are available to make playing at dusk or night very fun and right with the theme.