Grabbing the Flag
Many games use flags as the objective, either with one central flag
which must be taken to the enemy/friendly base, or more commonly one
flag in each base which must be captured and returned to your own. In
these games it is vital to concentrate on capturing the flag and not
just on shooting out enemy players - in theory your team could win without
a single kill. Frequently a team that is in a sufficiently strong position
to take the flag sits tight and slugs it out, and the game ends in a
draw rather than a victory. More often than not the flag will need to
be taken while under fire from those defending, and there are a number
of tactics both individual and group to increase the chance of success.
Watch the Clock
About a minute before the end of the game is an excellent time for
a suicidal flag run. If you get shot you won't miss much of the game,
and the opposing team won't have much time to capitalise if a lot of
people in your team are shot out.
Go Unarmed (possibly)
Leaving your gun behind, (particularly if you have a pump) is often
a good idea. You can run faster without it, use both hands to get a
grip on the flag, and climb over any barricades etc. When running along
you don't have much chance of hitting anyone anyway, so having a gun
is of limited use. Rely on the fire of your teammates to discourage
anyone attacking you too aggressively. When considering this, think
about the following: Is it near the end of the game time? This is a
very high risk strategy and it could mean waiting for the rest of the
game in the dead zone. Are there enemy very close to the flag? If so
you will need to shoot them first because they are unlikely to miss
at point blank range. Are there obstacles around the flag which having
both hands would be a definite advantage to negotiate? Are there plenty
of team-mates around who will compensate for not being able to fire
Don't run up to the flag, stop, grab it and then turn back. While
you are stationary you will be an easy target, and you are prolonging
the most dangerous stage of the operation. Instead plan your run so
that you can go straight through the flag base, grabbing the flag as
you go past and out the other side without slowing down.
Flag Team Play
Guard the Flag Carrier
A common mistake in amateur paintball is failing to protect a fellow
team member who has made a successful flag grab. They can easily be
waylaid on their way back by the enemy, and if they are carrying the
flag it will be difficult for them to defend themselves one handed.
At least one player should run with the flag carrier, so that if he
is shot they can pick it up and carry on, and another couple of players
should accompany them at a wider distance and attempt to stop enemy
players even getting close to the flag carrier.
When someone else is running for the flag and the entire opposing
team's attention, this is the ideal opportunity to bag some kills. Opposing
players will either chase after him, or stand up and fire without worrying
about their own cover or paying attention to you. If you're ready to
pick them off, you should get some easy targets.
When games are played with a central flag which must be returned to
the friendly base these can sometimes be won by sending one brave soul
to sprint for it and grab it at the very start of the game. If you decide
to go for this then they should leave their gun behind for faster running.
This should be carried forward by a team mate in case they are driven
back without the flag and need to continue to play the game in the normal