Whether you are an Airsoft newbie, or an old Pro, being equipped with some basic gear can certainly make the difference out on the battlefield. Aside from buying some gear to stow your accessories or gear that just looks plain cool, there are some items that should be considered a must-have.
Basic equipment such as Eye Protection is a must! Even if you think you are safe without it, or your safe because there are rules governing where and how far away you can shoot an opponent from, accidents can happen. Trust me, hindsight is not something you want to draw on after the fact. A good helmet and gloves will also serve you well. While it won’t kill you, getting hit on the knuckles or in the back of your head can sting like hell. Let’s take a look at some gear you can start out with.
I have tried a countless number of inexpensive googles. Many of which were labeled “non-fogging”. They clearly were not as advertised. So naturally, I was skeptical. Whenever I go skirmishing, I always wear eye protection. To me, my vision is worth the investment. I learned that anti-fogging goggles not only provide clear vision but reduce eye injury (because you don’t have to remove them to wipe them clean, which exposes you to the risk of getting hit in the eye). Problem was, I was finding that these types of goggles cost a lot more, but I found a really great pair of Valken V-Tac goggles (Check Latest Price Here) that were inexpensive. I prefer something a bit smaller and low profile. However, I found the Valken V-Tac goggles to be comfortable and a good fit. They are one size fits all and have a quick-release in the back that can make putting them on easier. They work well by themselves or in conjunction with a helmet. One feature that really makes them worth a bit more than other goggles, is that they are truly fog resistant. So much so, that even when breathed upon in an attempt to wipe them clean, they simply won’t fog up. This is important as you don’t want to risk a stray BB to the eye while removing your goggles to wipe them clean. These are my go-to goggles for eye protection.
The Condor Modular Molle Chest Rig (Check Latest Price Here), is a budget-minded tactical solution that won’t let you down. This heavy-duty Molle chest rig is well built, efficient and will provide enough ammo storage for the beginning Airsofter. The rig comes complete with magazine pouches and has webbing for additional attachments. Keep in mind that if you fill out all the mag pouches, the rig will stick out and make laying on your stomach nearly impossible. For the beginner, it is definitely worth picking up a Condor Chest Rig.
Ok, so this may be something completely optional for some, but I really do not like taking hits directly in the head. I was really surprised how cheap I was able to buy the Mich 2000 Helmet by OneTigris from Amazon (Check Latest Price Here). For the price, it will keep your head covered. Like the ability to add some accessories? This helmet does provide that option via the rails on each side of the helmet and comes with an NVG shroud. The NVG shroud allows for mounting Night Vision Goggles or an Action camera for capturing POV action. There is also plenty of velcro throughout for the addition of patches, and accessories like a battery pouch in the rear of the helmet. My only real complaint is the lack of an adjustment knob in the back to make for a better fit. Outside of that, the Mich 2000 offers some real bang for the buck.
This one may also be optional for some. Playing in the heat of the South, wearing gloves can be somewhere between uncomfortable or miserable. However, if you have ever taken a BB to the knuckle or cut yourself out in the woods, then you feel my pain. For some, full-fingered gloves may restrict movement by making things difficult to grab or handle. Full-fingered gloves can be modified to suit the needs of the wearer. I found the Condor Nomex Tactical Gloves (Check latest Price Here) to be sufficient for my needs, and would opt-out for gloves if I had better luck not taking a hit to the hands.