Airsoft vs Paintball-A detailed Comparison with Actual facts

Our team found that most of the newbies are confused to get the proper answer of Airsoft vs paintballpaintball vs airsoft is an ongoing debate ever since the games were developed because of the similarity.

Wait do you mean that paintball and airsoft are similar?

No, they are somehow similar because both are firearm games, still there is some major difference, we will try our best to close this debate by clearing the differences, hopefully, you will get your answers.

Without further wasting time let’s dive in.

Airsoft vs Paintball

Airsoft Vs paintball

Before we start an in-depth analysis of airsoft vs paintball, first we have to know about the basics of both games, let’s start from the definitions.

 Airsoft:  Airsoft is a sport in which the participant eliminate a player with spherical plastic/ metallic pellets releases from the airsoft gun, airsoft gun is very similar to the original military guns.

First played in Japan in the 1970s

 Paintball:  Paintball is an action-packed sport in which the participant eliminates the opponent with a spherical ball/ capsule filled with water paint launch Via a paintball marker or Gun.

First played in New Hampshire in 1981

Now let’s get to the depth of Airsoft vs paintball

Age requirements

 Airsoft age requirement:  Age requirements vary from fields to fields and country to country as well some fields allow only 12+ players in America, however, some fields allow 10+ players, definitely they have some low impact guns according to age groups.

If we conclude it generally we can see the majority of the fields allow 10+ years old players.

 Paintball age requirements:  Again the age of paintballing also depends on the fields and country, some fields allow and countries allow players even below 10 years, of course, they will have separate field low impact equipment and proper safety measures.

If we conclude generally the majority of fields allow 10+ years old players, at the professional level a player must 18+ old.

If you want a detailed guide about paintballing age requirements click here.


The equipment of paintball and airsoft are not same there are some major differences in both, we have seen the same equipment different in design, material, and somehow in functions.

But wait, I know you need some more details so let’s discuss some major equipment in detail

Mask and goggles

Airsoft mask

 Airsoft mask:  Airsoft masks are hardcore and a little bit scary, though you have varieties to select a professional one for you, scary masks are famous.

In airsoft you will have few choices because most of the players get their work done with goggles, they only need a mask when they have to play in a congested field where they can be shoot from very near.

paintball mask


 Paintball Mask:  paintball masks are more stylish with lots of modern features and ultra-durable in terms of built quality, Mask is mandatory in paintball, without mask most of the fields will not allow you to enter in the field.

You have a vast variety to choose a paintball mask for you, different masks come with different styles, features, build quality and comfort, even you can get a paintball mask for glasses as well, lots of choices available for you.

Note: Please select an antifog paintball mask and thanks me later, remember your vision is the most important factor in the field.


Airsoft Gun

 Airsoft Guns:  Airsoft guns and real firearms guns are very similar even we can’t differentiate both forms a certain distance but once we put in hands we can differentiate both easily.

Some of the airsoft guns have an orange cover at the tip to differentiate with actual firearm guns.

In airsoft You have a large variety of guns which is more like real firearms with different features shapes and built qualities, also you can get airsoft guns powered with batteries, gas, springs, and electric power guns (AEGs).

airsoft guns have a magazine loaded with pellets to shoot the opponents.

Airsoft magazine has the capability to hold 400-2500 pellets which is amazing means you don’t need to reload faster.

paintball gun

 Paintball Guns:  paintball guns are slim stylish and ultra-durable, we can easily differentiate paintball guns with airsoft guns just because of colors and hopper.

In paintball you also have large varieties of guns but not more than airsoft, paintball guns are powered with CO2 tanks or compressed air.

Airsoft gun comes with a large hopper in which we have to load some paintballs to shoot a particular object.

The paintball marker is able to hold 50-200 paintballs in the hopper.

 Usability and comfortability of Airsoft:  Airsoft guns are very easy to operate because of lightweight, it will never distract your movements, even you have carried thousands of pellets,

Reloading of airsoft is a little bit difficult and time is taken a process that why its magazine capacity is tremendous.

 Usability and comfortability of paintball:  Paintball guns are a little bit heavy and uncomfortable as compared to airsoft because paintball guns have a hopper which we have to put on our shoulder while we targeting.

Another major reason is, paintball Ammos is heavy as compared to pellets, somehow our movements may distract if we have carried lots of ammo.

Reloading of paintball is extremely easy just you have to throw paintball in the hopper that’s it, even most of the players reload their guns during the shooting. 

 Accuracy of Airsoft:  Airsoft guns have tremendous accuracy, though the size of pellets is very small, still due to high fps, pellets will cross the air without turning away in the air.

Also, pellets are not visible in the air because of high size and high fps, most of the players do not have superpowers to see the small pellets in the air.

 Accuracy of paintball:  paintball has a little bit less accuracy because of lower fps and higher diameter of Ammos.

Also, paintball Ammos has a large size they may turn away in the air, moreover, they are somehow visible in the air.

 Cost of Airsoft gun:  airsoft guns are way cheaper than paintball guns because the majority of airsoft guns are powered with ordinary spring, batteries, and sometimes gas.

Most of the players prefer guns with ordinary spring or batteries in order to reduce the ongoing cost.

Gas-powered guns will cost you again and again and remember they are not environmentally friendly as well.

 Cost of paintball gun:  paintball guns are expensive because they can only be operating with CO2 gas or compressed air, this the ongoing cost, we have to refill again and again.

Another major reason for being costly is you have to purchase a hopper and paintball tank (CO2 or compressed air tank), to store some gas for emergency use.


Airsoft Ammos

 Airsoft ammunition:  In Airsoft we shoot the spherical metallic/plastic pellets to the opponent with the airsoft guns.

  • Ammos of airsoft is very easy to carry because they have negligible weight you can easily carry lots of ammo with you during the field, your movements will never distract.
  • You can buy pellets at very cheap, even 5000 to 6000 pellets will cost you around $15

paintball Ammos

 Paintball ammunition:  in paintball we shoot our opponent with the spherical balls or capsules of water paint with paintball marker

  • paintball’s Ammos are somehow heavy we can’t move around the field with lots of ammo, still paintball player is able to manage that hurdle.
  • Secondly, paintballs are expensive as compared to the airsoft pallets, 2000 paintballs will cost you about $30 to $40, and some fields also offer special discounts as well.


 Airsoft Accessories:  In airsoft, you will get masks/goggles, magazines, batteries and chargers, protective vests, military-type clothes, etc.

Also, you will have some special accessories like smoke grenades, pellets grenades, sniper scopes, heavy machine guns, etc.

 Paintball Accessories:  paintball has lots of accessories like hopper, mask, clothing. Pods, harnesses, special vests, etc.

also, paintball allows you to use some special accessories like paint grenades rockets, tanks, and smoke grenades.


Airsoft Clothing

 Airsoft clothing:  In airsoft, we have similar clothes like the military; even we can’t distinguish between them, literally you have a getup of the military as you can see in the image as well.

paintball clothing

 Paintball clothing:  paintball clothes solely depends on the type of game, in speedball players prefer more vibrant, stylish, and colorful cloths.

However, in woodsball they choose darker clothes because they are less visible in the woods, somehow they resemble military-type clothes as well.

Cleaning of guns clothes

 Airsoft:  As airsoft is a paint-free clean game, its cloth and gun cleaning process is very easy.

 Paintball:  In paintball, we have to use paints, its cleaning process is somehow time taken then airsoft, long ago paintballs were made of oil pants that were difficult to clean, thankfully we have water paintballs now.


 Airsoft Sites: 

Can be played anywhere like malls building, forest, etc

 Paintball sites: 

paintball also can be played anywhere with proper permit.

Events and tournaments

 Airsoft:  In airsoft, you will found fewer events and tournaments as compared to paintball, still you can find a few very good large scale (350+ players) tournaments with a good price as a reward.

 Paintball:   In paintball, there are hundreds of tournaments because the trends of paintball tournaments are very old, many fields have their own schedule of tournaments.

Moreover, paintball tournaments occurred at a very large scale even 500 players can participate in a single tournament.

Cost of fields

 Airsoft:  In airsoft, you will have to pay the lower cost as compared to paintball, $30 is the average per day cost of airsoft field, however, if you have carried your Ammos with you it will be lower I think.

All most all paintball fields allow you to bring your own pellets, in paintball you some fields can’t allow you because of some safety reasons.

 Paintball:   cost of paintballs field is a little bit expensive as compared to the airsoft, $40-$50 is an average per day cost without paintballs.

Also, if the field doesn’t allow you to bring your own paintball you will have to purchase from the fields in order to play, according to our experience pack of 500 paintballs will cost you about $12 to $50 depending on the field.

lets cgeckout our detailed guide about paintball expenses


 Airsoft:  Airsoft is getting popular day by day because of cheaper cost and real military feelings, currently the majority of newbie’s start their journeys in airsoft.

Another major reason for the popularity is, airsoft equipment is very similar to the real equipment, Even you can’t distinguish, from a certain distance.

Moreover, some dye hard’s are building their collections of airsoft equipment as well.

 Paintball:  paintball is slightly less popular as compared to the airsoft, still there are some paintball die hards like me but fact is the fact.

Airsoft is dominating paintball because of cost and realism, Some peoples are able to manage that cost in order to get some exposure of fun with paints.


airsoft realism

 Airsoft:  Airsoft is a more realistic game you will have the same environment as the military, moreover you have similar tasks like the soldier you have to protect your village and your family, players are very serious about that they even will fell their attitude like a military officer.

Moreover, you will get more realistic guns, pistols, and grenades, as we have discussed above that airsoft equipment is very similar to the original military equipment.

Literally, you will get realistic military feels if you are interested to get that fell airsoft should be your first choice.

Paintball realism

 Paintball:  Paintball is a more sport supportive game, you will have a colorful paintball marker and paintballs to hit your opponents, many players prefer paintball because of enjoyment and fun.

Paintball is a more athletic type game, some players try to explore their surviving skills with their teammates and family.

Rules and regulations.

 Airsoft Rules:  There are lots of rules in airsoft but we have to count some general rules like if a player got a hit it will be eliminated, it will be not allowed to get out of the boundaries during the match.

400 fps is the standard velocity of pellets ever player should not have a gun more than 400fps.

There are more chancing of cheating in airsoft as compared to paintball because the pellets are very small and there will be no visible marker on the player to identify whether a player got shot or not.

 Paintball Rules:  Similarly like airsoft, there are several rules of paintball as well but we have to cover some general rules if a player got hit it should be eliminated and walk to the dead zone where all eliminate players will be treated further.

No one has a permit to go away from the boundary line every player should be in certain boundaries.

No one has a permit to climb on trees as well because of some safety reasons.

There are very fewer chances of cheating in paintball because paintballs make a clear mark on the object, referees can identify it within some seconds.

If you are not sure that you got a hit you will have the liberty to get surety from your teammates or referees game will be resumed after identification.

Roles of players.

 Airsoft player roles:  as we have discussed that airsoft is a serious game every player has to assign a role according to the nature of the game.

Each player has to follow its role strictly; we can see different additional roles than paintball.

Superman only has the task to eliminate opponents from far away, autocannons machines are operated by a heavy gun specialist, shoot guns are used to break the door, grenades and knives are used to eliminate the close opponents.

Even sometimes they have a proper medics team in longer games, now you can observe the reality if a player injured the medics team rushes to get the first AID.

 Paintball player Paintball: :   the roles of paintball players are simple, each player assigns a role according to the experience, like frontman, mid player, floater, back player, and inserts.

Pain and injuries

In this section, our main focus is to solve the most frequent questions about airsoft vs paintball pain, we will cover the following questions

  1. what hurts more paintball or airsoft.
  2. does airsoft hurt more than paintball

Airsoft Pain

 Airsoft pain:  airsoft guns loaded with small lightweight pallets (0.3 to 0.28) gm available in different varieties like you can get plastic or metallic pellets as per choice.

Though the FPS of airsoft is far more than paintball guns, still the size of ammo matters, if we compare both for the same distance paintball hurts more then airsoft, just because of large size.

Even some players didn’t felt like they got a shoot just because of the long-distance and proper thick clothes.

paintball pain

 Paintball Pain:   paintball guns are loaded with large size Ammos, paintball Ammos are approximately 17 times heavy as compared to airsoft pellets, definitely if we shoot a paintball and pellets from the same range on a particular object paintball will hurt more, just because of higher size and weight.

Though paintball guns have lower FPS as compared to airsoft, it still hurt more.

Check out our detailed guide about is paintball danger.

hopefuly you have got proper answeres of your questions 

Facts about Airsoft

  • Ammo size: 6mm plastic/metallic
  • Gun velocity: 200 to 600 FPS (400FPS is standard)
  • Accuracy: Impressive
  • Gun powered with: gas, spring, and batteries
  • Magazine capacity: 50 to 2500 pellets
  • Realism: real-time military feel
  • Gunpower: 1 to 2 jouls

Facts about paintball

  • Ammos size: 16 to 19mm spherical paint capsules
  • Gun velocity: 300 FPS
  • Accuracy: medium.
  • Gun powered with: Co2 gas, Compressed air.
  • Gunpower: 4 to 10 jouls.
  • Gun mechanism: very strong

Pros and cons of paintball

  • There are fewer chances of cheating because of visible marks.
  • More stylish clothes are available.
  • Durable equipment
  • More events and tournaments
  • Colorful and modern paintball masks
  • Reloading of guns is very easy
  • Expensive.
  • The accuracy of guns is less.
  • Less popular nowadays.
  • Operating of the gun is somehow difficult because of large hopper
  • paintball is more painful if you don’t have safety equipment
  • cleaning clothes is time taken

Pros and cons of Airsoft

  • Less expensive
  • Tremendous accuracy of guns.
  • Real-time military fells
  • More fps of guns
  • Most popular firearm games.
  • Cleaning of guns and cloths is very easy
  • Operating a gun is very easy.
  • More ammo can be load
  • Large varieties of guns available
  • Reloading is difficult.
  • Guns are less durable.
  • Fewer tournaments and events are available.
  • Fewer varieties of masks available.

Which is best for you paintball or airsoft?

paintball vs airsoft

Indeed both games are very interesting, to check out our surviving skills, final decision to select whether you want to go for paintball or airsoft is depending on the choice of players.

Airsoft is a more serious game with real-time military feels with large varieties of guns at cheaper cost; also you will have to pay less for field entry.

Paintball is a game of enjoyments most of the players play at low scale with their friends and family, though there are official serious tournaments, the majority of newbies has a dream to hit few paintballs on the butt of his/her best friend 🙂

If you are a color lover paintball is the best choice for you on the other hand if you are a military lover airsoft will be the best choice for you.

You can get some suggestions from here


If you haven’t played any of the game please let’s have a try to airsoft or paintball both of the games is amazing you analyze your surviving skills and believe me once you will win the game your excitement will touch the sky.

Being a city dweller when I won my first paintball game, I am feeling like solder 🙂 literally, I was like I am a military man no one will mess with me.

Ok, let us get to the point, both games are really good for your fitness you have to make movements, running and walking your whole body will participate in the game believe me your fitness will improve.

Let’s make a schedule to give some time to yourself, your family, and your friends and make a match of airsoft or paintball with them.

Thanks for reading hopefully we have cleared your all queries about airsoft vs paintball, if you have further queries let us know in the comments we will try our best to resolve it, please share with your friends and family.

Stay safe Stay happy


An Engineer and a paintball dye hard with a vision to promote safe paintball around the world, Currently Teaching lots of students about actual paintball.

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