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Indoor Paintball vs Outdoor Paintball – Settling The Debate  

Indoor paintball fields are lifesavers in a hot and humid climate or bad weather in general. Though it has its pros and cons, we cannot deny the benefits provided by indoor arenas when the weather is really bad outside sometimes.

There are hundreds of top indoor paintball arenas in the USA with decent pricing, sterilized gears, which allows underage fellows to enter (with safety).

That is to say,

Let’s compare indoor paintball vs. outdoor paintball to clarify things.

Indoor Paintball Vs Outdoor Paintball – Which One is Better

We suggest trying both to see which fits you. When just starting out, most people prefer indoor paintball fields over outdoor paintball because of the compactness and short playtime, and others prefer outdoor paintball because of the longer and gritty play, and more space to work with.

Indoor Paintball 

Indoor paintball

 Quick Look 

  • The weather can be bad outside, but you can play indoor paintball at any time of the year.
  • Most paintball fields are equipped with air conditioning to counter heat in the summers, and heaters to make games more comfortable in the winters.
  • So it is safe to say, indoor may be the smart option in the bad weather.
  • Indoor paintball fields provide more comfort than outdoor. Running water, restrooms, bathrooms, snack machines, etc. you will miss these perks in the outdoor fields.
  • Excluding speedball tournaments, most outdoor games take longer than indoor games. Distance is the main reason behind it.
  • The distance between teams is greater in outdoor games compare to indoor paintball, greater the distance longer it will take players to engage in battle.
  • Indoor fields are small and players engage a lot with each other, so players tend to play more than few games in 2-4 hours. Many games just run only for a few minutes.
Note: You will likely spend more time at the location while playing fewer games. Outdoor games take a better part of the day.

Outdoor paintball

 Quick Look 

Indoor paintball vs outdoor paintball

  • Most people play traditional outdoor paintball in nicer weather, but pro players play games year-round regardless of the weather, however, we cannot ignore the rain, snow, and heat factor.
  • A single outdoor field is made up of various small playing fields. The entire outdoor paintball field is usually massive.
  • The feel is real; insects, boulders, rocks, dust, and wear and tear of the weather, everything surrounding an outdoor field is realistic.
  • Most outdoor fields don’t offer restroom rooms, snack machines, and other comforts.
  • Outdoor games are longer than indoor due to the greater distance between players. It takes time to engage enemies.
  • In most cases, few games take an entire day.

Comparison Between Indoor Paintball And Outdoor Paintball

We are comparing both keeping our researched data, reviews from paintball players, and popularity in mind. Let’s get right into it.

Benefits of Indoor Paintball Arena

Fogging and glare are two of the biggest problems for players. What does this mean for you? If you don’t purchase a high-end paintball mask, you will face fog one way or another.

And the good news is,

In indoor arenas, it is highly unlikely to see fog on your glasses or goggles. Most arenas have air conditioners and fans, so you sweat a lot less compared to outdoor fields.

However, you may encounter more fogging than usual due to air conditioning & a cooler atmosphere, so it is necessary to purchase an anti-fog, dual pane thermal paintball mask-like dye i5.

The second thing I mentioned was the glare. On a bright sunny day, vision distortion can happen in the form of glare if your paintball mask is old school, single, pane, and not thermally treated.

For people who wear glasses, like me, the glare factor doubles than usual. However, sun rays can’t penetrate indoor fields, so you don’t need to worry about vision distortion.

An in-depth look into outdoor paintball vs. indoor paintball

We will compare both fields by giving logical reasons and reviews to settle this conversation once and for all.


The size of the battlefield is considerable between both. Most outdoor fields are huge, a couple of acres to be precise while an indoor arena is normally less in dimensions.

Space is directly proportional to the duration of the game. Few games outside can take an entire day while indoor games are more frequent and take less time due to less space, and more engagement between teams.

The more you run, engage, and hide, the more you get exhausted during the game. So greater space, the more you will get tired.


Let’s be realistic, outdoor fields are built like a real war zone. You will experience real ditches, trees, grass, rocks, and wear and tear.

There is some artificial variation in the outdoor fields to some degree to make them more compelling and interesting, but 70% of feel is natural.

Indoor fields are more artificial than natural, and that’s good because you can modify your arena according to the play and your imagination.

Indoor paintball uses artificial surfaces with inflatable bunkers and barriers.

Outdoor grounds are built on natural surfaces such as dirt or grass, but indoor grounds utilize artificial surfaces, and they can be slippery sometimes. However, most artificial surfaces are high-end.

Astroturf or artificial sod are two of the most common artificial grounds used in indoor fields.

As far as creativity is concerned, I do prefer indoor warzones. Most arenas have burned cars, bunkers, empty buildings, ditches, and barriers to make it more like a World War area.

Another reason why I prefer indoor fields is that I don’t have to anticipate any holes, ditches, or rough surfaces on the indoor grounds.

The paint residue can make the turf oily and slippery, but you won’t trip and fall at least. The sliding and diving part is the next level in the indoor arenas.

Why choose indoor paintball fields?

Weather is the main reason in my opinion. If you book a birthday party, school event, or corporate outing, for a week or two from now, you will not know how harsh the weather will be.

There can be many obstacles like heat waves, snow, rain, hails, snakes, etc. so it safe to choose an indoor field for a non-professional paintball player in my opinion.

Is indoor paintball game different?

Speed is the only difference as far as the game is concerned. Indoor games have a faster pace. Outdoor games take longer because you must locate your opponent first, and trust me it takes time.

Indoor games straight forward confrontation. You don’t have cross acres of the field just to find one opponent.


To sum it up, there is no definite solution to this post. On a hot and sunny day, indoor paintball arenas are handy to satisfy your paintball cravings, and if the weather is fine, some outdoor drills won’t hurt.

Well yeah, each has its own merits and demerits considering the landscape, obstacles, pricing, comfort, facilities, and duration of the game.

You should try both to see which fits you. You won’t know until you try, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

 My choice. 

I prefer indoor paintball because I can stand the extreme heat or cold, wear and tear of the weather, and long-lasting games.

Indoor games take less time, I can play multiple games in a shorter time.

I hate waiting like a sniper to locate one opponent. In indoor fields, I can go all out because I don’t have to worry about hidden enemies.

The debate continues on this forum as well.