Part of what this blog is really about is the tactical side of the blasters I love to mod. Be it Nerf or Laser Tag Blasters, I do tend to sway in a MilSim-ish fashion. Hence: Tactical Tag. While I understand why many hardcore MilSim folks go with Airsoft, I think Laser Tag can be an excellent compromise that can be just as fulfilling and exciting without running into legal issues/pissing off the locals. The main dividing points between Airsoft/Paintball and Laser Tag that I recognize are as such:
- Uses projectile-based rounds to land hits you can actually feel
- Utilize physical ammunition that needs to be carried into combat
- Have limited engagement ranges (~100 Feet)
- Have much more realistic designs and features
- Needs to be played somewhere that it is allowed/legal
- Uses Infrared Light to land hits on a sensor
- Utilize electronic features to track scoring, ammo, etc
- Have line-of-sight ranges of at least 300 feet (most can exceed this quite easily)
- Have less realistic designs (unless you build your own)
- Can be played anywhere
To me, one of the main elements of Military Simulation is "dressing up". Donning full Digital Woodland Camouflage, wearing a load-bearing system of some sort to carry equipment with you, and going full-on "tacti-cool" with radios and other gadgets enhance the game to make it seem more like the real deal. Really, you can accomplish this with just about any shooting-type game, be it Nerf, Laser Tag, Paintball, or Airsoft. You just need the proper equipment. After that, it's about the game you're playing, the system you're using, to flesh things out.
That being said, for mchlmacdonald's Airsoft Dilemma, I think the LTX system would be an excellent, cost-efficient, way to get into a MilSim style of play without breaking the bank. While there are more MilSim-ish systems out there like FragTag, MilesTag, and others, the LTX would serve you just fine. The features on the LTX like the recoil hammer, rumble pack, and reloading system harken to a MilSim style of play VERY well. With a little tinkering/modification, you can easily make an LTX Blaster something that you'd want to field for that type of setting. Ranges for Laser Tag work excellent for MilSim, since it's line of sight shooting instead of lobbing plastic pellets 100 feet. With a little paint, your Shiny Blue Phoenix LTX can be a neat MilSim-esque blaster and there's simple enough mods you can make to get them to use real Red Dot sights, scopes, and Tac Lights. One Source Laser Tag (1SLT) even has adapter rails for the LTX to use Weaver-rail accessories. They're also the same guys who will be releasing the new accessories for the LTX: the RapidBlast and SniperShot I mentioned earlier, so just an all-around good store to keep your eye on.
That's my lowdown on Tactical-ness of Laser Tag and how it can easily be as MilSim as you want.