Airsoft Action 07 - Mar 2012 - Page 16

URBAN6 OPERATION: CLEAR SKIES Urban 6 Airsoft puts more effort into its storylines than Stephen King. Sian Westall and Gareth ‘Gadge’ Harvey give us the lowdown on Operation: Clear Skies T here are some things in life you always mean to do but for one reason or another just don’t seem to get round to. One of those things I’d been meaning to do was visit Urban 6 Airsoft, and boy am I glad I did! Now I have to admit to not being totally impartial here. Some time ago an old army buddy of mine collared me at a re-enactment show, said he was setting up a site and asked if I’d like to come and have a look. D espite best intentions of going along for a game it took me a good year or so to get myself and some of the Airsoft Action crew down to Urban 6’s regular site – Swynnerton Army Camp, an MoD base recently revamped to supply realistic training to troops set to deploy to Afghanistan. Eventually fulfilling my promise to Urban 6 head honchos Mark Warrier and Nigel Armitage we loaded up the car with the usual airsofting paraphernalia on a freezing winter’s morning and set of for a lengthy drive to Swynnerton in Staffordshire. It wasn’t the easiest site entrance to find but once there we were quickly checked in by the Urban 6 team, and with less fuss than expected a quick and concise safety brief was issued before the real nitty gritty of the day’s play was explained. 016 March 2012 While it’s usual to have one or more teams with pseudo-military objectives for the games very few sites put as much effort into their back story and props as Urban 6 does. At times it felt more like we’d booked onto a well-themed weekender (like those run by Stirling Airsoft) and I’ll explain why. Nigel and Mark’s crew had created an entire military operation for this weekend. We were told that a renegade Russian state had been causing mayhem in the East and that UN forces were needed to go in to stabilise the region… ‘Simples’ you might think – but the main NATO force couldn’t go straight in as well-camouflaged man-portable SAM sites were taking out NATO helicopters by the dozen. There was only one thing for it: a NATO ground team would have to go in. With more than a little pre-battle prep, the Urban 6 crew had warned for anyone wanting to play on the NATO side to wear temperate woodland shades with the Russian rebel militia in black and mixed camo patterns. This also meant that, well in advance of the game, one team knew they would be largely in defence and were happy to be so. Sian: From a player POV the different kit requirements did a good job of differentiating the teams. I was expecting to find it harder as I didn’t know any of the other players at all. Even