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    Metal Gear Solid

    Ever since Hideo Kojima announced the film adaptation of "Metal Gear Solid" by Hollywood in 2006, things have been moving slowly. It's almost a decade now since the announcement was made, and there is no Metal Gear Solid movie in sight.  But last March 30,2015, news that the movie made a sudden leap to being made into reality made rounds in entertainment circles.

    According to Deadline, in demand British writer Jay Basu has signed a deal with Sony Pictures to write the screen adaptation of the bestselling video game made for the Sony Playstation Series. The film will be produced by Avi and Ari Arad with "The Kings of Summer"Director Jordan Vogt-Roberts taken on board to direct the movie.

    "Metal Gear Solid" is a video game created by Hideo Kojima and launched in 1998. Almost 20 years old, it is one of the video game titles that has a very avid following in the video game community. The game is about the Solid Snake, who was given the mission to infiltrate the facility controlled by the Foxhound organisation to rescue hostages and prevent the bad guys from launching a nuclear strike. It is a video game that is based on quick thinking and stealth with the use of guns just being a last resort or when a major character from Foxhound confronts Solid Snake requires the use of firearms.

    As for the casting, there is no line-up of potential actors and actresses for the main characters of "Metal Gear Solid". There were rumours that Christian Bale would sign-up to play the lead role of Solid Snake as he admitted that he is a  big fan of the "Metal Gear Solid" Series. We wish that this should come true as we find Christian Bale as one of the finest actors these days and also has solid action movie credentials such as being Batman in the highly acclaimed "Dark Knight Trilogy" by Christopher Nolan.

    Even with more well-known names now being mentioned for the production of the "Metal Gear Solid" Movie, the details are still sparse. Perhaps when the script that will be written by Basu gets the green light for production then we shall hear more information such as casting and release dates. But for now, if you feel restless waiting for the movie, I suggest that you settle first with watching the "Modern War Gear Solid - The Complete Saga" by Beat Down Boogie and have a good laugh:


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    Taurus Curve

    It may not exactly to an airsofter's taste, but the Taurus Curve .380 Handgun is something that I appreciate in terms of design and the thought that went into. It's not a very tactical pistol but can easily be mistaken for a gun that has been designed for a science fiction movie. Hate or love it, the Taurus Curve is made for concealed carry and meant to fit the contours of the human body.

    Yes, it means we are sexy, even if we don't actually fit what the fashion world's definition of sexy. Our bodies have curves and we are usually curvy at the waist area and that's where we usually place our pistols when we bring them along. For the Taurus Curve, its design is about comfort and concealability and maximizing it. It's light as well, weighing just 10.2 oz with a 6+1 magazine capacity that you have to remind yourself that you're carrying a firearm since it's so light and comfortable to wear.

    For women, the Taurus Curve is a good option to carry around for self-protection.

    Even for a small pistol, it comes with a built-in belt clip which you can easily clip to the waist area of your jeans or clip it to your belt, no need to worry about looking for a holster. Apart from that, it also has  a built-in LED light and laser so it's a fully equipped pistol designed for quick target acquisition and work in the dark.

    You might be worried that the Taurus Curve can be accidentally fired while it its clipped to your waist or when you accidentally leave it somewhere being so light and small (children usually have an uncanny ability to find guns at home). Taurus now incorporates the Taurus Security System (TSS) in their semi-auto pistols as added protection and security separate from the usual safety systems incorporated in pistols. Here is what Taurus says about the TSS:

    When the Security System is engaged, the pistol cannot be fired or cocked and the gun's manual safety cannot be disengaged. As with our revolver Security System, the device is part of the firearm and cannot be lost, and the same special Security Key works for both the revolver and pistol Systems (two keys come with each gun). To engage: simply insert the Key into the button on the rear or side of the pistol and rotate one-quarter turn clockwise. This engages the Security System. The manual safety cannot be moved and the trigger cannot be pulled. To disengage: simply rotate the key one-quarter turn back. This releases the Security System, yet leaves the pistol's manual safety in the "safe" position until you are ready to release it yourself and fire the gun.

    I don't know if airsoft players would want to have an airsoft version of this pistol since we prefer our pistols to be visible and very much tactical looking rather than concealed. But if you would ask me, I'd say yes, and perhaps female airsofters would agree with me since they’re the more curvaceous types. I don't care if it's a gas blowback or an AEP, it may be a good backup to use in some IDPA-style airsoft practice.


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    Star Wars Battlefront

    2015 is going to be really a Star Wars year as Disney, the new owners of Lucas Films are making a full court press to go for the three point shot in December (if you play basketball, you'll get what I mean). We're getting more impatient expecting for the release of Star Wars Episode 7: The Force Awakens, and we all can't wait for December. With the release of the second trailer four days ago, the excitement just got even higher.

    But if you haven't noticed, the day after the second trailer was released, Electronic Arts also made a big reveal that would make Star Wars fans in the gaming community, and I'm pretty sure  a good number of airsoft players, is the reveal of a first and third person video game called Star Wars: Battlefront:

    The reveal trailer is quite extensive showing the Rebel Alliance and The Empire battling each other with all the familiar space fighters, walkers, and other speeder bikes (and full use of jetpacks now), I still cannot make out how a player will actually play this video game. Will the player be a vehicle pilot or a soldier ready to do battle against the empire on land or in space?

    Electronic Arts sure knows how to make a trailer as it showed scenes that reminds us of the Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Furthermore, the movements of the soldiers and storm troopers in the trailer reminds of us of actions shown in recent FPS games such Titan Fall and Call of Duty Advanced: Warfare. The trailer is nicely done that apart from setting aside money for Episode 7 movie tickets, souvenirs, you might as well save more money for the release of Star Wars Battlefront.

    This is going to be multiplayer game with the total number of players in any given battle will max at 40 players. The trailer probably is about "Walker Assault" which was reported by PC Gamer last week and it's going to be one of the biggest modes in the game. There will also be smaller missions that can be played as a single player or in cooperation with friend.

    Still, we need more details. Will there be a Single Player Campaign or will it just be a multiplayer one? But if you are a hardcore Star Wars fan where you can talk about the transitions between one episode after the other, then you may just want a copy of the game. Star Wars: Battlefront will connect The Return of the Jedi to the Force Awakens with a downloadable content when it  gets released.

    Star Wars: Battlefront will be released for the XBox One, Playstation 4 and Windows PC on the 17th of November 2015. Now, if someone will make those Rebel Alliance soldier costumes that I can use in an airsoft game (together with a Rebel Alliance airsoft rifle), they can take my money right now.

    Now, here's the Star Wars: The Force Awakens Trailer. Welcome home Hans and Chewy!


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    Bundeswehr G36 03

    The news is that bad for Heckler & Koch. Previously, the German Defence Ministry raised concerns about the accuracy of the G36 when continuously fired in full-auto. But last Friday, the Bundeswehr Technical Team put out a report confirming the problem, but added that whole system is flawed.

    If that is not bad news, I wonder what  is then when a whole army and other security organisations depend on the G36 as their primary weapon. 

    When the testers mean by the whole system, then it is not only the about the composite material that holds the barrel in place that loosens up as the temperature rises when the rifle is fired in sustained rapid bursts. The rifle's accuracy fell 30% when temperature increase 30 degrees Celcius and accuracy differs by 35% between different munitions even with the best cartridges the differences can be seen.

    You can read the highlights of the report at the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.

    The German Army have already put a hold on further purchases of the G36 pending investigation into its accuracy problems. With this new report from the Technical Team, then they might have to consider looking into another rifle, like the HK416.

    A news report from Deutsche Welle, the Chief of Heckler & Koch,  Andreas Heeschen, defended the G36, saying that the German soldiers could completely depend of the rifle. He finds it unbelievable that after almost 20 years of service (the German Army have purchased over 176,000 G36 rifles from Heckler & Koch since 1996), one would then discover problems with the rifle.

    The company said that they are willing to discuss changes with the rifle with the German Army and that they would seek legal recourse if the study wasn't done according to rules. This would probably mean that they want an independent investigation that will either confirm or debunk the investigation done by the German Army.


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    Counter Strike Global Offensive

    We haven't been following Counter Strike in recent years as there are more FPS video games that have some riveting plots, DLCs, and yearly titles being released. But what we do concede is that Counter Strike is still the best multiplayer video game especially for use in video game tournaments. And this story is about the longest game in Counter Strike: Global Offensive --- 1 game, 6 overtimes and 88 rounds.

    In a report by UKSCSGO from the ESL UK Premiership, a  team that was expected to lose against a more renowned team was able to hold its own. Team exceL eSports, which was invited to the game instead of what others thought to be more deserving, was match against the more known Team XENEX.

    As expected, Team XENEX was able to build up a comfortable lead in the match, which as the match went on, was already at 14-8. But in the next 5 rounds, Team exceL eSports just went into overdrive, taking now prisoners and closed to 15-13. The next was history according to the report:

    "… At this stage in the game, something must have clicked for the exceL camp, who managed to take hold of 5 consecutive rounds before any sort of response from XENEX, who eventually led the game 15-13. Just two more rounds from exceL eSports saw the game lead into what would become the longest games of Counter Strike in memory.

    Overall, a grand total of 88 rounds were played with the eventual scoreline falling in favour of Team XENEX who managed to take a good lead in the opening half of the sixth overtime, giving them a comfortable round lead going on to the harder of the two sides. At this stage of the game, each player on the server had managed to exceed the 50 kill mark, with XENEX’s JT leading the charge with around an extra 20 on top. However, despite the map eventually going the way of XENEX, this result shows an extreme level of composure from the exceL eSports side, something that had been doubted in the match preview. It can safely be said that XENEX were not expecting the clash that came their way, and despite the fact that Goliath eventually took the map, David can walk away head held high. And better still, map two is still to come."

    It was a good battle, which if converted into an actual airsoft game, would be more of a test of physical and mental strengths of airsoft players. A team that was written-off to immediately lose gave the fight of their lives and went into the record books. If you're an airsoft team or a professional video game team, it's always good to never underestimate an opposing team; always take them seriously. They might give you some of the best games and gameplay memories.

    Watch a portion of the game below. But if you have enough time to watch the whole game, watch it on Twitch.


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    China PLA ZH-05 OICW

    A bit of a change in looking at Western and Russian weaponry as we look into China's own weapons design.  We are no strangers to China-made weapons in airsoft as we have Real Sword Type 97 Bullpup Rifles that were of Chinese design from the ground up. There are already much advances in Chinese weapons technology development over the years that it in some areas, it is able to match Western weaponry.

    In the case of the OICW, or the Objective Individual Combat Weapon, China is one of the only three countries developing for use by their troops. The first two are the USA (XM29 OICW and XM25 CDTE) and South Korea (K-11 DAW).  The OICW is the next generation combat assault system that combines an assault rifle and a launcher which is smaller than a grenade launcher that can send an airburst munition that is effective against enemies who are behind cover.

    The weapon in question is called the ZH-05/Type 05which is combination of the QBZ-03/Type 03 Assault Rifle and  a 20mm airburst grenade launcher. Two photos of the ZH-05 were posted earlier this month at the PLA Facebook Page (we cannot confirm if this is an official page, but looks like a PLA fan created it) showing the ZH-05 being handled by the PLA Marines who have developed a preference for the weapon.

    The 20mm airburst grenade is programmable just like the XM25 and K-11, allowing  for a more accurate launch and burst at the target area. The ZH-05 is lighter than the first two but the launcher is manually loaded one 20mm grenade at a time as compared to magazine fed system which the K-11 (6 rounds) and XM25 (4 rounds). ZH-05 20mm Grenade has more destructive payload as compared to the 20mm rounds of both the XM25 and K-11 as carries less electronics, allowing it to carry more explosives and claimed blast radius 25 feet and a range of 800 meters.

    Apart from the anti-personnel airburst grenade, there are two more 20mm grenades developed for the ZH-05 according to Popular Science. One is the anti-material impact grenade and the shotgun style canister grenade which can be used to shoot down small enemy drones.

    The ZH-05 design is simple and makes it easy to handle as compared to the problem prone XM25 and K-11. If the PLA is able to avoid the problems that the Americans and South Koreans are facing with their OICW design, then the ZH-05 might become the first widely used OICW in a major country's armed forces.

    (First batch of Type 05 OICW rifle issue)


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    OGO MSW & RAPTAC Partnership

    Darkhorse of One Grunt's Opinion broke the news of the partnership between Raptor Tactical Applications and Operations (RAPTAC) and Milsim West (MSW) in organising Milsim events in the USA. Milsim West, by its name itself, operates in the West Coast whereas RAPTAC organises its events in the East Coast.

    Realising that combining forces in holding Milsim events on both sides of continental U.S., the two groups decided to enter a partnership of giving each other support when one holds an event on the other one's side. The first event will be the Raid On Rostov Milsim Event which will be the first event that will be organised by MSW in the East Coast. RAPTAC will provide full support to Raid On Rostov to ensure its success.

    Here is the official press release from RAPTAC:

    Raptor Tactical Applications and Operations (RAPTAC)is proud to announce to the milsim community our new partnership with MilSim West. As an organization RAPTAC looks forward to having the opportunity to work with a capable and like minded event producer in order to bring additional high quality, immersive events to the east coast. The newly established partnership with MilSim West will further strengthen the ability of each company to grow our styles of event and will ultimately result in better experiences for the community.

    Since both RAPTAC and MilSim West’s conception in 2012, each organization has strived to promote events which offer a challenging and immersive experience, with scenarios derived from real world events and crafted by subject matter experts, bringing an experience to participants which had not been previously available in the USA. With MilSim West’s success on the west coast allowing them to grow towards the east coast, and RAPTAC’s successes on the east coast, this partnership was sought out by both organizations in order to bring to the participants the high quality events which they seek.

    MilSim West’s first east coast event, "Raid on Rostov”, will be held in Darlington, South Carolina from June 26 to June 28, 2015. RAPTAC will be supporting the event by providing members of our real-world experienced staff in key leadership positions as well as assisting in the promotion of “Raid on Rostov” to the east coast player base.

    Registration for “Raid on Rostov” is currently open, with the early registration price of $150 in effect until May 4th, 2015. For registration and event information please contact MilSim West or visit their website at: http://milsimwest.com.

    Milsim West issued a statement to further confirm this partnership:

    MilSim West was created in 2012 by a group of friends who, disappointed with the quality of existing “milsim events,” set out to create the style of immersive military simulation events that we wanted to participate in.

    Three years later the face of milsim has changed; there is more competition, more events and an actual community that demands increasingly immersive events from event producers. Just like the face of milsim changing, MilSim West has changed to meet the increasing demands of our customer base. 2015 is a year of expansion for us – first California, now South Carolina and more to come – there is a demand for our unique style of immersive war gaming coupled with our cadre of military staff and combat veterans.

    Recognizing the similarities in our event style, MilSim West is proud to announce that we have entered into a partnership with Raptor Tactical Applications and Operations (RAPTAC) for Raid on Rostov in Darlington, SC. In addition to helping promote the event RAPTAC will be contributing their military staff and cadre to plus up MilSim West’s own staff in key leadership positions throughout the event.
    MilSim West is excited about this partnership, the positive effects it will have on our event, Raid of Rostov, and about the possibilities for the future. Cooperation between two event producers, even one’s as like-minded as us, is something never before seen in the industry and we hope it leads to new and exciting things for both companies and sets a new standard within the industry.

    One Grunt's Opinion welcomes such partnership:

    RAPTAC and MSW will be partnering up to help each other out. So much awesomeness from the leaders in immersive realistic Milsim.

    This is a great show of cooperation within the op producer community. It shows a true commitment to see the greater community benefit with great leading edge MilSim that many in are craving. This is not a merger but simply a partnership to help each other grow. There's room for everyone to bring great events to the masses.

    Will this development be  a portent of things to come? Airsoft has been spitting out companies and organisations left and right but we have not seen any signs of consolidation yet (with the exception of acquisitions made by Cybergun a few years back). But in terms of events organising, there are efforts on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean to professionalise groups dedicated to organising Milsim events. If the output of such will bring about well-organised and high quality airsoft events, then bring them on, we need more professional organisations to gives us the best airsoft experience.


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    Mars Attacks

    The stuff that we're seeing in sci-fi movies are just getting real one after the other. Recently, we reported the U.S. Navy successfully launching a drone swarm, now we read about the U.S. Army testing ray guns that if successful, will be used against electronics in the field.

    Called the "Burker Pulser"after the its creator, James E. Burker, an engineer at the Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC), the device is made up of a piezoelectric generator, two protruding antennas, a blast shield, and mounted at the muzzle end of an M4 rifle, just like mounting a suppressor. When the gun is fired it harnesses the explosive energy and converts it into energy pulses.

    The U.S. Army has been developing such energy weapons and until the Burker Pulser, these are bulky vehicle-mounted or towed that are either are anti-personnel and anti-electronics. One laser can destroy a car and the U.S. Navy has tested lasers to take out incoming small high speed boats. They are also deployed to take down missiles and other incoming projectiles. With the Burker Pulser, soldiers will have an estimated sub-US$1,000 device that they can use against IEDs and low flying drones. With that price, the device can be mass produced and equip infantry squads to help out clear roadside bombs that are electronically triggered.

    The ability to fry IEDs lessens the risk of sending out an EOD team. It also lessens the delay of advancing units and patrols. The U.S. Army has been testing the Burker Pulser against various electronic devices to find out its effectiveness in the field. The results have been "promising" so far and they might try to test it against more destructive devices to push it to its limits.

    It’s a promising development that can also help lower the number of casualties and minimize collateral damage in the field. If that technology gets deployed and mature, who knows? We might be ready for the Martians when try to invade Earth with their own ray guns. Pew! Pew! Pew!


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    Call of Duty: Black Ops III

    It's robots this time. Lots of robots. If the Call of Duty: Black Ops II was already a look into the high tech future of drone warfare, Call of Duty: Black Ops III looks even further as more robotics technology has matured enough to be harnessed and be put into the frontlines.  In case you are looking forward to more of COD: Advanced Warfare tech, there are jetpacks and even more awesome armour and human modifications in use that was revealed by the Call of Duty: Black Ops III Gameplay Reveal Trailer.

    But before I go further into the Gameplay reveal, it's best for you to watch the Official Call of Duty: Black Ops III "Ember" Tease that was released last 23 April 2015 that should set things for you to understand better on what Black Ops III is all about. It’s about the leaps in scientific research that are leading to the development of "Super Humans". These are modified humans which have more heightened senses and more modified artificial attachments that give them special abilities. Some of the technologies shown in the trailer are already much available now and others are now in the drawing board. But what is revealed in the trailer is about "super soldiers" which the U.S. government denies in the trailer. But with all  these artificial enhancements of humans and the advancements in robotics, the debate on the ethical and moral dimensions are dividing people around the world leading to riots and violent upheavals.

    Call of Duty: Black Ops III is set 50 years into the future with highly modified soldiers that have special abilities built into their modifications. As always, it will have a single player campaign, a multiplayer mode and as always done by Treyarch, the Zombie mode for those who want to test their mettle against the living dead.

    Ok. Now what else is new apart from Black Ops III being as futuristic as Advanced Warfare? Well, there are some changes, as you can have a coop-campaign of up to 4 players which means that it will be a new experience in playing apar from the Single Player and Multiplayer mode. Apart from that, it will also have a "Cinematic" and "Arena-Like" level design. Treyarch's design will allow players to have a different strategy whenever they play the game.

    There is also "Character Progression" in which the player can fully customise the loadout in Single, Coop and Multiplayer. Whereas before this was doable in the Multiplayer campaign, now it's a welcome thing to have this loadout customisation in Single Player, Zombie, and the new Coop.

    Another is the "Momentum Based, Chain-Based" movement system in which the players can move fluidly from one map to another whilst maintaining complete control over their weapons. With the new powers called DNI or "Direct Neutral Interface" they can connect to the intelligence grid or with other players for them to fight smarter and better.

    As seen in the Gameplay Reveal Trailer, there is a multiplayer Beta that will allow those who pre-order to access this. This will also help the developers improve or make tweaks dependent on the feedback from those participating in the Beta test.

    Call of Duty: Black Ops III will be released on the 6th of November 2015. If you haven't noticed that, it's a Friday release for the game instead of the traditional Tuesday release.


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    Airsoft Gear Guide: Baofeng Interference with Wolverine Airsoft SMP FCU Full Auto

    An interesting discovery was made by Airsoft Gear Guide that users of HPA-systems with Fire Control Units (FCUs) should pay attention to. The programmable, affordable and popular Boafeng Radios which are much in use in airsoft milsim events and other airsoft games can affect the FCU of Wolverine Airsoft's SMP HPA System. Here’s a video posted on YouTube yesterday:

    But before you call up the manufacturer or retailer regarding this, please be advised that this report is still early until it will be confirmed by Wolverine Airsoft. We have been in touch with Airsoft Gear Guide as to what frequency(ies) that can affect the SMP FCU and the first frequency mentioned was 155.700 which is a frequency allocated for Land-Mobiles which are used by first responders (police, fire and emergency services), taxi services, government, and other businesses. We are not sure if there are other radios, especially the FRS/GMRS radios, that affect the SMP FCU, but so far it's mainly the Baofengs.

    Baofeng radios, especially the programmable UV-5R are said to be the culprit as these are dual band and can actually be reprogrammed as police scanners. If set at high power, they can actually remotely fire a Wolverine SMP HPA-powered gun as shown by MadCrew Airsoft in this video below:

    As to what frequencies that will affect the FCU apart from 155.700, it will still have to be confirmed further as the Airsoft Gear Guide and others will conduct further tests with the SMP and competing products.

    The Airsoft Gear Guide video is not an isolated incident as there's a previous video already showing that it can be done. Though so far, the Airsoft Gear Guide video is the first incident in an actual airsoft field.

    Accordingly, the Airsoft Gear Guide got in touch with PolarStar Airsoft to enquire if their FCUs are also affected by Baofeng Radios. They said that they tested their FCUs with no problems so far.

    Now if you are using a Baofeng  Radio and a Wolverine Airsoft SMP at the same time, perhaps the best thing really is to avoid using the frequencies that are confirmed to be affecting the FCU.  Another recommendation is to try to shield it with tin foil. But really it's best to wait for Wolverine Airsoft to come up with a solution.

    Have you or anyone you know experienced the same? Please feel free to share at the Popular Airsoft Facebook Page or at the Airsoft Gear Guide Facebook Page.


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    AirsoftDB

    Whether you would like to admit or not, many of us airsofters spend a lot of time combing websites, forums, online stores, and other online sources for airsoft guns and gear. The beauty of going online is that you can widen your search of airsoft products from your location to basically worldwide, all at the click of the mouse or a tap on the screen.

    Still even with if we use Google and other search engines, we still spend a lot of time going from one page of search results to another. It is worse for using some sites' search functions, many are not that precise that it's still best to rely on the usual search engines.

    But how about having a search engine dedicated to airsoft stuff? Just imagine one website to visit and find out if the product(s) that you have been searching for is in stock at various retailers and displayed to you rather then mixed up with other but unrelated search results. It’s cleaner and more convenient, isn't it?

    Our good friends from Airsoft.nu just created probably one of the most handy online tools. I have personally seen their efforts coding to make sure that they were able to have a limited beta during the IWA & Outdoor Classics 2015 in Germany and now they can finally say that they have a full Beta of the AirsoftDB search engine for everyone to use.

    Here is what Daniel has to say about their service:

    The new website Airsoftdb (Airsoftdb.com) is a search engine to find airsoft products from your local shop and stores worldwide.

    The system automatically detects your location and tailors its search results to show products from shops which are most local to you, by country (or by state if in the U.S.). If they are no shop (or not yet indexed) in your area you will see products from a wider area.

    The website is in early beta preview version and new shops and functions (and improvements) are added continuously.

    We think it’s better to let airsofters try the services the website provides during development than release it later with more functionality since we think it will help a lot of airsofters to find airsoft related products with the current functionality.

    The website is a hobby project by people mainly from the Swedish airsoft website Airsoft.nu. We are working on this during our spare time.

    We hope that the global airsoft community and the airsoft industry like this website and its services.

    I have tested and indeed the site is responsive with search results displayed quickly.  What I know is that they have spiders/web crawlers that index airsoft retail sites to come up with more search results. The search results will still need to be refined since it will put out results based on all the keywords that you have submitted to the search form. An example is "MadBull Inner Barrels" where search results turn up not just inner barrels, but anything that contains "MadBull", "Inner", and "Barrels" thus, you cannot immediately zero-in to the item that you have been looking.

    They seemed to have left-out pricing in the search results and it would be great to have a glance at pricing and be able to compare pricing amongst retailers.

    AirsoftDB is now indexing retail shops in the U.S. , Europe and some parts of Asia such as Hong Kong and Japan. If you are an airsoft retailer and want your products to show up on the search results, you better contact them so they can inform you on how to make your site indexed by their spiders.

    This project has good potential and it would be fantastic to see airsoft retailers around the world supporting this project. There are still a lot of things for the AirsoftDB crew to work on the improve on our search experiences, but for now, we can have ourselves content with their fast search results, even if they're not yet precise (we're spoiled by Google).

    The AirsoftDB crew would love to hear any problems and bugs that you would find whilst using the search engine. You can give your comments and suggestions by following them on Facebook or at the AirsoftDB Contact Page.

    If you like the project, why not make it a habit to make it your search engine for airsoft shopping? So far, it's the only thing we have for airsoft, we might as well use it for product and bargain hunting.


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    U.S. Paratrooper With Barrett Sniper Rifle

    You have probably learned about the DARPA EXACTO (Extreme Accuracy Tasked Ordnance) Bullet here on Popular Airsoft almost a year ago. The EXACTO Bullet is a .50 caliber self-guiding bullet that can hit targets at impossible angles and moving targets.  Last year a video was posted showing how the bullet guides itself at the target even if the aimpoint was different. The latest video posted three days ago on YouTube by DARPA  shows a successful test against a moving target conducted last February 2015.

    The video shows an expert shooter hitting a moving target six time consecutively, making a 100% hit rate with the EXACTO Bullet. This shows that the bullet is able to make changes in its ballistic path in mid-air as the target accelerates to ensure a high probability of a hit, and in this case, it was always on target. The next shooter after the six hits was a first time untrained user and was able to hit the moving target just like how the expert shooter did.

    The video means that anyone with an EXACTO Bullet and the rifle with which it can be fired from, like the Barrett .50 Caliber Sniper Rifle, even if untrained to be a sniper can take out hard to hit targets. Now equip a rifle squad such smart ammo and rifle and they may just hold-off an enemy battalion from a longer distance. In short, a force multiplier. For SpecOps snipers on a mission to eliminate a high value target, their mission got easier as they just leave the calculation such as trajectory, wind conditions, elevation, etc. to the EXACTO bullet itself and focus their scopes on the target.

    But will it make anyone with the bullet and rifle a sniper? Well, a good shooter perhaps, a sniper no. Being a sniper these days is not just about being deadly accurate when shooting at targets at great distances. It's about being patient to approach a target just for intelligence gathering purposes and not having orders to shoot. There is a lot of discipline required of a sniper that being a sharpshooter is just one of them. Information that a sniper team relays back to the HQ is much more important. There is still much more to a sniper than being a feared shooter.

    The EXACTO Bullet will be a game changer in the field as it will make the enemy think twice before making an attack. The bullet, even if it is designed for the sniper or marksman, may just make anyone in an infantry unit a potential deadly shooter, even if not trained to be a sniper.

    (Teaser Photo: A U.S. paratrooper scans for targets behind a Barrett .50-caliber sniper rifle while on a partnered patrol near Muqor in Afghanistan's Ghazni province, June 25, 2012. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Michael J. MacLeod. Defense.gov)


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    Airsoft Goggles

    Thanks to Airsoft GI's posting on Facebook, a report on the rise of airsoft eye injuries in children has been published by the Journal of the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (JAAPOS). Well, I guess it's time again to write about eye injuries as a reminder to airsoft players that the problem still persists and we should collectively be concerned.

    As blogged by Scope of Stanford Medicine, there were over 3,000 children treated for eye injuries for "non-powder" guns between 2010 and 2012. These injuries were severe enough for them to be sent to hospital emergency rooms. "Non-powder" guns are paintball, BB, pellet, and airsoft guns and these caused more injuries as compared  to fireworks and sports such as baseball, basketball, etc.

    However, going over the report, it's a bit problematic to really determine if airsoft is the bigger culprit amongst the "non-powder" guns as the researched have lumped BB, pellet, and airsoft guns together. We know that airsoft guns do not usually cause permanent vision problems or even bigger eye damage as compared to the other "non-powder" guns.

    The report takes note of the rising popularity of airsoft guns with dramatic sales increases but not in paintball guns, which many would probably interpret that airsoft is now outselling paintball in the USA (though that has to be verified by further research).

    (An actual airsoft eye injury. You can read more about this incident and discussion at the Zero In forums.)

    So with the ever vigilant airsoft community and airsoft fields that stress more than often on the need to wear eye protection when handling an airsoft gun, why is there a rise in the eye injuries to children?

    Well, in a 2013 report according to Dr. Airsoft, Big-Box stores are documented as source of airsoft guns that were involved in eye injuries in children. Big-Box stores (e.g. Walmart) mainly sell to whoever wants to buy their products and do not usually involve explaining the safety requirements and hazards of airsoft guns as compared to specialty stores (airsoft retail shops). With the growing popularity of airsoft and easy access to these at Big-Box stores where children can just tag clueless parents to buy them airsoft guns, it's a recipe for disaster. The proposal was to ban the sale of airsoft guns outside of specialty stores.

    Furthermore, most of the eye injuries usually happen outside airsoft fields and facilities where there are very strict rules in safety. Most eye injuries in children happen at home or neighborhood when they are left unsupervised by adults. It is best to store the airsoft guns away under lock and key by parents and will only the children to play with airsoft guns under their watchful eyes.

    The airsoft community should never tire to explain the need for eye protection when using airsoft guns, in and out of airsoft fields. For airsoft YouTube Channels, we highly recommend to airsoft personalities to always emphasize on the need for safety at the beginning or end of their videos and for them to wear eye protection when doing reviews.


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    Airsoft Surgeon European Championship 2014

    It’s now official, the Airsoft Surgeon Airsoft Practical Shooting European Championship is now set to take place on the 11th to the 13th of September 2015. This event, which will be on its third year of airsoft practical shooting action in the UK, is expecting top airsoft practical shooters in Europe and even some of the best shooters from Hong Kong will be participating in this event.

    For this year, the event will be at the Strike Force CQB in Gloucester, a change of venue this time. The previous European Championships were held at The Grange in Balsall Common, Coventry. Though this is now closer to the RedWolf Airsoft UK, which is hosting the event, as their warehouse and retail store is located Tewkesbury, a short ride north of Gloucester.

    More details will be released soon such as Divisions and Categories, but we do expect, pending further confirmation, the following:

    Divisions:

    • Open (Max 28 rounds BB in each magazine)
    • Standard  (Max 18 rounds BB in each magazine)
    • Classic  (1911 single stack GBB only) (Max 10 rounds BB in each magazine)

    Categories:

    • Male
    • Ladies
    • Juniors (11 – 18 years old)

    Interested groups and shooters can email Chris Kong of RedWolf Airsoft to register for the event. We do highly encourage shooters from all over the participate in this event as it is a much competitive airsoft tournament. New shooters will get exposed to a whole new level of airsoft practical shooting as some of the most experienced airsoft practical shooters in the world will be present (even real steel shooters also compete in airsoft practical shooting).

    Popular Airsoft is again a media partner of the tournament for the third straight year. You can watch videos of the past two years at our YouTube Channel or see the photos of the 2013 and 2014 Champsionships at our Facebook Page.


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    Border War 7 - The Skylance

    The recent Border War 7 – The Skylance organised by the Border War Crew pushed again the benchmarks of Airsoft MILSIM events organising. They successfully pulled off the 7th Border War MILSIM edition a monster size international MILSIM operation with an extremely high organisation level.

    Border War 7 – The Skylance was held in the Czech Republic in former the Military area called Ralsko . The event took place during last weekend of April and hosted players from 31 countries around the world. This year this event was participated in by players from Panama in Central America. Participants undertook intensive 50-hour day and night infantry MILSIM battles in very good weather across the largest airsoft MILSIM battlefield used in Europe.

    Border War 7 challenged the limits of Border War 6 and again assured its position of the largest Airsoft and MILSIM 40+hours game operation in the Czech Republic, Europe and as well in the word, proving itself as a benchmark in many aspects of Airsoft MILSIM event organising.

    BW 7 traditionally hosted historical vehicles, several helicopters for in-game insertion of more than 200 airmobile players directly in the heat of the battle, as well as fortified bunkers, antitank obstacles, and many game locations built for the purpose of the event. For the first time, the organisers involved paratroopers and airborne insertion to kick of the game in a style never seen before.

    A LARP city featured more than 30 building, and nearby heavily fortified castle and was inhabited by more than 350 LARP characters enjoying their role-play integrated closely to the game scenario.

    COOPERATION WITH AUTHORITIES

    The main partners of the event for this year and for the third time were the Czech Army and Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic. The Czech Army offered participants to have a hands on the Pandur II APC. Participants were actively asking many questions and as well checking out real steel weapons brought in for a display by the professional soldiers; taking pictures and trying out the APC. The Ministry of Defence shared to participant a very nice exhibition about Czech Army with plenty of photographs, especially from their from latest deployment in Africa.

    SPONSORS AND SHOPS

    The Main Sponsors of the event were ASG (Action Sport Games), G&G Armament and RedWolf Airsoft. BBs, merchandise and replicas were distributed to the participants to test replicas before game and in the game as well. The event was also well supported by Gunfire, KHS Tactical Watches, Bohemia Airsoft, Jackets to Go, UFPRO, Tactical Pro, Voodoo Tactical,  Military Gear and Adventure Food, Valken Tactical, Tippmann, and Armed.cz.

    LOGISTICAL SUPPORT

    The Off-Zone (safety zone) offered a large variety of airsoft products, goodies to take from the sponsors also shops with equipment for the airsoft players, gifts and samples from sponsors were given to the players for free, also players had a chance to put their hands on the new products. Traditional professional catering was available throughout the event with excellent food at reasonable prices and a great non-alcoholic Czech beer.

    BEHIND THE SCENES

    BW7 preparations including the several pre-scenarios supporting the pre-game development took 10 months. The on the spot BW Crew consisted of 200 people. Due to the Border Wars' professional organisation, it was allowed to use for the game a large area of the natural park.

    BECAUSE WE CARE

    Border War MILSIM was traditionally supported by professional medical services provided by the company Medevac (www.medewac.cz) with 3 Ambulances, more than 30 paramedics on jeeps and quad bikes, surgeon, and internist doctors present for the duration of the game setting the medical readiness on the event to the Role 2 medical standard --- being ready to help all players in need within 5 minutes after being notified via phone or radio anywhere on the large airsoft battlefield.

    Role 2 medical preparation set up is a higher level of on the spot medical service. For example, a music festival with 25,000 people as standard has Role 1 medical set up – Role 3 is an army field hospital, Role 4 is a Town Hospital. Of course the event was as well supported by local firefighters and police department. Safety of the players is the organizers' priority.

    THE UNIQUE POINTS OF BORDER WAR 7

    • Biggest amount of players on spot and playing more than 45 hours in a row
    • Fastest registration for the event in airsoft history – sold out in 12 minutes 9 months before the event.
    • Nature friendly event – bio bbs vere used during the event.
    • Largest game battlefield ever used in Europe maybe in the world
    • Largest Airmobile insertion in the airsoft history
    • Usage of Airborne Unit in the game
    • Largest LARP city in the Airsoft history iIncluding the heavily fortified castle and large scale fortified Task Force base)
    • Most advanced medical and safety standard on an Airsoft event in Europe (Role 2 medical set up – 30+ professional medical crew on spot)
    • Largest organising crew ever used to organise an airsoft event in Europe (maybe in the world) 200 people.
    • Largest usage of PES (Personal Eye System) by Milsistematika on the Airsoft event
    • Several trucks of Game Props were transported and used in game
    • 20 chrono stations with 40 Border War Chrono Crew managed to make fastest chrono ever in Airsoft history in Czech Republic (maybe in the World)
    • Epic Scale Task Force 39 parade before game including airborne drop  (Check pictures and videos)
    • Several heavy trucks were used to transport players in game and offgame
    • Czech Army Supported the Event – with one of the most modern technicals displayed to public

    ABOUT THE ORGANISER

    Border War Crew led by Mike von Bulow organise large scale international Airsoft MILSIM games from 2008 having in its portfolio more than 100 organised events from 2003.

    Border War MILSIM was twice voted as the best Airsoft event in the world by readers of Popular Airsoft Magazine when Border War 4 was voted as the best Airsoft event of the word in February 2013. The Border War 5 OP Warhammer received the award in 2014. Border War 6 was awarded in 2015 achieving a  golden hat trick in the category. Awards were handed over to the organizer at the Airsoft Meetup during the IWA & Outdoor Classics in Nuremberg, Germany in February 2013, 2014, and 2015.

    ABOUT THE SCENARIO

    The fictional scenario was situated in the Golden Triangle in the Pacific Area where a large satellite has fallen to the jungle. The groups involved are the governmental forces called "Task Force 39", and local movement for independence called the "Barrambatang Freedom Fighters". The Game was further enriched by two independent PMC fractions, smugglers, and civilian game participants. The game's strategic goal is to try to secure the debris of the crashed satellite in the jungles of one of the islands.

    The game consisted of intensive player deployments with a higher MILSIM aspect day and night as compared to the previous Border War events. A General MILSIM atmosphere was increased not only due to large walking distances and limited ammunition rule add-ons but also due to a large amount of game props and special game locations such as the PMC Castle, LARP village, Fortified Bunker Area and fortified local installations in field.  A large area of land was used during the event, giving the organisers to prepare a completely new experience for the players from around the world.

    More photos can be seen a the Border War Milsim Facebook Page.


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    Suicide Squad

    Last Sunday, David Ayers, the director of the upcoming Suicide Squad movie, released photos of the cast via twitter. Scheduled for release in Summer 2016, the Suicide Squad movie is based on the DC Comics of the same name about supervillains in prison who are sent in secret operations by the U.S. government for reduced prison sentences. If they fail in the mission, they will be denied by the government.

    The group operates from the Belle Reve Penitentiary which is managed by Dr. Amanda Waller. Some of the more infamous characters of the group include The Joker and Harley Quinn with Will Smith part of the cast as Deadshot. Principal photography of the cast took place last April and thus we are seeing the initial photos o f the cast this month.

    Here is the cast as shown by Director Ayers without their costumes on:

    The cast is actually a long one, as compared to the Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy --- Will Smith Smith as Deadshot, Jared Leto as The Joker, Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn,, Cara Delevingne as Enchantress, and Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flagg. Viola Davis as Dr. Waller, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc, Adam Beach as Slipknot, Karen Fukuhara as Katana, and Jay Hernandez El Diablo. Other members of the cast with unconfirmed roles are Scott Eastwood, Jim Parrack, Ike Barinholtz, Common, Alex Meraz, David Harbour, and Raymond Olubowale.

    Warner Bros. started developing the Suicide Squad Film version in 2009, taking in Justin Marks to write the script and Charles Roven, Dan Lin, Colin Wilson, as producers. David Ayers came on board as director in September 2014 with casting in October of the same year.

    Filming of the movie has started last April and is set to wrap up in August 2015. All film locations are Toronto, Canada.

    For airsofters, many would be keen in knowing more about the rifle of Will Smith/Deadshot who appeared initially in Gotham City as crimefighter but turned out to be an enemy of the Batman as shown in the photo:

    The rifle's handguard looks like has an engraved "I am the Light --- The Way" but we're keen on knowing more his favorite weapon, the silenced wrist mounted weapons. It would be interesting if there would be a tie-up with an airsoft manufacturer to make the weapon.


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    Zero Dark Thirty Night Vision

    It looks like U.S. soldiers will soon be a getting a better device to see and aim at targets in the dark once the new headsets or goggles that will be delivered by BAE Systems arrive. This new device is actually has integrated night vision and thermal targeting solution making it easier for the soldiers to perform their missions in the dark.

    This is a better solution for the warfighter, integrating both systems in just one mountable device. Presently, soldiers use night vision for situational awareness and thermal imaging for targeting which is mounted on the weapon.

    BAE Systems was initially awarded by US$35 million Enhanced Night Vision Goggle III and Family of Weapon Sight-Individual (ENVG III/FWS-I) program. The company has worked with the U.S. Army U.S Army Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate to develop the technology. The contract is valued to be over US$400 million over four years.

    According to the press release from BAE Systems, the two-in-one system has the following advantages:

    • Weapon sight imagery is viewed by the soldier in his goggle which shortens the engagement timeline.
    • Wireless interface between the weapon sight and goggle maximizes the soldier's maneuverability.
    • Advanced high resolution thermal imagers extend the goggle and weapon sight target acquisition ranges.
    • Light weight and small size reduces soldier fatigue.
    • Low power reduces battery usage and operating costs.

    The targeting component is still mounted on the weapon itself. However, it is connected via bluetooth to the helmet mounted display. With a button, the warfighters can toggle between two modes quickly, lessening the time for target acquisition. They don't have to rely on lasers to aim allowing them to remain covert.

    The new system may soon be distributed to soldiers in late 2016 or early 2017.


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    TomTom Bandit

    Just keep `em coming! That's what we can say with all these action camera offerings. This market segment was created by small startups to answer the needs of outdoors and extreme sports people for a handy way to film their experiences and exploits and it just went crazy. For now, GoPro is the market leader  but big name electronics companies from Japan such as Sony and Panasonic have entered the fray, and now companies more known for navigational products such as Garmin and TomTom also want a piece of the action.

    TomTom is the latest entry to this market with the TomTom Bandit which has some unique features that cannot be found in competitors apart from the usual High Definition video recording (1080p at 60fps/720p at 120fps), GPS, timelapse, Wifi, slow motion, burst photo mode, and still photos.

    With the phone app, it has a "Shake To Edit" feature that when you shake the phone it mixes up the video clips you have taken, allowing you to find the good clips to put your movie together. Once done, it’s ready to be uploaded, as TomTom says about the Bandit footage, "Share it while it’s hot."

    It also has data visualization allowing you to check your stats such as speed, altitude, and location which will you help you improve your performance, especially if you're preparing for a big competitive event.

    What I am actually pleased with the TomTom Bandit apart from its well thought out action-cam-smartphone-app combo it the actual hardware itself. It is certified IPX7 which is splashproof and can be immersed in 1 metre of water for 30 minutes without the need for a waterproof housing. With an extra lens cover, it can go IPX8 which TomTom says and you can dive up to 50 metres with it.

    Now what really sets its hardware apart is the uniquely designed Batt-Stick. It is a 1900 maH battery, a microSD card and USB stick housing. You can easily pull out the Batt-Stick Module from the camera unit and with its USB just insert it to the USB3 port of your laptop. While transferring video files, it can start drawing juice from the laptop's power and thus charging at the same time.

    The TomTom Bandit is now on pre-order for £299.99 with a Premium Pack which comes with a Remote Control, Handle Bar Mount, Dive Lens Cover, 360 Pitch Mount, and Power Cable to be available soon. TomTom are expecting to ship the Bandit before the 30th of May. For now, the app is available for iOS devices with the Android version coming soon, hopefully when the TomTom Bandit starts to ship.


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    Tokyo Marui 54th Shizuoka Hobby Show Teaser

    We're just less than a week to go before the 54th Shizuoka Hobby Show in Japan. It's a big event for the toy model and hobby industry in Japan, and for many airsoft players around the world, it's the first event of the year when Tokyo Marui unveil products that they will release for 2015.  Following the company's tradition, they usually give us a teaser of the products that will be showcased for the show.

    But are they really a surprise? If you don't follow airsoft news and updates in Japan, especially at events where Tokyo Marui have a big presence, perhaps. But if you are a keen follower and chronicler of airsoft in Japan, just like the famous Japanese airsoft blog site, Hyperdouraku, the clues have already been laid out for you in the past months before the official unveiling.

    So, what has Yas of Hyperdouraku, picked up in his sleuthing to take the surprise out before the show begins next week. Click here if you want the Japanese version by reading directly from Hyperdouraku.

    Tokyo Marui Hi-Capa Gold Match Gas Blowback Pistol

    What we think is perhaps the best-selling airsoft pistol from Tokyo Marui the, Hi-Capa Series, gets a new look and a premium one at that. Hyperdouraku has a photo of the 5.1 version of the Gas Blowback Pistols that any serious airsoft practical shooter would want to own and customise as a race gun.

    Tokyo Marui M4A1 MWS Gas Blowback Rifle


    First unveiled at the 53rd Shizuoka Hobby Show last year, we can confidently say that the Tokyo Marui M4A1 MWS Gas Blowback Rifle will be released in Spring 2015, in this case, it will be late Spring (and perhaps already summer for other countries). There are plenty of metal parts for this rifle and of course will have a Cerakote gun paint for finishing.

    Another Tokyo Marui Beretta M9 Gas Blowback Pistol?

    We're pretty much sure that this teaser is a  bit easy to guess, but it can also be hard. But what M9 pistol will this be? There have been no clues regarding this pistol and for those thinking it will be based on the new Beretta M9A3, we think not. The Beretta M9A3 has primarily a desert colour  and the teaser shows a pistol in black colour. But then, you can check out the Beretta USA website for a version that you hope this would be based on. It could also be the M96a1 that was released in 2010.

    (Beretta M96A1)

    Tokyo Marui Smith & Wesson M629 .44 Magnum? Or another Colt Python .357 Magnum CTG?

    If you refer to the Tokyo Marui website, you can see that they already have the Colt Python Models and the Smith & Wesson M19 and M66 Models. But there is no Tokyo Marui Smith & Wesson M629 whereas Tanaka Works already have their airsoft version of the revolver? We tend to agree with what Hyperdouraku is predicting this to be.

    Just another week to go before we get to see the new toys from Tokyo Marui. As always, please do expect our report on the new Tokyo Marui products for this year such as specifications and photos from the Tokyo Marui booth at the 54th Shizuoka Hobby Show.


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    LBX Tactical Caiman Camo

    Finally, we get to write something about an upcoming camo pattern to be released by LBX Tactical, hopefully by the end of May 2015. As posted on their Facebook Page last 23 April 2015, LBX Tactical officially announced their LBX Caiman Camo, which is the camo pattern they are going to bring to the airsoft market together with Leading Edge Ventures HyperStealth Biotechnology Corporation, the company developing some new generation camo fabric.

    Caiman Camo is actually the second pattern that will be released under this partnership as Inland Taipan is already in the market. If you have been following news from the SHOT Show, these patterns, called the LBX Tactical Camo Region Pack, were first revealed during the SHOT Show 2014 and there are a total of 4 patterns and: Mantis, Inland Taipan, Snow Raptor, and Caiman. According to Soldier Systems, to validate and optimize the patterns, they consulted sniper instructors from the Naval Special Warfare and US Marine Corps and explains it further:

    LBX Camo utilizes a proprietary 3-dimensional pattern which is added to the larger Macropattern regions to subdue the Spatial Frequency of the pattern and allow for different aspects of the pattern to work at various distances. This feature also creates a semi-horizontal natural flow texture and the illusion of depth and more than seven colors from a distance. This flow helps to mask horizontal movement at various tactical distances.

    Here is the unedited split screen of the Caiman Camo and see for yourself:

    Here is the Inland Taipan now used with the LBX Tactical Camouflage Combat Pant and Camouflage Combat Shirt:

    The LBX Caiman Camo is actually was being tested in the field by certain airsoft players and Silva of American Milsim was spotted by Asian With Hat wearing a full set of the prototype during American Milsim's ESR19-2 event held last Februay 28 to March 1, 2015:

    These new generation camo patterns are being integrated by LBX Tactical into their combat apparel line which are affordable as compared and without compromising quality.  Now, we wait for comparisons on the field between these new LBX Tactical Camo Patterns and their  competitors. Will HyperStealth do its trick like what CNN says in their video report?


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