Current uni student and freelance writer. Visit my recently created film blog www.kankanfilms.blogspot.com and follow me on Twitter @KevinHoang
Published February 25th 2011
From my experiences at Hotshots playing paintball, I've always liked to assume that the idea of the activity was first created by some post-modernist painter trying to create a life-based artwork in the style of Rambo. Of course, a quick glance over Wikipedia would tell you this isn't the case. However, judging from the recent paintball-induced, abstract bruise on my right buttock that vaguely resembles Sylvester Stallone if one were to squint at it; it's quite a logical assumption.
Hotshots is a paintball centre located in a small township called Anakie, which is nicely located within a triangle drawn between Melbourne, Geelong and Ballarat. So location-wise, it's quite convenient. One thing I like about this place is its bush-like scenery. With trees, bushes and boulders the size of small houses, it gives off that almost Rambo-like feel whilst you play, until you get shot that is, in which case, it really, really hurts. On that note, come prepared with extra protection, a.k.a groin guards. Hotshots sell groin guards for $5.50 and I highly advise towards those planning to go paintball to buy one if you aren't planning to become a statistic within the daily Hotshots 'collateral damage' report.
A paintball experience at Hotshots will enable you and your group of friends to experience a series of games that will push you to utilise every bit of your senses and reflexes that you have. Games range from 'Mission Impossible,' where it requires a member on each team to reach the opposition's end and slot a 'key' into a fortification to claim victory, to 'Darth Vader vs. Luke Skywalker' where one team re-enacts the Rebellion and the other the Empire with both teams going head to head against each other to dictate 'the fate of the universe.' However, one game that brings in the real experience of paintball is the 'Free for All' game. Unlike other paintball games, in Free for All, your character role is that of a human pin cushion. In this game, you have no friend. Just yourself. And your groin guard.
In terms of prices, a half a day paintball experience at Hotshots will cost you about $50, which is pretty good in terms of what you get. For just $50, you will receive the latest semi-automatic paintball marker, 200 paintballs, camouflage clothing which includes padding, a pair of goggles, water and a body kit/vest, for those who are extra nervous about being shot. However, this is where it gets towards the pricey end. An extra 100 balls will cost you $20 and honestly speaking, your initial 200 balls will easily dissipate within a game or two. So unless you're willing to fork out the cash, it's best to be conservative in your shooting within the paintball field.
All in all, Hotshots truly brings out the three p's within the paintball experience: paint, pleasure and pain (mainly pain). Now excuse me for ending this paragraph abruptly, but I got to go to the bathroom to squint harder at my abstract-bruise-that-looks-like-Sylvester Stallone to see whether it suddenly looks like he's punching Apollo Creed.
I missed the opportunity to visit Hot Shots with some mates a few weeks back, and reading this article makes me feel all the more regretful. I can't wait until the next time someone hosts a paintball party, it will be one hell of a treat. Although, I don't want my jollies getting bruised :(!
By supermiikes - reader Sunday, 27th of February @ 11:45 am
Yeah, a paintball experience is definitely unforgettable. Getting hit down there will make sure of that :)
By Kevin Hoang - senior reviewer Tuesday, 1st of March @ 10:26 am