A fact about me is that I have played "combat sports" since I was 10 isn't something I talk about very often. I started playing paintball in the 6th grade and airsoft in 10th. I had to lay off in college and for a couple years after that, but I kept immersed in it. Today I received my order for my first gas blowback rifle, I won't go over the nitty-gritty technical details of weapon (they count as firearms legally in some places I think, and you should be responsible with them even if they aren't in your area) types here. But I got a Mk18 CQBR styled one that is also marketed to law enforcement agencies for low cost training (as 5.56x45mm ammunition is expensive). This isn't my first airsoft gun, I owned an MP5 Navy, AKS, and still own an electric M16, and gas 1911A1. So why do I spend my hard earned money on this stuff?
Truth is that I love the act of being fictionally shot at and playing army. Getting used to being shot at (even by paintballs and airsoft bbs) took some getting used to, they still hurt and I was 10 at the time. But there's a certain adrenaline rush you get from it, I can't describe it. Yeah, I could have joined the real Army, I tried, didn't go well. But I tried and it didn't work out, I sometimes wish it had so I turn back to airsoft to live out my soldier fantasies. It has a small community still, and it requires you to be active at least, and its fun. I do it because I love making those kinds of connections and it helps me become and stay fit.
So the gun, I can't say rifle as the barrel is smooth, but it is a rifle in that isn't a handgun, shotgun, or SMG. Thus in the game they are referred to as GBBRs (gas blowback rifles) even without rifled barrels. It is a 1:1 scale replica, it even weighs about the same (~6 lbs, unsure if that is with or without the magazine), as do the magazines coming in at about a pound each, and holding up to 40 rounds. It's barrel is about 10 inches, and mine shoots a little "hot" (a term meaning high) for CQB (usually set at 350 fps [~106 m/s]). It came with iron sights, but I have a Aimpoint CompM4 red dot sight replica for the top rail. It is milspec as far as its furniture goes (stock, pistol grip, rail systems). All in all, for what I've done with it in the last couple hours, it was worth the relatively steep price tag. In response its a solid airsoft gun that is actually really loud and kicks, only like a .22 but that's more that you'd expect from an airsoft gun right?
My plans for the gun are that it will be a project gun to use at a local CQB field, it won't be cheap and will require a lot more money to get it exactly where I want it, and likely another few hundred dollars for it to be competitive (mostly for magazines as they aren't cheap themselves). I want to put a MagPul pistol grip and stock on it, and replace a few internal parts with reinforced ones. Though these aren't vital, they will make the gun much more comfortable to use. I want to put on a replica rail system (a copy of a DD RAS II Lite to be exact) to I can make it more versatile for close quarters fighting, as a tactical flashlight and vertical grip can do a lot to help in the usefulness and control areas. Finally I want to but an aggressive looking flash-hider on the front, just so it's even scarier to little kids... or maybe a sound amplifier. But something that is vital that I will need is a way to lower the fps of the weapon ~25 feet per second with a standard .20g BB (I'll be using .25g or .28g BBs more likely for accuracy) so I can even play with it. I am thinking a widebore barrel (a purposely in efficient barrel that lets air around the sides of the BB to lower fps will be key, I may have to also change a valve in the bolt as well.
I suppose I should comment on how I expect to use this thing, a "philosophy of use" as one of my favorite youtubers put it in his reviews of stuff. This weapon has full automatic fire (about 780+ rounds per minute) but the way gas weapons work means fast rates of fire waste more gas and cool down the weapon's internals (Boyle's Law) so I doesn't work as well, so magazine dumps are out. Short controlled bursts will be used if I need them, otherwise semiautomatic fire is more gas and ammunition efficient, plus it takes more skill. I will be out gunned by the electric guns (AEGs) with their higher magazine capacities and rates of fire plus the lack of recoil (a reason I bought this gun in the first place. I don't think it's a game of winning as much as its about having fun and looking cool doing it. So all the spray n' pray guys will have an advantage, but I will have range, trigger response, and accuracy on mine, so CQB isn't exactly where this thing shines, but I like the challenge. Hell, when I play FPS games these days, I stick my gun on semiautomatic (at least in single player) for the same reasons I would with this thing.
I will be putting stuff like this on here every so often, as it is technically roleplaying, but its a stretch at that. Mostly, its just something I like.