Ready, Aim, Splat!

New paintball gear lets you spatter your enemies faster and more accurately—without even leaving your cover

Splat

Greg Neumaier

Paintball has become the perfect way for gadget geeks to unleash their inner Rambo. The latest carbon-dioxide- or compressed-air-powered guns, known as "markers," have computerized controls and electronic firing mechanisms that can blast out 1,200 balls a minute at speeds of up to 300 feet per second. Add in a quick reloader and a sneaky scope, and your buddies won't stand a chance.

  • A. Shooter
    The Luxe marker has an electric firing mechanism. While standard guns use a clunky mechanical hammer to open a large gas valve, this gun's electric bolt opens a small valve to fire paintballs faster, with less recoil. When the Luxe clogs up with mud or broken paintballs, you clean it out quickly and without tools—unlike conventional guns that require you to turn off the gas, shoot several rounds to depressurize the gun, and disassemble it with Allen wrenches. Another aid in combat: DLX replaces confusing electronic beeps with spoken-word menus for switching modes or firing rates.
    DLX Technology Luxe Marker $1,500; smartparts.com
  • B. Loader
    A gun's feeder stores hundreds of paintballs and pumps them into the chamber as you fire—until they jam. The 220-shot Magna Loader uses an adjustable magnetic clutch to spin a disk that pushes balls into the chamber. Add or remove magnets to change the force and speed of loading, for, say, fragile competition-grade paintballs. To conserve batteries, the loader spins only when needed, using either a microphone to detect when the gun is firing or a radio-frequency link synced with the trigger.
    Empire Paintball Magna Loader $170; empirepaintball.com
  • C. Spotter
    Peek around a corner, and the next thing you'll see is paint splattered on your face mask. Instead, attach this dual-mirror scope to the end of your muzzle to peer over ledges or around walls. The curved mirrors' fish-eye effect lets you see more.
    ICU System $25; icub4ucme.com