I went paintballing yesterday as part of my brother's stag festivities. It was quite fun, but beforehand i was quite nervous about being shot. I reached out to an ex-military guy on another forum i frequent, and he told me something i had long suspected. That the real-life fear of being hurt is a powerful tool for the front-line soldier.
Unfortunately once you've been hit a few times it's hard to be that worried, but it reminded me of a quote from Dragon Age II, where Hawke tells his party 'i don't know if we can win this, or if we even should, but i do know i can fight harder scared than they can angry'.
So obviously i decided it would be advantageous to subtly rile up our opponents, who happened to be a mixed-gender party of 12 celebrating someone's birthday. This took place in Essex, so imagine they were quite chav-like.
Anyway, in the first game i eliminated two of the women (like a big man) before being shot myself and having to sit out the rest of the round. I got hit in the neck, which really, REALLY, f*cking hurt. As i was tending to my wound in the sit-out area i overheard the two women talking. 'Yeah, some guy hit me in the arse... it was you wasn't it?'
'Sorry. The weapon instructor did say we'd get better results aiming for the larger areas of the body as opposed to always going for head shots'.
'You cheeky gi...'
'It was a compliment. You're quite callipygian'
She didn't know what that meant, so i told to look it up at dictionary.com when she got a moment.
Which she must have done, as after the break for lunch she approached me to say that it was quite a 'fancy way of telling me i have a nice bum' before adding she isn't used to that kind of language.
The rest of her party were watching, so i made a point of slowly looking at the men before telling her that doesn't surprise me. She laughed in agreement.
(at this point i understand that it seems like i was flirting, which might seem a little shady considering i have a girlfriend of my own, but i'd like to point out my brother's fiancée is having strippers at her hen party')
As you can imagine the guys didn't appreciate that, and during the next game seemed to make a point of going after me. Which they did quite successfully when they flanked me. I looked like a Kandinsky painting, and noticed in the shower just now that i have about half a dozen red marks on my back.
However, this was an objective game. Capture the flag. In focusing so heavily on me, they didn't give due thought to the rest of my team who managed to retrieve it and win the game.
And all because of messir Hawke (and my tactical brilliance and ability to charm a woman - i feel a bit like a cross between James Bond in Goldfinger and Sun Tzu).
It's also notable that the things i learned on Dragon Age helped me more than anything i had learned on Call of Duty, while playing paintball at a place which prides itself on having a recreation of a Modern Warfare 2 map.