Paintball is one of the most exciting outdoor sports ever created. Many sports grew out of athletic tests to prepare men for combat, but that was the combat of a thousand years ago or more. Paintball is heavily entrenched in modern warfare, and as such it has captured the imaginations of millions of men, women and even children in dozens of countries around the world.

Today the game is played with a number of variant types of paintball guns (or paintball markers, as some prefer). Many of these more modern pump paintball markers use compressed gas of some sort or another as propellant, either in refillable or disposable tanks. Originally though, there was the simple pump paintball gun. This type of paintball marker has a pump, usually under the barrel like that of a pump action shotgun, that allows the marker to compress its own air to use for paintball propulsion.

Many consider this a purer version of the sport, especially since the use of non self-sufficient propulsion has led to paintball innovations of mass destruction. Mounted markers that are fitted to giant compressed gas canisters and can fire out paintballs with truly incredible rates of fire. The velocity of the paintballs shot from these markers also tends to be painfully (literally) high. Some paintball venues won't even allow such markers due to fear of player injury (and the potential lawsuits that come along with it, no doubt) and actively encourage players to use pump paintball markers instead.

Even for places that do permit the rapid fire weapons, many players don't want to see them on the field of battle. For many, it takes the sport out of the game when you can simply spray enormous numbers of paintballs over large swaths of the battlefield without even really needing to aim. When games are played exclusively at a pump paintball site with pump-action paint markers the pace of the battle slows down a bit and allows for better use of strategy rather than the winner simply being the team that can bring the most overwhelming force down the quickest.

Games played with rules requiring strictly pump paintball guns take some extra skill to play as well. Players need to be able to aim well and make every shot count. In real war, winning often means a prize beyond value. Generally speaking, it means the winners get to rule their land the way they see fit. When playing paintball, the losers go out for beers with the winners afterward. When winning holds no value beyond prestige (as is the difference between war and sport) that prestige means a lot more if you won it with a pump marker and not simply by owning an expensive paintball machine gun.