Hey everyone!

Welcome back to the blog! If you were following my socials during my time in the States, you’ll have seen that I visited Wildlands Airsoft Park at Jungle Island Paintball Park in Lake Elsinore, California. I’ve played this site a few times since my first visit in 2017 but up until now I’ve not done a review, so here are my thoughts: 

Wildlands Airsoft Park is located on the Jungle Island Paintball Park in Lake Elsinore, CA. It’s around an hour and a half drive from the High Desert (where I’m based in the US) if there’s not any shitty LA traffic. Upon arrival, you see a large set of gates with a long dirt/sand track that leads to both Jungle Island and of course Wildlands. As soon as you drive through the gates you can see the playable fields on either side of the track. About 50-60m down the track you’ll see some set-up tables for the paintball players and the sign in cabin. There is a table set up just outside the sign in so you can fill in your insurance waiver before getting to the sign-in which saves tonnes of time. The sign in cabin also holds a small shop that sells various paintball/airsoft goods and snacks. A walk-on game fee is $25 (around £23) which is super affordable! It is worth noting that this doesn’t include lunch but lunch is available for an extra fee.

Once you’ve gone through sign in, you can drive to the bottom of the track where the Airsoft car park and set-up area is. The safe one facilities at Wildlands are leaving a lot to be desired. The safe zone is essentially a sand/dirt car park with a few tables underneath a giant gazebo. On low numbers days this is plenty of space for all the players but on busy days, not so much. If you have a pickup or SUV it’s advisable to bring your own gazebo and set-up off your tailgate if you know it’s going to be a busy day. There are portaloos on site but as they’re left out in the Californian sun they aren’t the most pleasant you will come across (but this can’t be helped). There is a male and female portaloo which is appreciated but I would love to see these cleaned more often and water/soap or even hand sanitiser provided so players can keep their hands clean.

Onto the arena: the arenas are where I think Wildlands excels. I have personally played on 4 different arenas at Wildlands and whilst I prefer some more than others, they are all really playable arenas. I’m unsure of all of the names but there is an arena that has a large hill with bunkers/buildings for cover which is a really hard slog if you’re attacking from the bottom of the hill (Firebase Rancho), an arena that is made entirely from tyres, a smallish arena that is mostly made up of buildings (one of my favourites!) And the big arena which houses the hospital, Babylon, the junction and the double story building. Each arena has a theme which makes them immersive and the games played on each arena work well. The staff at Wildlands have obviously put in a lot of time and effort into the arenas and it definitely shows. It’s also awesome that they have so many vehicles and buildings to fight around, the school bus is also pretty cool. It is worth mentioning that the site is entirely outdoors so it’s an outdoors CQB kinda vibe which I really like!

All players are given a comprehensive safety brief in the morning that explains the rules and regulations of the site before they enter the arena to ensure safe gameplay. The brief covers everything from Chrono limits, what do to when you get hit, emergencies, pyrotechnics and MEDs. Wildlands operates at 400 FPS for AEGs and does operate a MED and a bang rule.

The games played include a variety of deathmatches and objective-based games, and are usually specific to the arena you are playing on - if you’re in the arena with the hospital and Babylon, you’ll more than likely be playing an objective-based game. One of my favourite objective-based games that Wildlands play is with a device that one team needs to get into the second story building to detonate the device and the other team must defend the building - it always results in some intense firefights.

The Marshalls do a good job of keeping the games running smoothly and explaining the rules to players but I have found on one or two occasions certain marshalls have told players to be quiet then proceeded to talk really loudly with other players whilst marshalls are giving the game brief, which results in players getting confused by the rules or simply not hearing them. Whilst they do a really good job on the field this could do with nipping in the bud.

Wildlands Airsoft is a really fun and varied site to play. The arenas are well built, have cool themes and a really playable. The games played are varied, enjoyable and keep players entertained and on their toes. There are a couple of improvements that I would love to see - the toilet facilities improved (addition of soap/water or hand sanitiser) and more professional conduct from some of the marshalls during game briefs but otherwise I think Wildlands is fun and affordable.

Post thanks to Patreon patron Airsoftpanda

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