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Old 06-16-2009, 04:45 PM   #1
NYwRiter94
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Default Recruiting

Hopefully, this will garner speedy responses, as my last thread did.

Anyways, I'm starting to build up a roster of water warriors, and I was just wondering how I should go about it. I've told a few people about my dream of having water wars throughout the summer, then provided links such as isoaker.com, sscentral.com, DX's History of Ridgewood Water Warfare(We live in NJ AND it shows what I want us to be like).

How do I really sell the idea? And the method of just having wars and telling people to join is not applicable here.

Also, I understand there have been other recruit threads, but I'm talking more what to tell them, not how to tell them.
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:37 PM   #2
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Default Re: Recruiting

Where in Jersey are ya located?
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:49 PM   #3
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Default Re: Recruiting

If you have enough water guns, just pull them out and invite others to join in. I wouldn't know how to take the next step to a formal league, though. That would be a little difficult here since my friends generally prefer airsoft, although they've burned out of that, too, now.
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Old 06-16-2009, 11:08 PM   #4
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Default Re: Recruiting

I live near Morristown, up north.

And yeah, I've told a few friends. One of them is my best friend who always does things with me that we get hooked on for a while, but I've told him about Ridgewood and how I have dreams of being like that and he tells me it could never last that long. I said to him we should worry about that later and just get some quick soakfests together to start.

MY problem is that I have no guns(lost the one I had), no money, and have to rely on my friend's stack and HIS friend's supposed CPS 2000s or Monster XLs(he had no idea which kind it was 3 years ago and we don't know if he still has 'em). Once I get that under control, I can begin.
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Old 06-19-2009, 01:04 AM   #5
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Default Re: Recruiting

Hey there, I'm quite flattered that you've been using Ridgewood as a role model for team warfare! Your friend shouldn't be so quick to downplay your goals - Robin and I were 14 when we formed the Ridgewood Militia. That's when water wars in Ridgewood really took off. Nick/Belisaurius had been doing things for a while before that, but had no enemy to fight.

Recruiting almost always starts off slow and later snowballs as you accrue hype and reputation. How to sell the idea of water warfare really depends on the kind of people you're looking to hook, especially when starting a team. Soakfests, while enjoyed by the majority of water war enthusiasts, are not a high schoolers' cup of tea. We had just one inter-team soakfest and it was honestly kinda boring. High school aged kids want a game that they have a chance of "winning" and it should be a challenge that requires skill and style appropriate for their age. There is a stigma to playing with water guns that you have to overcome. Some suggestions:

- When selling the game to a friend for the first time, transition into it from a related subject or cast a lure and see if they take the bait. Sometimes I'd draw up battle plans and formations during class and someone would notice over my shoulder. When they ask about it, you have an excellent chance of getting them into it.

- Downplay the childish aspects of water wars. I don't know if you are interested in playing for score, but that was an aspect of our wars that kept interest up. It wasn't just charging around and soaking on some lawn. We had to ambush, dodge, coordinate, radio positions across a mile of terrain, and play mind games with the enemy. Average mileage run was as high as 12-25 per war. We fought in plants taller than ourselves. We waded through waist-deep streams just to cut off retreating enemies. Water warfare was damn hardcore and exciting. We did things with soakers that your typical little kid on a lawn wouldn't ever dream of.

- It helps to have powerful weapons. Even college kids are impressed with big water guns with long range. Modded and homemade guns are a plus. Water balloon launchers are probably the best asset to have. They are easy to build, intimidating looking, and really impressive. There is nothing quite like a night battle with launchers on the field. In '06 some slightly drunk guys encountered us in the Waterbridge park during the RM Classic while we were dueling across the stream with Douchenators. It was a really intense moment to watch a water war in action. Next day the entire school knew what a Douchenator was by 3rd period. We had a bunch of people join on the spot.

From 2006 to 2007, the Ridgewood Militia possessed the greatest arsenal of any team, period. In 2004 we didn't have jack. Arsenals take time to build up, don't worry if you haven't got much now. Do go for quality though - CPS are still the best and can be found for bargain prices in midwinter on Ebay.

- Create rules and set standards as early as possible. When you're trying to convince someone to join, you want to be able to hand them a paper copy of the rules so they can read for themselves. Proper organization, or at least the appearance of such, lends legitimacy to an activity.

- Ultimately, your reputation will do most of the recruiting work for you. If the first season is successful, future seasons will come together nicely. Encourage the circulation of stories about highlights. Some in Ridgewood became pretty legendary in cafeteria conversation. When one of our players in '07 jumped off a hill and broke his leg at the Goffle Invite, he told people it was just a battle scar from water warfare. Imagine the reactions you'd get from that. The only bad injury sustained in our wars actually ended up promoting the game rather than detracting from it. The story of Matt going over the waterfall, the night battle with launchers, Jay rolling down High Point, Cliff gunning down Jeff after a half mile chase, all contributed to an image of water warfare as something so cool you had to try it. Make it sound irresistible.

Without more information on what kind of games you want to play, rules, type of people, etc. I dunno what else to say.
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Old 06-19-2009, 05:32 AM   #6
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Default Re: Recruiting

The groups at Cambridge - the Assassins' Guild and Capture The Flag - seem to do fairly well. CTF is somewhat of an Assassins spinoff (being the fun duelling bits without the paranoia!). It would be fair to say that both attract a geeky type - full of mathematicians and computer scientists.

Of course, they've got a University of about 13,000 undergraduates to draw from.
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Old 06-19-2009, 09:25 AM   #7
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Default Re: Recruiting

Thanks for the input, guys.

DX, that was a lot of stuff, let's see what I can tackle.

First of all, I'm working on it, and I have 4 or 5 people right now, which is pretty good if we can all get together. The biggest problem that I have is that since we all go to private school, none of us live in the same town. That said, we don't live more than 20 minutes apart with one of the kids being 40 minutes apart. Our parents have no problem driving us to each other's houses.

So far, I've just said "Wanna see something cool?" and sent a link to either sscentral or isoaker, and see how they respond. When they ask what it is, I talk about having fights with water guns, then usually link the Intro posted by Ben on this site, then the Ridgewood Ruleset and the History of Ridgewood Warfare that I found on waterwarfare.com. While I don't expect the majority of them to read you entire history, I think it gives them the idea of the scope of this and how big it can become.

While I don't think that many of them are as into it as me(if I get hooked onto something I spend hours a day reading about it, as is the case with water warfare right now), I think that if I do the work, and they just listen to my theories, shoot back a couple of ideas, and grab some water guns, we can play. I'm thinking one hit kill as soakfests, while fun, don't really move it forward. Plus, as you said, high schoolers want something they can win, and that's not easily achieved in a Soakfest.

I did get one kid, Mac, who was very interested in all of the articles I linked, then came to ME and started a conversation about the best gun(granted, over AIM, he didn't come up to me in school as school's out). After we debated for a while, we decided to start hunting for guns on eBay. I found a ton of cheap CPS guns, especially some '98s for around $20. I think I've struck gold with him. As long as I have another core member, the other ones don't have to be so gung ho for now.

So as to answer the questions posed in you last statement:

Games we want to play: Probably OHK with the occasional soakfest

Rules: Ridgewood's(only full ruleset I've found) with a couple of changes, especially to parts III and IV

Types of People: Now this is a tricky one. I doubt I'd be able to get many people to join as members of the forum, and I don't know how many will read things like the Tactical Theory, but they definitely will listen to rules. This is tricky, though, as 1) I have 2 friends each that hang out with different people in school. One of the groups I don't spend as much time with, but don't mind and they would follow the rules and stuff. The other group, aside from the two kids I already asked, is a bunch of jerks that all hate me and would intentionally undermine me. Plus, they'd be the kind to not follow rules.
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Old 06-19-2009, 01:43 PM   #8
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Default Re: Recruiting

DX, I'm jealous. Less than 5 people in my high school know what a Douchenator is, the rest would give strange looks if we talk about it. I've ran our water wars for 3 years and this season, most of the people I invite to wars is going to college, including me. Perhaps I'll be able to do better there. Then again, airsoft and paintball will always have a better reputation where I am, no matter how good a water war gets.

It seems that the places you war at are also very important. They are important to having good wars, which is important to having the word spread. Perhaps my lack of being able to get wars of such high quality may have prevented word from spreading. Warring between backyards is a start, but it seems that the deep woods may be better, or perhaps any large, sprawling, unpopulated area with sufficient cover. (not trees, trees are not cover, I'm talking about thick shrubbery you can hide in without camo)

I did score the CPS's without terribly much trouble though. You'll get some from eBay, but friends may also have them. If they're broken, you generally have 2 choices: offer to repair it for free or offer to buy it, unless its a good friend who'll let you keep it. If you search around, you shouldn't have terribly much trouble with getting them.

One thing you may want to avoid is making people read stuff. If they're interested, offer it to them but don't push it on them if they don't want to bother and simply want to play. By high school, most people should be able to figure out the basics on what to do anyway; i.e. they'll dodge, conserve water, etc. Let the games run and then talk. Now if someone breaks a pump or loses a cap, thats another story. You may not want to invite them to wars again unless they bring their own guns.

You may be able to advertise water wars as "cheap airsoft/paintball", that you don't have money for them, and/or the fact that you can run a water war anywhere. (not just on special fields) Just be careful in how to advertise, don't do it in a way that'll put people off. The soakfest, while not the most tactical, is the easiest place to start due to simplicity of the rules. Most people don't mind starting on them either, but if they want something better (and you don't want to twist up the rules too much too soon), try games like zombies. (explained here.) Otherwise, if your situation is more similar to DX's, you can start with 1 hit kills. (elimination first perhaps)
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Old 06-19-2009, 05:58 PM   #9
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Default Re: Recruiting

If you want some simple rules to go with (or adapt), you could nick CTFs:

http://www.srcf.ucam.org/ctf/

One thing about CTF is that Nerf guns and thrown objects are allowed, as well as water guns. This means we can have wars all year round, by banning some or all water weapons if the weather's too cold.

We usually play in quite small areas - smaller than a football pitch. Though urban games have been good.
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Old 06-20-2009, 12:18 AM   #10
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cantab, that's strange because Nerf weaponry can get three or four times the range of equivalent water weaponry. Or does that not matter for capture-the-flag?
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Old 06-20-2009, 07:24 AM   #11
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In practice NERF doesn't seem to outrange. The weapons that have the really good ranges also tend to be quite slow to reload. If there are any that shoot fast and far, tell me. Also, water blasters have more effective ammo.

And there just isn't much NERF weaponry around.
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Arsenal:
Super Soaker: XP215, 2xXP220, Liquidator, Aquashock Secret Strike M(odded), Arctic Blast M, CPS1200, CPS2100, SC Power Pak, 3l aquapack, 1.5l aquapack
Water Warriors: Jet, Sting Ray M, Shark, Argon M, Tiger Shark, PulseMaster
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