The world of airsoft can be something of a confusing place for beginners.
Airsoft stores are filled with different models and styles all promising to deliver the power and performance you’ll need to dominate the field and quickly become a tactical master.
More often than not, however, beginners are best served by putting aside their desire to acquire the latest and greatest and focus on getting something reliable and well-designed that will serve them well as they learn to hone their skills and deepen their knowledge.
Unfortunately, being new to the sport, it can be hard to cut through the marketing and avoid making a costly mistake.
To help out, we put together a basic list of the airsoft guns that we feel are the best for beginners to start their journey with.
In a Rush? Check out our Top Picks
|Airsoft Gun Type||Read our Review||Check it out|
|Best Starter Airsoft M4||G&G Raider 2.0||Check out the Raider|
|Best Beginner AK47||Cyma Full Metal AK47||Check out the CYMA AK47|
|Best Beginner Airsoft Pistol||Tokyo Marui Hi Capa 5.1||Check out the Hi Capa|
|Best Beginner CO2 Pistol||Elite Force 1911 TAC||Check out the 1911 TAC|
|Best Airsoft SMG for Beginners||G&G ARP9||Check out the ARP9|
|Best airsoft Shotgun for beginners||Cyma Full Metal M3||Check out the CYMA M3|
But First – What We Look for in a Beginner or Starter Airsoft Gun
As with many other sports and hobbies, when starting off with airsoft it can be hard to know just how much to spend.
On the one hand, beginners should seek quality airsoft guns and equipment. It’s no secret that there is a lot of inexpensive junk on the market and it won’t really help a beginner’s appreciation of airsoft if their first airsoft replica falls apart after a few shots.
On the other hand, without knowing how much they’ll enjoy airsoft and without a whole lot of practical experience with airsoft replicas and their maintenance, it really doesn’t make a lot of sense to spend a lot of money on the latest and greatest equipment.
For these reasons when it comes to beginner airsoft guns, we typically look for a balance between a sensible price and reasonable build quality. In our experience this tends to fall around the $100-250 range for first airsoft rifles and shotguns and around $80-200 for airsoft pistols and SMGs.
Although there are exceptions to everything, generally speaking at this price range, airsoft guns tend to be decently built and have enough of a feature set to keep them interesting enough in-game
It goes without saying that build quality is an important characteristic for a beginner airsoft gun.
While more advanced players can lean on their experience to cope with and see value in the more temperamental replicas out there, those starting out need something well put together, with good internals of the box that will perform reliably and well enough not to turn them off of airsoft altogether.
Performance is always a tricky thing to deal with, particularly when it comes to beginners who may be relying on a single primary airsoft gun for some time.
There has to be enough FPS for the gun to be interesting and to reach opponents at range, but at the same time it has to be able to meet indoor and CBQ FPS limits.
While it perhaps excludes some interesting FPS beasts, we tend to recommend airsoft weapons at the 300-400 FPS range, ensuring that these airsoft guns can be used in as many game types as a user would like to explore.
Upgradability and customizability
While an airsofter may be a beginner now, they may not always be so. A good beginner airsoft gun should be able to grow with a user’s skill and desire to explore the myriad of accessories and customization options that airsoft has to offer.
As a result we tend to prefer brands and models that make use of sturdy, common but widely available parts, like standard V2s and V3s gearboxes or those that easily take TM compatible upgrades, and tend to consider proprietary mechanisms to be a drawback (unless there is a lot of OEM compatibility, such as with some KWC brands).
While these makes and models perhaps lack outstanding features present in airsoft guns with unique and innovative mechanisms, it does mean that fixing and upgrading them is a lot easier and less frustrating in the long run.
Best Starter Airsoft M4 – G&G CM16 Raider 2.0 AEG
|FPS||~ 350-370 FPS @ .20g|
|Rounds Per Second||13-15 RPS|
|Threaded||Threaded – 14mm CCW|
|Inner Barrel||10.83 in (275mm)|
|Gearbox||V2 – full metal|
|✅ Great value for Money||❌ It’s not an exact M4 replica|
|✅ Looks very cool out of the box||❌ M-LOK can be a little finicky to use for beginners|
|✅ Lightweight, durable construction|
|✅ Solid internals and build quality|
|✅ Decent all around firepower, accuracy|
|✅ Comfortable and easy to hold and use|
|✅ Extremely easy to accessorize|
|✅ M-LOK allows for accessories while keeping handguard smooth and lightweight|
|✅ Highly upgradable|
The M4 is an iconic military weapon.
A highly modular design, there are a ton of variants out there to suit just about any situation and preference. It’s no surprise then that this venerable firearm is also highly popular on airsoft fields.
If you’re just starting out in airsoft and are looking for a good looking, good performing and all around dependable M4 airsoft gun, you definitely want to check out the G&G Combat Machine 16 (CM16) Raider 2.0 AEG.
The G&G Raider is a modern take on the classic M4. It’s not a perfect M4 replica but with its skeletonized handguard and full-length picatinny rail, it looks really cool right out of the box.
The gun is made of nylon-reinforced polymer, which while not feeling quite as nice as full-metal, does keep its weight down and is highly durable, far more so than most ABS plastic airsoft guns and even many replicas made of cheap metals.
The G&G Raider 2.0 is well put together, too, with no looseness or rattling, and the attention to detail is quite good, with snappy removable flip-up sights and a semi-functional charging handle that pops the dust cover, which is a change of pace from most other AR airsoft guns.
The Raider comes with both a full length picatinny rail running across the top and an M-LOK handguard.
Although it requires users to add individual rails to it, the M-LOK allows them to add accessories across the gun’s bottom and sides (6, 3 and 9 o clock), giving it a lot of potential for customization while keeping the Raider’s foregrip smoother and easier to hold than with picatinnies.
The Raider isn’t just built for looks, however. Inside, the G&G comes standard with a tighter-than-average diameter inner barrel bore (6.04mm) offering better compression and helping deliver improved performance.
The outer barrel is threaded, as well, so it is easy to attach mock suppressors and/or tracer units.
The Raider’s gearbox is built fairly durably, with a full metal V2 gearbox with 8mm bearings and steel gears, so it should survive some abuse and stay functional for quite some time.
The gearbox is also compatible with a variety of V2 aftermarket parts, so it is also highly upgradable.
In terms of performance, out of the box the raider delivers impressive all around performance, delivering around 355 FPS with 0.20g BBs with a respectable rate of fire of about 13-14 RPS, and easily hitting targets at 150 feet.
As far as ammo is concerned the G&G Raider comes with a 450 round hi-cap mag, but can use pretty much any STANAG/AR style magazines out there, which means it is very easy to find spares for it, as well as unique options such as tracer mags and drums.
Pricewise, the Raider 2.0 comes in at under $200, which isn’t bad for an M4. While there are cheaper replicas out there there are very few that come standard with many of the features and raw potential that the Raider offers.
Well-built, accurate, reliable, upgradable and with a lot of out of the box performance features, all at a sub-$200 price, for those starting out in airsoft, it doesn’t get much better than the G&G CM16 Raider 2.0.
Best Airsoft AK47 for a Beginner – CYMA Standard AK47 Full Metal Airsoft AEG (CM042)
|FPS||~ 420 FPS @ .20g|
|Rounds Per Second||~15 RPS|
|Threaded||Threaded – 14mm CCW|
|Inner Barrel||16.10 in (409mm)|
|Gearbox||V3 Full Metal|
|Construction||Metal receiverMetal barrel assemblyWood stock and foregrip|
|✅ Affordable||❌ It’s heavy, like a real AK, at 10 lbs|
|✅ Classic looks – 1:1 replica of an AK||❌ It’s not exactly cheap|
|✅ Real wood furniture, nicely finished|
|✅ Durable metal receiver, barrel assembly – it’s built to last|
|✅ Solid build quality and internals|
|✅ Hits hard at 400+FPS|
|✅ Very realistic feel and weight|
|✅ Highly upgradable internally and externally – lots of aftermarket accessories|
|✅ Adjustable sights|
AK-47 – when you absolutely, positively have to take out every opponent on the field, accept no substitutes.
And when it comes to getting a reliable, durable and affordable AK there’s no substitute for a CYMA.
The full metal CYMA standard AK47, or CM042 as it is usually referred to, is no exception.
Although not licensed, this is a very accurate 1:1 replica of an AK47. It is well built and put together nicely, with a full metal receiver and real, lacquered wood furniture that is not only gorgeous to look at but feels durable and solid in hand.
The full metal frame and wood furniture makes this CYMA AK47 something of a tank that should take most of the knocks and bumps and scrapes that come from enthusiastic running and gunning.
The CM042 comes with adjustable front and rear iron sights and a full stock, which will help with control and accuracy, as well as dual sling points to help shoulder some of its hefty 10 lb, AK-47-accurate bulk around the field.
Inside, however, is where the CYMA shines as a starter AK.
The CM042 uses a full metal V3 gearbox with steel gears that is rock solid and should withstand what most airsofters will throw at it.
As with other CYMA AKs, it is Marui compatible and there are a ton of replacement and upgrade parts available for CYMAs, so users should get a lot of mileage out of this gun as they progress in skill.
The CM042 comes with an adjustable hop up that’s easily accessible, located behind the mock bolt assembly and hidden under the dust cover.
It’s also quite simple to use, being a slider-type hop – you push the slide forward to increase backspin and backward to reduce it.
In terms of performance, the CYKA CM042 packs a punch right out of the box. Using 0.20g BBs it delivers between 400-420 FPS and will deliver decent groupings at 100-150 feet.
In terms of ammo, the AK comes with a metal hi cap crescent magazine that holds about 600 BBs at a time. It does make some noise when partially empty and does require some winding, it does work reasonably well without any major feed problems.
For those that prefer something a little quieter and smaller, CYMA offers a range of compatible low and mid-caps (as well as cool Bakelite-style versions). Further, the CM042 is compatible magazine-wise with G&G, Tokyo Marui and many other brands, which should reduce overall cost in the long run.
As a 1:1 AK47 replica, the CM042 doesn’t have a lot of options in terms of accessorization. It is threaded, so you will be able to easily fit a mock suppressor or tracer unit, but there are no rails or mounts to speak of out of the box and you probably wouldn’t want to ruin its nice wood furniture or metal frame by drilling and adding picatinnies.
However, with CYMA being so popular, there are a lot of aftermarket parts for the series, such as railed dust covers, that will let you add pretty much whatever you’d like fairly easily and relatively inexpensively.
On the downside, the CM042 isn’t a particularly cheap beginner airsoft gun, typically coming in at over $200.
That said, with its quality build, hard hitting out of the box performance and easy upgradability, the CM042 does represent pretty good value for money and is a reliable AK option that’s perfect for those getting into airsoft.
Best Airsoft Pistol for Beginners – Tokyo Marui Hi-Capa 5.1 GBB
|Airsoft type||Gas Blowback Pistol|
|FPS||270-300 @ 0.20g with 134a gas|
|Recommended Gas||Duster (134a gas), Green (for experienced players)|
|Construction||Polymer slide & frame|
Adjustable rear sights
|✅ Looks very cool||❌ Not exactly cheap|
|✅ Lightweight, accurate||❌ Plastic slide limits the type of gas you can use without damage|
|✅ Well built, easy to use|
|✅ Great internals|
|✅ Easily upgradable|
|✅ Smooth action|
|✅ Good for indoor and outdoor games|
Tokyo Marui is something of an icon in airsoft that is known for the quality of its replicas. It perhaps comes as no surprise then that one of their best known pistols, its take on the Para Ordnance P14-45 (a 1911 derivative), would make our list.
As with most other Tokyo Marui airsoft guns, the Hi-Capa 5.1 is made of ABS plastic. While this does limit the gas type it can reliably work with, it does make the pistol quite lightweight and easy to handle and use for extended periods of use.
In fact, the ABS plastic slide gives the gun a very smooth, snappy blowback action, which makes the 5.1 a great experience to fire.
It also helps keep the trigger action very short and light, as well, which is great for new airsofters since they won’t have to use a lot of force to get it firing.
Despite its plastic build, the gun is well put together. The attention to detail is typical Tokyo Marui.
It is a full size 1911-variant, coming in at just over 8.5” (a 4.3 model is also available for those who prefer a more compact size), and the pistol feels solidly built, with no ill-fitting parts and the double-stack magazine slides in and out very easily.
Inside, the Hi-Capa 5.1 is similarly high-quality, with solid air seals, an easily adjusted and accessible rotary hop up, and a decently tight bore that helps the gun deliver good performance.
With 0.20g BBs, the Hi-Capa delivers a decent 270-280 FPS that, although not an FPS monster by any means, lets users use it safely indoors and out, without fear of running afoul of any FPS field limits, something that trips up many other gas blowback pistols on the market.
The Hi-Capa 5.1 is highly accurate and, with a little careful aiming, will hit targets at the 100-150 foot range. Further, its lightweight construction makes it pretty gas efficient as well, getting 2.5-3 mags per fill.
Because of the ABS construction, the gun is designed to run on Duster gas rather than Green Gas. Using Green Gas does bump performance up significantly, to the lower-mid 300s, but does risk damaging the slide with prolonged use.
That said, being Tokyo Marui there is obviously a plethora of aftermarket parts for this pistol, including a good deal of easily-attached metal slides that will allow users to make the transition to higher pressure gases when they feel up to it.
In fact, because of its aftermarket support, this pistol is incredibly easy to work on and tweak to taste.
Users can add in essentially any feature they’d like including high performance barrels, more durable slides and blowback housings, mags, grips, rails, nozzles and more, so it should easily keep pace with a beginner’s developing skills and desires over the years.
In terms of price, it is a Tokyo Marui and it isn’t exactly cheap. At over $150, it is on the upper-middle end of the airsoft pistol market, which considering its excellent build quality isn’t that bad.
Overall, the 5.1 is snappy, accurate, very reliable, highly usable and gas efficient. Combined with the extensive possibilities for upgrades, it is our top choice for beginners and those looking into their first airsoft pistol.
Best Starter CO2 Blowback Airsoft Pistol – Elite Force 1911 Tactical CO2
|Airsoft type||Gas Blowback Pistol|
|FPS||340-360 @ 0.20g with CO2|
|Outer barrel||Threaded; 14mm negative|
|Construction||Full Metal Construction – Metal frame, metal slide, metal sights|
|✅ Decently priced CO2 pistol||❌ Some proprietary KWC parts|
|✅ Durable, full metal construction||❌ Hop up adjustment requires slide disassembly|
|✅ Easy to hold and use|
|✅ Hits hard, but still under indoor FPS limits|
|✅ Easily to accessorize with rails and threaded barrel|
|✅ Excellent blowback action|
If you’re looking for a little more power and kick than your typical Green Gas blowback can deliver, then CO2 power is probably your best bet, and if you’re still an airsoft beginner and need a CO2 gas blowback pistol that works reliably and consistently, then the Elite Force 1911 Tactical is your best bet.
The Elite Force 1911 TAC is a gas blowback airsoft pistol that offers a bit of a modern take on the venerable Colt 1911.
Its full metal slide and frame are sturdy enough to handle the increased pressure of CO2 without any issue and give the 1911 TAC a powerful, crisp, metallic blowback that is both more realistic and a pleasure to use.
The model is well put-together, without much in the way of clattering or rattling, and the action is consistently smooth.
The 1911 TAC is also quite ergonomic and easy to hold. It has a slim and easy to grab onto profile – using diamond textured polymer grips and wide side cuts that make it easy to hold onto and cock this gun, even when using gloves or in wet conditions
It also comes with undermount rails and a threaded outer barrel, so there is a lot of room for adding your favorite accessories and suppressors.
In terms of performance, the Elite Force 1911 Tactical has a short, crisp and responsive trigger, which is very easy for those starting off with airsoft pistols to pull, and the gun delivers a strong, yet still reasonable 340-360 FPS @ 0.20g BBs.
Although not super powerful, it does mean that the TAC is highly flexible. It is decently hard hitting but still ultimately usable in all airsoft fields, indoors and out, which is beneficial to those who may not have an airsoft pistol for every occasion at home.
Also a benefit to new airsofters, the TAC is highly gas efficient, getting about 3-4 mags per fill, which is impressive for a CO2 airsoft pistol with such a snappy recoil.
In terms of accuracy, the Elite Force 1911 TAC is pretty good at getting tight groupings to 100+ feet, and is easy to aim with its white dot iron sights, which helps in aiming in low visibility/low contrast situations.
When it comes to upgrades, the gun is a KWC OEM model, which means there is a little less aftermarket support than there might be with a Tokyo Marui clone, but KWC does do enough work with brands like Cybergun, Umarex and Dan Wesson, that finding parts to replace, rebuild or modify the gun isn’t that much of an issue.
It also means that there are quite a few options when it comes to mags. The gun comes with a decent 14 shot magazine, with the option of a 27 round extended mag, but it also accepts most 1911 mags from the myriad of KWC OEM 1911s out there, which reduces the cost (and headache) of ownership quite a bit.
In terms of price, the Elite Force 1911 TAC typically comes in at just over $120, which is actually fairly affordable for a full metal CO2 gas blowback 1911 replica.
Because the Elite Force 1911 Tactical is accurate, highly usable in different airsoft fields, well-priced, accessorizable, somewhat customizable and gas efficient, it is our top choice for beginners looking for their first CO2 airsoft pistol.
Best Airsoft SMG for a Beginner – G&G ARP9 AEG
|FPS||~350-360 @ .20g BBs|
|Rounds Per Second||21-22 RPS|
|Outer barrel||14mm CCW threaded|
|Inner Barrel||5 in (128mm)|
|Gearbox||V2- Full Metal|
|Construction||Polymer upper receiver|
Polymer lower receiver
Polymer PDW Stock
Metal M-LOK handguard
|✅ Highly compact, great for CQB||❌ Proprietary magazines|
|✅ Decently strong FPS, accurate at range||❌ PDW stock is a little cramped and only has 2 positions|
|✅ Flexible use- despite size can be used indoors and out|
|✅ Solid internals and build quality|
|✅ Snappy trigger response|
|✅ Easy to accessorize|
|✅ Highly upgradable|
|✅ Several mag options|
If you’re starting out in airsoft and you prefer something a little more compact and easier to handle than a carbine, a submachine gun (SMG) might just be what you’re looking for.
If that’s the case, the G&G ARP9 is probably your best bet.
The little brother of the classic G&G Raider 2.0 is technically a short barreled rifle/compact pistol caliber M4, but in practice fills the role of an airsoft submachine gun better than most other replicas.
The ARP9 is something of a unique, tactical design from G&G, taking the basic M4 platform and giving it far more compact dimensions (20-23 inches) with a short barrel, making it lighter weight, at around 5 lbs, and letting it take 9mm style airsoft stick mags.
Yet despite its compact size, the G&G is still very well built. Its receivers and stock are heavy duty nylon-reinforced polymer, which makes the gun durable but lightweight and easy to handle.
It also (like the Raider) the gun comes standard with both a full-length picatinny rail on top and aluminum M-LOK handguards, as well as a threaded barrel, for maximum accessory upgrades.
Quite hilariously, the ARP9 comes standard with a massive, removable loudener that gives it a very noticeable and loud report when fired.
Inside, the gun is based on the highly modifiable Tokyo Marui system, with a durable, full metal upgradable V2 gearbox, steel gears, 8mm bushings, rotary hop up, a very tight spring and a powerful 25K long type motor that gives the gun some impressive torque and power for its size.
The ARP9 is LiPo-ready, coming stock with a mosfet and ETU, and is actually programmable to deliver automatic or burst fire, which is pretty cool.
Performance-wise, the ARP9 is small but hits hard enough. It has a short and crisp trigger pull and shoots around 350 FPS at 0.20g, which means you’ll be able to use it in CQB as well outdoors.
And, although it is very compact and the PDW stock isn’t the best for shouldering or adjusting, the gun is still very accurate, letting users nail targets at 150+ feet with little issue.
It also has a highly impressive rate of fire for something so small. Out of the box, it delivers between 21-22 RPS, which should delight most users and makes the gun great for fast-paced shooting and spraying.
Perhaps more importantly for beginners in airsoft, being based on the M4, unlike many other dedicated submachine guns there is nothing too different or unique about the gun’s handling. As a result, there is no shortage of youtube videos and documentation out there to help users learn to strip and maintain this gun.
In terms of mags and ammo, the ARP9 is designed to take 9mm-style stick mags and comes with a hi-cap that holds 300 rounds. There are a few other options out there, such as low-caps, mid-caps and drums, which give users users the flexibility to play around a bit.
Unfortunately the mags are proprietary to the gun, but it does fit similar Classic Army models, which reduces the difficulty and cost of finding new mags a bit.
Pricewise, it is a bit expensive, using coming in a little north of $250, but is less expensive than other comparable guns, such as the Nemesis X0 and the ARES M45X.
Overall, though, because it is easy to carry, accurate, flexible, customizable, decently powerful and consistent with upgradable and high quality internals the G&G ARP9 AEG is our pick for the best SMG for airsoft beginners.
Best Airsoft Shotgun for a Beginner – CYMA Standard Full Metal M3 Spring Powered Shotgun
|FPS||~300-320 FPS @ 0.20g BBs|
|Total Length||40.98 in (1040 mm) with full stock25 in (635mm) for CQB without|
|Weight||5.5 lbs (2494g)|
|Construction||Metal receiver, polymer stock|
|Shots||30 rds/shell, 10 shots per shell|
|Highly affordable, entry level tri shot||You’ll need to use a little muscle to pump it|
|Easy to hold and use||Doesn’t come with extras and only comes with 1 shell|
|Durable, full metal receiver|
|Strong, high powered spring|
|High compatible with other brand’s shells|
|Strong FPS – good for indoor or outdoor use|
|Integrated metal sights|
|Quite a few variants, from full length to sawed off|
Shotguns aren’t usually recommended to those starting out in airsoft due to their unique characteristics and build compared to other airsoft guns, as well as the fact that many models are, quite frankly, poorly built.
If you are interested in getting into shotguns, however, the CYMA Full Metal M3 stands out as a tri-shot airsoft shotgun that is well-built, relatively inexpensive, cool to look at, does its job well and isn’t likely to fall apart on you.
The CYMA M3 Standard is an airsoft replica of the Benelli M3 Super 90, an Italian tactical shotgun of some note and renown.
It is a metal framed airsoft shotgun that feels realistic and solid in hand, coming in at 5.5lb (2.5 KG) with a full length polymer stock pistol grip.
The grip makes the CYMA easier to hold and maneuver around in closer quarters, while the full stock makes it a lot easier to rack, shoulder and fire, which is why we recommend it to beginners over its more tactical, compact CYMA variants, such as the sawed off M3.
The gun is spring-powered tri shot, giving it a relatively simple mechanism of action that will deliver 3 BBs per trigger pull. This simplicity makes the gun quite reliable and consistent in performance, especially compared to gas models, which makes it ideal for those just starting out.
Despite being spring-powered, however, the CYMA M3 can deliver some impressive power at close range, firing off 0.20g BBs at around 300-320 FPS.
It is also (surprising for a shotgun) quite accurate at range, slamming targets well past 100 feet with a decent spread.
The combination of accuracy at range and powerful but reasonable FPS make it a highly usable shotgun both for indoor/CQB and outdoor games, making it a somewhat more flexible option as an airsoft gun.
In terms of ammunition, like other shotguns, the CYMA works by a shell that loads with 30 BBs at a time, meaning it will deliver about 10 shots before needing to reload.
While the gun only comes with one shell, it is (typically for CYMA) highly compatible, and accepts shells from other CYMA shotguns, Tokyo Marui and its clones, various third party producers and more.
In terms of price, the CYMA M3 comes in just north of $100, which makes it relatively affordable compared to other quality airsoft shotguns.
Overall, the combination of its ability to perform reliably, accurately and consistently makes the CYMA M3 our top pick for beginners looking into getting their first airsoft shotgun.
What should a beginner avoid when buying an airsoft gun?
Really expensive models
It is always tempting to go out and buy the latest and greatest when entering any hobby. After all, more expensive means better, right?
Well not always. Especially not in airsoft, where certain models lean heavily on officially licensed trademarks or their own brand recognition.
Such guns may look cool on the outside but can possibly be a mess on the inside, and it can be all too easy for a beginner to fall into this trap.
Additionally, a beginner in airsoft may just be dipping their toes into the sport, and it generally isn’t wise for them to lay out thousands of dollars if they’re not sure they will be involved in it a year down the line.
Exotics and historical replicas
If you have gotten into airsoft, chances are you like guns to one degree or another.
Certain airsoft guns are based on iconic and beloved historic real steel guns, while others may be designed after lesser known guns and are so unusual that they are certain to turn some heads on the airsoft field.
In both cases, the main draw of the airsoft gun is their looks rather than their build quality, i.e. form over function.
While its true that airsoft is largely about look and feel, it’s also true that these airsoft replicas do have to perform.
Exotics and historical replicas are particularly prone to using lower quality parts, poor design choices, proprietary parts (particularly with models that have to be designed from scratch) and are often subject to rather slap-dash quality control.
All this makes it far easier to get a lemon than with more common airsoft guns, especially for those without detailed knowledge of airsoft components and parts specs.
Snipers and DMR Builds
Everyone wants to be a sniper (or marksman), but these are usually more advanced roles in airsoft.
It takes time to develop the skills to be an effective sniper or DM on an airsoft field, and a fair amount of practical knowledge to put together a proper loadout.
While many companies offer out of the box, insta-sniper solutions, more often than not these aren’t really all that great, can be quite temperamental, and, especially without the requisite game skills and knowledge, are often a waste of money.
High performance parts
It’s tempting to immediately go out and buy things that will increase the performance of your airsoft gun.
After all, high performance parts can make a high performance airsoft gun and that can make a high performance player, right?
Consider that a gun is only as good as the skills and knowledge of those wielding it, and also consider that high performance parts require more frequent and detailed maintenance, as they put more wear and tear on an airsoft gun, and frequently require improving more subtle and less obvious components to balance things out and prevent sudden catastrophic failure
Advantages of buying a beginner airsoft gun
Any good entry level airsoft gun tends to be at least somewhat affordably priced, meaning they will fit most budgets comfortably and let users find out if they really like airsofting enough to continue without much risk.
Easy to use and maintain
As long as you don’t go in for the cheapest airsoft rifle you can find, good beginner airsoft guns tend to use parts that are commonly found and fairly proven. This means they will be fairly reliable, relatively easy to use and there will be a lot of replacement parts and documentation on how to repair them if things go wrong.
Most respectable beginner airsoft guns will use parts that are fairly proven and interchangeable, and consequently they will be fairly easy to upgrade and have fairly decent aftermarket support compared to exotics and high performance guns.
Disadvantages of buying a beginner airsoft guns
Not exactly unique
Unfortunately, good beginner airsoft guns have properties that lend themselves to being a good jack of all trades airsoft gun period. As a result, they will tend to be found in larger numbers at most airsoft events, so you can’t really expect to stand out from the crowd with one of these too much.
Don’t always have the coolest look
Built with the idea of function over form, beginner airsoft rifles aren’t necessarily the coolest and most unusual looking guns out there. While they may be easily customized with aftermarket parts and accessories, they tend to look pretty plain out of the box.
Don’t always have the most high performance parts
While some airsoft beginners’ guns can come with fairly high-quality parts, they are really designed to give users a reliable and consistent airsoft experience.
High quality parts may deliver better FPS/RPS performance, but can be more temperamental or require more attention and maintenance in general.
The world of airsoft, with its myriad of guns, parts and accessories, can be a confusing place for beginners.
But it doesn’t have to be.
There are many affordable and reliable models out there that can act as a great starting point for beginners and that can help nurture that spark of interest into a raging, fiery desire to see their enemies punished on the field.