First Blood – An Interview with GH05 and GH07 from Team Gun Ho
So it’s the 1st anniversary of the blog, over the last year we’ve interviewed a slew of teams, players, site owners and organizers and more. This has included GunHo, Cobalt, Team Diablo, Dan FooFighter, OpFor, Bravo 46, Red Team from Florida, Direwolves from Canada, Task Force Green, The Cage, Gray Fox, UCAP Airsoft, Combat Airsoft Group, Task Force Voodoo, Airborne Airsoft, ToySoldier from Hong Kong …
But, without you the readers, it would be a hollow task, so it’s to you, we say happy anniversary, as you’ve all been instrumental in helping grow our library of interviews and reports, propelling our mission to grow positivity within the industry, the game and both Airsoft and MilSim communities …
We thought it would be only appropriate to go back to the very beginning and catch up with our very first interviewees Moolegh and ShouldbeMiller GH05 & GH07 respectively from GunHo …
So, whilst we covered their kit and blasters, we thought it’d be cool to go behind the scenes and see what makes this prolific and hard working team tick, what they’ve been up to and what plans they have for the up coming year.
GM75: Thanks for coming onboard to celebrate the blogs anniversary, this is a first for us, and a great way to celebrate by doing a retrospective interview with our first two interviewees – your support throughout the year has been amazing. So, it’s been over a year, since we last officially sat down to speak with you individually – whilst we reflect a year on with the blog, I’ll open with this, two fold question … How did GunHo start, you’ve surely grown into a very proficient, professional and streamlined organization with a solid reputation – how does this differ from when you also both started out with Plastic Deth ?
GH05: No worries mate, great blog and glad to contribute to it. Always enjoy reading the interviews and seeing how others think.
Im not too sure how the team started in the beginning as I was the last member to join before our site closed and missed the many years before that. The team started to push more towards the MilSim/training side of the hobby after I joined, which is when we started to gain the mixed reputation we have.
When I started playing I didnt know any of the GH lads or anything about MilSim but quickly after my second game I realised skirmishing wasn’t for me and looked for more, which pushed me towards GHT and everything has grown from there.
GH07: I started out playing Airsoft at the age of 14 with my dad and later moved to play regularly at a site called “Gun Ho Airsoft” which was run by the founders of the team GH01 and 02. After getting to know them and some of the other originally guys I was asked to join, and the team expanded from there. I love playing with our team of like minded players and this keeps me interested in the game. Small unit tactics is my thing.
GM75: Over the year, I’ve watched with interest as you’ve both modified, streamlined and upgraded kit. Combining both a stylistic atheistic, all the whilst improving function and remaining practical. I’ve observed you utilize, not just individually but as a team, load outs that serve you well and as a small unit. So, what changes have you made, is this a natural evolution or a conscious decision as a collective ?
GH05: The way we have our kits set up is due to years of trial and error, as well as listening and learning from guys who have used this kit in many ways in places none of us will ever see (Combat Airsoft Group Instructors). Myself and GH07 often bounce ideas off each other regarding placements and bits of kit to use. And trial bits of kit out between us to see how it runs. Nothing is perfect, everything is evolving all the time. Your enemy learns just as fast as you can, so we need to keep one step ahead. When it comes to “loadouts” people focus on how they look, but that doesn’t work. Just because one SEAL used something one way, dosnt mean it will work for you. Too much focus on how you look and not how you perform. But saying that I do like to use kit that the US, UK and AUSSF use, as well as the HRT (Hostage Rescue Teams)
GH07: All our kits have personal touches so this answer will be different for all the guys but my personal kit is purely what works for me. As long as we have flash bangs accessible from our back we’re good to go. My kit has naturally evolved over the last year, slick and light weight is the order of the day. I’ve become slightly less concerned about the latest tactical trends and have focused more on what works and what’s available to me at the time.
GM75: Now, sadly I was unable to attend, but Gun Ho admirably gave good account of themselves at CAG’s (Combat Airsoft Group) Op Snake Bite. Visually, the photos and footage the arose from that event has captured the imaginations of players around the globe. But, you were there … had all the training, preparation and team work paid off ?
GH05: In short, yes. But to be honest we didn’t do that much training for that event but we had already covered a lot of what would be involved over the years of training and other events. We did however do months worth of preparation, to make sure we had all the kit we would need but it wouldnt be too much to tab with. Made sure we were all physically capable to carry out the taskings and travel the required distance without issues. Which is one thing people over look when it comes to MilSim events, yes its “just Airsoft” but it is physically/mentally challenging if you aren’t used to it. Some people cant deal without sleep or deal with a long exfil tab after a long night raid. That kit wont be any use if you can’t carry it while tabbing for miles on mixed terrain.
GH07: There’s no doubt that the training was beneficial. All those hours spent working together certainly paid off and I’d like to think that we were able to be an asset to blue force throughout the event. As much as it can be difficult to organise training in prep for these events due to our daily lives it is definitely worth doing. All the guys left Otterburn with a sense of achievement and total satisfaction after being run ragged by the CAG staff.
GM75: You regularly frequent your home site, Northern Alliance Airsoft, for training, skirmishes and other team building exercises. Despite its diminutive stature it’s a site I’m really keen to visit – offering a variety of open areas to CQB skirmishing. It’s surely an ideal training ground for teams to polish and hone their skills?
GH05: To me, its the best local site we have. Offers a lot of variety to play and train in which we have used to the point of over use really. Its good to train in places you aren’t familiar with. It is also one of the best run sites I have used.
GH07: truthfully I don’t think any site in the north east is “ideal” for all types of training but NAA is by far the closest to it in our area. The terrain varies from open ground to tight CQB and the guys there always look after us. That’s why we always speak so fondly of them!
GM75: So, after a solid 2015, which saw you prolifically attend a wide variety of events, be it Skirmishes, Training, and MilSim’s what have you planned for 2016 …
GH05:For me, 2016 is the year of CAG (Combat Airsoft Group). They have a lot of amazing and interesting events planned out for this year and I plan on focusing on those. Their events just add another level to what else is out there. As well as the CAG Ops/training, I want to focus on the team and get all the lads up to the same level and ready to push onto more advanced/dynamic tactics.
GH07: As always with GHT it’s difficult to plan weekend events due to conflicting work schedules and long drives down south but we hope to attend as many events as we can. We’ll be keeping a close eye on CAG’s training events (NVG module 1 is fast approaching) and attending the odd skirmish at NAA and Tac House Spartan. Maybe even a few new site as and when time allows …
GH05:My kit is constantly changing. Since we last spoke I have stripped my CPC down and introduced an IA (Intelligent Armor) CT Team belt set up into my kit. I’ve not yet had a chance to field test it but so far its a nice bit of kit and seems to work just as I wanted. I have recently added a JPC to my rig collection for something lighter and low profile, just so I have an option depending on the op. As Miller will echo this, I have been looking towards making my kit light and stream lined. The addition of the belt has really reduced what I run up top.
GH07: My evolution is very simple, it’s slimmer and lighter. My blaster set up is running the 10.5″ barrel exclusively now and is often paired with the KAC can. This is the best all round option for me. As for nylon gear, this is often changed but the philosophy stays the same. Minimalist and light weight, lately I’ve been playing with the JPC 2.0 which has been fun and my go to chest rig which is a modified Eagle MPCR.
GM75: So over recent months, we seen wide sweeping changes, not just in the UK, but across the globe with Airsoft, Plastic Deth as I prefer, and MilSim change, grow and even go … Do you, whilst you’ve stayed true to your original ethos, feel with this growth it’s become perhaps diluted, perhaps lots some of its originality or is it as strong as ever, and has a healthy future and is in safe hands ?
GH05: General Airsoft isn’t my thing at all, yes I do skirmish but its for training reasons mainly and keeping the team on form. So to me, mainstream Airsoft is in safe hands and will keep bringing people in and hopefully point the right people towards MilSim. But I feel like the word “MilSim” is dying. The word is losing all meaning and its becoming what MilSim in America is. Lots of kit, patches and pointless shit, for no reason to just attend a big ass skirmish. Theres some “MilSim” teams out there now that spend more time in front of the camera taking “in game” pics to post on Facebook/Instagram instead of focusing on the task in hand. If it wasnt for GHT I would have packed in ages ago. But on a good note, with the introduction of CAG to UK MilSim, things are looking a lot better in my eyes.
GH07: Airsoft as a hobby is growing and as long as the standard of player is kept high I have no doubt it is in safe hands. The down side to this growth in my eyes is there seems to be an increasing number of people who purely care about how they look and how people perceive them. Playing the game and pushing yourself whist having fun is my ultimate goal.
GM75: As you well know, and I guess we both share a passion for load outs, gear and tactical equipment. We’ve even recently covered the venerable load out here, and again in our exclusive Airsoft International articles – do you think the days of the load out, impression are dead or is it still very much alive ?
GH05: Myself and 07 dropped the impressions a while ago. They are fun to do, the research and trying to find the gear needed was fun but it limits what you can use. To me the impression life is dead but it is still going strong and always will do but its not for me. For load outs, I find them a bit pointless, I just have kit which I use, no set mix of kit. If it performs fine, I will use it. Yes I like the high end brands over the cheaper kit but im done with the new trends. Function over Form.
GH07: I think themed load outs will go on for as long as MilSim gaming exists but for me it is very much dead. No military unit’s kit meets my needs exactly and that’s why I have lost interest in impressions. My gear selection is fuelled by function over form. Don’t get me wrong, a well thought out impression is very cool to look at but its not something I’d invest time in getting right any more.
GM75: So, a year on since when we both interviewed you, unbeknownst at the time, it’s started something which has grown in size beyond my imagination at least – culminating in the 100 fan only ‘beer mat’ S23 Familia patches … you’ve both, along with many others ardently supported and shouted encouragement from the sidelines – is there any particular interviews you’ve enjoyed or really taken you aback ?
GH05: Ive not read all the interviews and posts you have made over the last year and dont really have one article that springs to mind really. I enjoy them to see others peoples gear set ups and mind sets. The last ones I read was The Cage and the Gray Fox one, both great reads.
GH07: Two recent ones stand out to me. The interview with Gray Fox was an Interesting read, looking forward to meeting up with them later this year and your update about the patches made in association with Toy Soldier Workshop took me back. It’s great to see how far the blog has come along in just a year!
GH05:Ooohh, I’ve been put on the spot here. I wont give any shout outs really, just if the readershaven’t already looked into Combat Airsoft Group I suggest you do. You wont be disappointed.
As far as questions go: what do you think about the growing culture of posed photos on instagram? Its something thats being seen more and becoming more irritating to me ?
GH07: Like to say a quick thanks to NAA and Tac House for giving us plenty of good times. Also to Smudge and the CAG staff for offering some new Airsoft experiences as well as offering training that has changed the way I play personally.
As for my question to you. How do you see the blog evolving in the next year? Where would you like it to be?
GM75: Great questions, the blog has really started to take on an identity of its own. In as much it’s grown into more of a collective, growing the positive ethos behind ‘Plastic Deth‘. It’s pretty much my main drive to continue to grow that, as so far, we’ve received great feedback from many readers, who’ve used and read the blog as a touch stone to get started in the hobby. Otherwise, I’m committed to showcasing all facets of the industry, and even a few off shoots that are related indirectly or directly to the community and industry. I’ve always got new content bubbling away, sure I’d like to tighten the schedule, but it’s very much an organic thing at the moment so it unfortunately gets sporadic and intermittent publication. I’ve used some of the ‘bigger name’ interviews to promote some of the smaller interviews and drive traffic there way, my intention here is to build a following that where everyone interview gets a consistent audience.
What was interesting, whilst I found my feet, I experimented with a variety of articles. But, a long story short, it became quickly apparent that readers wanted the more ‘personable’ interviews and that, the tone and style of the interviews is what they want. It’s their blog as much as it’s mine, so their vote counts …
So, for the foreseeable future it’s more of the same and business as usual with a few surprises to boot …
In answer to GH05’s question, which is a really good question. I think in the first instance there is a huge glut of posed bedroom, garden photos, often of part finished or incomplete kit. When coupled with little to no information, or even constructive criticism it has over saturated both platforms to the point, out sides probably assume Airsoft is just one big vanity project.
So it has its negatives, but whilst I’m also guilty of posting a plethora of material, and work is underway to vary content from other sources to support and supplement the blog, it has also served well to raise the profile of the blog.
There is a positive side, and only the other day I had lunch with GF23 from Gray Fox, and the week before with Echo Charlie (The Cage) – we all lamented the demise of the old Wannabe Forums, which whilst heavily quality and content controlled, had a vast plethora of legitimate content, such as photo shoots, gear, blasters etc …
That, showcased all of what we do with a lot more pertinence and served as a great library and wealth of information.
At the end of the day, people are going to do whatever they want, but if it leads to somewhere positive …
GM75: In the truest tradition, it wouldn’t be complete without asking the old favorite, obligatory last question – I always like to ask (kind of a trademark), I’m a fan of 30 Rounds per mag, what’s your thoughts on this – could you see this perhaps bringing something new and fresh to game play if embraced by the masses?
GH05: I love 30rd mags, I think I even said that in my first interview. It does add another level to the game but it wont work at skirmishes. Its part of the CAG rules (real ammo limits) but it is hard to police. Game based on trust and you cant trust people to count.
GH07: After playing some of CAG’s events where only 30 Rnd mags are allowed I can definitely see it being a positive thing. The dynamic of the game changes completely and an individual’s skills really show. That’s got to be a positive thing.
GM75: So, we’ve reached a milestone, our first anniversary and I can’t think of a better way than to celebrate with none other than our first two interviewees – check out more from Gun Ho here
GH07 was interviewed here: @ShouldbeMiller’s Tokyo Marui Recce EBBR Interview http://wp.me/p5Hyma-H via @wordpressdotcom
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