Stay Cold – an interview with Tribe MilSim’s Olly C
Perceptions are an interesting thing, ultimately, it’s the individuals viewpoint that formulates an idea or preconception about something or someone …
It’s been the longstanding ethos to propagate, support and grow positivity, high standards of sportsmanship and make our community globally a place that can grow and evolve.
So, whilst we’ve never gone out of our way to particular court controversy, or ask those difficult questions – we thought, this time out we’d put one of the younger players of our game under the spotlight to set the record straight and get his thoughts and views out there …
As you well know, I’ve long been a fan of the heavy genre of music, often dominated by huge monolithic bands in stature, with a loyal fan base who cannot be dissuaded by the ‘New Titans on The Block’ despite making all the right noises …
However, every so often, a new Pantera, Trapped Under Ice, or even Madball comes along, sets out their game plan from the off and completely shakes it all up by reinventing genre …
Invariably, such new jacks as they find their feet invariably brush shoulders creating friction and schism …
But, it’s my long held own opinion this is just all the natural order of evolution, a case of art imitating life …
So, here we take time out to speak Olly C of Tribe MilSim.
GM75: Thanks for taking time out to speak with us, it’s always good to get a fresh perspective on things and showcase the different facets of ‘plastic deth‘. I open with this to set the stage, how long have you been playing and what can you tell us about your team, Tribe MilSim, how many are there ?
OC: Firstly I would just like to thank you for taking the time to hear what I have to say, I have been a fan of your blog for quite some time and am thrilled that I have the opportunity to contribute something to it. I first picked up an airsoft gun when I was about 11 years old, although this was nothing more than plinking battles in my back garden. My first proper skirmish was when I was 12 and I was instantly hooked, I realised quite early on that Airsoft was not going to be another hobby I dropped after a few months. I really started getting into guns before any of the gear, after a year or so of playing I decided to dive into the Systema PTW scene and haven’t left the platform since, although there has been the introduction of the Tokyo Marui NGRS to my armoury and it is slowly taking centre stage. About a year and a half ago I started to become more involved with impressions and real steel gear and over this time tweaked and changed my kit to give a sense of impression but with my own little twist. Tribe MilSim first noticed me through my Instagram and I set up to the Midlands to go and play with them, I instantly recognised that these guys didn’t mess around and wanted to be a part of what they were doing. We focus on being fast paced and coordinated whilst running round in our own individual loadouts that have a lot of similarities but are identifiably personal. At the moment the team is made up of 6 main team members and 3 support group members but we hope to expand even further in the future.
GM75: You seem a tight knit group, you work well together and even when in small numbers deliver an aggressively frenetic display of intuitive teamwork. Do you regularly train, or this built up from week in week out of regularly attending events together ?
OC: I think it is a bit of both really, We just gel really well as a team anyway so adding that to playing together and occasional training results in what you see from our videos. We all try and play as much as possible, whether this be individually or in groups and we practice drills when we can. It sounds ridiculous but we have such a close bond outside of airsoft that working together is almost second nature to us and it just comes naturally.
GM75: Now, I’ll talk more about kit later, but visually, the teams aesthetic is certainly eye grabbing, whilst uniformity is present, it’s the little individual take on things, personal preference to how they’ve set up their load outs that caught my eye. Is this just natural evolution, or do you have a relaxed attitude to the team collectively developing their kit ?
OC: I think the majority of us set out with the idea to be uniform outfit but we soon found out that what works for one person doesn’t necessarily work for another. We try to stick to a basic uniformity in the form of Crye combat sets, Multicam plate carriers, grey soft shells and Mil styled blasters but then the rest is down to personal preference. Although some members of the team try to accurately recreate a specific impression I have started to side more with functionality. There is certainly no pressure to conform to what everyone else is wearing, I think that is what makes us a unique team.
GM75: Now, as we earlier questioned, you’ve personally and as team, really grasped the concept of ‘violence of action’ working together as team, and real high speed dynamic ‘gun play’. It’s caught many opposing teams or unwitting players off guard, created and provoked some extraordinary reactions and garnered you equally respected and loathed reputation. This included a recent ‘ban’ what’s your opinion on all of this ?
OC: I think that what many failed to understand is that although my play style had a part to play in my ban it was mainly down to the Airsoft world outside of the field. A clash of ideas and personality with a certain group of people led to a rather bad reputation, especially when paired with our aggressive and fast paced style of play it is understandable why people seemed to loath us so much. I think that as soon as you have a close knit bunch of guys with highly tuned guns and an aggressive, well coordinated style of play it is easy to make enemies and we have fallen victim to a lot of criticism, which if I am honest really bugs me, We pride ourselves on our honest play, I’m back at regen as much as the next guy and play as fairly as everyone else but seem to get complained about because of the way I play.
GM75: Is perhaps, that it’s all a clash of individuals expectations, their interpretation of ‘suspension of disbelief’ or just not used to your continually in motion style of teamwork?
OC: I think that there are very few teams at the moment who play how we do and this often catches people by surprise, especially at a Sunday skirmish. I don’t think that people expect to be engaged so aggressively from the get go and it can seriously frustrate them and personally I feel this is where the negativity stems from. Before joining the team I got frustrated easily when coming up against aggressive teams who would just take us apart so trust me I know the feeling of being on the receiving end.
GM75: Recently, a clash of personalities, and difference of opinion was somewhat waged across Social Media, with a particular well respected individual. It was, to say the least emotive, and quite rightly one of interpretation and difference of what the game means to each of you. Whilst I wouldn’t be as crass to encourage the extension of the ‘olive branch’. But, as we spoke earlier, you offered quite the mature explanation as why this friction had occurred, and conversely to popular opinion offered a reasoned reply as to why you had a difference of opinion.
Ah sort clip of T02, T04 and T07 along with a couple of friends going through room breaching and clearing drills at today's Close Quarters Training at Tac-House Spartan. #TrainingDay #CQB #CQC #RoomClearing #Breaching #Pyrotechnics #GR20 #CryePrecision #CryePrecision #Arcteryx #L119 #Mk18 #RM4 #TacHouseSpartan #GunHoTeam #GHT #BlackHawkRangers #BHR #TPAirsoft #TaskforceNeptune #CobaltMilsim #TRIBEMILSIM
OC: I think that the certain individual has a lot to offer in their community. We clashed on many levels but our interpretation of what airsoft was is what led to the nastiness that you may have seen over social media. We are split into two camps, one is Airsoft in its purest form and the other is airsoft verging into MilSim and people who care about gear and it is difficult to live with each other because our ideas are truly polar opposites. I whole heartedly admit that the individual, although not my cup of tea, has made a name for themselves and brings a lot of positivity to the sport. For the sake of reputation and wanting everything to go smoothly I no longer involve myself with a certain group of people whom the individual plays with, although i have no problem with them I have learned that we can’t function together and it is best to go our own separate ways.
GM75: … we also spoke earlier about gear, load outs and setting up equipment to optimize ‘operability’ and functionality. Naturally, I’m sure our readers want to understand more about how you evolved to this point, what your using and why and how you’ve made those choices ?
OC: I have a few different setups to cater for my needs for a specific event. Mainly people will see me running my Crye AVS, this is a result of testing other plate carriers like the JPC and CPC and finding the best system for me which happened to be the AVS. I use the AVS because it is less bulky than the CPC but has similar load carrying capabilities with the incorporation of a harness system and also because of its modularity with flaps and cummerbunds. In terms of my helmet setup I have stuck with the Airframe, again having tested other helmets like the MICH 2001 and the Maritime I find that the Airframe is the best system for me, it is light, has a great design that keeps your head cool and it just looks seriously cool. As I said earlier I run the Crye combat set, personally I feel that it is the most user friendly combat set on the market and I haven’t looked back since purchasing mine. Recently I purchased some nods, probably the stupidest yet coolest purchase I have made whilst being involved in Airsoft, I went for the AB MOD3, a beefed up anvis style dual tube set up, I chose the dual tube because I like the idea of keeping depth perception and find running around at night easier when I have two green eyes and not just the one. Boots were also an extremely important aspect of my kit and at the moment I switch between the Salomon 4D Quest GTX and the Merrell Moab mids, they both have their upsides but I usually choose the Salomons because they are sturdier and in my opinion more comfortable. Eye pro again is very important, I wanted to get a good pair of glasses that wouldn’t fog all the time so I chose the Oakley M frame 3.0 but then soon after switched these out for the M frame 2.0 as I liked the design more and found them much more comfortable. I chose the Oakleys because it has the option to go full seal with the addition of the Helo Kit, something that I felt was important whilst playing a lot of cqb. Finally my gun setup, at the moment I am running a TM 416 which has been highly modified internally to match the performance of my Systema PTW. There is a lot of discussion about which system is better but personally I prefer the NGRS at the moment because it is less of a headache when it breaks, the performance is equal and there is something about the kick and blowback that puts a smile on your face when you drop someone with it.
I set the gun up so that it is as user friendly as possible for me, although the paint job and many of the accessories are inspired by ‘CAG’ I try not to follow reference pictures as I am a strong believer in doing my own thing especially when it comes down to guns.
GM75: We also spoke about, how easily you could all just really strip it back to the barest minimum of LBE (Load Bearing Equipment) but, perhaps, part of it all is the visual aspect, the suspension of disbelief it creates, would this be a step backwards and remove part of what this is all about, the fun had building kits, the history, the research …
OC: I think that it would be so easy to strip back ones kit to the bare minimum and as we all know, Airsoft is largely based around the visual aspect, now this is not to say that one can’t achieve a load out that is both aesthetically pleasing and also something that works well and I think that finding the balance and not copying the masses is essential. I think that stripping it all back would create a large hole in the community, especially for the gear whores, I know for a fact that many enjoy collecting gear just as much as playing the sport and so yes I feel it would be a step backwards. I think that the lesson is, build your setup around yourself and your environment, there is no point running around with a bulky CPC setup if all you do is play CQB and only go through 3 mags per game. In my opinion adaptation is the key to evolving yourself as a player and sometimes to build things up one has to first break things down and strip things back.
GM75: great stuff, really appreciate you taking the time out to talk, 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 ?
OC: I can certainly say that it would be interesting, having run gas weapons I can admit that it is challenging but this is possibly down to the fact that I was playing against people with high caps. I think that the way I play at the moment I would run out of rounds rather quickly, although I think there would be something satisfying about having to pick shots more carefully, and if some of us take it so seriously with the gear that we run why not make it even more realistic by capping mags to 30 rounds. Thank you for listening to what I’ve had to say, really appreciate the opportunity.
… an insightful, thought provoking interview as we’ve ever done. Be sure to check out Tribe MilSim here:
S23 is Proudly Sponsored by ToySoldier