Uniformity of equipment and clothing is key to not just immersion, but to identifying friendly and enemy forces. Make sure you follow these guidelines, and help the rest of your Team follow them to assure there is no confusion.
Anything that makes your general impression change from the requirements is a violation. If, for example, your complete uniform and web gear looks fine, but you have mismatched body armor then it must not be worn, or many only be worn in conjunction with your web gear. Pay attention to avoid being shot, or being perceived as cheating, and follow the instructions and recommendations of your team leader and other team members.
Kitoy currently allows two patterns:
- OD Green or similar solid green colors. Any muted greenish color darker than khaki is permitted.
- Crye® MultiCam™ and related patterns or close copies are permitted. This includes US-issue OEFCP, OCP, and Scorpion W1, UK-issue MTP, Australian-issue AMCU, Polish-issue Suez, and others with the same basic pattern and color scheme. Both commercial and military issue versions are permitted.
No other patterns are permitted. Tropic, Arid, Alpine, and Black MultiCam patterns variants are not permitted.
Ardea allows two patterns:
- US M81 Woodland, copies of any sort such as French CE, Russian LES, or anything that can be easily confused with it.
- British Woodland Pattern DPM, or any very close copies of it.
No other patterns are permitted. No different colors of the same patterns such as Desert DPM may be used. No solid colors may be worn.
All of your uniforms and outerwear must be in one of the approved patterns. At least two complete uniforms are suggested, but do not have to match each other – you may carry two uniforms in different patterns if you wish as long as each uniform meets the faction requirements above.
In sufficiently snowy conditions, you may wear winter "over-whites" instead of, or in addition to your normal uniform. In this case, the over-white uniform pattern is also an allowed uniform pattern. Over-whites may be worn in part; you may wear an over-white top with conventional camouflage pants.
Any solid white overwhite.
Any patterned overwhite.
Hats and helmets/helmet covers must be in one of the approved colors or camouflage patterns for your unit's uniform. Helmets can be bare metal or plastic, and painted to match the camo pattern if desired, and do not need a matching helmet cover.
Clothing, protective equipment and other stuff attached to you at all times. Other clothing items are listed in other sections because that is where they are carried.
Full seal eye protection is required. Plastic goggles that are ANSI Z87.1 rated, or approved metal mesh goggles are acceptable. Do not assume military goggle have ballistic lenses; many Sun-Wind-Dust goggles are not approved.
Remember that you are literally going to be living with goggles on at all times during the entire duration of the event. Your goggles may only be removed when inside a sealed tent or vehicle. This may never occur during the entire event time, so make sure that your goggles fit well and are comfortable.
Mesh goggles must have screen tighter than 20 holes per square inch for woven wire. Microwave door pierced metal screen is the most popular option for mesh goggles.
Safety glasses, shooting glasses, and other similar eye wear that does not seal around your face are not allowed.
Paintball-style full face masks are strongly not recommended for comfort and visibility reasons. There should be little or no close range combat that requires the extra protection. If you have good reason for needing face protection, wear larger goggles and get (or make by removing from a cheap mask) a lower face protector. It can then be worn and removed without removing the goggles.
Eye protection is required. Plastic glasses or goggles that are ANSI Z87.1 rated.
Anything on the US Military Authorized Protective Eyewear List is automatically acceptable. Do not assume other military goggles have ballistic lenses; many Sun-Wind-Dust goggles are not safety goggles so will not provide protection.
Mesh goggles, as used in airsoft, are not allowed. Small particles and gasses are the key injury mechanism with blank firing, and mesh provides no protection from these threats.
You must bring at least two pairs of earplugs. Disposable foam types are acceptable. There are different types of earplugs, so make sure to get some for shooting, instead of for blocking other noises.
Ear Muffs (Optional)
Electronic hearing protection is recommended as it provides additional hearing protection due to the larger coverage area, and gives a much greater sense of situational awareness. Avoid the "clipping" type that shut off all sound during high noise, and look for those that simply feed you a safe volume. You can also add earplug under these for additional protection.
Consumer-grade shooting muffs are generally not capable of handling field use, and will fail just from humidity and cold weather. MSA Sordin, Peltor ComTac, TCI and related headsets are the only ones we are sure are suitable for this environment but other military issue field items may work as well.
Non-electronic over-ear hearing protection is prohibited due to the loss of situational awareness. For safety you must be able to hear other players or staff issue commands.
Any uniform style or cut is allowed but two piece (blouse and pants) uniforms are strongly suggested over one-piece (flight suit, jumpsuit) type uniforms.
A sturdy, military or military issue like webbing belt is recommended. It may be in any subdued color, including black.
We suggest you do not wear a leather belt, or a floppy boy-scout like belt as it will not hold up well, and you will be pulling your pants up constntly. Look for terms like "Riggers belt" and go ahead and spend the money on one. They are worth it. You will use this to hold up your pants, but it must be secure enough to stay up all the time, and you may well be wearing things on it, so it must be able to stand up to the load.
Suspenders should be worn under the uniform blouse, so they are not visible when in uniform. Belts are still recommended even if suspenders are used, as they give the pants shape so the suspenders can work better.
Undershirts may be any subdued color, including black and sand, but may not be white or bright colors.
Pure cotton shirts including the brown USGI shirts are strongly not suggested; cotton traps moisture so can help induce hypothermia. If you wear a cotton shirt, we strongly suggest you wear another layer under it. Thin wicking shirts (such as UnderArmor) are suggested. For those wearing armor, a wicking shirt next to the skin with a thicker shirt on top of that is useful to control moisture and despite the extra layers will make you cooler.
No logos should be visible when worn with the blouse buttoned or zipped up. Your UnderArmor turtleneck may be out if it has a big white logo on the neck, for example.
Any are allowed, but subdued colors are highly suggested.
We strongly suggest you invest in quality, wicking fabrics instead of just bringing whichever tighty-whities are in your drawer. This will be worn for a long time, may get wet, have belts and packs against it for hours, and so on. Make sure it is comfortable under such conditions.
You must have, and wear, a hat to provide minimal protection from impact with branches, BBs, rain, and sun.
Any hat, in any shape, which is entirely in the camouflage color/pattern of the currently worn uniform is permitted.
The Kitoy Armed Forces traditionally have worn boonie hats or similar round brimmed hats.
Berets and other ceremonial hats are not allowed, even when in proper camouflage colors.
Any hat, in any shape, which is entirely in the camouflage color/pattern of the currently worn uniform is permitted.
Ardean forces have traditionally worn US-style Patrol Caps.
Black, British military style, berets are worn for ceremonial use, and are permitted headgear for non-combat use.
No other colors of beret or other ceremonial hats, even in the proper camouflage, are permitted.
Helmets may be worn but are not required. The helmet will provide protection; sometimes the medic card accounts for armor and you may have a more minor injury, or escape injury altogether. Since even a non-life-threatening impact from a rifle or fragment to the head is shocking, you will still call a hit, lay down and follow the medic rules.
Any military issue ballistic helmet, or one that appears to be a military issue ballistic-rated helmet may be worn. If you have a non-ballistic bump helmet with vents, you must have a cover to hide the vents. A visibly vented helmet is not ballistic and does not count as armor in the game, though you can wear it as a hat if you really want.
Note that knockoffs and replicas are generally very poorly made, so will not support night vision, and will not be comfortable for several days of wear. It is even possible to break them simply falling down or bumping into large branches. Actual issue helmets or quality training/bump helmets are highly suggested if you choose to wear a helmet.
Any footwear that is in a subdued color is allowed. Try to avoid even bright colored laces, and if using sport or hiking shoes, check to make sure there are no reflective bits.
Boots are strongly suggested, over shoes. Make sure your boots fit, and are broken in. If at all new, or only boots you have worn for a few hours, be sure to walk at least five miles in them, with the socks you will use in the field.
We suggest waterproof boots at least 8" tall (normal military boots are 8" tall, hiking boots are 4-6") to keep your feet warm, dry, and your ankles protected from sprains, rocks, roots, and thorns.
In addition to the socks you are wearing when you arrive, a change of socks for each day of the event is suggested.
Socks should not be cotton, or have any significant cotton content as cotton holds moisture and can cause you to suffer frostbite or encourage hypothermia in cold weather.
No insignia outside of the affiliation within the event is allowed. No team patches, no national patches (US Flags), no branch (US ARMY) nametapes. Items must be removed, and cannot just be covered with tape, or obscured with marker.
Individual name tapes are encouraged but not required. No branch indicator required or allowed. Your national military assumes ARMY if not labeled NAVY, AIR FORCE, or COAST GUARD.
Event-specific unit insignia are available for purchase, and may be worn on the left shoulder. Refer to the uniform standards for your uniform clothing or follow AR 670-1 for where to place the patch so it looks good.
A national flag is permitted, but it must be the proper one for your country. Patches may be purchased from the event.
If worn, it may only be placed on the right shoulder of the uniform. Refer to the uniform standards for the uniform clothing you wear, or follow the US Army regulation AR 670-1 for where to place the patch so it looks good.
We strongly encourage placing glow in the dark material on the back of your hat, LBE, and rucksack. You should also have cateyes on the back of your helmet if you bring one, and on any assault pack if it covers the marker on the back of your LBE when worn.
"Cateyes" are the common name for the two attached to USGI helmet bands, and are highly suggested, but glow in the dark tape or velcro patches are available from many sources and can be affixed to anything useful. A single piece (no smaller than 1/4" square) is acceptable, but larger patches and the USGI helmet bands with two pieces are also good choices.
Placing glow in the dark tape material on the back of helmets, hats, load bearing gear, or packs, helps your team follow each other at night, so is a safety consideration. Without it, people get losts very easily.
Attaching patches of the tape to packs allows you to find the patrol base, or packs left at your FRV when returning from an attack more easily.
This is a full-time event, and you will be expected to operate at any time of day regardless of lighting. There's no time set aside to sleep so be ready to be active at all times.
And that doesn't mean just shooting, but moving, observing, communicating, and everything else. You must be able to operate at night, so night vision is useful, but a weapon sight is not remotely as important as a good monocular or binocular.
For night vision, purchase a Gen 2 or Gen 3 unit, with a US made tube (by ITT, Litton or L3) if you can possibly afford it. Foreign made tubes can be useful, but so many are sold of such poor quality that they are hard to recommend. Avoid brands like ATN, Armasight, Night Owl, Yukon, Sightmark and more (since they put new names on many units). If the illuminator is large and an important feature, that's a good sign that it's cheap, and of no use to you. Avoid anything that says it's digital.
Night vision requires being mounted to a head mount to work. Helmet mounts are the best by far, so if you expect this get a plate mounted to your helmet, by screw or clamp, and make sure it is secure. Don't rely on any "skullcrusher" head mounts except the new and expensive Crye Nightcap. Practice with it. Use your night vision a lot, not just at other events and formal training, but take the dog for a walk for an hour and see how it is when moving, hands-free, for a long time.
Body armor may be worn, but is not required.
We suggest not attaching armor separate from load bearing equipment, so that you can choose whether or not to wear armor if it is hot, restrictive or you are tired.
The benefit of wearing armor is it will provide protection in the medic rules. You will sometimes have a more minor injury, or escape injury altogether while wearing armor. To get the benefit of armor for medic rules, the vest must cover the front and back, from at least (when standing) 3" above the waist, to 3" below the throat.
We suggest soft armor vests actually issued to a military or paramilitary force. These come up surplus regularly, at prices sometimes as low as $20 each. Plates and plate carriers are allowed but not suggested due to their rigidity.
If at all possible, use actual Kevlar or equivalent woven Fiberglas or Aramid fiber filling for soft armor, and plates or training plates for hard armor. If not available, consider buying cheap used armor and cutting soft filling to fit. If you cannot find a filler, contact the event staff for permission to use foam or other materials to simulate armor. Carriers without armor filling are generally not allowed.
Other items which may happen to carry soft armor (such as some battlebelts) are permitted but offer add no protection for medic rules purposes.
Armor must generally comply with LBE color requirements as they cover your entire torso, and may not be covered by your LBE. Make sure they do not change the impression of your uniform, and that they are in a camouflage pattern similar to your uniform, or something similar enough to not be confusing. Ask your Team leader to evaluate your assault pack if you have questions.
You should bring gloves, both for cold weather and general cut and poke protection.
Gloves may be in any subdued colors, to include brown and black but not sand. Printing with names and logos (yes, even Mechanix) are strongly discouraged.
If you really expect cold weather, or have been frost-nipped so get cold easily, mittens are suggested. Over-mitts, which you wear over your gloves) are often best for these sorts of operations, as they can be used when marching or standing post, but when removed there are still gloves on.
Military surplus over-mitts are common, and work very well.
Mittens may be any accessory color, to include brown and black. Avoid light tan and sand colors as they stick out a lot.
Neck Gaiter or Scarf
You will loose a surprising amount of heat from the gap at the top of your coat. Bring a neck gaiter or scarf to seal that, and to cover your face from any biting cold winds.
Neck gaiters can also double as a sort of half-hat, or act as an ear warmer. This can be useful to keep wind from freezing parts off without overheating you.
If your knees are going bad, or it bothers you to poke into rocks or sticks, get some kneepads.
Any are allowed as long as they are in subdued colors that do not clash with your uniform colors such as black, green, or gray-green. Brown, sand and bright colors are not allowed. Kneepads that fit inside your uniform pants may also be a good idea.
Only the weapons listed are allowed, no others.
Airsoft weapons may only be used at airsoft events. They are banned from other event types for safety reasons.
Everyone must have an individual weapon. For most players this is your rifle. Machine gunners may choose to carry a machine gun as their individual weapon, but all others–grenade launchers, rocket launchers, and so forth–are support weapons instead, and you must also carry a rifle.
Note: Barrel lengths in the following definitions are the equivalent length of the barrel in the real weapon system the replica is based on. The length of the airsoft replica barrel is irrelevant.
Kitoy issues AR-15 variant rifles or carbines. You may bring a rifle of any issued style, or issued barrel length:
- Down to short but issued guns like the "CAR-15" Colt Model 733, or the Mk18, with barrels as short as 10"
- Up to 20" M16s
No shorter SMG-length guns are allowed.
No longer machine gun, sniper, or automatic rifle variants are allowed, even if actually issued. This is to be an individual rifle, not a specialist or support weapon of any sort.
Any buttstock that uses the original receiver extension may be used. No side-folding stocks are allowed. No receiver variants that would in reality allow side folding such as the ZM-300 are allowed.
Ardea issues a variety of 7.62x51 NATO rifles. You may bring either a: G3, FN-FAL, Mk17 SCAR-H, HK417 or M14.
Rifles can be any issued rifle or carbine with any issued barrel length. No commercial, gunsmith-only, or airsoft-only variants. For example:
- G3, or G3K, but not the HK51 as those were not real
- FAL, FAL Para or L1, C1 and other issued guns, with 21" or 16-17" barrels
- SCAR-H, not the SCAR-L, and only with barrels from 13-20"
- HK417, not HK416, and only with barrels from 12" to 20"
- M14s may only have the original 22" barrel, and may not use any railed chassis or folding stocks
No longer machine gun, sniper, or automatic rifle variants are allowed, even if actually issued. This is to be an individual rifle, not a specialist or support weapon of any sort.
Only original, issue-style stocks are allowed. HK rifles may not have side folding stocks, FALs cannot use SAW stocks, and neither can have adapters to use AR-15 stocks.
Suppressors may be used if you choose, but should be added to the weapon system as described above; they do not count for the total barrel length when installed. Suppressors should emulate a real model of suppressor and be of reasonable, realistic size and diameter for a military or paramilitary issue unit.
All airsoft weapons may use any* operating system or principle (AEG, GBB, HPA...). No weapons will be allowed which allow for adjustment of velocity without tools or disassembly. Any guns with easily-changeable spring rate, regulators, or the like must be able to be locked out (tournament locked), and will be locked by CWG event staff after passing chrono.
All guns must be free-standing weapons systems, just like real ones. That means no external (hose fed) gas systems. As with all other accessories, all weapon accessories must be as they purport to be, and all airsoft gun specific mechanisms must be concealed. This means no PEQ battery boxes, no visible gas tanks, no visible wires, or visible battery packs are allowed. This is not an exclusive list, and feel free to ask us for approval or assistance in making your gun suitable for CWG if you have any concerns.
*Pyrotechnic (cap firing) systems are not allowed as they present additional risks, including legal ones.
There are no requirements for spares, backup, etc. But you are 100% responsible for keeping your gun running for the whole event. If your gun goes down, you should tough it out and keep working.
If your gun does fail, remember that the enemy doesn't know that. You can do a lot with eyes, boots, shoulders, etc. so stick it out and don't quit.
If you wish to carry an extra weapon, it must also abide by all rules listed above as though it is your primary weapon.
Handguns, Machine Guns, Support Weapons
All other weapon types are detailed below under conditional equipment.
Machine gunners may choose to use the machine gun as their primary weapon, and not carry a rifle at all. Make sure your machine gun is up to the task of working for all actions for three days straight, and you don't mind carrying it the whole time.
Individual Weapon Magazines
Magazines must look like issued 20 or 30 round box magazines. No shorter or longer types (5 round sniper mags, 40 round AR-180, 60 round PMAGs), no drums of any sort.
No magazines may contain over 150 BBs. No winding magazines of any sort are allowed.
Magazine loaders should be concealed and not carried in such a way they purport to be some other device. If your favorite mag loader looks like a grenade, that's fine, but you may not carry it in a grenade pouch on your web gear. Put it in your pack or a sustainment pouch instead.
No airsoft weapons of any sort, to include pellet throwing grenades, can be used in MILES events.
Everyone will be issued an individual weapon. This will be an AR-15 pattern carbine or rifle.
All rifles have a conventional A2 carry handle and iron sights. There are no rails, but if you have a sight which fits to the carry handle (e.g. ACOG) or bring an adapter, you may mount it to the rifle. There is no provision for zeroing of sights or laser aimers, so if you bring one it will have to be zeroed by cowitnessing to the iron sights only.
You may optionally bring your own AR-15 pattern rifle, or carbine. The weapon must meet certain requirements and will only be accepted for use at the time of check in. Weapons may be rejected at any time if there are issues with installation of the required equipment. Your rifle must:
- Be an AR-15 carbine or rifle which accepts standard (STANAG 4179) magazines.
- Have a barrel between 10 and 20".
- Have a buttstock and be legally a rifle. No pistols are allowed.
- Have a direct impingement gas system. No piston systems of any sort are allowed.
- Have a conventional USGI flash hider which can accept a USGI Blank Firing Adapter (BFA). You may or may not be allowed to use your own BFA even if you provide one.
- Have at least 4 inches of barrel exposed between the flash hider and the handguards or rail for attachment of the SAT (laser emitter module). M4 profile barrels are best, but there are a limited number of shims for older "pencil" barrels. This mounting may scratch your barrel.
- If you bring an NFA weapons (a Short Barrel Rifle, or a Machine Gun) you must have a copy of all paperwork indicating it is a legal weapon, and that you are legally allowed to possess it in this location. A copy of this paperwork must be on your person at all times during the event.
Weapons will have a Blank Firing Adapter fitted to the muzzle at all times. If repair is needed, this will be handled by event staff. Under no circumstances will a BFA be removed in the field.
Weapons will have a MILES SAT fitted to the muzzle. Do not attempt to remove, zero or otherwise change the SAT. A laser is emitted from the front, so be sure to keep it clean and clear of debris or your shots will not be counted.
Individual Weapon Magazines
All magazines will be issued, and are marked as being for blank fire only.
Only metal 30 round box magazines are issued.
You are responsible for magazines so may have to pay a fee if you loose one.
Allowed weapon accessories apply to all weapon types.
Rails and other accessory attachment systems are allowed on individual weapons as long as the weapon is issued with one of that configuration. G3s and FALs cannot use forearm rails.
Accessories of any sort can be used but must be equipment used by actual military, paramilitary or national police organizations.
Note your chain of command may restrict or prohibit any specific equipment.
Functionally-equivalent replicas that are visually similar may be used instead of actual equipment. That means you can bring your actual PEQ-15 from work if you can get permission, or can bring your Class 1 IR laser "PEQ-15," or use an IR laser PEQ clone regardless of quality, etc. but you cannot use a PEQ battery box, a commercial/replica that uses only visible laser, or a mini grenade launcher shaped like a laser.
For another example, you can use a cheap knockoff red dot sight, but it has to look like a real sight issued to anyone (any Aimpoint, EOTech, etc) so cannot look like a PVS-14 or a magnified scope.
Accessories which are purely consumer, hunting, airsoft, or otherwise not issued, including many scopes and sights, are not allowed.
We are responsible for all shots we fire, and always aim. Your rifle must have sights, and they must be functional (zeroed to at least approximate point of impact) at the time you are shooting the gun. If your optical sight fails, you may resort to backup iron sights, but they must be installed, elevated and not obsctructed by the broken scope, for example.
Sighting equipment must be actual military-issued sighting equipment or visually and functionally similar as described in Weapon Accessories. Do not bring a commercial hunting scope.
No optical sights over 4x magnification will be allowed to mounted to weapons. There is no limit on magnification for monoculars, binoculars or spotting scopes but airsoft guns cannot be long range sniper rifles.
Certain other weapons may also be employed, but may only be used within these guidelines.
Machine guns may be any belt fed SAW, LMG, GPMG or Medium MG that is issued to any army since 1955. Box and drum fed automatic rifles, especially those that are variants of the AR-15, FN-FAL or Kalashnikov, are not allowed. Experimental, never issued, one-off, or commercial-only guns, as well as belt-fed conversions of rifles are not allowed.
Good examples of allowed guns are the FN MAG-58/M-240, FN Minimi / M249, M60, the PK series, or the RPD, but many others are also allowed. Ask if you are unsure if your weapon meets these requirements, know it was issued but is obscure, or have a good reason to ask for an exception.
Machine guns must have a bipod attached at all times, and should be fired from the bipod whenever practical, not just used as a large, heavy rifle. Machine guns may be used with a tripod as well if you choose to bring one.
Machine guns may use magazines or feed devices of any capacity or type, however the feeding device must appear to be one suitable to be issued with the gun and for use when it is a machine gun. You may not use a box magazine or drum in the side of an M249, or use a SAW "nutsack" to feed a MAG-58, for two examples.
Issued machine gun ammunition is white, with 1/5th tracers. We suggest adding a tracer unit or modifying the gun to light the tracers, so the gun is more effective in the night. Machine gun ammunition cannot be exchanged either way with rifle ammunition.
Rocket and grenade launchers, mortars and other such devices that are not individual pellet throwers are "Support Weapons." These are still aimed devices and you are responsible for safe employment.
Support weapons must be visually similar to real weapons. No grenade launchers that look like a PEQ, no PVC pipe rocket launchers. No dummy weapons or weapons you cannot fire. You must have functioning ammunition when you enter the field.
When the fireable round is visible, but is simulated and does not actually fire (such as for the RPG-7) it must be stowed when the weapon is unloaded or if you have no additional rounds to fire it. This is so you cannot trick people with an inoperative weapon; an empty RPG-7 launcher is different looking from one loaded with a grenade.
Support weapons must have sights which are regulated to the point of impact. Sights do not have to work as they do on the real weapon (e.g. your Javelin simulator doesn't have to have a thermal sight) but has to have functional sights that are accurate enough anyone can safely shoot the rocket and hit a target.
Weapons must operate in a manner similar to real weapons. Triggers must be in similar locations.
Support Weapon Reloads
Support weapon can only be reloaded in the field as they would actually be. AT-4s can only be fired once, 40 mm grenades cannot be recharged with gas, etc.
Reloadable weapons may be reloaded with another shell, but additional shots must be of similar size and shape to the real world reload. These items do not have to be actually used but must correspond to the number of available reloads. E.g. a backpack that appears to be three PG-7 grenades can be worn, even if your RPG-7 fires Moscart shells and Nerf rockets alone. However, you may only have three of these shells on you.
Non-reloadable support weapons such as disposable rocket launchers may be reloaded in-game, but this must be done at a basecamp, not under combat conditions, and is treated as a new round of ammunition. Reloads will not be carried on the body.
All grenades, whether thrown or launched, must expel pellets to function. All others have only their actual effect, namely making noise.
Completely inert grenades (or Nerf rockets or other items) may be launched as anti-vehicle munitions, where the use of bursting grenades would not be allowed due to fire safety.
No paint, water, or chalk marking grenades are allowed.
All grenades must be designed for war gaming events. Absolutely no use of live munitions including practice grenades or practice flashbangs.
Both Ardea and Kitoy are signatories to the Ottawa Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction. Anti-personnel land mines are therefore not allowed. However, anti-vehicle and other types of self-initiating mines are permitted.
Command detonated explosives such as Claymores are not considered land mines, so are permitted.
Night Sights and Aimers (Recommended)
Night vision gunsights are also allowed, and even encouraged. Military surplus sights such as the PVS-4 are relatively affordable (and may cost less than your NOD). They are large, but that gives them good performance, and you don't need it during the day. You also are unlikely to need many of them; one per squad is often good enough for ambushes and deliberate attacks. Again, avoid imported units, and those where an illuminator is required unless you know it to be useful and reliable.
But for most gunfighting purposes, IR aiming lasers are the most useful sighting system. Avoid cheap, airsoft-only knockoffs. They have terrible range, fuzzy dots and are not rugged enough for these sorts of operations. In the last few years there are now a variety of civilian legal Class 1 IR lasers equipment from major makers such as Steiner available, with prices starting around $500. If you paid a lot less for a laser, I wouldn't rely on it.
Visible lights and visible lasers are generally more of a hazard to you than the enemy for night fighting. They are not encouraged and your chain of command may ban them as they probably disallow white lights (the enemy can see you better than you can see them) so check first.
Load Bearing Equipment (LBE)
You must have load-bearing equipment (LBE) to carry your magazines, water and other key combat and field equipment. When assembled and worn with pouches it must be:
- Of quality construction and in good condition. Cheap and worn-out items may not last under heavy use.
- Hold the required number of magazines.
- Hold the required amount of water.
- Have enough adjustment to fit over you, with any and all cold and wet weather gear you bring.
- Has room to fit an IFAK as described elsewhere.
Your LBE should be in OD green, but may be in any subdued color so it does not stick out when worn with your uniform. Larger vests (LBV) and other LBE with large coverage will be especially closely watched to make sure it matches the uniform.
The unit of issue for ammunition is 7 rifle magazines. That means 1 in the gun and 6 on the LBE. No additional rifle magazines may be permanently carried in easily-accessible, dedicated pouches on your LBE or anywhere else on the body. You may of course carry spares loose in a buttpack, assault pack, rucksack, bandolier, etc.
Your LBE should be in the pattern of your uniform or have pouches mounted to it in that pattern, but may be in any subdued color so it does not stick out when worn with your uniform. Larger vests and other LBE with large coverage will be especially closely watched to make sure it matches the uniform.
The unit of issue for ammunition is 5 rifle magazines. That means 1 in the gun and 4 on the LBE. No additional rifle magazines may be permanently carried in easily-accessible, dedicated pouches on your LBE or anywhere else on the body. You may of course carry spares loose in a buttpack, assault pack, rucksack, bandolier, etc.
You may in some cases have more than the allowed number of magazine pouches. If the pouch is dedicated to the use of a radio, GPS, notebook, or other equipment, you are allowed to carry such equipment, and never carry a magazine there, you may have more pouches than the allowed magazine load standards above.
Machine gunners may equip their LBE to carry only machine gun ammunition instead of rifle magazines. Be sure your machine gun is up to the task of working for three days straight before you commit to this.
Individual First Aid Kit (IFAK)
You should carry an Individual First Aid Kit on your primary load carriage gear. This is not for in-event use, to respawn you from simulated injuries but is for treating actual small injuries.
It must be clearly marked with a cross or plus symbol on the pouch.
The specific contents of the kit are up to you but remember you are not likely to be shot or blown up for real. This is a "boo boo" kit for small cuts and scrapes, and to maintain your personal needs. Carry items such as: Band aids, antibiotic ointment, tape, tweezers, painkillers, bug ointment, blister kits, and medications you may need. You may also carry "blowout" items such as field dressings, tourniquets, and so forth, but do not use the entire kit for such low-use gear.
Your Chain of Command may require your IFAK be carried in a specific location so it is not confused with in-game medic equipment, or to use if you are actually injured, so check with them first.
Each attendee is required to have a minimum of two red dead rags. A dead rag is nothing more than a swatch of red cloth used to signal that you are hit. Dead rags do not have to be anything fancy. Use any red shop rag, handkerchief, or any swatch of red cloth will do.
These do have a tendency to get lost when you stick one on the top of your helmet, then walk through the woods. Two are required, but more may be helpful.
At least two liters of water should be carried on the body. Water must be carried in water bottles you will not dispose of when done, in canteens, or in a water bladder (CamelBak). Do not rely on single-use water bottles, as they always end up as litter.
Refill water when you can so you always have enough on hand. Do not become a hydration casualty.
You may also wear a hydration bladder, such as a CamelBak, but due to issues with reliability, freezing and filling, it should not be the only way you carry water. Try to have a place to carry water bottles onto your load bearing equipment in case they are needed.
Notebook & Pencil
Everyone should carry a notepad and pencil or something else reliable to write with at all times. Pocket sized waterproof Rite in the Rain notebooks are best for this.
You should have a permanent marker such as a Sharpie or Lumocolor in black or another dark color. Aside from marking equipment or tactical use, notes must sometimes be written for in-game use such as medic cards, and marking equipment for destruction.
Everyone must for safety carry a compass at all times. This must be an actual military issue compass, or one from a major maker such as Brunton, Silva, or Suunto. Make sure you know how to use it, during the day as well as at night, and coordinate with your squad to assure everyone is working off the same base of knowledge.
Know how to use your compass, and the emergency azimuth to head when totally lost, so you can find your way back.
A low power flashlight which can be converted to red light is critical for doing all sorts of activities at night, from map reading to setting mines. We strongly suggest you carry one in a safe place, and assure it cannot be accidentally turned on.
Avoid replica USGI angle heads as they are of very poor quality. Most cheap flashlights, whether for home use or sold as "tactical" cannot handle rough use or weather so should be avoided. Spend money on a name brand or military surplus light, maintain it well, and get to know how it works so you can use it at night, and change the batteries in the dark.
A wristwatch is highly suggested for all participants. It need not be anything specific as long as it is reasonably not shiny, tells time and can tolerate a rough and wet environment. Tritium or glow in the dark hands are good, but most of all you should avoid anything that lights up as it can easily be bumped and give away your position at night.
You should carry something to cut with. It may be a pocket knife, fixed blade knife, or EMT shears. You will not be fighting with this utility cutting tool, so think carefully about the size, weight and method of carry before you pack a huge fixed blade knife.
Assault packs are small backpacks of various sizes, but smaller than your ruck. They are generally frameless, and may or may not have waist belts. You can use them to carry items that do not fit on your LBE, such as food, spare water, cold and wet weather gear or spare ammunition.
The assault pack is functionally identical to a buttpack. As long as you actually carry it, items in the assault pack count as being on your LBE.
Magazines carried on or in a buttpack or assualt pack are NOT considered to be part of the LBE basic load, and are backup ammo or team ammo instead. In this way you can have much more than the unit of issue on your body, to resupply yourself.
Assault packs must generally comply with LBE color requirements as they cover your entire rear torso. They should not change the impression of your uniform. They must be in a camouflage pattern similar to your uniform, or something similar enough to not be confusing. Ask your Team leader to evaluate your assault pack if you have questions.
Additional Load Carriage
Satchels or bandoliers may be used to carry additional load, or special purpose items such as observation equipment, flare launchers, or mine detectors. This will allow you to keep the primary load carriage simple and light, and to transfer special purpose equipment to other team members, as needed.
Drop leg platforms are strongly discouraged for any purpose.
Other communications equipment of any sort may be used at your discretion including signal lights, flares and smoke (safety rules permitting), and wireline field phones.
Field phones, flare launchers, and much other equipment must be military surplus or reasonable facimilies of the same. Seek approval for any equipment if you have any questions at all, before bringing it to the field.
Cyalume light sticks are useful markers for when flares are not allowed (or not a good idea) for safety, so are also worth bringing. There are a wide variety of them, including very short "burn" ones that are much brighter, in a variety of colors including IR only.
Sustainment and backup gear on the large backpack you carry between patrol bases.
Backpack / Rucksack
Any pack you find to be suitable in construction and size may be used as long as it is in a suitable color (subdued, or camouflaged and preferably not black). Any major items visible on the outside of the pack such as pouches, sleeping mats or sleeping bags, must be in a subdued color. Camouflage pack covers are easily available, so can be used to make your pack blend into the environment more as well as keeping it from snagging, or getting soaked in rain.
Actual military issue packs or those from other high-quality makers are highly recommended. Cheaper knockoffs or replica are not well enough made to be trusted. You are still responsible for moving your equipment, even if your Condor pack blows out 2 hours into the event.
Be sure to load your pack with all the required equipment well in advance to assure it fits, and that you can comfortably carry it. You may be assigned to a unit that is on the move the entire time, so do not pack as though it's a suitcase. Plan to carry it all the time, and live out of it. Make sure there is room for you to carry squad equipment as well as your own.
You should have a completely waterproof bag of some sort inside the pack, and at least store spare socks, underwear and undershirts in it to assure you have dry clothing to change into. This is critical to avoid becoming hypothermic in the event you become cold and wet.
The bag may be as minimal as a large Ziploc, or may be a specific dry bag such as a SeaLine (or one of many suitable copies), or any issue waterproof pack liner. Keep the bag sealed at all times, and pack carefully to avoid piercing it.
A poncho, or jacket, either waterproof or Gore-tex, should be on the top of your pack, so it is ready for unexpected weather. Any rain gear must be in an approved uniform color/pattern for your army, but does not have to match the color of your current uniform.
USGI ponchos can be easily found, and even knockoffs are usually of acceptable quality. They are available in both solid OD green and Woodland patterns. There are also foreign military surplus ponchos, and some good quality new-made ones, such as those from Snugpak.
For jackets or parkas, military surplus items are the most sturdy, reliable and efficient items, and will be easiest to find in proper colors. While a broad range of high-quality items are available for high cost, avoid cheap consumer, hunting or "tactical" rain jackets, even if found in the proper colors. For surplus:
- USGI ECWS Parkas are readily available in Woodland, and occasionally in OD green
- The French, among others, issue both CE (like Woodland) and solid OD green parkas and jackets which are sometimes available
- The UK is currently surplussing their first generation of "Multicam" outerwear including a range of very nice rain gear.
Test your rain gear before use, and apply suitable sealant sprays or other repairs as needed.
An insulating warmth layer should be carried. This may be met any number of ways, whether with outerwear such as the M65 field jacket, or layered items for wear under the rain jacket such as a USGI "Bear Suit," a sweater, or polypro.
Bring both a top and bottom warmth layer. They do not have to match (a coat on top, and polypro under your pants on the bottom) but both must be present.
If you choose outerwear (a coat) it should have a water-repellent shell exterior (no exposed fleece) and must be in an approved uniform color/pattern for your army, but does not have to match the color of your currrent. Insulating layers worn under the uniform may be in any subdued color. Black is allowed, but not encouraged.
Do not be confused by names. A rain "parka" is not a warmth layer item, but a rain shell and does not fill this requirement.
Weather is unpredictable. Even in summer there can be surprising cold snaps. It may be that at the start of the event, this equipment is not required, but you should bring it with you until you get such word, and consider bringing additional cold weather clothing, such as both a layer to wear under your uniform and a warm coat.
A cold weather hat is suggested. Insulated hats with earflaps, insulated helmet liners and many other options are available, but be careful not to make your primary hat insulated as you may overheat on warm days.
If you bring a knit or fleece watch cap of any type, it may be in any camouflage color, including black, but must not be in a camouflage or color which may cause confusion in identity.
As with all other uniform and equipment items, no headgear may be in the camouflage pattern of the enemy forces at all.
You must bring a complete sleep system, consisting of a sleeping bag suitable for use in below-freezing conditions, and a waterproof cover such as a bivy sack to keep it dry.
The bivy cover must be a military camouflage color or pattern, but does not need to match the uniform color.
Each attendee must provide for their own personal hygiene kit. Personal hygiene in the field is important both for the sake of comfort as well as protection from disease. While the exact contents are left to you, you should at least bring:
- A toothbrush
- A washcloth, rag or wipes
- A hand towel or camp towel to dry off with
Other items you are likely to need are:
- Bug repellent
- Alcohol wipes
- Foot powder
- Zinc oxide cream
- Fingernail clippers, nail file
Also remember you drove here, and may have a long drive home. Bring additional travel toiletries to make yourself presentable to the rest of the world once you leave the field, but leave those in your car.
You will need to bring toilet paper. Do not assume you can just hold it for a couple days, and do not rely on the very, very small amount provided with things like your MRE.
1/3d of a roll from home works well, but you may also get travel packets from the drug store, or wipes for this purpose. Place it in a waterproof bag so it works when you need it.
Absolutely do not leave waste, or paper, laying loose on the ground. Bring a digging tool (or borrow from another team member) to make a hole, then cover it carefully so it cannot be easily dug up by animals.
The best way to make yourself sick, at home, at work, or in the woods is poor hygiene. Keep yourself clean whenever you can.
While soap and water, and disposable towels, are the best way to keep clean, that's pretty impossible to do from your backpack in the woods, so we strongly suggest keeping a little pack of wet wipes.
Clean your handse every time you use the bathroom, and before eating regardless of what you have been up to.
And be sure to not litter with them either. Keep them and collect as trash.
You should bring at least one trash bag of any size. Use it to place food and other waste in, so you do not mess up the field, or give away your position with a breadcrumb trail of candy wrappers.
You must bring enough food for two full days in the field. This must include at least three entrees and must be a pre-packaged ration pack such as military rations. MREs are a good example, and include one entree per ration, so you would need three of those. 24 hour rations usually include breakfast, lunch and dinner so you may be able to get away with one ration pack.
However, these are the minimum requirements. You will be walking and fighting, may be cold, and may otherwise need much, much more food than this. You may bring unlimited other snack goods, or additional rations to meet your actual food intake, but are strongly encouraged to not over pack. Avoid candy and other sugary snacks as your entire meal plan.
As long as you prove to your team leader you are bringing most of an entire ration, you may then "break it down" by opening and packing pieces individually. You are allowed to discard small items (such as drink mixes) you do not wish to use, but do bring all key food components.
You may not assemble "MRE-like" foods from the grocery store and declare it to be a one day ration. It must be an issued ration marked "MRE" or a similar commercial equivalent marked as such.
Some commercial "MREs" or military ones repacked for sale not come with a heater pack. If you do not want to eat cold food, plan accordingly. Spare and improved heater bags exist, but alcohol stove or trioxane tablets are also a good solution for this.
Additional Water (Optional)
The required water is not enough for the entire event. While resupply water is available, if there is room you may wish to carry additional water bottles, or bladders.
Bring a tent or tarp if you want as well. Any subdued-colored item, in any pattern is allowed. Make sure it will not stick out like a sore thumb in sie and shape as well. Many tents you find at Walmart will be very large, hard to set up and may have shiny parts as well. Make sure you know how to set it up at night, without making too much noise or using lights.
You should coordinate with your team so you can integrate, or not overpack. One tent for half the squad may be plenty. Look at the expected weather before you make your final plans.
On the other hand, if everyone brings a shelter half, you can turn them into other types of shelters for cold weather or to have a fire without revealing your position.
Additional gear you have ready for when you get wet, or cold. You ready bag will be stored at your Company or Troop supply point and can be brought forward when needed by other troops or transport vehicles. If the weather is nice, your Team Leader may allow you to move some items such as cold and wet weather gear from the rucksack to this bag. Be sure to bring a large enough one.
Bring a waterproof bag big enough for the items you will put in the ready bag. It may be inside a backpack, A-Bag or other suitable bag that looks or is military.
The bag should be waterproof when roughly handled and when left outside for a few days in the rain or snow. Military waterproof bags, SeaLine bags or knockoffs, are all good. Trash bags are not suitable. Do not use a hard box such as a Rubbermaid storage container or foot locker
Your name must be clearly marked on the bag. Stencils are best, but any large, clear label will do. If you must use your callsign or nickname, also include your actual last name and first initial.
Be sure to bring batteries for anything battery powered you will carry onto the field, including radios. For long life, especially in cold weather, Lithium works best so are strongly suggested, even for simple flashlights.
Chargers for AEGs, or any other system, may be left at the CCP supply station. These must be free-standing items, and cannot rely on external power or your vehicle.
Support Weapon Recharges
If you have a support rocket, reloadable grenade, mine or any other weapon that can be recharged to fire again, but simulates a disposable device, your recharging equipment may not be carried into the field on your person or in vehicles.
You may place this equipment at the CCP resupply point, and use it when a casualty, or may travel there expressly to recharge your weapons.
If you expect to recharge weapons and carry them forward in cases or as reload analogues (such as the PG7 grenade pack in the example on the line above), remember to have a method to mark if your reload analogues as used or not. Place spare sealing tape or wire ties at the CCP as well.
Gas for Small Arms
Gas for recharging small arms (rifles, handguns, SMGs and MGs) may be carried in the field, as it may need to be used very regularly. However, it must be carried inside a pack or pouch so is not visible.
Some equipment should to be present or carried, but only by one person on your Fire Team. Team Leaders will coordinate this to assure the requirements are met but that everyone doesn't get overloaded by everyone carrying one.
One person on each Team must carry a digging tool, at least for waste disposal. This may be any military issue shovel, entrenching tool, pick, mattock or pulaski. Only military issue tools are really acceptable, or major manufacturer commercially sold variants such as the Gerber, Glock or SOG e-tools.
No reproduction or import knockoff entrenching or camping tools are allowed as they are all very low quality so may break and both not work, and risk injuring you or others.
A second pioneer tool, to cut wood, should carried by someone in the Team. While it is very unlikely you will make a campfire, or certainly not one large enough to require cutting down trees, you may need to cut trees, bushes or roots for campsites, camouflage, or fighting positions. Trying to cut down a tree with a shovel is difficult, so a saw or hatchet may be useful.
Small folding pruning saws, available at any garden center, are good for most work you are likely to encounter. The Sven Saw is an excellent, very lightweight tool that assembles into a full sized bow saw.
Hatchets and axes are heavier, require additional skill to use and sharpen, so are discouraged. Even you are an expert lumberjack, the rest of the team may not be able to safely or effectively use it.
In case you bring cheap equipment, or abuse your gear, bring a small repair kit, with at least the following items:
- Sewing kit
- 10 ft (3 m) string or paracord, in black, green, or brown
- 10 ft (3 m) 90/100 mph tape or gaffer tape, in black, green or brown
Additional items are encouraged, including wire ties, safety pins, electrical tape, baling wire, or anything else you have found useful to quickly re-connect or repair items.
Discuss with the team if any other items or tools may be important for their weapons, LBE or other equipment.
You cannot be guaranteed to be supplied with water, and will use a surprising amount over the course of the weekend. DO NOT DRINK UNTREATED GROUND WATER from streams or ponds. You should be prepared to purify water you find from streams and ponds.
There are two types or tablets available iodine and chlorine dioxide. U.S. military or commercial iodine tablets are suitable for purification of bacteria and viruses but have no effect on Cryptosporidium and a low to moderate effect on Giardia, both of which are common in the US; if you bring purifying tablets, these type are not permitted.
Chlorine dioxide tablets are suitable for bacteria, viruses and has a low to moderate (slow) effect on Cryptosporidium and is highly effective on Giardia. You're most likely to find Katadyn Micropur Purification Tablets available in the US, outside the US there are several available types. Aquamira tablets are NSN 6850-01-551-7850.
Chlorine dioxide tablets come in individual foil blister packets and have a shelf life of 4 years. They do not significantly affect the taste of water.
Read the instructions for the tablet you select and follow them.
- If you suspect the area you are in (proximity to livestock) has Cryptosporidium contact time is 30 minutes for clear water, 4 hours for turbid (non-clear) water.
- Remember that in all cases the colder/dirtier your water the longer any purification tablet will take to work
If you wish to, you may bring a water purification pump. If you choose to bring one, be sure you know how it works and carefully follow the procedure to assure that you do not drink contaminated water by accident. You are likely to only need one purifier pump per squad. If you have and want to bring one, talk to your squad leader.
Pumps can break, so a water purifier does not replace water purification tablets.
You do not have to eat your MREs. If you wish, you can bring other foods, or even better organize the squad so everyone brings a bit of something to cook a real meal or two during the event. Be sure to account for all utensils, pots to cook in, bowls or cups to eat from, and a way to heat it. Backpacking and survival stoves are small and light, but consider carefully which one you take. Some are quite loud.
Even easier may be to plan on providing coffee, tea or soup to the team. These can be easily made, as long as you bring a stove and container to heat them in. Everyone on the team should then have a cup to drink it from.
You are still required to bring your MRE, as you may not have the time or tactical situation to use the planned food.
Glow in the dark materials like cateyes only charge under UV light. Modern LEDs have such a restrictive color emission profile they put out very little UV, so are poor at charging. Get at least one small UV keychain light per squad to charge cateyes, watches, compasses, etc. Most emit dim purple light, but it cannot be seen very far away so is safe to use in all but the closest enemy contact.
Certain roles require or allow equipment not allowed or required for conventional troops. These outline the requirements for those items.
Handguns - Airsoft
Handguns are required for officers (anyone with the word Commander in their rank), and are allowed for others:
- Non-commissioned officers (anyone with the word Leader in their rank)
- Machine gunners (not assistant gunners)
Handguns are heavy, bulky, snaggy and get in the way. Handguns are not generally encouraged for those other than officers.
In all cases, your rifle is your primary weapon. Whenever practical keep your rifle, or machine gun, available and nearby.
Your handgun must be a functional, self loading airsoft gun, such as a gas blowback (GBB). No prop guns, no spring pistols, and absolutely no cartridge blank firing guns.
Any model is allowed as long as it:
- A handgun actually issued to any police, paramilitary, or military organization since 1950.
- Be dark colored. Black, parkerized gray, and blued are most common but molded green and brown plastic frames are also allowed when issued. No chrome, stainless or other bright colors are permitted.
- No full-auto, burst-fire, or select fire machine pistols. No convertible pistol/carbines with folding or removable buttstocks.
- No red dot or telescopic sights. Lasers (especially IR laser pointers for use with night vision) and lights or illuminators are allowed.
- No extreme customization is permitted, to include compensators, extended barrels and the like. No "suppressed" pistols are allowed.
This means that there are no Desert Eagles, no double-stack 1911s, and no fictional guns. If you have any questions at all, please ask to make sure.
No other variants with shorter or longer barrels, or shorter gripframes will be permitted. Glock models with integral compensators (cuts in the slide) are allowed. No other colors, or paint schemes are allowed. The Glock 18 and any other full auto variants are prohibited.
Handguns must meet all safety requirements including passing the chrono test and be marked as such just as rifles and machine guns.
Handguns - MILES
Handguns of all sorts are prohibited for MILES events. No live weapons not fitting with a BFA and SAT are permitted, including empty live weapons, and pellet-throwing devices such as airsoft guns are prohibited entirely.
Handguns must be carried in a holster designed to secure the pistol model you are using. The pistol may not fall or be pulled out of the holster, or provide access to the trigger unless the pistol is deliberately released. Thumb straps or other retention mechanisms including Safariland SLS or ALS systems are suggested. Friction fit may be permitted but the holster must be able to be inverted and not release the pistol while not worn on a belt.
Officers can use any holster that securely retains the pistol. Soldiers and NCOs permitted to carry a pistol must have holster with a flap. All holsters must point down, such that a shot fired from the holster while standing would strike the ground within 1 meter.
Holsters may be any non-bright color. Black plastic and brown leather are specifically allowed; you do not have to have a camouflage color.
You may not use a magazine carrier pocket, put them in your pocket, etc. No drop leg platforms are permitted for any purpose, but short extensions rigidly mounted to the belt are permitted. The Safariland UBL and the USGI extension for the Bianchi M12 both are specifically authorized.
Lanyards or retention holsters are encouraged to avoid loss.
Rank will be issued and is required to be worn by NCOs and officers. Rank insignia are the property of the event, and will be turned in at the end of the event.
Rank is not worn by other troops.
Each squad will have a Medic. Each Medic will carry their supplies in a bag, satchel, or backpack of any type or size you wish. The bag must be prominently marked with a red cross on a white field.
The Medic Bag will contain items provided by the event staff. So you can plan, these materials should include:
- Bound casualty Card book
- Triangle bandages (to make slings)
- Aluminum rolled splints
- Rolled elastic bandages (to secure splints and limbs)
- A box of band-aids
The bag can serve multiple roles, so be the assault pack for the medic and carry other equipment they may need for themselves or the team.
You must also provide, and should include inside the Medic Bag, even if duplicates are carried on the Medic:
- A small red light (to read Casualty Cards at night)
- A permanent marker
The Medic may carry as many items as he wishes to meet medical needs, and may carry additional items such as improved materials to secure splints, but must balance this with the weight and bulk.
The Medic Bag should not carry any real world medical supplies to avoid confusion.
Radios will be issued, but you may bring your own if it meets the standards. Only military issue audio accessories may be used with the radios. –
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Carry an SOI card with the radio –
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You must carry at least one set of spare batteries for the radio.