Been busy and now there is so much to respond to!
First off I explored Westmoreland Park, it is amazing! It reminded me quite a bit of Saint John's Woods (that was the first round of MOAB right?) only with less prickle bushes. The stream nearby is very clear and would be great for filling in (still recommend filling first round blasters at my house to speed things up though). It is mostly flat which should eliminate boring fights where one team camps on a hill. The battle area is trees and bushes with a lots of trails going through it and a few open spots. Most likely it will replace Carderock on that day but there are a few complications that might arise. First off when I explored it most the underbrush was still dormant, depending on how thick it gets come spring it may not work as a battlefield. If it ends up being like the southern half of Carderock (which looks awesome in the winter) but during the summer has underbrush that you need a chainsaw to get through, it would limit battling to just the dirt paths. There is also a paved trail that runs through the middle of the battlefield, if it ends up being crowded once the weather warms up it would just about grantee someone coming and kicking us out (remember kids, even a simple squirt gun is as dangers as an M-16). Most likely we will start Sunday at Westmoreland Park, but I still want to wait until I can see how crowded it gets before giving a definite answer. I also want to play test it with at least 2 vs 2 before the event to make sure it is as fun as it looks. I also want to explore Carderock more, I feel that it has a lot more potential we just didn't pick very good spots to battle or the correct gametypes for said locations.
I lot of discussion has been going on about hits, hers how I normally call them:
If I feel it hit or see it hit me, I count it as a hit. Also if a stream breaks up I usually still call it so long as the majority of the droplets hit me. Like people have been saying, it is almost imposable to judge droplets, so if the main stream breaks up, but most the droplets hit me, I still count it (I don't even bother trying to figure out if it would have been fist sized, the stream was going to hit me, broke up, and then all the droplets hit me, I'm dead.). I also count below the knees so long as I can feel the shot hit, I never count shoes just because I can't feel it there, where socks are a lot thinner. I think splatter should should count for balloons, but not guns. Splatter from a balloon is like shrapnel, since throwing a balloon is like using a grenade. Splatter from a gun though really can't be compared to anything since no real weapon is even similar to a water blaster, I just think it shouldn't count for game play reasons.
I really like some of the ideas being thrown around for the naval war, here are my latest ideas for it.
First off, as much as it sound fun, boat vs. boat is very dull. The problem is that the boats have very little mobility, with equal weaponry, it becomes a matter of who ever comes in range first dies (often with both people hitting the other at the same time). Even my friends, as bad shots as some of them are, could pick each-other off quite easily. If the beach landings go well, I'd say we try boat vs. boat CTF since we will be all set for naval wars anyway, all my boat vs. boat battles in the past have never gone that well, but they were always soakfest so CTF might be different. One note for all naval wars, boat vs. boat or otherwise, the limit will be 2 people per boat. Unless the extra person is very small (were talking less than 100 pounds here), having 3 people in a boat makes them even less mobile and very prone to capsizing. In my last naval war with friends, both boats with 3 people ended up flipping themselves in the first 5 minutes. What would actually be the most ideal is to have every one in single man kayaks with a water gun mounted to the front, I really see no way of doing this though.
We really need to get what counts as a hit worked out before the war. I think my friends are capable of following the rules (DC Sam has really matured a lot since last year), but if we can't even agree what a hit is, how are we going to explain it to them?
Current plan for the beach landing:
In order for it to work at all it needs to be a calm day (no/little wind and slow moving river), we also need at least 11 people. The landing zone will be the bottom 1/3 or the island, basically below the southern most dock on each side. The round will be done in two stages, with a short pause in between to refresh the newbies of the rules for the next stage. Stage 1: Attackers are in boats with 2 people each armed with anything goes, the defenders get light primaries. The attackers must establish a landing zone (get the boat ashore without both people getting hit) and then attack the defenders. The defenders have three lives, the attackers have unlimited but must re-spawn at a landed boat or if still in a boat go out 50 ft and try to land again. Once the all the defenders are out the attackers win stage 1. Stage 2: Attackers start at any of the landed boats and if hit may re-spawn at any of them, the defenders can re-spawn anywhere. Both teams now get anything goes. The gametype is soak and destroy, the attackers must destroy two targets scattered around the lower 1/3 or the island. When both targets are destroyed, the attackers win. The winner of the whole game is which ever team gets the shortest time for both the 3 life OHK landing and soak and destroy. If for some reason the naval landing doesn't work out (whether from bad weather or it is just boring, the attackers will just pick a spot on the lower 1/3 or the island as there spawn point and play skip the landing part of Stage 1).
So that is it for now. Like I said, I want to scout Westmoreland Park after it gets warm just to make sure it is going to work. There are also a few other parks I plan to scout before the war plus more exploration of Carderock. The Island day will most likely be just that (other than the night war at the school) just because it is a little hard to get to, but there is no reason why we can't go to more than one location on the second day. All the places I am exploring have parking lots within 5 minutes of most the battle areas, and they are all within 20 minutes of each other and my house. If one location doesn't work out, we can get any of the others on the list in at most half an hour.
"If you are wet at the end of a water war, you are doing it wrong"
Van: "What happened?" SEAL: "Scott Happened"