Paintball History

May, 1981 – Paintball begins in Henniker, New Hampshire. The principal creators, Bob Gurnsey, a sporting goods retailer; Hayes Noel, a stockbroker, and Charles Gaines, a writer discuss the idea of some sort of stalking game.

June 27, 1981 – The first game is played: 12 players competing against each other with Nel-spot 007s pistols. The game was capture the flag. The winner captured all the flags without firing a shot.

April 1982 – The first outdoor playing field is opened in Rochester, NY, by Caleb Strong.

1982 – Charles Gaines markets paintball as the National Survival Game (NSG). PMI (Pursuit Marketing Inc.), is founded to market and distribute paintball products.

1983 – The first NSG National Championship is held with a $14,000 cash purse. The first paintball field in another country is opened in Toronto, Canada.

June, 1983 – Lionel Atwill, one of the original 12 players, writes “The Official Survival Game Manual” – the first paintball publication.

1984 – The sport is introduced to Australia under the name of Skirmish Games.

November, 1984 – The first indoor playing field is opened in Buffalo, NY, by Caleb Strong.

1985 – The first outdoor playing field is opened in England.

1988 – IPPA (International Paintball Players Association) is founded as a nonprofit association dedicated to the education, growth and safety of the sport of paintball.

1991 – Paintball begins in France, Denmark and other countries in Europe.

April 15, 1992 – Rec.sport.paintball passes its vote for creation on a vote of 195 to 43 and is announced as an official newsgroup.

June – July, 1992 – Team Internet is formed as players prepared for the World Record Game at Jack Frost Mountain, PA.

November, 1992 – NPPL (National Professional Paintball League) is founded in Chicago and the NPPL Pro-Am Series starts with events around the US.

1995 – Paintball fields are open all in Europe, Asia, and South America.

1996 – The IPPA is officially disbanded.

1996 – Paintball playing fields, stores and tournaments can now be found in Canada, the United States, Australia, England, Scotland, Denmark, France, Holland, Germany, Austria, Ireland, Belgium, Greece, Italy, Norway, Sweden, Africa, Russia, New Zealand, Brazil, Venezuela, Israel, Korea, Thailand and the Philippines.

1997 – Present: Still Going Strong.