Originally Posted by Ricochet
[...]and the equipment is just better all around.
I disagree on that part, assuming you're talking about the gun/marker. Airsoft gearboxes are based on a 20 year old design, and all we really have is a company in Japan making guns for the Japanese market, and a bunch of Chinese companies cloning that tech. There's no real steps forward.
I have this discussion with a chairsofting coworker sometimes, who's been playing paintball for 20+ years, and he talks about how annoying it is to look at airsoft gear. He's watched the evolution of paintball over the past two decades, meanwhile airsoft is barely moving. He'll talk about how he'll listen to an episode of airsoftology, and when they say something like "hey, did you see this new thing that might be coming out? It's pretty exciting", and he wants to yell at them "yeah, it's called a such-and-such. The technology has been around since the 80s", or something.
The G&G PDW came out, with its adjustable velocity, and that's considered a selling point. You buy a $400 gun, and not only is it accepted that something will break within a few games, but it's expected. People are debating and explaining things about air compression, barrel diameter, and whatever - meanwhile paintballers have gone over all that a decade ago. (That was a bad example, but you get the point)
His analogy is that it's like airsoft and paintball came up together, and paintball got more popular, and thus had a bigger player base, was more profitable for manufacturers, etc. So a lot of the technology grew through paintball. The same stuff that could be applied to airsoft with no problem, but it's like airsoft manufacturers are too proud to glance over at what paintball is doing, so they either reinvent the wheel (rarely), or just reproduce a v2 gearbox over and over.
So in that sense, paintball is much better. Manufacturers are improving their guns. New ideas and designs are coming out every few years. Paintball is continually innovating and evolving.
Airsoft is relatively stagnant.