We started researching about the best paintball guns for kids last month as there was a paintball themed birthday party in the neighborhood.
After reading about the Montreal incident, we certainly didn’t want to risk sending our kids to a paintball game without the right equipment.
So, a group of ten parents spent the next two weeks researching protective gear and paintball guns for kids aged 10-14.
There were a couple of kids below 10 years who wanted to participate as well. But we decided against it and kept them at a safe distance to view the game instead.
Coming back to the best paintball guns for kids, these are the top five that made the list.
- 1 1 – Tippmann A-5
- 2 2- Tippmann 98 Custom
- 3 3 – Spyder Victor Paintball Marker
- 4 4 – Tippmann Gryphon Paintball Marker
- 5 5 – JT Splatmaster z100 Paintball Pistol
- 6 How We Selected the Best Paintball Gun for Kids
- 7 Closing Thoughts
1 – Tippmann A-5
It is cheap, is a mechanical marker that is easy to use, doesn’t overwhelm the newbie player and is extremely accurate.
We thought that there would be no better choice for many of the kids who were playing their first paintball game.
Not Too Heavy
Being a birthday party, the paintball game was scheduled to last for a couple of hours at best. So, we didn’t want to weigh the kids down with a marker that they couldn’t carry without straining their arms. The A5 weighs just about 3 pounds.
As a lot of you all would know, that’s not the lightest one in the business.
But it’s not overly heavy either.
And in your first game, it’s important to have a marker that you can feel in your hands, rather than a petite one.
Also, the 19-inch form factor makes for a very visible gun that can make your opponents go weak.
Shoots Clean and Easy
Another reason why we love the A5 (we can rant about it forever) is because it requires very little modification out of the box.
You can unbox it, throw in the paint, the hopper and start shooting.
The semi-automatic action clubbed with Tippman’s reliable Cyclone Feed system allows newbies to shoot up to 15 balls a second with minimal instances of balls jamming. In case of the rare jam due to operational error, any child can easily tear the gun down in seconds and reload.
If anything, the 8-inch stock barrel might seem a little weak as compared to the overall setup. But this is a kids’ paintball game, remember?
- Proven performance
- Tippmann’s reliable cyclone feed system
- Can shoot up to 15 balls per second
- Minimal instances of balls jamming
- Easy to operate
- Not too heavy
- Can be dismantled and cleaned in seconds
- Tons of compatible accessories and mods
- It’s not a fully automatic gun. But I’d rather have the kids get used to a mechanical semi-auto before they get their hands on more advanced guns. So that’s not a deal breaker for us.
Conclusion: Looking for a paintball marker that will grow with your kids? Look no further. Go for the Tippmann A5.
2- Tippmann 98 Custom
It is hands down, Tippmann’s most popular marker, ever.
You can find this marker in a well-rounded package, including the platinum series custom 98 marker along with some very useful accessories, including a 6+1 Deluxe Paintball Harness, 140 Round clear paintball tubes, a visor and a mask.
Beast of a Paintball Gun
The Custom 98 is built like a tank. It has a heavy duty aluminum frame, with a contoured grip that fits firmly in your hands. It can easily withstand all the abuse that you can subject it to. This makes it one of the best paintball guns for kids, who tend to be a little rough with their gear in the early days.
It weighs just 2.9 lbs without the tank and comes with an 8.5” barrel with an effective range of 150 feet. It shoots fast and accurate.
The only caveat is that there will be a little kickback. Nothing unmanageable, mind you.
That’s partly due to the open bolt blow-back action. Also, you can always upgrade the barrel as you level up.
The Platinum edition has a few upgraded design additions like the new split receiver and self-sealing gas line, which makes it easy to dismantle the gun for cleaning and mods. The earlier iteration was a pain to clean.
There is a new vertical front grip that provides a better feel while handling the gun and there is a marked improvement in the stability. The picatinny rails are retained. So there’s ample room for the extras.
Talking about extras, there’s an entire industry of aftermarket products for the custom 98. So, you can modify this just about any way that you want to. Swap the trigger for a customizable one, change the stock to a collapsible one, add a cyclone feed system like some of Tippman’s newer models and try new conversion kits.
Your child will never be bored of the Tippman 98 no matter what schmancy techie marker you buy them after this.
- Infallible design
- Built like a tank with a rugged aluminum frame
- 5-inch stock barrel
- Weighs just 2.9 lbs.
- Can be powered with CO2, nitrogen or compressed air
- Hundreds of possible mods
- Picatinny rails
- New redesigned vertical front grip
- Upgraded Split receiver and self-sealing gas line
- There’s a slight recoil to the gun. But it’s nothing that kids can’t get used to after a few hours on the field.
Conclusion: The custom 98 is a no-brainer choice for kids, adults or people of any age looking to get started with Paintball. This doesn’t even warrant a second thought.
3 – Spyder Victor Paintball Marker
It is simple, shoots reasonably accurate, doesn’t chop paint too often and is way cheaper than the nearest competition.
Ticks all the boxes that one looks for from the best paintball guns for kids.
Lightweight Extruded Aluminum Body
Weighing just 2 lbs., the Spyder Victor is perfect for smaller kids who prefer petite markers over heavier ones like the Tippman A5.
The lighter extruded aluminum frame is as durable as they come and it allows for easier maneuvers on the field.
It is a semi-auto with a blow back action. But there is no kickback whatsoever.
It comes with a 10” stock barrel and can shoot reasonably accurate up to 50-80 feet. This range can be increased as the child hones their shooting skills.
The Victor has a two-finger trigger and they can ramp up the speed as much as they’d like to.
Can Be Completely Upgraded
One of the best things about the Kingman Spyder Victor is that you can upgrade just about every component of the gun.
So, you can swap the barrel kit, get a custom grip, add a 4500 psi carbon tank, an electronic trigger and a one-piece barrel.
Bingo! You have a completely new marker that can stand its own against $500 markers easily.
The only possible niggle that we have with the Spyder Victor is that it tends to chop cheap paint. So, if you picked up a lot of cheap paint for the kids, there’s going to be some ball chopping every 100 rounds or so.
The workaround is to use good quality re-usable paintballs. Try these which can be found on Amazon.
- Cheap and minimalistic paintball gun for kids
- Lightweight aluminum frame
- Weighs just 2 lbs.
- Reasonably accurate
- Two-finger trigger
- Can be powered by CO2 as well as Compressed air
- No kickback whatsoever
- Almost every component can be completely upgraded
- Tends to chop cheap quality paint. Use good quality paint to prevent this.
- There will be some variation in the muzzle velocity and the trigger pull is slightly stiff
Conclusion: The Spyder Victor is a great first gun for beginners. It has a minimalistic, reliable design and is completely upgradeable
4 – Tippmann Gryphon Paintball Marker
The Tippmann Gryphon is one of the rarities in that price bracket.
It is an entry-level marker, which can be used for recreational gameplay as well as practice.
Why, with some upgrades, there is no reason why it can be your child’s go-to paintball gun for all types of gameplay. At least until they outgrow it.
Tough Composite Frame
The Gryphon is made of composite, as expected at this price point. But it’s extremely tough.
It can take a bashing on the field without giving up on you. Aesthetics are nothing to write home about. Especially for mil-sim games.
But kids quite like the bright colors and the flashy graphics. There are four to choose from.
More importantly, the gun fits firmly into the hands thanks to the ribbed receiver which gives you excellent control while firing. There is no stiffness in the trigger and children can easily go at it with multiple fingers to ramp up the firing speed.
Tippmann’s In-Line Gas System
The big draw here is the in-line gas system that is found on most high-end markers from Tippman. This along with the center feed design make the gun extremely petite and reliable. Perfect for children playing their virgin paintball game.
There are minimal instances of balls chopping and most kids can easily fire at 8 balls per second. This may not seem like a lot for a seasoned paint baller. But it works just fine for newbies.
If your child yearns for more firepower, you can always swap the stock barrel for a new one or upgrade the CO2 tank.
Sadly, not much modifications are possible beyond that except for replica body kits, which are a waste of money.
- Super-cheap paintball marker from Tippmann
- Petite profile
- Lightweight and easy maneuvers
- Bright and flashy colors
- Ribbed receiver
- Easy trigger control
- Up to 8 balls per second
- Tippman’s reliable in-line gas system
- Center feed design
- Accuracy can be a hit or a miss beyond 50 feet. To be fair, this isn’t intended to be a mil-sim or a laser tag gun. So, we can’t call that a deal breaker.
Conclusion: Despite a few minor flaws, the Tippmann Gryphon is a decent beginner paintball gun. It is cheap and features Tippman’s in-line gas system. That’s an unbeatable combination. You can’t go wrong with it as long as you are aware of its limitations.
5 – JT Splatmaster z100 Paintball Pistol
At first glance, this might seem like a watered down option when most kids would be carrying much bigger and faster guns.
But how about using it as a backup when your primary weapon chops paint or gets jammed?
Just draw it out, cock the gun and fire. We bet that your frenemy will be caught unaware.
Lightweight and Easy to Use
The JT Splatmaster Z100 has a lightweight, composite plastic body that can easily sustain the wear and tear that comes on the paintball field.
It weighs less than a pound and can easily be tucked into the sock (ankle holster) or inside the waistband.
Even 6 year olds can slide the rack easily after a quick reload. By the way, it comes with a 7 paintball magazine and we highly recommend backup mags on the field. The mags are really small and can easily be concealed in the clothing.
JT Splatmaster paintballs work best with the gun. We did try some cheap .50 cal aftermarket paintball guns. But the chops and jams were too frequent.
Non-toxic, Non-Staining Paintballs
The JT Splatmaster paintballs use a non-toxic and non-staining paint which can be washed off instantly.
Perfect for kiddie games.
The Z100 has excellent accuracy up to a range of 60 feet or so. That would also depend on the shooter’s skills to be fair. But we took the kids plinking to get them some hands on practice before the game and even the youngest one could hit bullseye at 50 feet with the Z100.
We would rate the ball velocity at 100-150 feet. So, this will sting a little like paintballs do. Just ensure that you follow the basic safety rules.
- Compact-sized pistol that can easily be tucked in the clothing
- Lightweight, tough composite body
- Weighs less than a pound
- Smooth rack slide
- 7 paintball magazine
- Effective range of 100 feet
- Works best with the JT Splatmaster range of paintballs
- Non-toxic and biodegradable
- Needs to be reloaded every 7 shots or so. So, this will work best as a backup weapon rather than as a primary weapon.
Conclusion: The JT Splatmaster Z100 is a very effective paintball gun for kids. Apart from its obvious appeal as a backup weapon in a paintball game, it can also be used for plinking and practice sessions around home.
How We Selected the Best Paintball Gun for Kids
We had some very basic requirements while researching paintball guns for kids. And that’s what we based our selections on.
- Lightweight: That’s a no-brainer. Kids need lightweight weapons that they can easily carry and move around with. So, anything beyond 3 pounds was ruled out automatically. The heaviest one that made the list is the Tipmman A5. And that too because we are biased towards it. Lol!
- Easy to use: We mostly picked semi-auto mechanical markers because they are easy to use and have less chances of jamming as compared to fully automatic guns. Despite this, we gave the kids a quick session on basic marker maintenance. The topics covered were cleaning, dismantling for cleaning jams and dealing with ball chopping.
- Accurate: When shooting skills aren’t that great to begin with, it’s important to have markers that are accurate for at least 100-150 feet. Thankfully, all of the markers in this list of the best paintball guns for kids are extremely accurate at that distance.
- Durable: You’ll be surprised at the abuse that paintball markers undergo in kids’ games and tourneys. Anything flimsy won’t see the light of the next day. So, we have picked markers that beg abuse and come out shining. Be it the Tippman 98 or the A5, they can take a pounding.
- Reasonably priced: Nobody wants to spend thousands of dollars for kids’ paintball gear without knowing whether the child will take a liking for the game or drop it like a bad habit. So, you won’t find any $500 markers in this list. All of these are priced below $300. And that’s a sweet price range we believe.
Despite all the hullabaloo surrounding kids and paintball, we believe that it’s a safe game provided you follow the safety rules.
Wear protective clothing, never step into a field without a mask, never remove the mask or the goggles even if you are tagged or it starts to fog!
That’s it. We hope your kids enjoy paintball as much as you do. Do write in to us with your experiences and feedback about the best paintball guns for kids.