A regular topic of conversation for us is "Which camo should I wear?", so we thought we'd write a blog post about it, because there are so many options on this front that it can be confusing and difficult to choose.
We will start off with the most popular ones, and will also tell you our staff preferences and reasons for preference.
Lets begin with MTP, which is, by far, the most popular amongst our customers. MTP, or Multi-Terrain Pattern is the current camo used by the British Army, and was first issued to the British Army for operations in Afghanistan with personnel serving under the 4th Mechanised Brigade.
The MTP uniform was initially issued to personnel deployed on Operation Herrick from March 2010, then issued more widely to HM Forces from 2011 onward replacing all DPM including Woodland and Desert variants of the Combat Soldier 95 uniform by 2013 along with the introduction of the new Personal Clothing System.
The next most popular colour for tac gear amongst our customers is plain black. This is used by most military units for night ops, and is usually also first choice for those of us who prefer indoor or CQB Airsoft games.
Moving on, OD Green, or Olive Drab, was used by the US Army Helicopter Pilots in Vietnam. It was also used by the British Army pre 1960, when it was replaced with DPM, or Disruptive Pattern Material. OD Green is another popular choice for us, especially in players that prefer outdoor airsoft sites.
OD green is preferred by our very own Biff, and he has a few reasons for this choice. Firstly it blends in well to various environments, second it works well when used with most camo patterns without looking too contrasting and finally, Biff likes that he can wear OD Green tactical clothing in every day situations without standing out like a sore thumb!
Another colour we sell a lot of is grey. This is the colour uniform currently used by the British Counter Terrorism Police. The reason for this is that grey tactical clothing has proved to be the best colour for concealment in an urban environment. This rule also applies to indoor Airsoft sites. Most buildings are grey or similar colours, which therefore means that you don't stand out.
One camo that used to dominate the market is British DPM, or Disruptive Pattern Material. This was first issued to the Parachute Regiment and British Commandos in the early 1940's, and was thought to have originally been hand-painted!
DPM was produced in a few colours, such as Woodland and Desert, and continued to be used by the Royal Marines and the Parachute Regiment until the 1970's, when it was superseded by MTP (Multi-Terrain Pattern).
DPM is a favourite for our chief, Matt, who has only recently stopped using it to replace his kit with Tan colour tac gear. This is mostly because DPM has become less popular over the years that he has played airsoft, and is now not easy to get hold of.
Another favourite is BTP Black, which is the preferred choice for our Manager, Nick. When asked why BTP Black was his preferred choice, Nick's response was, "Cos I like it." He's a man of few words...
The Navy Working Uniform (NWU) is a series of military uniforms that are currently used by the United States Navy (and some elements of the U.S. Coast Guard) for wear by its members. The NWU is a "working" uniform, which means that it is made to be a durable and utilitarian standard, thus being worn instead of more formal and delicate uniforms, that might get unduly damaged or dirtied, in the process of normal military duties.
The AOR1 (NWU Type II) and AOR2 (NWU Type III) is worn by specialized units such as the Naval Special Warfare Development Group, Navy SEALs, Special Amphibious Reconnaissance Corpsmen, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technicians and Seabees.
The final camo favoured by one of our staff members is M81, also known as US Woodland, which is Adams first choice. This is the camo pattern used by the US Army from 1981, until it was replaced in 2004 with the digital Universal Camouflage Pattern (UCP) found on the Army Combat Uniform.
US Woodland is a four colour, high contrast disruptive pattern, with irregular markings in sand, brown, black and green, and was unofficially known as M81.
Here are some other Camo patterns that are less common on the airsoft market:
- Marpat - United States Marine Core (current)
- Desert Tri Stripe - US Army Rangers / Delta Force (90s)
- M90 - Swedish Military (current)
- Flektarn - German Military (current)
- Vegatato - Italian Military (current)
- Cadpat - Canadian Military (current)
- M84 - Danish Military (current)
- Camouflage Pantera - Polish Military (current)
- Digital Flora - Russian Military (current)
- Tiger Stripe - Seals, Green Berets (vietnam)
- CEC - French Military (90s onwards)