Last weekend was a pretty crazy weekend for me. It was a close friend's birthday and we all decided to make our way up to Newcastle to celebrate.Newcastle for those of you that don’t know is a city in the North East of England (about 4 hours drive from where I live). I would love to say its a nice city to visit but I honestly don’t know. We saw little of the city itself. Mainly the inside of a Travelodge and multiple bars and clubs.
Before we took part in the local night life though we decided to partake in a couple activities. Quad biking and Clay Pigeon shooting. To set the scene, it was around midday and me and 7 friends pulled up on a farm in Durham. Met a couple of blokes and paid them a fair amount of money for the days activities. First of all Quad Biking. We all suited up and rolled around for an hour or so spraying each other with mud and nearly killing ourselves ragging the small 4 wheelers round country lanes and tight corners.
The thing that I was more interested in though was the shooting, having played first person shooters for as long as I can remember. Never really thinking about what it would be actually like to handle a gun. This exercise really interested me. Would any knowledge picked up from gaming help me in any way while shooting a real gun or are all shooters just full of bullshit and would I know nothing at all in how to handle this weapon in front of me. I think the answer is pretty obvious. I had no clue. I didn’t know that a shotgun had to be horizontal while cocking it. I never actually knew how accurate a shotgun could be. In games if a target is even an arms length away from you, you have no bloody chance of hitting it with a shotgun so why in real life while clay pigeon shooting did these guns feel extremely accurate to me. I also expected more of a kick from the guns. Where in all honesty I didn’t really feel too much at all. All in all this was really fun for me. It is nothing like it is shown in gaming and there are allot more technical steps to shooting a gun than what is shown in Call of Duty or Halo. All in all though I did pretty well, hitting a majority of the targets and even beating out a soldier from the British Armed Forces. I think that may be partly down to gaming. The hand eye coordination picked up while playing games surely at least contributed to the skill shown on the day. I found clay pigeon shooting a hell of allot of fun and hope to do it again some day. I also urge anyone who plays games on the regular to try shooting a real gun at least once. It is a real experience and will change the way you look at shooters and guns in games.
Capping off the weekend was a hell of allot of drinking in the great city that is Newcastle. We as a group have been to a fair amount of places on nights out and I have to say Newcastle didn’t disappoint. Getting back into the hotel at 4 and not getting back to bed and our own room till 7. All I will say is the weekend was fun. A lot of fun.