Zen of Soaking HomeTeachings > Choice of Water Blaster
The Zen of Soaking

"Function over aesthetics; Essence over matter." - Z.o.S.

Choosing a water blaster for primary use is deceptively simple, yet its true impact is incredibly profound. This section shall look in-depth into the different ways of judging a blaster. Contrary to what many individuals may preach, there is no perfect blaster for any situation. However, there are perfect blasters for particular situations. However, what is perfect for one is not necessarily perfect for another. To find what is good for oneself, one must have the Right View, seeing a blaster for all that it is and all that it is not.

Most importantly, the blaster chosen is not simply some object for use; rather, the blaster chosen should be considered an enhancement of the self. Use this section wisely.

Selection :.

Though there are some who have the resources to test out virtually every blaster on the market to see what feel best to them, the typical individual has more limited finances. As such, the option of acquiring a single blaster is feasible for most, the thought of having two or three is not as common. As such, it is imperative that one attempts to get the most effective return for the time and money spent.

Before choosing a blaster, one should, of course, look at what other people have said about their own experiences with a given blaster. There are many good websites which give good, detailed reviews on a variety of water blasters. From these opinions, one can get a general idea of the types of blasters available in the market. Of course, one should also peruse the stores nearby to see what blasters are available for purchase. There is no point in dreaming about a particular blaster read in a review if it is no longer for sale or unavailable in one's area. As well, one should ensure one's budget can afford the blaster one wants.

The following are other key points to consider before choosing/acquiring a blaster:

Box of Soakers

Consider one's Needs:

This point seems obvious when read, but often forgotten when choosing. Simply stated, one needs to consider what type of water combat one is likely to be involved in (i.e. Free-for-alls, One-Hit-Kills, Sniping, Team games, etc.).

Various types of water combat place different demands on the Water Warrior. The sort of questions which should be asked are:

  • Do most water fights occur where refill stations are readily available or does one need to be able to last a long time without a refill? Lack of refilling stations suggests a need for a blaster with greater capacity and, perhaps, nozzle selections for reducing output when low.
  • Will there be a hose available (particularly if considering a blaster with a hose adapter for quick refills such as the blasters in the Super Charger or Speed Loader series)? Such related technology make refilling quicker, but this technology also requires an active hose available.
  • Does range or blaster output matter more? For snipers and for one-hit-kill-type games, range is often more beneficial. However, for general free-for-alls, output usually takes precedence.
  • What blasters do team members have (if applicable)? What type of blaster would work best at enhancing the team?

Consider one's Abilities:

This is another apparently obvious statement which is hardly overstated, especially in light of the typical desire of many to just go for the biggest blaster they can lay their hands on. If a blaster is too large or cumbersome or if one simply does not feel comfortable handling it, one may as well not have a blaster at all. A blaster that requires more strength or agility than the user has will only serve to hinder the user's performance, typically resulting in less ability to dodge incoming attacks and less ability to return fire.

When choosing a blaster, pick it up and hold it as in combat (if possible). Take into consideration that the water payload tends to double or even triple the weight of the empty blaster. To some, the size of the blaster can also affect their ability to use it. Ensure the blaster chosen is a comfortable size, taking into consideration whether one intends on running with it, climbing with it, etc.

The more comfortable one is with one's blaster, the better the blaster will perform in one's hands.

Consider one's Heart:

Though functionality is important, one still needs to consider one's own desires. The Water Warrior who truly enjoys using his blaster will still be more effective than another who simply chose the blaster with the best measured statistics. In fact, when purchasing a blaster, even if one has chosen a particular model, look at the different boxes of the same model, chosing the one the catches one's eye or just feels right. As the soaker will be an extension of oneself during water combat, one must be well tuned to its true feel. The end goal is to find a blaster that will eventually become an extension of oneself. Do not consider the blaster as merely a tool. It should become part of the self, responding effortlessly to one's thoughts, moving gracefully with one's strides, and adding to one's sense of confidence in the water war grounds.

With these thoughts in mind and in heart, one will find the blaster one chooses may not be the biggest or even the one with the highest output, but it will be the perfect blaster for oneself.

When Choices are Limited :.

There are times when one must choose from sub-optimal water blaster choices. Even in these times, one should still strive to select the best matched soaker to one's needs. As long as there is more than one option, there will be the more appropriate choice. If only one option exists for a given moment, than that option remains the best choice until a new option appears.

There is also the option, for those with the skills and desire to do so, to create a blaster from parts or modify an existing, limited blaster to one that performs more in tune with one's needs. However, such undertakings are beyond the scope of this section. Those interested in such endeavors are encouraged to seek out relevant information on sites with more experience in those areas.

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But What Is Optimal? :.

Purchased, built, or modified, the end goal remains the same; finding the optimal water blaster for oneself. What is optimal for one is not necessarily optimal for all, thus while listening to others' opinions can give some insight, nothing else matches first hand experience with a blaster. Moreover, what may seem sub-optimal at the moment can become optimal at a later point as one's skills are enhanced through training. Of course, the reverse also holds true, thus enlightened Water Warriors are not steadfast in their choice.

Those possessing the Right View shall see that blaster selection, while important, is wholly dependant on oneself, one's skills, one's needs, and one's state of mind. The optimal soaker reflects both the one who wields it and that which is to be soaked. To be able to match the unknown and unexpected, the optimal choice for the Water Warrior must, too, be fluid, non-fixed. For those just embarking on their understanding of the Zen of Soaking, selecting a good training soaker will help with furthering understanding of other aspects of the training. Bear in mind that the true Water Warrior knows that the optimal soaker is simply that soaker he is wielding at the time, even at times if it means wielding no soaker at all.

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