Paintball is a fun and highly strategic team sport that simultaneously allows for the personalization of all the aspects of the experience. Although team play is one way of experiencing this hobby, the individual experience of creating your own powerful and highly customized paintball gun is rewarding in and of itself.
Whether you plan to work together with your friends to beat the opposing team or simply enjoy sharpening your skills on your own, the current assortment of highly individualized paintball guns is growing while enabling each user to tailor their purchase to their own needs.
To clarify what potential buyers should expect from a paintball gun at various price points, we've taken a look at the pros and cons of a few competing models and compared their prices and features, with a specific focus on the Empire Mini GS paintball gun.
About the Empire Mini GS
The Empire Mini GS paintball gun is a competition-ready model, produced by a manufacturer with a long history of making game-winning paintball guns. This gun sports design elements geared toward easy handling, user-friendly maintenance, and overall performance enhancement.
The Empire Mini GS is a 68 caliber HPA electronic marker. It sports a hoseless design and an auto-cocking barrel thread, with a barrel length of 12 inches, and a barrel bore size of 0.689 in. Its rubber foregrip cover and meticulously designed trigger frame grip allow easy handling even without tactical gloves. The model makes use of a low profile regulated with lever actuation, lessening the potential of ruining the O-rings.
The foregrip housing and buttons are bolstered against the elements with weatherproof rubber membranes to keep moisture out of the electronics. For the sake of convenience, the number of the differently sized screws incorporated into this model has been reduced by the manufacturer down to 2. This means less time spent rifling through the tool box during maintenance. The Microswitch trigger activation is incorporated via a small switch above the Hall Effect system for fast finger control.
The trigger itself is self lubricating for a consistently smooth pull. Even the feed neck made of a glass-filled composite and aluminum clamping lever for peak efficiency, making the component lighter and stronger than regular metal feed necks. All of this model's internal upgrades and peripheral components are compatible with all other Mini models by this manufacturer. Also, this model's sleek design makes it a natural choice for those looking for an edge in their paintball games.
The price points of the paintball gun models on our list here range between $100-$350, with the highest prices matching higher quality build materials and unique features. The purpose of the paintball gun – for sport or fun – and the make of the gun the paintball gun is emulating also impact the price.
How It Compares
We've picked a handful of similar paintball guns to the Empire Mini GS to see how they compare with one another in terms of price, features, and design.
As a competition-ready paintball gun, the Empire Mini GS is great for those looking to play in a team, but it might be too advanced and expensive for beginners or hobbyists. Nonetheless, its well-rounded set of features makes it a versatile option.
The Empire Mini GS can be purchased wherever sporting goods are sold at a price point of $300 to $35 or from the manufacturer's website and online marketplaces such as Amazon.
The Empire Mini GS includes an impressive amount of durability-boosting twists, such as weather resistant electronics, microswitch trigger activation, and an auto-cocking barrel. Not only does this extend the life of the unit, but it also fine-tunes it to give players an edge over the competition. This model is very versatile because it is also compatible with any accessories designed for other paintball guns from the Mini series.
The Empire Mini GS sports intelligent design features like the composite glass-filled feed neck and aluminum clamping lever, which grants it a firm position above the competition.
Ease of Use
As a competition-oriented paintball gun, the Empire Mini GS isn't necessarily recommended for beginners or hobbyists. However, convenience-boosting features such as a large number of grips, self-lubricating trigger, and hoseless design make this unit quick and easy to use in high-pressure competitive scenarios.
- Tippmann Cronus .68 Caliber Paintball Marker Package
- The Cronus combines high performance w/ incredible durability in a milsim body
- Kit includes GenX Stealth Anti Fog Paintball Mask
This model features a milsim - aka military simulation - type of body, without sacrificing performance or durability. It is a semi-automatic 0.68 caliber model. It sports a black and tan color scheme in line with its military design.
With a unique, in-line bolt system for time tested reliability, the Tippmann Cronus makes use of an internal gas line for minimal fuss. It also has four Picatinny rails which allows extended modification via compatible accessories from a variety of other manufacturers.
This model comes with a mod kit for certified compatibility and a mock silencer, stock, and carry handle. The barrel is of a high performance ported variety, with front and rear fixed sights for increased accuracy. This marker is a good choice for users into military grade weapons or beginners. However, those looking for a competition grade paintball gun may mot like it because it is more suited for use as a toy than as an element in a paintball team's composition.
This model can be purchased wherever sporting goods are sold for $100-$150 or from the manufacturer's website and online marketplaces such as Amazon.
With front and rear sights and an in-line bolt system, this model certainly doesn't lack the top features of typical paintball gun. However, it lacks the features that push a paintball gun beyond the realm of curious fun seekers and into the realm of competition. Nonetheless, four Picatinny rails allow flexible customization.
This model's unique and attractive milsim body is a major point of interest. It is appealing to both military weapon enthusiasts and user who find the typical bare bones paintball gun uninteresting. Although additional accessories, such as a mock silencer, stock, and carry handle, are available, they must be purchased separately.
Ease of Use
Although this model is more simple than the Empire Mini GS, it lacks convenience based functionality barring the inclusion of an internal gas line.
- Patented UL hourglass gripframe with 4 tournament firing modes.
- Patented self-cleaning DYE M2 Eye Pipe with integrated ball detents; precision bored 14" Proto 2-piece barrel.
- DYE Lockdown adjustable clamping feed neck.
This high-performance and competition-ready model is a unique purchasing option, i.e. a model that is a fully upgraded version of an older model offered by the manufacturer. It features a two-piece 14" micro-honed Proto barrel with a low 140-150 operating pressure.
The self-cleaning eye pipe has integrated ball detents and an anti-chop break beam wired eye system. The model sports an electric console with an LED program control display, with four tournament modes and the ability to adjust the rate of fire directly, making it a force to be reckoned with in competitive settings.
Featuring an ergonomic design, the marker's hourglass composite 45 frame is made of an ultra light DYE polymer. For loading, the DYE Proto Rail features a DYE lock-down lever lock and a RIZE pneumatic solenoid. There is also an external quick-release macroline hose, with increased flow via an in-line air regulator.
The model also features a UL on/off airport is also featured. To boost maneuverability, a proto dual-density injection sticky grip keeps the model in users' hands even when the user's hands have started to bead with the sweat of exhaustion.
Even though this model sports the highest number of features on this list, it also has the highest price tag and is the least likely to be customized, making it a bad choice for beginners or hobbyists. However, this marker has everything a skilled player would want to ensure a game-winning advantage. And if you're interested in a marker for beginners, check out our selection of the best beginner paintball guns.)
This model can be purchased wherever sporting goods are sold at a price points ranging between $330-$350, as well as from the manufacturer's website and online marketplaces like Amazon.
This feature-rich model incorporates all the additional tweaks included in the manufacturer's previous models, such as individualized tournament modes and adjustable firing rates, at a reduced price
This model's design meets all the high performance demands of tournament use, while incorporating high-end components such as the RIZE pneumatic solenoid and macroline hose for extra durability and efficiency.
Ease of Use
As a tournament-ready model, accessibility isn't that great. However, features like the preset tournament settings can enable absolute beginners to begin to participate in the sport.
This mid-range 0.68 caliber milsim paintball gun sports a uniquely military-style design which emulates a sniper rifle in both shape and function. It also features a red-dot scope for extra accuracy, a six-position collapsible and foldable stock for easy storage, a shroud with four built-in Picatinny rails, and a magazine which doubles as a toolkit.
An additional flat-top Picatinny rail built into the receiver opens this model up to additional customization. The unit incorporates an 11" quick-thread barrel, a stainless steel gas line, and a high performance in-line bolt system. The front and rear sights are removable and adjustable for maximized convenience. What's more, there's also an incorporated toolkit which includes an allen wrench set.
This model can be purchased wherever sporting goods are sold for $150 to $180, as well as from the manufacturer's website and online marketplaces such as Amazon.
With an additional Picatinny rail to the four included this manufacturer's standard models, this paintball marker is highly customizable. Plus, the front and rear sights are adjustable and removable, while the included allen wrench set is a wonderful bonus.
Although this model's design isn't necessarily convenience- or tournament-oriented, its military style body is both eye catching and unique.
Ease of Use
A collapsible and foldable stock, along with a magazine that doubles as tool storage space, makes this unit an excellent introductory model for a potential hobbyist.
The excitement over paintball doesn't have to stay just on the battlefield or in the backyard as the sheer scope of any further customization is to find countless varied ways to maximize efficiency and power. However, when shopping around for a paintball gun, it isn't clear what you'll be getting at any particular price point.
For those looking to take up paintball, a competition-ready and more expensive model is a must as the higher price tag brings precision, clever automation, and high-grade, durable machine components. However, those looking only to shoot some targets with friends will appreciate the money saved with an equally powerful but less tournament-minded option.
If our comparison review of the Empire Mini GS has helped you better understand the perks and drawbacks of paintball guns depending on their price range and skill level or if you have any feedback for us, leave it in the comment section below.