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Friday January 24, 2020

In the last issue we already reported to you about the ambitious plans of the DPL, which were summarized in the so-called Agenda 2022 and are intended to bring a breath of fresh air into German league operations. Some of this has already been implemented in the last few months and has also been hotly discussed and commented on in the forums and social media. We asked the DPL again for you and wanted to know exactly what the players can expect in the coming year. Not only did further, up-to-date information come out, but also new rule changes that will last into the 2021 season

First of all, one can say with certainty that the 2020 season will be another good league year. Although the DPL has gradually lost players and teams in recent years since the strong paintball years of 2014 and 2015, it now wants to actively counteract this trend. – These efforts already seem to be bearing fruit. At the time of going to press (January 2nd, 2020), the current number of teams registered across Germany was already 237 teams. The DPL announced through its spokesman Sven Reimann that the number of new registrations, i.e. teams playing DPL for the first time this year, has actually increased again for the first time.

One reason for this could be the continuation of the DPL support program introduced in 2019, in which new teams can start their first tournament season at a significantly reduced price. This year, too, the prerequisite is that a maximum of one player is registered in the team who has already played DPL League Paintball in the previous year (2019). This makes the funding program the ideal opportunity for interested newcomers and old hands who want to start again.

The funding for the 2020 season is 250 euros for the district league (starting fee is reduced from 299 to 49 euros) and 200 euros in the state league (starting fee is reduced from 549 euros to 249 euros). The funding program can also be useful for existing teams with a larger squad. Simply register your new players in the youth team, grab the sponsorship bonus and secure a whole season of match practice for the youth team at a great price. In order to further reduce entry and, above all, the cost barrier, the jersey rule in the BZL has also been relaxed. In the lowest DPL league, a "uniform outerwear" is now sufficient to be allowed on the field. This means that in principle uniform T-shirts are sufficient instead of expensive jerseys. You're already there.

As a last adjustment in the district league, the rooster size was adjusted to a whopping 12 players. This means that your team can now consist of up to 12 players. Since the BZL is still a 3-man format, you can not only split the costs among more players, but also significantly reduce the time burden in the beginners' tournament area. Theoretically, with 12 players in the rooster, three other players could play for the same team on each of the four matchdays. This gives you maximum flexibility throughout the season.

The next exciting topic is the M800 format and affects the entire DPL. From 2020 you can finally take more color with you onto the field. Especially for us as old tournament hands, who were still on the road with Cap 15 and unlimited paint, definitely a step in the right direction. The M500 format has made the game faster in recent years, no question. But unfortunately it often happened that one or the other player ran out of ammunition in crucial game situations. With M800, the DPL is trying to improve this. After all, the 300 shots more make up a whopping 60% additional ammunition. This is a significant change that one or the other player will notice properly.

M800 has already been hotly debated in the forums over the past few weeks. Many players directly feared an increase in costs due to the additional paint. Of course, where more paint is available, more paint will be used from time to time, that's for sure. But anyone who has played the M500 format in recent years should ask themselves the question "how often have I really shot myself empty over the course of the year?" – Because only then would you have reached the point of potential additional consumption. The next question would then be "what would I have given in the situation for one or two pods extra in the pack?" – In the end we all just want to shoot and are disappointed when we have to give up a game because of missing paint. The M800 is still a limited format, but at the same time it should offer significantly more possibilities and game flow. What exactly it brings in the end and whether the pros or cons will be right, we will definitely only know after the season. As a personal conclusion, the M800 format is definitely one of the coolest changes for us. Finally four pots in a pack again. Another innovation is the expansion of the DPL playing area. With the Gotcha playing field south, which is located approx. 19 kilometers behind the German border in the Czech Republic, a foreign playing field has joined the ranks of the DPL locations for the first time. The DPL decided to take this step because the playing field is not only regularly visited by many German players and teams, but also offers a very high standard. The fact that the location abroad is associated with other advantages in terms of gaming is only mentioned in passing for experienced players.

Significant changes have already been announced for 2021. From 2021, the DPL 3rd Bundesliga and also the regional league will no longer play SSR (single round robin) but DRR (double round robin). Say there is a first and second half of the season. So far, the teams in this league have only met once a year. At the same time, the number of teams per league will be reduced from a maximum of 14 to just 10 teams. This adjustment is due to the declining number of tournament teams with a corresponding level of play. At the same time, the remaining teams get more playing time, because the new DRR format means that the previously maximum 13 games are now 18 games with the same number of game days. This will particularly please the teams who had complained about long journeys and few games on the last matchdays of the respective season in previous years. In the past, with 13 to 14 teams, for example, some teams had to travel from Berlin across the country to Burg to play one or two matches there on the last day of the game. This expenditure of time was disproportionate to the playing time on site. Due to the new regulation with 18 matches, the game days are now much crisper and are almost at the level of the 1st & 2nd Bundesliga. Teams will have to play at least four, if not five, matches on each matchday. This will significantly raise the performance level of these two leagues, because only those who deliver consistently have a chance of promotion in the end. At the same time, it won't be that difficult for the promoted players to adjust to the tough conditions and the high level of play in the premier class in the following year. Definitely an interesting change. So much for the current news in the DPL. The season must now show how the many small and large changes are accepted by the players and, if necessary, influence and change the gameplay. In our opinion, the DPL has shown significantly more flexibility and player proximity than in previous years and is well on the way not only to reforming tournament sport in Germany, but also to breathe new life into it. Because tournament sport in Germany only has a future with a strong league.

Last but not least, while we're on the subject of the future, we want to turn our attention to youth work with the youngest players. Since the Cal. 50 Kids Paintball, more and more young players have had paintball experience. There is no separate DPL Kids League yet, but the first children's and junior tournaments took place last year. Venues here included the Hessian DPL Bundesliga location Paintball Base Solms under the direction of Cologne Hurricane veteran Stephan Stainer and in the east the DPL league field Rockstar Arena Garzau, on which league paintball up to the 3rd Bundesliga is also held. The Roter Baron team has been successfully organizing youth tournaments in Garzau for over three years now. In any case, it will be interesting to see how the topic of kids paintball will develop as part of the DPL in the coming years.

The DPL has already set up a Facebook group for all interested young players and parents to exchange ideas. If you are interested, you are welcome to take a look.

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