With game days rising out of the reach of many, has simulated game finally come of age? James Simon investigates some unreal fun.
Most readers will be acutely aware that the unholy trinity of Covid, Brexit and bird flu has cast a perfect storm over game shooting, dragging the availability of days down while pushing costs up. For decades there has, of course, been an alternative, but sim shooting has often been considered a poor substitute for the real thing. Cheap ’n’ cheerful but rarely very satisfying. (Read more on the cost of game shooting.)
Until now, that is. With the game industry in such a woeful state, there’s never been a better time for sim shooting to shine, to reconsider the dubious appeal of gigantic bags and strive for quality and authenticity instead. (Read this guide to simulated game shooting in the UK.)
Sim shooting – “it really is just like a game shoot”
Few appreciate this better than Andy Brown, owner of Cotswold Fieldsports. “The biggest compliment I get,” recalls Andy, “is when experienced game shots and gamekeepers come up to me at the end of a day and remark: ‘It really is just like a game shoot.’ Some start the day a little…