Nerf Deploy CS-6

Nerf Deploy CS 6

The first thing I noticed when took the Deploy out of the box is that it comes with a strap. Finally! I don’t know why it took so long to get a strap on a Nerf gun, but it’s definitely a welcome feature.

At this point, I’d planned to play around with transforming the Deploy from gun to flashlight and back again, but I just couldn’t resist — I had to see how far it shoots before I could do anything else. The results of the range test were about as I expected. Shots ranged from 25-30 feet, which is not surprising at all, given that it uses a reverse plunger system like the one  found in the Nerf Recon and Raider.

The Deploy’s clip holds a maximum of six darts. Of course, this clip is interchangeable with other N-Strike clips, including the drum (which looks really ridiculous on the Deploy and feels plain silly).

Unfortunately, the pump action firing method is a bit of a mixed bag. The pump itself slides very smoothly and is easy to use, but the Deploy’s handle feels really flimsy (this is what happens when you make a collapsible handle to accommodate a transforming design).

Though it’s a little flimsy, overall the Deploy feels solid in my hands. It’s light and well constructed, as you would expect from a Nerf product.

As advertised, you can use components from other N-Strike guns on the Deploy.  As I’ve said in the past, most of the components are purely cosmetic in nature, but it’s undeniably cool that you can customize the appearance of your blaster as you see fit.

Now to the flashlight transformation element.

First things first, using the flashlight requires 3 AAA batteries (the same batteries operate the ‘laser’ targeting system). Folding up the Deploy is simple enough — just fold up the handle and slide the shoulder stock forward, and you’ll end up with a device that resembles a briefcase – with a flashlight at the end of it.

Transforming the Deploy back into a blaster again is the best part, as you only have to press a button on the top.

All in all, the Deploy is a solid gun, and I’d heartily recommend it to avid Nerf fans and kids who would get a kick out of the flashlight part. However, if you’re new to Nerf and just want to have some casual wars around the house or office, there are better guns out there.

Below is a picture of the back of the box (found via Adult Fans of Nerf ).




Nerf Longstrike CS-6

Nerf Longstrike CS6

Longstrike Review

First things first: The Longstrike is hands down one of the coolest looking Nerf guns ever made, and Hasbro will undoubtedly sell a million of these based on appearance alone. We all want a true Nerf sniper rifle, and based on appearances, the Longstrike seems to fit the bill.

As stated on the box, the Longstrike is the longest Nerf blaster. Now, make sure you read this sentence carefully, as it can be a little misleading. It doesn’t have the longest range of any Nerf blaster, it’s just the longest (over 3 feet long).  I haven’t measured it exactly, but it only seems to be a couple inches longer than the Longshot.

Unfortunately, the range on the Longstrike is a bit disappointing, especially seeing as it’s modeled after a sniper rifle. Instead of using a direct plunger system like the Longshot, Hasbro has opted to use a reverse plunger system like that found on the Deploy and Raider. Most shots will fall in the 30-35 feet range without the barrel attachment, which isn’t bad, but isn’t great either. Using the barrel attachment seems to have a pretty negative impact on the range.

For those unfamiliar with the internals of Nerf guns, the effect of a reverse plunger system is that the plunger can’t achieve the speed that it can with a direct plunger system. As a result, the plunger doesn’t create as much force, and the darts don’t travel as far as they could with a direct plunger system.

Thankfully, you can see some pretty significant improvements with only a couple basic modifications. Removing the air restrictor will add about 10 feet on average, and replacing the spring will add even more. You’re not going to hit Longshot ranges no matter what you do, but rest assured that you can make some significant improvements with little more than a screwdriver, xacto knife, and hot glue.

To a lot of people, what I just said will be complete gobbledy-gook, and that’s fine. So if you aren’t into modding your Nerf guns, none of this may matter to you, and you may prefer the Longstrike over the Longshot. Afterall, the out of the box ranges don’t vary by a huge amount, and the Longstrike is much lighter and less bulky than the Longshot. It ultimately comes down to a matter of preference.

The Longstrike does feel very sturdy, and it gives the impression that it is a very well made blaster.


As with other recent N-Strike guns, the Longstrike is compatible with the interchangeable parts found in other N-Strike guns.

One cool feature is that the Longstrike can hold 2 additional clips in the shoulder stock (you’ll have to buy these separately), and having two clips at the ready can cut down significantly on reload times while you’re in the heat of battle.


The Longstrike is one of the best looking Nerf guns ever made, but it isn’t one of the best performing. Though some simple modifications can increase the range, it still seems a little silly to create a Nerf gun that resembles a sniper rifle but only shoots a little farther than an out of the box Nite Finder.

Here’s the box:

nerf longstrike box

nerf longstrike box

Here are the Longstrike’s accessories (courtesy of SG Nerf):

nerf longstrike accessories

nerf longstrike accessories

And finally, here is a picture of the Longstrike’s internals. I haven’t taken mine apart yet, so I couldn’t take my own picture — photo credit goes to Mod Works.

nerf longstrike internals

nerf longstrike internals


Nerf Raider

Nerf N-Strike Rapid Fire Raider CS-35


The Nerf Raider came out this week, and I’ve finally had enough time to play around with it to write a review.

The N-Strike Raider  features a 35-dart magazine. The magazine is detachable, and though I haven’t seen any replacement magazines for sale as of yet, I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before you’ll be able to swap out your empty magazine for a fully loaded one. An additional bonus is that the magazine on the CS-35 is compatible with the Nerf Longshot and Recon.

The Nerf Raider CS-35 also features two firing modes — single fire, and slam fire. If you’re considering buying this Nerf gun, chances are, you’re most interested in the slam fire mode.

To use slam fire mode, you just have to hold down the trigger and pump the front grip. Each time you pump the grip, the Raider fires a dart. At first, performing this motion is a little awkward, and you’ll probably have some accuracy problems when you first get the gun from shaking it while pumping. However, it only takes a little practice until you’re able to hold the gun steady while pumping.

The rate of fire on the Rapid Fire Raider CS-35 is awesome. I’m averaging about 2.5 shots per second, which is a lot of fun. Of course, that means you can unload the entire magazine in about 12 seconds, so you’re going to spend a lot of time refilling the magazine. This is a small price to pay in my opinion, because this very well may be the most fun Nerf gun I’ve played with.

The range on the Raider is better than I expected, given the firing mechanism of the gun. You can expect to routinely hit anywhere from 25-30 feet. I haven’t had a chance to mod mine yet, but I’ve been told that removing the air restrictor can add about 10 feet to the range. This seems believable to me, as the internals look very similar to the Recon, which gets a similar boost from air restrictor removal.

All in all, I’m extremely happy with the Nerf Raider. It’s one of the most unique guns that Nerf has ever made, the construction is solid, and it’s an absolute blast to unload.


The Nerf N-Strike Raider CS-35 will be coming to a store near you this fall.

This Nerf Tommy Gun looks really promising. It features a 35 dart magazine that you can empty in either single shot or automatic mode.

The N-Strike Raider CS-35 will cost $35 (yup, that’s one dollar per dart that the magazine holds). No official word yet on whether you buy new magazines to pop in and out, but here’s hoping.

One thing’s for sure: we’re really going to have to stock up on ammo, as I know for a fact that I will lose at least 34 of the 35 darts in about…well…35 minutes.

Regardless, I want wait to pump my friends full of darts while yelling ‘keep the change you filthy animal!’

Here’s Nerf’s official unveiling of the Raider:


Nerf Element EX-6 Action Kit

Nerf N-Strike Element EX-6 Action Kit

The Nerf Element EX-6 Action Kit is essentially a re-release of the gun that comes with Nerf Disk Shot, which itself is basically an upgrade to the ever popular Nite Finder EX-3.

The first thing you’ll notice when you see the Element EX-6 in the packaging is the accessories. The package comes with a scope and a light, both of which attach to the top of the gun. Neither attachment works very well — particularly the scope. Nerf darts sink rather quickly and don’t maintain a constant trajectory, so the scope isn’t accurate at all beyond about 10 feet or so.

The other downside of the attachments is that they make the gun heavier and more bulky than is really necessary for a pistol, but I do have to admit, they look pretty cool when attached. The attachments are also compatible with other guns in the N-Strike line, including the Maverick, Vulcan, Nite Finder, Longshot, and Recon.

If you already have a Nite Finder, the biggest (and only IMO) reason to upgrade to the Nerf Element is the increased dart storage. Whereas the original Nite Finder could hold only two extra rounds of ammo, the Element can hold five.

Internally, the Nerf Element EX-6 is basically identical to the Nite Finder, except that the light is now an accessory, so you don’t have to deal with the battery and wires. The plunger is also a bit smaller, but it’s just as easy (and worthwhile) to mod as the Nite Finder EX-3. Even the most amateur modders should be able to increase the range to 40 feet or more just by removing the air restrictor and plugging a hole in the barrel with tape.

It’s impossible not to recommend the Nerf N-Strike Element if you don’t already have the Nerf Disk Shot, as the increased dart storage capacity alone makes it a fantastic upgrade to what was already one of the best Nerf guns out there.


Nerf Vulcan

N-Strike Vulcan Nerf Gun

Part of the Nerf N-Strike line, the Nerf Vulcan is one of the most ambitious Nerf guns that Hasbro has ever made.

The first thing you’ll notice when you take the Vulcan out of the box is that this is a really big Nerf gun, not at all suited for a stealth mission. This is to be expected — it is a machine gun afterall — but you won’t appreciate size and weight of the gun until you hold it in your hands for the first time.

Once you take the Vulcan out of the box, you’ll notice that it comes with a few accessories: a much needed tripod, an ammobox, and an ammobelt. Inside the ammobox, you’ll find 25 darts loaded in the ammobelt.

If you’re thinking about buying the Vulcan, you’re probably attracted to the idea of firing off 25 rounds in less than 10 seconds. And really, who wouldn’t enjoy blasting their friends/kids/baby seals with that kind of firepower? Unfortunately, as appealing as the idea is, the Vulcan isn’t all high fives and fist pumps.

For starters, the price tag on the Nerf Vulcan is pretty hefty ($40). It also requires 6 D batteries to operate (unless you want to go into single-shot manual pump mode). As you would expect, it also takes a very significant amount of time to load 25 rounds into the belt after every 10 seconds of fun.

One of the primary complaints about the Nerf Vulcan is its tendency to jam. In my experience, this problem can be mitigated significantly by keeping the belt straight and ‘feeding’ it in with your non-trigger hand. However, I can see that younger kids would probably have a hard time with this, and I’d imagine they’d grow frustrated rather quickly.

The range on this Nerf gun  is also somewhat lackluster, but in the end it’s acceptable given the awesome rate of fire. Expect average shots to reach about 15-20 feet.

On the positive side, the Vulcan is an absolute blast to use, and like many N-Strike guns, features the tactical rail system. This means that it’s compatible with accessories from other Nerf guns, such as the Recon’s sights, the Longshot’s scope, and the Unity Power System’s scout blaster.

All in all, the Nerf Vulcan is a great deal of fun and should keep you busy for hours — even if most of that time is spent reloading.

Here’s a Vulcan user guide from Nerf:


Nerf Nite Finder EX-3

N-Strike Nite Finder EX-3 Nerf Gun

The Nerf Nite Finder EX-3 is a re-release of the original Nerf Nite Finder, and aside from the new yellow and black paint job that matches the rest of the  N-Strike line, the Nite Finder EX-3 is the same fantastic blaster that Nerf warriors have come to know and love.

If you aren’t familiar with previous incarnations of the Nite Finder, it is widely regarded to be one of the most reliable Nerf guns out there, due largely to its simple mechanics and sturdy construction. It’s also one of the easiest Nerf guns to mod, with a simple plunger system and easy-to-work-with materials. As with all guns, some mods are more difficult than others, but removing the air restrictor on the Nite Finder requires nothing more than an exacto knife and some superglue, and it can result in a nice performance increase. An even simpler modification is to wrap rubber bands around the front of the gun, and then loop them through the cocking mechanism.

The Nerf Nite Finder features a ‘laser’ sight (it’s really just a red light) that you can calibrate for aiming in dark lighting. Despite the packaging’s claims that this sight will lead to precision shooting, the laser isn’t really accurate beyond 15 feet, as Nerf darts drop rather quickly. I don’t mean to say that the light isn’t cool — it is. It’s just that it isn’t especially effective. Younger Nerfers especially will probably get a kick out of the laser, but those older than 10 will likely think it’s pretty worthless.

As far as price goes, you aren’t going to a better deal than the Nite Finder. Whereas most Nerf guns cost $20 or more, you can find the Nite Finder for closer to $10.

Out of the box, you can expect the Nite Finder to shoot about 35 feet, which is pretty great for a single-shot spring Nerf gun. The accuracy on the Nerf Nite Finder EX-3 is also exceptional, and the weapon can easily be handled by young and old Nerf warriors alike.


Nerf Magstrike

Magstrike Nerf Gun

The Nerf Magstrike is a ten round automatic Nerf gun.

The Magstrike is different from most other modern Nerf guns, in that rather than using a spring plunger mechanism like the Nite Finder or Raider, you have to prime the gun by pumping the handle to shoot. In the past, priming a Nerf gun was a bit of a pain because it slowed down the rate of fire, but thanks to the Magstrike’s clip system, you can just swap out a pre-loaded  clip instead of having to reload rounds one at a time. A clip holds 10 darts and can be unloaded in about 1.5 seconds, which is really impressive to behold and makes the priming totally worthwhile.

Fully priming the Magstrike requires roughly 20 pumps, which you can easily do in 10 seconds. Once primed, you can unload the entire clip in rapid succession by holding down the trigger. The range on the Magstrike is great considering the rate of fire –  each dart will shoot about 20 feet.

Of course, you *can* prime the Magstrike more than 20 times, but if you do so routinely, you can put undue pressure of theair bladder and it will get stretched out. This will result in a very noticeable drop in performance, so don’t go crazy with the priming — you get diminishing returns very quickly after 20 pumps anyway.

As with many of the pump primed Nerf guns made these days, the pump will break if you’re rough with it. However, if you stick to controlled andsteady pumps, your Magstrike should have a long life.

Ultimately, I would recommend the Magstrike to anybody who is looking for a portable Nerf gun with a high rate of fire.

If you’re considering buying this for a younger kid (under 10 years old), I’d recommend a gun that doesn’t need as much priming like the Nerf Raider. However, for the rest of you, you can’t go wrong with the Magstrike.


Nerf Switch Shot EX-3

Switch Shot EX-3 Nerf Gun

The Nerf N-Strike Switch Shot EX-3 can be bought on its own or as part of a bundle with the Nerf N-Strike Wii game.

The Switch Shot EX-3 gets its name from the fact that you can switch between using it as a regular Nerf gun or as a Wii Remote. It’s undeniably cool to have a real Nerf gun that can be used as a remote for a Wii game, and if you’re looking for a gun-type accessory for the Wii, you can’t go wrong with the Switch Shot. It’s definitely the best there is, but truth be told, it makes a better Wii remote than a blaster.

The biggest drawback of the Switch Shot as a blaster is that you can only load a single Nerf dart at a time. Now, there’s definitely a time and place for single shot guns, but in this day and age where many modern Nerf guns are utilizing a clip system, the SwitchShot just feels outdated.

The range and accuracy also leave a lot to be desired, even for a single shot blaster. Of course, there are many modifications that you can make to the SwitchShot to increase its range, but even then, it’s difficult to recommend over superior singleshot guns like the Nite Finder.

Also, let’s be clear about one thing: The Switch Shot is not cheap, and there are many other choices that will bring you more bang for your buck (see the Raider or Longshot for example). In the end, there  really isn’t any reason to buy the Switch Shot as a standalone product, especially when the Nite Finder gets much better performance, is more easily modifiable, and can be bought for a fraction of the price.

Ultimately, the N-Strike Switch Shot EX-3 makes a fun remote to use when you want to shoot things on the Wii, but as a standalone blaster of Nerf’s other offerings.


Nerf SuperMAXX 1500

Nerf SuperMAXX 1500

The Nerf SuperMAXX 1500 is a good Nerf gun that could have been a great Nerf gun.

The SuperMAXX 1500 boasts a 45 foot range with great accuracy and relatively small size. It also requires only three pumps to prime, which is fantastic given the range. The one thing that keeps the SuperMAXX 1500 from being the perfect Nerf blaster is that you have to rotate the barrel manually, increasing the time between shots.

If Nerf could have found a way to make the SuperMAXX 1500 a semi-automatic with a rotating barrel, the it would be even higher on the list of the best Nerf guns of all-time.

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Nerf Wildfire

Wildfire Nerf Gun

The Nerf Wildfire was the first fully automatic Nerf weapon, and it was a good one.

The Wildfire can shoot 20 darts rapid fire style, and it has a phenomenal max range at 50 feet. Unfortunately, it takes 45 pumps to prime the Wildfire, which really hurts (both strategically and physically).

More recent improvements to automatic blasters like the Rapid Fire 20 have made the Wildfire pretty much obsolete, but it still holds its own pretty well, and as a pioneer it has a place in every collector’s heart.