NERF gun buyers guide
NERF guns, also known as toy blasters, are toy weapons that test your ability to shoot with soft ammunition. There are many different models to choose from and here we will advise you on what to look for before buying one.
What is a NERF gun?
NERF guns are toy weapons that shoot darts made of a foam-based material. The toys are mainly for indoor use and the darts are designed with a flat tip of foam so as to not harm the person it hits.
The name originates originally from the manufacturer with the same name, that launched the concept in the US already in 1969. Since then, NERF has become more or less synonymous with all toy weapons that shoot foam ammunitions, no matter which manufacturer it is. Today, Hasbro owns the brand NERF.
What type of NERF guns exists?
NERF has produced several models of the NERF guns, in a variety of series. From small guns that are loaded manually and shoot one shot at a time, to bows and fully automatic machine guns.
The different series are mainly about different types of designs. For example, the Modulus series has additional parts you can bolt on and the Accustrike series uses a slightly harder tip for better precision.
The series have different types of ammunition that cannot always be combined with the wrong series. If you buy extra ammunition, check the package carefully so that it will be right for your NERF.
Here are four NERF series that you can price compare on PriceSpy:
- NERF N-Strike Modulus
- NERF N-Strike Elite
- NERF N-Strike Mega
- NERF Zombie Strike
For which ages are NERF guns suited?
The recommended age for NERF guns is from eight years. It’s recommended not to give NERF guns or ammunition to children three years of age or younger. The reason is that the products contain small parts.
Younger kids should try out models that are easy to load and easy to hold in one or both hands. Avoid models that require the child to pull a lever to a certain position to shoot, as these can be difficult to handle.
NERF guns are designed to not harm you or your opponent. However, they are not completely harmless, a direct hit to the eyeball, for example, could cause permanent sight damage. Protective goggles are always recommended when using NERF guns, for both adults and children.
Which NERF model is the best?
All NERF models have different characteristics that suit specific situations. A small blaster could be a last resort when a bigger weapon is out of ammunition, and if you want to practice sniper shooting it’s easiest with a NERF-gun that has built-in aim.
Consider the following before making your purchase:
- How far do I want to shoot?
- How high accuracy should the model have?
- How much ammunition should it carry?
- Should the model load new bullets automatically or manually?
- Should it be possible to mount additional accessories?
- How much should it cost?
- Bear this in mind before you buy a NERF gun
The NERF gun always comes with a little bit of ammunition. In many cases, there are two to eight bullets depending on the model. Buy extra bullets separately, so you don’t have to look for lost ammunition after just a few goes with the blaster.
Here are three models with lots of accompanying darts:
- NERF N-Strike Elite Rampage Blaster (25 darts included)
- NERF N-Strike Mega Mastodon Blaster (24 darts included)
- NERF N-Strike StratoBow Bow (15 darts included)
There are NERF guns with built-in motors that automatically shoots off the darts. These require that you also buy batteries that are installed in the weapon.
The NERF gun darts are soft and easily broken. Models with a magazine, and which automatically reload after each shot, increase the risk of breaking the darts if they are loaded incorrectly. Some extra darts purchased separately make the loss a little easier to bear.
The more advanced models can sometimes shoot up to five shots per second and have up to 30 meters’ range.