From me, to you. Fly that foam and pretty much whatever else you play, dear friends.
Just some quick photos of what some blasters looked like in the Nerf Blaster sleeve. Check it out!
$19.99 at Target. Some of the stitching is a bit iffy, but see for yourself if you find’em.
|From Nerf Blaster sleeve|
|From Nerf Blaster sleeve|
Well, it is now the Day After the annual release/Media Big Bash for Nerf. Starting in 2009 with the release of the Nerf Stampede, myself and a number of other U.S. bloggers are lucky enough to be invited to this event.
Members of the Hasbro/Nerf design team and marketing chain of command are on hand for us to discuss/inquire about the products on display as well as some elements of the design process. It is s usually pretty eye opening affair, and this year was pretty fantastic as well.
The focus this year was a “Bash at the Beach” themed event where some major releases such as the Nerf N- Strike Elite Mega Centurion, Nerf N- Strike Elite Rapidstrike, Nerf Vortex Revonix 360, the Nerf Rebelle Heartbreaker Bow, Nerf Rebelle Guardian Crossbow, and Nerf Cybershot Hoop were alll on hand to play and get a first-hand feel for them. Also a prime moment to give some feedback before the blasters go into full production if necessary.
|ALL THE NERF BLASTERS.|
|Super Soakers and the Nerf Firevision Disc Flyer|
|The Nerf Sweet Revenge blaster with the holster attached. Sadly, not up for demonstration.|
The crown jewel of all the blasters for me over the evening was the Nerf Rapidstrike. It definitely felt lighter and overall more maneuverable than the Nerf Stampede. It fired faster and found it very easy to either do 3 round bursts or rock and roll at full auto. Dual wielding did not feel cumbersome either, so I am definitely looking forward to getting these on the field. It had the clear 18 round magazines and an adjustable stock. There’s also a flip-up iron sight, multiple tac rails, and a good amount of sling points.
|The Nerf Rapidstrike – yes, it’s awesome.
Fall 2013, $39.99
THE ORANGE MAGS WERE ONLY THERE FOR DEMO PURPOSES. THE RELEASE OF THE RAPIDSTRIKE WILL HAVE FULLY CLEAR MAGAZINES.
One interesting bit: there was some kind of thin rubber piece leading into the barrel and flywheels. I do not believe I have seen this before, so I am intrigued what it purpose it serves. Guide? Stabilizer? I have to check my Stampede to be sure.
|I forget who photobombed me.
Nerf Vortex Revonix 360
Fall 2013, $39.99
|In case you don’t like the pink of the Heartbreaker, have a different version!|
|A familiar face, the Rebelle spokesperson still hard at work!|
The Nerf Mega Centurion was there as well, but my review of that is already HERE:
The most info I did get was about the incoming app(s):
There will be TWO separate ones, one for Nerf Rebelle and the other for the Nerf N-Strike Elite blasters. I’ll have to make a follow up inquiry to see if there’s any interaction between the two apps. Functionally, they will be similar.
|The App Cradle|
With the app, players can (at least for now):
- Record & Share video
- Add to social media
- Send media to friends
- Learn how to play CTF, last man standing, etc.
They recognized all the duct tape magic going on out there mounting cameras, so they finally decided to provide a product (and no, the EPPS was not there. Basic Nerf brought one, but that’s the only one there.) Also, Droid fans… don’t worry. They’re working on it but just want to get it right.
Word has it the N-Force and Nerf Dart Tag lines are currently not the focus of the team, so nothing new to report on that front right now (thanks, AFON)
We couldn’t really get a lot of answers about stuff NOT on the show floor (though AFON got some info on the Elite Spectre, go check!) and that makes sense to focus on the here and now. If you’re in the woods, you’re worried about the bear 2′ away, not the bear that’s on the next mountain. So, let’s embrace the 2013 bear for what it is, and I’ll be back to revisit these blasters once they hit shelves.
And let’s not forget about Click Click BAMF who has now made 2 shows, and Shining Foam in his rookie year (along with Basic Nerf) at this event. Nice putting faces to the pages, always. Class acts from these guys this year, and hopefully get to see them again at the next event!
That’s about all I can think of for now… if I find I forgot anything I’ll update the post later. Until then, I still have plenty of more reviews to do, so check in later this week! Thanks all for traveling with me, keep on Nerfin’!
Questions? Comments? Let me know!
And there it is. The Nerf N-Strike Elite Mega Centurion. One of the three main new blasters for the year (Revonix and the Rapidstrike being the others so far, besides Rebelle, etc.)
Release (approximate): Fall 2013
- Centurion blaster x 1
- Mega Whistler Magazine x 1
- Mega Whistler Darts x 6
- Removable bipod x 1
Between 40-75′, depending on the angle, dart quality, etc.
Now let’s get to it. When news of a Mega line, much less a “sniper” style rifle that was going to outdo the Longshot and Longstrike came out, I was excited. There’s always been 1 or 2 players I knew who liked to sit in the back row and provide support for assault/run and gunners. The Centurion was their stock blaster solution I thought.
After some initial firing…. I think I built it up too much in my head. First, let’s tackle some of the questions I have about the blaster.
The Size. At over 3′ long, this blaster is HUGE. And unlike the Longshot or Longstrike, you can’t remove the front barrel once it’s on. (You probably could, but not without risking damage to the blaster. I warned you!) It makes maneuvering through a jungle gym or tight indoor spaces a bit tougher unless you have it shouldered with a bandolier. And even then, you’re running without your blaster drawn which could be crucial seconds. With practice, this might not be a concern but again, that’s with practice. On the plus side, it’s friendly to lefties and righties.
The rate of fire. The Centurion has a draw pull that comes out to approx. 13″on a bolt-action motion. On the run, that could be an issue for a fleet footed player looking to fire back. Pump-action is much faster in comparison, and electric blasters have the advantage. Again, this blaster is designed to be used as a sniper’s play style, so it would take some adjusting to remember this and act accordingly. Methodical, and NOT a spray and pray game.
The accuracy. Granted, these are Nerf blasters and inherently aren’t known for pinpoint success at 100′. Even Elite streamlines still veer off course, so nothing’s perfect. However, there is a level of tolerance that I have come to expect from Nerf blasters and Elite darts, and the Elite Megas definitely left me wanting. I was expecting them to be styled more like Elite darts, with heavier heads and at least able to hit within range of a target. In fact, the foam seems thinner and the heads were just as squishy as the original orange streamlines. So Elite Megas, these were not. Additionally, it was getting range relative to the other Elite blasters… and I was expecting even a few feet more. Different functionalities add so much to a play pattern experience!
And as for the bipod? It does wobble a bit, and does seem like it wants to let go frequently. Believe it or not though, that bipod is far more stable than the ones on the Xploderz Xranger or Shadow Hawk. I was pleased with how it felt, and had to try it on all sorts of things –
But! All that being said, I see potential here. Larger ammo I also find inherently funny, so the Centurion is a fun, over the top kinda blaster to use on unsuspecting victims. Much like the Vulcan and the Hailfire, this blaster is designed with a role play mindset factored in; a kid who wants to pretend to be the sneaky sharpshooter, unlike the other blasters where they play a lone wolf hero archetype. Unfortunately, the form does not lend itself well to the function of the typical way a person might play Nerf. At least, not right now. I intend to try the Centurion out in the field more when more mags and ammo are available, as right now with only one mag reloading is an issue as well.
And yes, there are pics out there showing the internals. Say what you want, but I find the “KA-thu-CHUNK” of each shot oddly satisfying.
So, where does that leave me? I’m excited to see mega darts return, but I’m just not overcome with awe for the Centurion. The performance was not quite what I expected this but this is only the first blaster in the Mega line and I look forward to what else comes next. Especially if it means something like the largest Vulcan EVER:
Does that mean it’s worth the $50? To be on the forefront of trying out a new innovation from Nerf, sure. To shoot your friends with oversized ammo, sure. To have a cool looking totally over the top blaster that still gets pretty good ranges, then sure! Just remember, this isn’t a blaster to run, strafe, and spray and pray with on the front lines. It’s more suited to a methodical, sneaky style outdoors or from higher vantage points to check the opposition.
Questions? Comments? Feel free, and see you on the field.
So after a few months of hubbub, here we are with the Nerf Centurion. (Popular Science got the exclusive “official” post on this, here’s their take – http://www.popsci.com/gadgets/article/2013-05/exclusive-nerf%E2%80%99s-newest-gun-fires-100-feet)
|picture taken from the article, illustrating distance|
Release is set for Fall 2013
Price: $49.99 (a bit lower than I expected, thankfully)
“As for the gun [sic] itself, we’ll be blunt: this thing is freaking huge. It spans 40.7 inches from nose to heel, and at least 2/3 of that length is barrel. As with any gun, the longer the barrel, the straighter – and hopefully the farther – shots will soar.”
“To get the velocity necessary (nearly 55 mph) to catapult ammo one-third of a football field, the designers had to supersize the typical Nerf launch mechanism. With a dart-filled magazine in place, you pull back on a loading handle to allow the top dart to pop into the firing chamber. Pushing the same handle forward sets the firing mechanism in place, and pulling the trigger releases a spring-loaded piston that launches the dart.”
“The Centurion is the first in a new line of Nerf guns that use MEGA darts. The darts are about twice the size of typical Nerf darts, which engineers say helps them get the momentum they need to fly further. The also whistle, an oddly satisfying addition to long-range shootouts.”
So we can expect more Mega blasters down the road. This all still begs the questions-
– Extra mags/mission kits will be sold when?
– I think we can assume there will be some kind of “value” pack that comes out after the inital release (happens during the holidays especially – Double Discs/Darts, blaster packs, etc.)
– The cradle… and maybe we’ll get a proper scope?
– Ranges are reported to hit 100′. Is this with the 35 degrees that has been used in the past as the angle for max range claims? (see here) – most likely yes
– Bipod better be robust
– DAT DRAW PULL. HOLY CRAP.
Not gonna lie though… Yet Another Ammo Type? Just when things calmed down from Sonics/Micros/Streamlines/Taggers/Discs now Megas are in the mix. While Sonics and Micros aren’t as prevalent in stores, they are still in circulation and part of many a community dart stash. So here we go again with one more “caliber” of sorts to sort through when cleaning up.
But don’t get me wrong! I’m excited to see range and mega darts again, for sure. Will this change Nerf games? How? And it is the shot in the arm in range and performance that Nerf could use? We’ll see once it hits shelves in the Fall. And yes, I plan to figure out how to dual-wield these, too.
Edit: My mistake, Basic Nerf did not make it last year; hopefully he will be able to this year, if it happens.
And, got a new video up today on the TekRecon for my own channel –
Whew! Busy morning. (at least, it’s morning here)