Fort Boards Assist in Nerf Game Bunker construction
Fort Boards! Pretty cool! Fort Boards are 8″x8″ plastic interlocking panels that can be used to create a variety of shapes, including curved surfaces, blocks, walls, panels, panels with doors, etc. They come in a variety of colors, in a “Starter” pack of 22 panels (along with additional connectors) or a “Prime” pack of 44 panels (with additional connectors. Customizable with (sold separately) metal or wooden texture inserts, bull’s eye inserts (coming soon with Blaster Board Target panels). There’s a LOT of potential I see here with this toy, with a little practice building your own customizable bunkers (with targetable panels) could work out pretty quickly. Different color schemes would keep things fresh as well (and maybe even help with branding for some arenas) while the modular nature keeps things varied and enhances objective style gameplay. I most certainly see the applications of this toy, and they are diverse beyond just building a clubhouse. Not going to lie, building an octopus looks pretty neat though.
Starter Pack: Includes 22 boards (8”x 8”) and 21 connectors (for interlocking) and instructions – $61.99 Prime Pack: Includes 44 boards (8”x 8”) and 46 connectors (for interlocking) and instructions
Find the Fort Boards on Amazon – Amazon Associate Links (affiliate links, help keep the lights on for F2A! This is a provided sample by Fort Boards for review, I assure you my opinions remain my own):
Product provided! Opinions remain my own, thanks K’Nex!
Ultimately, the blaster took me over an hour to build, from dumping out the contents to the first shot. I did make some mistakes during the build, but unfortunately I didn’t catch them until well after they happened which meant backtracking and dismantling parts of the build to go back. As someone unfamiliar with using K’Nex construction kits, maybe this is growing pains at learning a different medium. The build isn’t even entirely like the one on the box because I messed something up and would have had to flip pieces that I installed at the beginning. But that’s the point of the line, right? Making your own blaster ultimately, after building the one shown?
For a blaster that reports 75′ on the box for 5 shots, at approximately $25 for the whole thing the replay value is potentially endless for a kit you can build and rebuild, with additional shots and turrets if you have the other kits. Is it worth it? If you aren’t heavily modding your blasters already, and do enjoy the satisfaction that comes from completing puzzles and building kits, this could be a neat addition for your collection. The colors are eye-catching for sure, and there are some spots on the blaster body I naturally found to be good for gripping, I didn’t stab my hands on any corners. Minus anything that resembled a stock, holding the blaster seemed pretty intuitive.
Battle-tested, I have tried some k’nex blasters at games before and maybe it’s just me but I definitely worry about losing the odd connector or slamming the blaster unexpectedly and spraying pieces everywhere. It hasn’t happened yet, but I have lost the odd piece from the body… maybe 2 at this point on other kits. Not a terribly bad ratio I guess but that’s not something you worry about right off the bat from other blasters.
K’Nex is planning on being at New York Toy Fair again, and so will I! Don’t forget to tune in here please and see what I find. (Full schedule posted shortly before the trip)
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After a bit of press for the last year or so, Paper Shooters is finally ready for the U.S. shores! I’ve been following the brand ever since they approached me some time ago, and it was good to finally see and shoot a finished product. I went for the GoPro POV while aiming and shooting. Note the priming between shots and the shell ejection.
The basic kits will run $29.99 and may include the following (pulled this from their website, I assume it will be the same in the U.S. during release:)
“Your 138 piece kit contains : – All plastic components, screws and springs to create your PaperShooters™ base model – 8 highly detailed A4 die cut cardboard pieces that contain all the individual pieces to create your awesome Zombie Slayer camo skin
Also included :
– 50 ‘Soft- splat’ paper pellets. Just dip them in water for 20-30 seconds, load them into shells and blast away! – A mould to create endless amounts of ammo from ordinary paper. Got paper,? Got ammo! – 6 shells that eject with every shot!”
I will have a more in-depth look at this when the samples come in and will give more of my thoughts then. Already, I know that it’s supposed to be a pretty involved build and I am looking forward to taking a crack at it. It’s not going to be the usual blaster out of the box experience, but I am definitely taken with the look and feel of the product.
K’Nex’s K-Force is an interesting spin on the blaster scene. I will admit, when I first heard about it I was skeptical. I had never used K’Nex construction kits before, being more a brick user. K’Nex sets seemed a little overwhelming, and I wasn’t sure what to expect. Then this happened:
That is a multi-barreled springer blaster this employee built on their own time. Each barrel has to be primed individually, but they are rigged up to fire under one trigger. It hit me. I got it. If you can figure it out, you can build it. For years, apparently the K’Nex community has already been at work on rubber band/various other models of shooters (a quick search on YouTube will prove that) and in the interest of giving their own fans what they want, that brings us to K-Force. The line launches with 6 blasters to start, with more on the way if the line does well.
The initial launch line for K-Force.
My main concerns with K-Force were- 1. Durability. Could the blasters withstand a drop/fall/getting banged around? This video says yes. And the folks at the K’Nex booth couldn’t be more eager to show me all the ins and outs of the blaster, what you can build, and so on. One key point to holding all the K’Nex rods and gears together is using a special fastening piece that goes over connecting points. One thing they assured me about was that they tested fully built blasters so you didn’t have to move any differently than if you are using more popular blasters.
2. Could leading brand ammo be used in the blasters, and vice versa?
Word has it K’Nex darts work in other brand blasters and vice versa. I will have to test this out after launch.
3. Accessibility how hard will it be to build a blaster right out of the box, at the loss of some instant gratification? Again, as I never used K’Nex before, this was a major concern for me spending an hour getting a blaster together. K’Nex instructions are easy to use apparently, and color coded. While I intend to get a box of K’Nex of my own, the sets may take anywhere from 20-25 minutes to build. Even less for the smaller kits. I like that the kits provide their own plunger tubes, allowing you to come up with your own trigger set ups which can lead to monsters like the blaster above. The locking mechanism for stress points is smart, and really accentuate how far into thinking the designers worked on this brand to make the initial launch easy for new users but some new parts and mechanics for veteran builders. I look forward to trying more and more of the set out just to see where this line goes.
K-FORCE Build and Blast: Mega Boom Building Set Build 5 different blaster models and a buildable target in one set, including the double chamber Mega Boom blaster that fires up to 75 feet! The K-FORCE Build and Blast Mega Boom Building Set comes with over 300 pieces including, K’NEX rods and connectors, 2 blaster chambers, 3 skull dart holders, 2 quick fit grips, 2 preload rings that can be used to create customized blasters, 7 foam darts, and an instruction sheet to build the Mega Boom blaster. Customize and create your own K- FORCE blaster or log on to knex.com and download instructions for 4 alternate blaster builds. Most models can be built one at a time. Compatible with the entire K-FORCE Build and Blast line. All K’NEX rods and connectors are made in the USA. Suggested retail price is $44.99. Ages 8+. Available Fall 2015 on knex.com and at toy retailers nationwide.
K-FORCE Build and Blast: Dual Cross Building Set
Build 5 different blaster models and a buildable target in one set, including the double chamber Dual Cross blaster that fires up to 75 feet! Set features over 330 pieces including K’NEX rods and connectors, 2 blaster chambers, 3 skull dart holders, 2 quick fit grips, 2 preload rings that allow you to create customized blasters, 7 foam darts, and an instruction sheet to build the Dual Cross blaster. Customize and create your own K-FORCE blaster or log on to knex.com and download instructions for 4 alternate blaster builds. Most models can be built one at a time. Compatible with the entire K-FORCE Build and Blast line. All K’NEX rods and connectors are made in the USA. Suggested retail price is $44.99. Ages 8+. Available Fall 2015 on knex.com and at toy retailers nationwide. K-FORCE Build and Blast: Battle Bow Building Set Build 3 different blaster models that fire up to 75 feet and a buildable target in one set with the K-FORCE Build and Blast Battle Bow Building Set! Set features over 150 pieces including K’NEX rods and connectors, 1 blaster chamber, 2 skull dart holders, 1 quick fit grip, 1 preload ring to create different blasters, 5 foam darts, and an instruction sheet to build the Battle Bow blaster. Customize and create your own K-FORCE blaster or log on to knex.com and download instructions for 2 alternate blaster builds.. Compatible with the entire K-FORCE Build and Blast line. All K’NEX rods and connectors are made in the USA. Suggested retail price is $24.99. Ages 8+. Available Fall 2015 on knex.com and at toy retailers nationwide. K-FORCE Build and Blast: K-20X Building Set Build 3 different blaster models and a buildable target in one set with the K-FORCE Build and Blast K-20X Building Set! Set features over 140 pieces including K’NEX rods and connectors, 1 blaster chamber, 2 skull dart holders, 1 quick fit grip, 1 preload ring to create different blasters that fire up to 75 feet, 5 foam darts, and an instruction sheet to build the K-20K blaster. Customize and create your own K-FORCE blaster or log on to knex.com and download instructions for 2 alternate blaster builds. Compatible with the entire K-FORCE Build and Blast line. All K’NEX rods and connectors are made in the USA. Suggested retail price is $24.99. Ages 8+. Available Fall 2015 on knex.com and at toy retailers nationwide.
K-FORCE Build and Blast: K-10X Building Set Build your own K-10X blaster that fires up to 75 feet! Set features over 75 pieces including, K’NEX rods and connectors, 1 blaster chamber, 1 quick fit grip, 1 preload ring and 5 foam darts. Customize and create your own K-FORCE blaster or combine with the K-FORCE Build and Blast Mini Cross Building Set for an awesome downloadable combo build! All K’NEX rods and connectors are made in the USA. Suggested retail price is $14.99. Ages 8+. Available Fall 2015 on knex.com and at toy retailers nationwide. K-FORCE Build and Blast: Mini Cross Building Set Build your own Mini Cross blaster that fires up to 75 feet! Set features over 60 pieces including, K’NEX® rods and connectors, 1 blaster chamber, 1 quick fit grip, 1 preload ring and 5 foam darts. Customize and create your own K-FORCE blaster or combine with the K-FORCE Build and Blast K-10X Building Set for an awesome downloadable combo build! All K’NEX rods and connectors are made in the USA. Suggested retail price is $14.99. Ages 8+. Available Fall 2015 on knex.com and at toy retailers nationwide. K-FORCE Build and Blast: 30 Dart Pack and Target Building Set This 58 piece set comes with 30 foam darts and enough K’NEX rods and connectors for you to create a buildable target. All K’NEX rods and connectors are made in the USA. Suggested retail price is $9.99. Ages 8+. Available Fall 2015 on knex.com and at toy retailers nationwide. K-FORCE Build and Blast: 10 Dart Pack and Target Building Set
This 26 piece set comes with 10 foam darts and enough K’NEX rods and connectors for you to create a buildable target. All K’NEX rods and connectors are made in the USA. Suggested retail price is $6.99. Ages 8+. Available Fall 2015 on knex.com and at toy retailers nationwide.
Questions? Comments? Anything I Missed? Comment below!
Fresh from the folks at K’Nex, they’re looking for members of the K-Force! Do you have what it takes? See the announcement below:
K’NEX Seeks Members To Join The K-FORCE(TM) Squad
Nationwide Search Will Reward 20 Enthusiastic Blaster Fans!
Hatfield, PA – March, 2015 – K’NEX, the only US construction toy company focused on Building Worlds Kids Love®, is seeking 20 enthusiastic blaster fans to join its K-FORCE Squad! The members of the squad will be the first to get their hands on the new K- FORCE Build and Blast(TM) line; the only line of blasters that you build then blast!
The K-FORCE Build and Blast line invites kids ages 8+ to construct customized blasters, big or small, single or multi-shot, with endless possibilities — the only limit is your imagination! The introductory line includes 8 different kinds of blasters, buildable targets, and foam dart packs.
The nationwide search runs through March 22, 2015 and challenges blaster fans ages 13+ to submit a video, up to 60 seconds in length, explaining why they deserve to be chosen as a member of the K-FORCE Squad. The first 1,000 video entries received will be reviewed by a panel of K’NEX judges, and 20 K-FORCE Squad members will be chosen from among those entries.
Upon confirmation of eligibility, the 20 K-FORCE Squad members will each receive exclusive access to the K-FORCE Build and Blast product line before it hits store shelves, and a chance to become the Grand Prize winner. All the Squad members have to do is build one or more K-FORCE blasters using the K-FORCE products they receive (and any other genuine K’NEX parts they may already have at home), and then create a short video that shows the Squad member using the blaster(s) he or she created to execute his or her best “trick shot”.
K-FORCE Squad members will be required to submit their video to K’NEX by May 8, 2015 and, upon review and confirmation of qualification, will be asked to post their Best Trick Shot Video to YouTube by May 15, 2015. These videos will then be featured on the K’NEX Facebook page, and the public will be given the opportunity to vote for their favorite video. The K-FORCE Squad member whose video receives the most votes will be awarded the Grand Prize, a $500 shopping spree on knex.com, and a GoPro HERO4 Camera.
The K-FORCE Squad contest is open to residents of the U.S. and Canada, except those of Puerto Rico, U.S. territories or possessions, the Province of Quebec, and where
They’re back! In case you haven’t heard already, Paper Shooters returned, and is taking another shot at getting funded via indiegogo.
Back in April, I wrote about their first campaign, outlining it was a plastic blaster/shooter/model kit that used paper wads similar to Max Force ammo. As you’ll recall, I mentioned continuously in my initial analysis that Paper Shooters was not to be perceived as most other blasters, for a couple of reasons:
1) You had to build it out of the box; this is a construction/model kit first and foremost (according to the literature I’ve run across) and the play experience/target shooting aspect is secondary. The functionality just adds to the experience of building the shooter. You are responsible for the success of your own tools depending on how much care you spent building it. Modders can understand that, I think. And on top of that, Paper Shooters is ok with modifications performed to their kits, reinforcing the “model/construction aspect.”
2) While it was a plastic blaster, there was a specially treated water resistant cardboard skin/arrangement of sorts that was part of the external assembly around the plastic skeleton. Essentially, you can mix and match the skins (if you had the multiple versions available. But, that could get costly.)
3) Shells. The magazines hold 8 shells (last I heard, and from the looks of the indiegogo acct.) and while these are supposed to hit 75′, shells might be problematic for someone looking to these for the typical blaster play experience. Buzz Bee shells were problematic in that once you ran out of shells, you had to reload them AND locate each one to get your ammo capacity back. Nerf magazines are limited as well, but much easier to keep track of (although bulky). So I wouldn’t expect to use this in a typical Nerf war, maybe more for target practice or office hijinks against other folks who had Paper Shooters.
These are a few of the skins available (taken directly from the Indiegogo site), and like I said, getting started owning these shooters can get quite costly. While the perks from the campaign include ammo, and a mould to make more paper ammo, the initial investment might be a little much. But if you are a fan of building models, this might be right up your alley with the construction challenge and THEN you have a functioning shooter as well. (I believe the box is STILL supposed to assemble into a zombie head, but I could be wrong or that has changed.
Either way, it’s still an interesting concept as far as getting one involved in the construction side of blaster building (if they aren’t already modding), but unless the campaign succeeds it doesn’t look like we’ll know anything solid about the products. While the video shows what I’m guessing is a prototype that looks like it functions pretty solidly, that’s all we have to work off of, and the faith that is inherent with crowdfunding. Should you decide to back them, it would definitely seem like you’re in for a very different experience than most other shooter kits on the market currently. Until they’re out and funded, there’s really nothing to demo here. But, at the very least you’re aware of this creation!
Also, if you have your doubts about how good cardboard can look, I leave you with these links:
The Nerf Alpha Girl Mission Kit I reported on back in February has been renamed:
NERF REBELLE SWEET REVENGE Kit
(HASBRO/Ages 8 & up/Approx. Retail Price $19.99/Available: Fall 13)
The NERF REBELLE SWEET REVENGE Kit is a girl’s best friend and includes the accessories she needs to take on any NERF REBELLE mission in style. The star of the NERF REBELLE SWEET REVENGE Kit is the bold five dart revolving blaster, which features a cool purple deco and bright magenta accents. Pull back on the lever to ready the blaster and press the trigger to send darts soaring through the air up to 75 feet. Add style savvy during non-stop, action-packed adventures with the included pair of NERF REBELLE VISION GEAR eyewear. Taking a break from the excitement? Players can stow their blaster and extra darts in the included hip holster, and take the NERF REBELLE action with them wherever they go. Includes blaster, five collectible darts, and belt clip holster. Available at most major retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.
And in case anyone doesn’t remember how this thing shoots:
I caught wind of Paper Shooters on twitter and instagram, they seemed interesting enough. Behold, a triggered paper wad shooter! While the paper wad part brought back memories of the Shadow Hawk/Max Force line, they looked like replica M4 rifles and had a trigger… not to mention these things were supposedly made out of cardboard. You know the motto around these parts, “If you can fire it, I will try it.”
Right off the bat, this line isn’t fully in production yet. On Friday, their indiegogo page goes live – www.indiegogo.com/papershooters – and from there you can pre-order your own shooter kit. As stated in the video, they need to cover some further costs on die-cutting parts of the kits so that’s where the donations come in.
The team was nice enough to send along a bit of info:
Included in each kit:
– Plastic shape (skeleton) and all internal mechanics, rivets, springs etc – Layer one Camo Skin (with rivets/ screws to attach to plastic) – Layer two Camo Skin (glues onto layer one to add significant detail)
– A Magazine- additional Mags available – 8 Gold Shells with 50 pcs of pre made ‘soft splat’ paper ammo – Mould to make ‘soft splat’ ammo from ordinary paper (never need run out of pellets) – Zombie head target (this is a cardboard model head- made from the box itself)
“Everything is included in the box. It uses screws and a patented ‘rivet’ ststem. An ordinary rivet cannot be opened when fixed but the ones utilsed in our kits can. We include a tool so you can ‘un pop’ them and change the skins, pieces etc. Glue/ screwdriver etc all included!”
Price: Around $50-$60 – Target Audience: Ages 14+
Digital Ops, Golden Touch, and Zombie Slayer Skins
Anyone else love unlocking the “Golden Gun” in Goldeneye on the N64?
The Ammo! (It does look similar to the Max Force paper wads…) Requires to be set inside a casing, THEN placed inside the magazine.
First, this isn’t the typical fare of shooter/blaster we’re used to seeing. These are construction kits moreso than a toy (think like making a model plane) where the end product is a replica (of sorts) of an m4 rifle. But this actually has a function and shoots projectiles. In this case, wet paper wads. The experience of building is the sell before target practice. If you mod your toy blasters, you know what I’m talking about. The kit is your starting ground. You have the option to build your blaster from the ground up (albeit being handed the pieces), craft your own ammo with the mould included, and customize as more pieces are available.
I’m not sure this qualifies as a blaster toy. It’s a creative experience first, followed by the play. Additionally, it’s geared to 14+, NOT within the usual range of 8+ like most of the other blasters I write about (I believe BlasterPro was aged 14+ as well.) I’d qualify these as a type of display piece/model, that you can play with. While these are modeled after an actual firearm, they are scaled smaller(like an airsoft rifle might be), have the visible orange tip, and colored in atypical designs. While they do fire, the rate of fire is slow compared to current toy blasters (bolt-action, no slam fire, it uses casings to hold the paper wads which eject after each shot, etc.) good for some hijinks in the office and target practice but until I get these in-hand I can’t attest to the actual experience of these in use. Between the casings and the rate of fire, it is at a distinct disadvantage for most of the ways I play dart tag.
The base of the model is plastic but then decorated and finished off with the cardboard accents. Word has it the cardboard on the exterior will be treated specially to make it more durable than regular cardboard. Again, should I get my hands on these I’ll test for sure.
Pricing – admittedly $50-$60 is a bit steep, but when you think that buying additional paper wad ammo packs isn’t necessary (you can make your own from scrap paper, but additional magazines and casings will be available), that’s one thing you save on, and you get a very nice looking replica you made yourself. AND A HUMAN ZOMBIE HEAD TARGET MADE FROM THE BOX. But in this case, the value is all on what you’re into. This is an interesting level of customization and ‘smithing right out of the box in regards to Things That Shoot, so I’m intrigued to say the least.
So you build your own shooter, then what? If the indiegogo does well, they have plans for an RPG, “Call of Duty”-type crossbow, additional sights and accessories, and stronger internal mechs and springs to add to your models after some time. So, you start with these and then continue to upgrade as pieces are made available. This only happens though if they have enough support! When the page goes live Friday, if this seems right up your alley, go for it. www.indiegogo.com/papershooters It looks great aesthetically, and the creative process of crafting your own shooter and ammo (from paper scraps, no FBR or additional materials necessary) might interest you creative types. Give them a look, and if they get to their pre-order target I’ll hopefully be back with a proper live test/review of these things when they’re available.
For the 14+ crowd Jury is still out on playability VERY STRIKING aesthetically Offers a creative element usually only experienced in the mod community (build your own) Pricey, but full of potential in customization and future product offerings Indiegogo preorders must be made for this to come out