Original live broadcast on 2/19/2019, after New York Toy Fair. Panelists include Vas from FoamFromaAbove.com, Nerfers101 from Instagram, and Nikki from NY Dart Zone. Producer is Gabe E. of NY Dart Zone.
Nerf Blasts the Internet with Foam Flinging Reveals for 2018
New York Toy Fair is coming! That means a slew of new reveals on a variety of tech/geek outlets across the internet, and Nerf is getting out ahead for 2018. I can’t help but think there will be something else out there. Yes, a majority of the products from that secret video some time ago are already revealed now but maybe there is still something to come. Nerdist.com sometimes does reveals as well, it was there that the Doominator showed up. Whether that holds this year remains to be seen. Popular Science is another publication that may still hold the biggest reveal of them all (how you get bigger than the Prometheus… I don’t know. Odds are decent though.)
*fair note, I put additional bold formatting beyond the sent copy to highlight features of interest.
NERF RIVAL PHANTOM CORPS HADES XVIII-6000 Blaster (Ages 14 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $69.99/Available: Fall 2018) Experience intense head-to-head competition with the NERF RIVAL HADES XVIII-6000 blaster! Load 60 high-impact rounds into the easy-load integrated magazine, prime, and pull the trigger to fire a barrage at your enemies. Whether Team Red, Team Blue, or Phantom Corps, Rival battles will never be the same. Package includes blaster, 60 high-impact rounds, two flags and instructions. Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.
NERF N-STRIKE ELITE INFINUS Blaster (Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $69.99/Available: Fall 2018)
Load and fire fast with the NERF N-STRIKE ELITE INFINUS blaster! The INFINUS blaster features motorized Quick-Load Technology; as kids feed darts into the blaster, the darts are automatically loaded into the 30-dart removable drum. With motorized, rapid-fire blasting, kids can quickly unleash a barrage of darts on their targets. Hold down the acceleration button to power up the blaster, then pull the trigger to fire. The INFINUS blaster includes 30 Elite darts. Requires 4 D batteries, not included. Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.
NERF MODULUS GHOST OPS EVADER Blaster (Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $39.99/Available: Fall 2018)
Stay in stealth mode or light the way with the NERF MODULUS GHOST OPS EVADER blaster! Part of the GHOST OPS series, the MODULUS EVADER is completely clear to keep players undetected on any mission. Illuminate the blaster to guide the way in low-light situations by pressing the light activator. Customize the blaster with the barrel extension which lights up when attached to the blaster. Load the 12-dart clip into the Evader blaster, take aim, and unleash 12 darts in a row with rapid-fire motorized blasting. Enemies will never see you coming!Package includes blaster, clip housing cover, barrel extension, 12-dart clip 12 darts, and instructions. Requires 4 “AA” alkaline batteries (demo batteries included). Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.
NERF ZOMBIE STRIKE SURVIVAL SYSTEM SCRAVENGER Blaster
(Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $49.99/Available: Fall 2018)
Zombie survivors are prepared for anything with the NERF ZOMBIE STRIKE SURVIVAL SYSTEM SCRAVENGER blaster! This essential zombie defense kit keeps battlers ready for any zombifying challenge that comes their way. Load a 12-dart clip into the SCRAVENGER and unleash a dozen darts in a row. Grab the extra clip from the holder and slam-fire the zombies away with the on/off slam-fire button, or stabilize shots with the stock/blaster attachment to never miss a target. The 2-dart back-up blaster allows battlers to surprise oncoming zombies who will never see it coming. Package includes blaster, stock with blaster, scope, tactical light, barrel extension, two 12-dart clips, 26 ZOMBIE STRIKE ELITE darts, and instructions. Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.
NERF RIVAL PROMETHEUS MXVIII-20K Blaster
(Ages 14 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $199.99/Available: Fall 2018)
Head into battle blazing to take on the competition with the NERF RIVAL PROMETHEUS MXVIII-20K blaster! This blaster features the new ADVANCED ACCELERATION SYSTEM which allows it to fire at a rate of 8 high-impact rounds per second! This blaster also holds a whopping 200 high-impact rounds in its easy-load hopper. The PROMETHEUS MXVIII-20K blaster is fully motorized with a rechargeable NiMh battery for endless fun. Package includes blaster, 200 high-impact rounds, rechargeable NiMh battery, charger, two flags, shoulder strap and instructions. Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.
NERF ACCUSTRIKE MEGA THUNDERHAWK Blaster
(Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $49.99/Available: Fall 2018)
Introducing Nerf’s first ever MEGA ACCUSTRIKE blaster! Blast with power and precision with the NERF MEGA THUNDERHAWK blaster. The barrel extension slides back and forth on the top of the blaster for custom performance allowing for distance targeting or a more compact blaster. The THUNDERHAWK allows for steady shots with the flip-down bipod for MEGA performance with ACCUSTRIKE accuracy. The THUNDERHAWK blaster includes a 10-dart, side-loading indexing clip and 10 NERF MEGA ACCUSTRIKE darts. Also compatible with NERF MEGA darts. Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.
Ultimately, Nerf once again is going for premium pricing for their higher visibility blasters. The addition of Accustrike Mega Darts, a faster firing rate from the Prometheus, Quick-load technology, and a slam-fire on/off switch… those are some interesting features for this year. New York Toy Fair will be something else, for sure this year. There will undoubtedly be the smaller range items that have a soft release over the course of the year, so don’t be surprised to see additional blasters release as the year continues. But that’s a thought for another day. Thanks for reading, and make sure to watch for new edits and blog posts as the days to Toy Fair continue to pass!
Nerf blaster firing videos from Toy Fair are found here.
(photos taken by Leywink, she helped me out a ton during the show. Most of the video? Her work, too.)
Nerf continues to provide blasters in the higher price category, but not without good reason. The Nemesis seems to be the hallmark blaster for them this show, providing a high capacity, high rate of fire, full auto, quickly reloaded blaster. At approximately $100 this is a pretty pricey toy, but for an older age group and with possibly a bit more disposable income. Using the Rival rounds is convenient (and offers a play style similar to paintball) even further encouraged with the hopper fed firing mechanism. Even as a prototype, this blaster really sets a bar that will be tough to meet on certain criteria. Again, this is a premium priced toy, but you might possibly get your money’s worth out of it.
“NERF MODULUS REGULATOR Blaster (Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $59.99/Available: Fall 2017) Bring the power of three firing modes with one epic blaster! The NERF MODULUS REGULATOR blaster features single-fire, burst-fire, and fully motorized blasting power. The REGULATOR blaster is customizable and compatible with accessories within the MODULUS system, sold separately, so fans can build their blasters and have the ultimate blasting experience. Includes two 12-dart clips and 24 MODULUS darts. Requires 4 C batteries, not included. Available at most major retailers nationwide and HasbroToyshop.com.”
The Regulator, I could see that blaster being quite a bit of fun across board as well. The select fire feature, complete with 3 round burst setting, is a fascinating bit of engineering. The Nerf video game had a burst round blaster, and now art imitates life here. The fire select option worked pretty decently going between single, burst, and full auto, but given it’s a prototype I don’t want to get my hopes up too much until the final product. At best I can estimate performance similar to the Hyperfire (based on the batteries needed) and my own visual experience. My only real confusion with this blaster is the carrying handle, I can see that adding to the full auto feel of the blaster but it comes across to me as just unnecessary. But, given the intended market and 8 year old switching from burst to Full Auto can really get in character with the help of the muzzle handle. Even more impressive is you can still sight through the handle even when it’s on. Well done for finding the Devil in the Details, Nerf.
“NERF DOOMLANDS THE JUDGE Blaster
(Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $59.99/Available: Fall 2017)
Bring justice to a doomed land with the DOOMLANDS THE JUDGE blaster. With an impressive 30 dart capacity, THE JUDGE blaster can fire three darts at once! This massive blaster is ready for anything the post-apocalyptic wasteland can send its way. Includes 30 DOOMLANDS Elite darts. Available at most major retailers nationwide and HasbroToyshop.com.”
The Judge’s size was not lost on anyone. ANYONE. This blaster is ridiculously huge, and say what you want about dead space, useless plastic, etc., this toy was still wowing and amazing people on the design. Now Nerf isn’t promising full range on all three darts from each barrel, there will still be a dip in performance for each burst. That being said, this would still be on my list of things to buy just because of how insane it looks. Would I have liked slam fire? Sure. Would I have liked a stock? Maybe? Would I have liked to see 4 or 5 dart bursts? Definitely. But even this prototype at Toy Fair did a fine job of leaving an impression and should find its way into a gift box or two. I would be interested to see this play out at some of the games I go to though (blasters can count as shields there, and the players go super stock. There is also a decent amount of cover, so high range blasters get equaled out a bit more.)
“NERF N-STRIKE ELITE ACCUSTRIKE RAPTORSTRIKE Blaster (Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $49.99/Available: Fall 2017) Hone your skills and hit your mark with the NERF N-STRIKE ELITE ACCUSTRIKE RAPTORSTRIKE blaster. This clip-fed blaster with pop-up sight, adjustable stock and bipod helps players line up their shot and to aim with precision and confidence. Includes two six-dart clips and 18 ACCUSTRIKE series NERF darts. Available at most major toy retailers and at HasbroToyShop.com.”
The Raptorstrike. You might not see anything with this Accustrike blaster that you haven’t seen already, outside of the precision/range increase from Elite and Accustrike technology. The blaster comes with 2 six shot magazines, extendable bipod, but a flip-up sight. the sight means no top tactical rail, which is unfortunate, but it does have a neat look and a very cool feeling carry handle along the underside. Also of note is the solid priming bar, not the insert tab style on the Alphahawk. Also missing is a barrel attachment point, but the iron sights are another nice detail on the blaster that some folks should get a kick out of. The ammo storage in the stock is a neat touch, and it’s one of the long type rifles that Longstrike/”sniper” fans might get a kick out of. Again, I’ll reserve full judgment until it hits stores.
NERF ZOMBIE STRIKE DREADBOLT Blaster (Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $49.99/Available: Fall 2017) Outsmart and dominate the zombie hordes with the ZOMBIE STRIKE DREADBOLT blaster. The first-ever arrow-firing ZOMBIE STRIKE crossbow, the DREADBOLT blaster can take down zombies like never before. Use the detachable scope to line up the target, aim, and fire! Includes five arrows and detachable scope. Available at most major retailers nationwide and HasbroToyshop.com.
The Nerf Zombie Strike Dreadbolt surprised me. I had not expected it to be nearly as big as it was, with previous crossbows in the line (Outbreaker, Crossfire Crossbow, etc.) and the Rebelle Courage Crossbow was supposedly a similar design, BUT SO MUCH SMALLER.
With the Dreadbolt, the blaster has a pretty sizable wingspan at the arms, and uses the soft head arrows introduced in the Rebelle line, with the Agent Bow. It’s also comfortable to hold, and the priming mechanism is a wrench along the bottom to crank back the string. Nothing you haven’t seen before either, but also nothing this big crossbow styled yet. I could see a few faithful users to this blaster just because of how much fun it could be. Using arrow ammo would be a pain during the usual Nerf war, but just the hilariousness of this blaster could make it worth it.
Speaking of arrows….
Really looking forward to the Signature Bow. I really hoped it would come out last year, but it looks like that was not the case, and this is why. It went rebranded to be released as part of the Dude Perfect trick shot items. I’ll still get it, just because of the archery aspect. Not much to say about it, as this is essentially the Platinum Bow from last year, and I wanted to get it then too.
Nerf Nitro was in full effect as well! The cars really are a firm foam construction, and Nerf isn’t kidding when they say you’ll hit new heights with the cars. They launch off the ramps a lot higher than I did with Hot Wheels cars I used back when I was younger, and if they hit wood floors or furniture, the marking and dents should be minimal. It’s a really neat idea and while not your usual cup of foam from Nerf, I can see why they did it. My next big question about this innovation is what does Nerf have lined up on the licensing side of things if this line takes off.
Nerf Rebelle only had a couple of new blasters to show off, the new Accustrike crossbows and then a crossbow/bow combo blaster. One might think Rebelle is getting scaled back after storming out with revolvers and other triggered blasters, but it’s hard to say. There wasn’t anything terribly striking from the Rebelle line this year though, unlike last year when the Corner Sight was part of the lineup. No new narrative was apparent either, unlike the “Secrets and Spies” from a couple of years ago, or the Charmed line from last year. Given how early it is in the year though, I’ll definitely not be surprised if Rebelle comes out with something else later this year.
Don’t forget that Jazwares will also be making new Nerf accessories for 2017! Check out the press release here.
Thanks for reading! I have plenty more booth visits to write up (Buzz Bee, Zuru will be out later this week) and some additional brands worth checking out to recommend (Whombatz and Fort Boards, I’m looking at you).
All in all, Nerf had a pretty strong showing with a couple of blasters, but stayed the course in functionality with a few others. I feel like there are still a few “buzz generating” items they’re holding off on even now, and will just bear watching in the future. A few more brands came out of Toy Fair swinging, so the brand synonymous with the blaster battle activity is going to have to keep coming out strong themselves.
And look, a genuine demo video, showing how the hit registering works. I was pretty amazed, to be honest. Yes, it’s different, yes, you have to aim for the shield, but nothing is written in stone and to be able to track hits? Heck yes I’ll try this out.
NERF COMBAT CREATURE RC Robot
(HASBRO/Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $79.99/Available: Fall 2014)
NERF battles mobilize when combined with remote-controlled COMBAT CREATURE robots! Using the handheld remote, fans can activate the all-terrain, 6-legged mobility, shoot Nerf darts up to an impressive 45 feet and use the aiming elevator and 360 degree rotation to hit their targets. Battle friends and activate rapid-fire blasting to shoot up to twelve NERF darts in a row, changing the direction of each shot to keep advancing robots at bay. 6 AA batteries required, not included. Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.
My time with the Nerf Zombie Strike Slingfire. You might even have an idea of the range/accuracy, as I used a GoPro for part of this video.
Now, if only they had 2 of them.
I’ll continue to embed videos here, so make sure to come back to this page!
Nerf Writeup from the American International Toy Fair in New York City, 2014 Vas The Stampede
Nerf N-Strike Elite, Nerf Rebelle, Nerf Sports, Super Soaker, Zombie Strike, Mega, 3rd party licensed electronics, Oh my!
(update!) Here’s a video of the Nerf Slingfire –
https://photos.gstatic.com/media/slideshow.swf 2014 marked my 4th year attending the American International Toy Fair in New York City. I can’t believe it either, honestly. To walk that floor with all the brands, bigwigs, and toys, there’s almost nothing else like it. FAIR WARNING – I have a LOT to say in this post, so there’s a lot of reading (and some pics!) so more after the break –
“Zombie Strike” and “Secrets and Spies” are Nerf’s attempts at telling a narrative, having a backstory to their blasters. These are also attempts to cash in on current pop culture (obviously) trends, but who can blame them? With certain TV shows being so popular and other game types, it was inevitable that Nerf would finally pick up on it and jump in.
Interesting note about the Rebelle for 2014 – compared to the naming schemes for last year, “Pink Crush, “Heartbreaker Bow”, and so on (I think the “Guardian” may have been the main exception) something changed. “Rapid Red”, “Agent Bow” indicate this, although “Diamondista” seems to carry over from last year. “Spylight” could just as easily have fit into the N-Strike line, though maybe as “SpylightFireUltraHyperShot REV-6.”
Word has it research showed girls imagined themselves as spies with last year’s blasters, hence the innovation towards decoders and things. Very retro tech, reminiscent of old sticker collection books I had back in the 80s.(I remember a Super Mario Bros. and Voltron one, specifically. They were awesome.)
If I can highlight some things about the Agent bow…
Integrated Pinpoint sight
It has an actual “nock” to hook onto the string, much detail, such archery. Wow.
It just looks great. Sleek and imposing even, and the bow arm mounted quiver is a really nice addition. (check the gallery).
I did ask to be shot with the Agent Arrows (under protest from my tour guide), but I had to be able to tell you what it’s like to be hit with them. Personally, I didn’t find it any worse than getting shot with a Mega Dart from a Centurion at point blank (ask BasicNerf). The heads are just as soft as Mega Dart whistler heads, the plastic shaft of the arrow is a non-issue (at least for me).
The Sweet Revenge was my favorite from last year, the Agent Bow might be my frontrunner out of Rebelle 2014.
Nerf N-Strike Elite though, is Nerf’s Flagship (at least in my estimation) line and the heavy hitters out of the gate are the Nerf Cam ECS-12 and the Nerf N-Strike Elite Demolisher 2 in 1.
The Nerf Cam ECS-12 is probably the most cost-prohibitive of the bunch. The MSRP is at $79.99, requires 8 AA batteries (flywheels + camera power), includes a 4 GB memory card, and is supposed to hit around 90-95′. A lot of Nerf players may already own GoPro cameras or have other arrangements by this point, so is that range bump enough to pour this much money into just one blaster? Especially given the camera is a 0.3 megapixels?
Nerf provided this video of the Cam(era), and it was honestly better than I expected.
But is it enough? We are still months from seeing a final form of this (in fact, all these blasters) so the jury is still out until the Fall release.
So, Rebelle gets a makeover and a sweet bow, Elite gets a 90′ increase, that leaves Mega and Zombie Strike.
The Thunderbow is HUGE. About the size of my torso. And it will hit 100′. It primes like the Heartbreaker, actually. You pull back on the string, wait for the indicator to tell you you’ve pulled back enough (the arms pull back as well) and release, firing the Mega dart. You can do this up to 5 times before you are empty. Approximately 100′ out of it. My only complaint at this stage is somebody trying to pull a Legolas may suffer wear and tear on their fingers, as right now there is nothing covering the string where your fingers go.As someone who’s fired a lot of Zing arrows, I hope something gets put there before Fall, as the pull is pretty robust.
The Nerf Zombiestrike Slingfire? My favorite so far, simply because I can do this:
Whew! Alright, that’s the showroom.
ICYMI, 3rd party tech made a huge splash at Toy Fair for Nerf this year – Tek Strike is a 3rd party game/setup that promises hit tracking, and utilizes bluetooth connectivity and requires players to be more strategic as you need specialized Nerf darts to play. See my initial writeup HERE Without giving too much away, these folks at Eyespy have a wonderful idea right now, and plenty more wonderful ideas to follow up. I’ll be watching them closely, as I’m genuinely excited about seeing this product and on more than one occasion listening to their pitch I was left speechless. I do have a video that I need to edit as well, so expect that soon.
https://photos.gstatic.com/media/slideshow.swf My press kit didn’t have much in the way of pricing yet, but I’m in contact with Sakar at the moment trying to get some info. According to the rep I spoke with at Toy Fair, a few of these items (including the hands-free walkie talkies) were pretty new, so the info was lacking. I’ll update this post as necessary! And when I have HQ videos.
Make sure to join the discussion at the F2A Facebook page and see more firing videos on my instagram feed.
I’m sure there’s plenty I’ve left out, so make sure to leave a comment if there’s something you’re curious about. ON THAT NOTE: No secret blaster. All the reveals had been done by this Toy Fair, so the Cam was probably the secret blaster at UK Toy Fair. No super secret sizzle video either like when the Hailfire was revealed. No new Nerf Dart Tag and now new Nerf N-Force (unless you want to count the Strikeblade, but that’s under the Zombie Strike brand.) While not outright saying the lines were defunct, there just aren’t any plans right now for either line, and that is indicated by the lack of new product for those lines as of New York Toy Fair.
Nerf Cam ECS (CS?) 12 Footage is live! This looks a bit better than the engadget post from a month or so ago, in that the video isn’t as pixelated (seemingly) as one might expect, and the camera seems to be insulated from the flywheels whirring much better than before.
NERF N-STRIKE ELITE NERF CAM ECS-12 Blaster
(Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $79.99/Available: Fall 14)
Epic NERF shots live on way past the initial blast with the N-STRIKE ELITE NERF CAM ECS-12 blaster! Giving NERF fans the innovation and connectivity they crave, the NERF CAM ECS-12 blaster allows them to capture and share footage of epic battles and missions. The first NERF blaster to feature a built in camera, the NERF CAM ECS-12 blaster sends N-STRIKE ELITE darts flying up to an impressive 90 feet, records awesome NERF missions and lets NERF fans display them instantly on the playback screen or download them to share with friends for major bragging rights. Blaster includes a 4GB memory card which can hold up to 2,000 photos or 3 hours of video, 1.77” color screen, 12 dart clip and 12 N-STRIKE ELITE darts. Eight AA batteries required, not included. Available at most major retailers nationwide and HasbroToyShop.com.
Fresh from the Nerf Showroom at New York Toy Fair! Thanks to the Toy Spy for these exclusive images! I visit the Hasbro showroom tomorrow when the fair opens, so expect more coverage including videos/photos/and more pictures! Click on the pics for more info from the press releases/previous reveals. I expect to have a proper press release on the Attacknids/Combat Creatures after tomorrow.
Once again! These pics came from Toy Spy! I’ll have my own info up later this week. These images came from a separate event, and Toy Fair itself doesn’t start until tomorrow.
Nerf N-Strike Elite Cam CS-12 and the Nerf Demolisher! (click for more info)
New York Toy Fair ended and that leaves a hole in my schedule and a LOT of material to run through. But as always, I’ll do my best.
Nerf-wise, the biggest news to come out of the showroom this year wasn’t some super secret video with a mysterious silhouette. This year Nerf was upfront about where they’re going by revealing their new line with girls in mind, the Nerf Rebelle.
For years, I’ve been running the “Foamme Fatale” gallery on my blog to show that in fact, girls are interested in and play with Nerf toys too. This isn’t, nor should it be a new or surprising development. From Amazons to Samus Aran, females are into the action toys as well. It’s good to see that for a couple of years, Nerf did the research and is now getting this initiative in gear. 1200 girls surveyed to see what it is they wanted out of Nerf blasters, and the Nerf Rebelle line is evidence of that.
Now, I don’t remember, but did anyone see girls in the running for the last user-submitted NDTL? Just putting that out there.
First off, I’m a big fan of the line. I love the functionality, the streamlined feel of the blasters, and the call back to older weaponry (Nerf Crossbow, Bow N Arrow) with some of them. The “Rebelle” (and I think even that’s a bit smart, I believe playing off “reveille”) line will get the same performance as the Elite blasters, and the only difference then is the outside aesthetics, kinda like how boys and girls are different on the outside, but on the inside we’re all able to reach 75′. (Or something like that).
Nerf Rebelle Heartbreaker Bow
Nerf N-Strike Blazin’ Bow
The performance is there for the Rebelles, for sure. And handling the blasters I can tell you the function matches the form. They are sleek, streamlined, feel pretty mobile, and are very eye-catching. All good ingredients for success. Now, at first I was wondering about the pink trim, and “why does the girls stuff have to be pink?” but… it’s what my niece has been looking for. And this is why I say it will sort of challenge gender stereotypes. Sure, pink is a stereotypically feminine color, but remember the original Bow And Arrow(s?) And as cool as some of these blasters are (I refer to the Nerf Alpha Girl) the boys are going to HAVE to get used to a pink blaster.
So, failed argument bemoaning the coloring. Nerf researched high and low for 2 years figuring out what girls wanted, and they wanted pink blasters, accessories, social interaction, the works.
One more note on the pink… the packaging and everything is going to stand out on the shelves. Think about it. You walk down the toy blaster aisle, as a young girl you see aisles and aisles of shooting toys in a sea of blues, greens, yellows, oranges, and all with serious-faced boys firing blasters…. and there it is:
Something different. A pink box, a couple of girls looking like they’re ready to have some fun with blasters. And not just blasters where it’s “oh, these are for boys, but hey girls can play too” it’s FOR you, a female, speaking TO you in the advertising. Images mean everything, and this might be what it will take to get most (remember, research of over 1200 girls for 2 years) girls to give the blaster aisle a 2nd look for something directed at them.
Marketing theories aside, the Nerf Rebelle line is only one hint of a trend to bridge a gap between boys and girls in the active toy department. Not just Nerf, but Zing Toys made a pink bow called the Huntress:
As well as included some female characters into their marketing collateral.
What does this mean? Attempts to appeal to the association to characters such as “Katniss Everdeen” from The Hunger Games and “Merida” from Disney’s Brave. No joke, a number of the pitches I heard during Toy Fair drew correlations to creating strong female empowerment imagery to associate to one’s toys. Or it was applying technology for existing “Boys'” toys to “Girls'” toys.
What does this mean for our blasters? Nothing alarming, don’t get me wrong. What this means is that girls have been recognized as a missed opportunity in the action toy department, and Nerf’s Rebelle and Zing’s Huntress are the start. We might see more of this female-oriented development from other companies in the future should these particular initiatives succeed.
The OTHER point, is with the social climate being what it is right now in regards to firearms, bows and arrows and weaponry of that category are the 2nd trend I’m wondering about. That’s why you see a Blazin’ Bow after a series of triggered blasters from Nerf, the Rebelle line is bows and crossbows (for the most part), and why Zing is what I believe is the dark horse of the category with their bow-centric toys. Sure Rebelle has the revolver, but unlike the Nerf Elite series, between the aesthetics and the color scheme, Rebelle seems like it is trying really hard to shake the image of a modern firearm, with all the smooth aesthetics and bow-type functions in spite of the triggered system (that’s why the Heartbreaker is the big item from the Nerf Rebelle line; it’s a non-triggered toy I think and thus less of a firearm. And Katniss.) POINT #2:
My Last Dart has already spread the news that Nerf is going to make discs that serve different functions, one of which is to get the discs to fly faster and farther. Knowing that they are already pushing the envelope with the blasters themselves, this makes sense that they decided a back door way to try and get higher performance with the ammo. The Elite darts were only the start (essentially modified stock streamlines). Now you have what could be a precedent for different dart types as well.
Other companies do this now. Zing has two versions of arrows; the long-range version and a suction cup version. Each gives a player a choice on how they want to play, so I would not be surprised to see more of this, with different types of ammo that might fall within safety regs but are different from foam darts. See: the TekRecon, Vapor blasters, and Xploderz ammo. Heck, Marshmallowville is out there with Marshmallow shooters too. Rubber bands, water pellets, marshmallows… smaller ammo than darts, flying farther, and higher ammo capacity than Nerf. (TekRecon’s Havok is going to boast 90 shots per reload, and similar with Vapor and Xploderz.)
Head spinning yet? Girls are a new market, look for new innovations in ammo types more than the blasters, Max Force and the first round of water pellet blasters was the start. Possibly blasters are going to start looking crazier and crazier, so they look less like real firearms. Ultimately though, Nerf still has one more (or 3) trick up its sleeve…. the as-yet unrevealed blasters that are under NDA right now, but being hinted at. Nerf’s still THE brand to contend with, and we’ll just have to see what happens next. Lock and load.
PrimteTime Toys (more foam dart shooters, but they’re revealing more later this year)
Tech 4 Kids To Revolutionize Boys Action Experience with Tek Recon!
With innovations never seen before, Tech 4 Kids is set to revolutionize the action blaster category with Tek Recon! Tek Recon is a new line of blasters that integrate cutting edge design and the latest in gaming technology to provide the ultimate targeting and boys action experience. By bringing blasting capabilities to new heights, and by adding revolutionary app-enhanced gameplay features comparable to those of sophisticated video games, Tek Recon truly takes the category to the next level. Simply attach your smartphone to the blaster’s mount and you’re ready for Tek Recon Advanced Battle Systems that include GPS radar, voice communication capabilities and tons more gaming features!
Tek Recon blasters are the ONLY in their category to feature:
App-enhanced video game quality multi-player battles and team play, in REAL LIFE!
High performance rapid fire blasting (rubber rounds) with real recoil kickback
Additional features include:
Futuristic blaster design
Massive capacity of rounds (30 with Hammer Head, 90 with Havok), reusable with no mess
Long blasting distance with modifiable blasting modes
Fast trigger blasting with quick clip reload
Advanced Battle Systems:
The optional smart phone enhanced features are industry leading in bringing video game like experiences into real world play and include:
Reality /Digital Convergence (RDC) to capture real world actions through the lens of a smart device jam packed with popular, in demand gameplay features
Heads-up Display (HUD) with customizable vision modes, sound effects, and scopes for enhanced scouting of targets and objectives
Massive closed circuit gaming experience where players can use GPS to track the movement of teammates and opponents through Tek Recon Radar
Downloadable upgrades and links to a global social community, where screen captures can be shared, personal stats can be tracked, and team leader boards populated
Flashlight for night vision, surveillance video and camera, inter-team walkie talkie features
3 Popular, Familiar, and Exciting Game Modes:
Isolation: every person for themself tagging battle – last person standing
Team supremacy: team battle, eliminate opponent team through tactical maneuvers and tagging
Intel recovery: team reconnaissance mission – locate and scan all flags before
The app works with iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, and iPod Touch devices as well as select Android devices.
Available Fall 2013 Suggested retail price: $19.99 (Hammer Head), $34.99 (Havok) Ages 8+
Fantastic video from the The Toy Spy walking the wall at New York Toy Fair, learning about the new Nerf Rebelle line coming later on from Nerf.
The Heartbreaker Bow, Nerf Alpha Girl Mission Kit, Crossbow, Pink Crush, and Sneak-Attackers are all on the way, so keep your eyes open, ladies! Nerf’s been doing the research for 2 years with 1200 girls (per the video) and this is what they developed.