|Nerf N-Strike Elite Rhino Fire. 90′ range. MSRP: $100.00 Available Fall 2014.|
UPDATE: Here’s the full press release straight from Nerf:
NERF N-STRIKE ELITE RHINO-FIRE Blaster
(Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $99.99/Available: Fall 14)
Dominate the competition with the biggest, baddest NERF blaster yet! The N-STRIKE ELITE RHINO-FIRE blaster is the first fully automatic NERF blaster featuring rapid-fire, double barrel blasting, an amazing 50 dart capacity and two N-STRIKE ELITE dart drums, turning ordinary battles into extraordinary ones. The epic RHINO-FIRE blaster sends darts soaring impressive ELITE distances of up to 90 feet, and features both a front handle for mobility and tripod to ensure awesome accuracy. Includes 50 N-STRIKE ELITE darts. Six “D” batteries required, not included. Available exclusively at Walmart.
The story so far:
Available Fall 2014 (most likely around the holidays)
As has been heavily covered already (seriously, I’m basically the last one to post about this), Mattel’s jumping into the blaster market (again!) with a product called BOOMco. I heard rumblings about this at New York Toy Fair, amidst other companies and apparently the group at dartblaster.de heard about it during the International Toy Fair Nürnberg. Not having anything solid to go by, I haven’t been able to say much at all about it. Mattel was also booked solid by the time I found out, so I wasn’t able to bug them.
Proper news broke on Reddit – MarcusH26051
ANYWAY, here we go.
“Twisted Spinner Blaster – BOOMco. Blasters – Mattel 2014”
“Rapid Madness, Twisted Spinner, Farshot & Clipfire – BOOMco. Blasters – Mattel 2014”
Much EXTREME, such stunt. Wow.
The incoming available product line can be found here on Amazon.
|Clipstrike – Cause it has a carabiner! A belt clip! Geddit? It also looks like it folds up, no?|
|The Farshot (shield deployed)|
|No cross-branding here! Dart refills (w/Smart-Stic Tech) look longer than Nerf darts, most likely not compatible.|
|Dual Defender pack|
|Additional targets & other accessories (see below) will be for sale|
|Twisted Spinner blaster – NOT to be confused with a dilophosaur.|
First things first. No relation –
All joking aside, I’m a bit surprised and really interested at Mattel even getting near blasters again. I want to expect a knock-down, drag-out slugfest of innovation in blasters now that 2 of the top toy makers out there are on a collision course. They rule the roost with Barbie and Monster High, have some great games with Uno and Apples to Apples, but blasters and playing with blasters has been synonymous with Nerf. The other brands (not necessarily blasters) on the market are carving a great niche (Zing, Marshmallow Shooters, Power Poppers, Tek Recon come to mind) but admittedly, a blaster brand/company with the resources and deep pockets like Mattel has been long missing. Nerf, long synonymous with blasters for many years might have that challenger.
One thing I can tell, not all the blasters are triggered. The Twisted Spinner blaster isn’t, and has a… different kind of rotation mech. The Rapid Madness does have a trigger though, but it also uses a clip reminiscent of a Powerclip/Magstrike (additional clips are sold separately).
Some quick specs:
– Blasters should hit around 70′ (not sure if this is for all of them, but it’s claims are close to N-Strike Elite)
– Darts use “Smart Stick” Tech to show hits, supposed to be used with the shields/targets that also stick to surfaces. As shown in the videos, the targets can be worn on clothes to optimize stickability.
– Eye protection, 2 in 1 bandolier, extra darts, targets, and clips will be sold separately.
– The shields are used to protect and collect, catch your opponent’s darts so you can fire them back. I guess that helps cut down on dart sweeps…. maybe? The shields are fixed to the blasters via tactical rail.
– Interesting bit, if you watch the videos from the pros in their interviews, one of them mentions how you don’t really know where the darts are going, adding to the satisfaction when you DO get a hit. Testament to the accuracy? Who knows. Honestly, that won’t be a confirmed thing until these come out Summer 2014.
– Mattel looks to be going big – Nerfnation meet the BOOMco League (and win a “Boom Box” while you’re there.)
Mattel has a reputation for putting out strong, quality products. Can’t attest that the reputation upholds though until these are out. The videos however make a good number of promises, and I will admit with Mattel’s name involved, I am just a touch less skeptical than I would normally be. Given the past incarnations of sticky ammo from other brands though, I wonder how those new darts will work on cloth and skin. But wondering is about all I can do, along with the rest of you, until these come out and hopefully I can get my hands on them. BUT, with the possible competitiveness between these two powerhouse toy companies… I truly hope it’s us the consumers who win out. With each trying to outdo the other we might see some of the best blasters to date in performance, quality, and features.
Lock and load, things just might get interesting.
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.
Tek Recon was a bit of a find for me last year at Toy Fair. A year after the Kickstarter and subsequent release, what have they been up to? The Tek Recon Predator.
- MSRP: $49.99
- Ammo Capacity: 100 (50 rounds on each side of the magazine)
- Range: 100′
- Removable stock, sight(s), LED light on the front (all picatinny compatible)
- New style magazine (Interesting note, the Havok magazine will work in the Predator, but the Predator magazine is not backwards compatible)
- New style cradle, a lot more robust than the original. This one features a HUGE metal screw to fix the mobile device holder in place.
|Old style cradle|
|New style cradle|
The prototype fired using the pump grip (edit: there will be trigger this time, the Predator will only fire using the pump grip. The trigger shown in the picture is for the light) and it had some heft. The rubber end of the stock was great as before, so no complaints there.
As has been the case from the beginning, the folks at Tek Recon I spoke with (Harold, Steve, and Graeme) were all receptive to my critiques to the Hammer Head and Havok, and reminded me that information like that is important to their design process. As their first foray into blasters, they realize there’s work to be done, and they welcome it. For the record, did you answer their request for suggestions on Facebook?
As previously reported, there aren’t just new blasters but ammo types as well in the works. These will either affect rate of fire or range, so we’ll just have to see. As it looks, Tech4Kids is still strongly behind Tek Recon to bring the best experience for the players. Judging from Toy Fair, their energy into the brand is on the right track, and I’m looking forward to seeing this in the Fall in its Final Form.
Tek Recon broke out at last year’s Toy Fair with it’s app, new styled, reusable rubber ring NRG ammo, and promises of high capacity and high ranges mixed with video game FPS action. The Hammer Head and the Havok generated a lot of buzz via Kickstarter and E3, with some astounding community outreach there and through Facebook.
That was the past though, and now for New York Toy Fair 2014, Tek Recon brings you… the Predator. They sent out a press release around this AM, and here are some highlights!
From the press release –
“The Predator features rapid slam firing, with ranges exceeding 100 feet. It holds up to 100 ‘NRG’ rounds, more than any other reusable ammo blaster. To help enhance the Tek Recon experience, a newly designed magazine that allows for rapid loading firing will be introduced to enhance the battle experience. The Predator comes equipped with six accessories; including scopes and LED targeting technology that can be customized and mounted on tactical rails. ….In addition to the Predator blaster, new accessories for 2014 include different performance ‘NRG’ rounds, like Long and Soft shots. These special rounds come in a variety of colors and provide more customization for the fans.”
So there you have it. The special rounds of varying styles that dartblaster.de showed, and a new blaster. I’m guessing I’ll get a look at the new cradle too. Should make for an interesting Toy Fair and year in blasters overall. Thoughts? I got some clarification, and they’re referring to this being more rounds than any other Tek Recon blaster, as the Hailfire has a max of 144 rounds.
Anyway, thoughts? How have you liked Tek Recon thus far?
Dartblaster.de saw this at the Nuremberg Toy Fair, here’s the press release from Nerf!
NERF ZOMBIE STRIKE DOUBLESTRIKE Blaster
(Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $9.99/Available: Fall 14)
When zombies are on the loose, double dart firing power is a necessity. Load two ZOMBIE STRIKE darts into the DOUBLESTRIKE blaster, pull back on the hammer mechanism, and fire to unleash both darts in a row! Blaster includes two ZOMBIE STRIKE darts. Available at most retailers nationwide and Hasbrotoyshop.com.
“Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war…” – Julius Caesar: Act 3, Scene 1, page 13
And Engadget sure did. They posted Yet Another Nerf Exclusive and it was the N-Strike Elite NERF Cam ECS-12 Blaster. No press release, but as discussed on my Facebook page (join the conversation! “Like” me!) here is the story so far:
- Integrated camera (!) – 0.3 megapixels (urk) at 20 fps(urkx2), comes with 4 GB SD card (ok).
- MSRP: $75 (?!)
- 8 (!?!) AA batteries (4 for the camera, 4 for the blaster)
- Flywheels (dat accelerator trigger)/semiauto (but looks like a Rapidstrike, no?)
- Allegedly hits up to 90′ (probably angled)
|Photo courtesy of engadget. Opted for this one because it’s the real life prototype they used. Final will have a clear magazine and blue trim.|
Holy carp, $75? The biggest complaint I’ve been receiving is that is just too much $$$ for a camera that isn’t even a single megapixel. Furthermore, even if it is for kids (which it is), that’s a lot for an 8 year old’s toy who either has a mobile device of some sort or some other camera in this day and age. Even if it is integrated, that price is so darn high against other tech toys with better resolution. Regardless of the blaster hitting 90′ (the Elite line originally touted 75′ ranges) I can’t see telling anyone to pay for the camera AND blaster when the camera is of such low quality. Engadget’s piece also has a video, and…. well, I hope the camera gets an improvement from this prototype to the final version. The flywheels and camera each require 4 AA batteries, so there’s an additional cost right there.
Also, the proximity of the camera to the motors. The engadget video illustrates it perfectly: “VRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR” is what I heard.
Otherwise, the aesthetics and power boost (hopefully) are the better parts I can see about this blaster. While I can’t advocate strapping an expensive iPhone or iPod Touch to the top of your blaster (personally, I use a GoPro, but that’s me. Yes, maybe the camera will provide a tactical advantage cornering and yes, the camera integrated into the shell is more streamline, but a Rapidstrike is considerably less and full auto. If you need practice with trigger control, then this is more your style unless you would rather get a Stryfe.
So I’m ambivalent about this blaster. I want to love the way it looks, but I don’t know if that’s enough for me. For $75 I could buy a Rapidstrike or Stryfe and extra darts. I can remove whatever camera I’m using to put on other blasters or for a project unrelated to Nerf. But for the Nerf Cam? Thumb middle of the road until the final version. Hopefully this will be available at New York Toy Fair, and I’ll get a better look then.
G’luck in your struggles!
London Toy Fair 2014 – Thoughts on the Nerf overview from UK Nerf
UK NERF was at the London Toy Fair this week, and posted up a report of what Hasbro had on display. Hasbro sent out exclusive release info already on the Nerf Zombie Strike Slingfire, N-Strike Mega Thunderbow, N-Strike Elite Demolisher, and Rebelle Agent Bow.
UK Nerf, was able to try them out. Make sure to read the entire report, but here are some choice bits:
About the Slingfire:
“About the same size as the Sledgefire and roughly the same weight. This was designed to be used one handed so the balance is spot on. You can flick it to prime it and it lands neatly in your hand so rapid fire with this technique would be possible with a little practice, keeping the other hand free for a secondary or to reload.”
” The Grenade launcher is not detachable, nor can it be without a lot of work (as far as I could see). It is fairly heavily integrated into the shell and I think if it were removable, simply using it would wrench it off the rail anyway.” Word has it the Demolisher may be full auto due to the popularity of the Rapidstrike, so that remains to be seen.
Go read the rest if you want to know more! It sounds promising though, and I am looking forward to getting a turn at these come New York Toy Fair. UK Nerf mentions a total of 10 releases, so it’s bound to be a busy year. No word on N-Force or Dart Tag though, we’ll have to wait and see.
I’d really love to say more and speculate, but honestly there’s not much to say without the blasters. It’s a little weird to see the Thunderbow reliant on the bow arm as part of the priming mech, unlike the Big Bad Bow or BnA, where the bow arms were extraneous. The Demolisher is going to be fun I think, and I really want to know if the diameter of the missile is the same as the Mega darts. I strongly think the Rebelle Agent Bow is going to be the dark horse of the new releases, with the new arrows (tipped something like ball, per UK Nerf). Anyway, have fun with the info! It looks like Hasbro didn’t allow video or photos at all in their showroom hence the lack of images and photos from anybody. UK Nerf does have some new angles though. Thanks to them for taking time out of their lives to make the trip!
Lock and Load.
|A shot from last year’s New York Toy Fair|
Fresh from the London Toy Fair, UK Nerf posted a press release from the London Toy Fair. Besides the already revealed blasters, there was one more, the Nerf Rebelle Agent Bow!
Ages 8 years & up·
Available: Autumn 2014
The Nerf Rebelle Agent bow is perfect for high-profile missions that require accuracy and skill. Release the string and watch as the first ever Nerf Rebelle foam-dart arrows soar up to 85 feet across the sky making a whistling sound! For added precision, the Agent Bow features an electronic glowing red dot that provides better aiming accuracy with every shot.