Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Nerf Blasters, Inside and Out

Just because there's more plastic on this Longshot,
doesn't mean it's a good idea...
In following the trend this week of posting Tactical advice for Nerf, today's advice centers itself around the blaster.  It's sort of tough to go into a Nerf Battle without a Nerf Blaster, isn't it?  There are so many different types that can go with different styles, but I thought I could help by offering ideas to improve your blaster to better your performance in games.  Once again, my focus on this will be for indoor games since I don't play Nerf outdoors (unless I'm running tests).

Whatever style you have adopted, your blaster probably reflects this.  The key to having a good blaster is having the specs that match what you want to do, since everyone plays differently.  For instance, if you're the type who likes to spam darts everywhere, you probably have a high RoF blaster with plenty of ammo at your disposal.  If you like to spam darts but you're using a single-shot front-loading pistol... you probably need to find something else!  Matching a blaster to your style, whatever it is, is important.  Don't sacrifice the way you play by being tied to one blaster because it "looks cool" or something like that.

Assuming you've got the right combination, now it's up to you to get your blaster working at peak performance.  There are plenty of overhauls and big-time mods you could do to it, but not everyone has the skills and materials to make a Brass Breech Longshot.  You may even find that your blaster doesn't need any modification from it's stock form if it's working for how you play.  That being said, I know there's a lot of prospective modders out there who are afraid to dig into their blasters because they don't want to "break" them.  In my experience, I've seen tons of folks saying they "broke" their blaster because they lost parts.  There's really no excuse for this unless you're trying to disassemble a Deploy while free-falling from an aircraft.  You can't expect to know how to put it back together if you dig into the blaster taking things apart mindlessly. Keep a log of where parts went, or take things out and place them in order of how you took them out.  Use some kind of method to track the parts you've removed so when it comes time to put it back together, you can simply reverse the process to ensure that it's done right.  There's really no excuse I can find for someone to NOT be able to properly disassemble a Nerf Blaster as long as you've taken the appropriate steps to ensure that it'll go back together.

AR's out!  So simple on the Spectre and Mav
There are basic modifications I do to every blaster I get.  Most of the time, I don't bother firing the blaster in it's stock form when I get a new one!  The basic one to cover are Air Restrictor removal.  This mod alone will increase your blaster's power ten fold.  There are lots of options outside of that for your blaster, but I won't cover how to do them.  Between NM&R, ModWorks, N-Rev, and Nerf Haven, if you can't find a tutorial on how to increase the performance of your blaster... the internet must be broken.  I started out using these as resources to learn how to perform mods successfully.  You'll learn for things to look for like an Air Release to seal up, plungers to pad, springs to swap, and everything else under the sun.  Check out those sites if you need a guide for how to do what you want to.

On the outside of your blaster, make it work for YOU.  A Paintjob can make your blaster stand out, but a useful mod like exterior ammo storage, a flashlight, or a modified grip can really make it tailored to how you play.  For instance, I put fuzzy-side-up velcro panels on the outside of my Dart Tag blasters so I can store ammo on them during games.  I've modified a Raider's pump-action handle to be a shotgun-style since it was more comfortable for me.  I've dremeled out spots in the Maverick's turret to make loading and unloading darts easier.  There are all kinds of external modifications that can improve the way your blaster functions for your personal preferences.  It's up to YOU to decide what you need.  Don't just do a mod because "it looks cool" if it won't help you out.

Going back to N-Strike accessories, there are a few useful ones that you can take advantage of.  Shields (if your group allows them) can be incredibly helpful, and a lifesaver in those do-or-die firefight situations.  Again, the bottom line is that as long as it ACTUALLY helps you, whatever you can use to win is a good accessory.  I will put my "Stamp of lame" on N-Strike Scopes.  Don't try to convince yourself that they do anything more than make your blaster look cool.  They can only worsen your vision and give you tunnel vision in a game where you need to keep tabs on all your corners.  So be smart about what accessories you use.

Tomorrow we'll discuss strategies you can use to keep you in the game and keep your opponents OUT!


  1. There are a couple downsides to removing air restrictors though: It makes your blaster more than a tenfold louder. It also causes damage to the blaster when dry firing. (really? Tenfold more powerful? More like twice and that's stretching it a lot.)

    1. you can quiet it by padding the plunger duh plus some people kno better than to dry fire or to pad b4 dry firing