Here's the bit I've observed, and I'll use this bit from the r/Nerf page on Reddit from torukmakto4.
Sorry to be a pessimist but what is the allure of the LS system in this day and age? Elite CS is just as easy to work on, and just as rewarding for stock dart users in the end, and actually easier for noobs. The LS requires a lot of work to be viable in the stock dart world due to that pushback/reliability mess. If you want one to do a Retal's job, you either need a breech system, or you need to be the first to develop a conversion of the LS chamber to swinging-door.
For stefan use, LS are a bit of a headache and have a number of mechanical shortcomings, and tend not to be cost effective. A lot of factors are going against the system from magazine cost/availability for stefans to weak bolt carriers breaking to very expensive aftermarket parts, and you hardly ever see a usable/reasonable build cost one shooting more than 200fps.
For aesthetics and ergonomics they are very dated and clearly from a prior era where Hasbro Nerf was missing some modern lessons learned. Just look at the grip, the stock, the forend. Ouch.After reading this, I kind of sat back and thought "you know... he's got a REAL good point there."
I've seen a lot of experienced modders debate it, too. Some of us seem to get caught a little more in the nostalgia and glory of this "Legendary" N-Strike Blaster... and they tend to say "YAY! Now people can know the joys of modding like I did!" Others are forward-thinking and can use modern Nerf examples of improvement to pick this big hunk of plastic to pieces. Both sides make a lot of sense though.
Elite Longshot vs Nerf Retaliator". When the Elite lineup was first introduced, I decided to modify a blue Longshot to look and perform like an Elite blaster would. At the time, the 75 Ft Range Claims the Elite line was boasting was my target. It didn't take much to get my old blue blaster to sling darts like that. The usual AR Removals, Dead Space fill, and spring upgrades easily made the Longshot shoot to 75 feet flat. When I finally got a Retaliator to match up against the Longshot I had built, I found that the 75 Ft ranges were more of an angled range instead of the flat ranges I was aiming for.
However, when I proceeded to modify my Retaliator with some simple mods... I quickly found out that there was a lot of potential sitting inside a smaller blaster. With the same modifications (and a weaker spring), the modified Retaliator was slinging just like my Elite Longshot. There are lots of blasters that I can think of, Retaliator included, that are more user-friendly and just as accessible to current Nerf modders that can be good to the modding community. At the rate that people are pumping out reviews and mod tutorials and all kinds of stuff, the argument of "There's so much out there for the Longshot" doesn't hold much weight anymore. It also means that there's less new ground to break with the Longshot, which I think is part of the excitement about modding new blasters. Uncharted territory, doing stuff that hasn't been done or wasn't able to be done before... that kind of thing has been wrung out of the Longshot for eons.