I was recently contacted by Newisland, a blaster brand that is not particularly well-known in the west, but has nonetheless generated some buzz for their quirky Alloy Transformable Toys Dinosaur Series Toy Blasters. I’ve seen the Newisland blasters, but always assumed they were designed primarily for children, so I didn’t give them much thought. But now I’m told they had a new type of dart and tactical vest designed for older players. Newisland, you have my attention.
So who or what is “Newisland,” anyway? Well, the short version is that Newisland is a toy company based in Shenzhen China. According to Newisland, they’ve been doing business on Amazon since 2013. And the Amazon reviews for their Dinosaur Series blasters are actually quite good. But I like my Transformers to be Transformers, and my dart blasters to be dart blasters. They seem like cool toys, but not anything one would choose to take to a Nerf war. And to be honest, their marketing could use some improvement for western audiences. For instance, the Newisland name implies that it should be pronounced “New Island,” but they tell me it’s intentionally one word. And the mission statement from the Newisland website only states that they want to make quality toys and provide good service (admirable goals, though they may be):
Inspiration from easy life. All we do is to make technology simpler and more enjoyable for customers with our unique design and reliable quality. We are committed to providing each customer with the highest standard of customer service and hope that you have a wonderful online shopping experience with us!
But language barriers and limited product offerings aside, the latest offerings from Newisland have actually caught my eye. They are releasing a new series of high-value foam darts (which recently went live for purchase on Amazon), and a never-before-seen tactical vest which is debuting right here on Blaster Hub.
The “N-Strike foam darts” (attention Hasbro trademark lawyers) have an MSRP of $14.99 for 200 darts (60 suction, 140 standard), which is very cost competitive. And right now, at least, they are just $13.99 for 200 Newisland darts on Amazon with free Prime shipping, which is even better. I’ve been told the suction darts are different from most suction darts on the market because the ones from Newisland have “great power to stick to smooth surface even shoot aside.” And who doesn’t want “great power to stick,” amiright?
Of equal interest is the Newisland “Elite Tactical Vest,” which has just been listed on Amazon. The price is $13.99 for the Newisland vest, which compares favorably to the $28 official Nerf version from Hasbro, but is slightly more expensive than other non-Nerf brands like Pinksee and Vorosy ($10-$12 on Amazon). However, Newisland tells me “people comment that vests sales now are too tiny for them, we make it more adjustable in range by extending the length Velcro belt.” So that sounds to me like they’re aiming for a slightly older (or slightly portlier) demographic with this vest, which should make it appealing to many players for whom other vests are simply not a good fit. And I’m also told the Newisland vest has, “more details in processing,” which I’m guessing means it might be constructed to a slightly higher standard (there’s that language barrier again).
Samples of both the Newisland darts and vest are on the way, so I should be able to see first-hand if the Newisland products are a good option for more serious players–something that could help vault Newisland further into the consciousness of older, more hardcore enthusiats. In the meantime, I’d like to thank Newisland for reaching out. I’m always interested to see if non-mainstream brands can outdo the big boys by releasing superior products at lower prices–regardless of their origin. And Newisland certainly seems eager to do just that. We’ll be anxious to see if they’ve succeeded with their new darts and vest!