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The Bulldog is Nerf’s second Mega Accustrike blaster to hit the market, following the relative “thud” that was the Mega Thunderhawk – one blaster I never got around to reviewing, but never felt guilty about because it wasn’t that good.
The Bulldog is objectively a better blaster that, while still featuring gimmicks, performs decently well, especially with the Mega Accustrike darts. However, I didn’t see much difference in performance when compared to the last three-shot Mega blaster, the Tribreak. At the very least, at $20 it’s a solid pistol for the Mega line, given the current trends in blaster pricing.
Expand and Blast
The Bulldog comes in package fully extended, with the stock set back and the foregrip flipped down. The dart storage piece and flip-up sight, however, are within the packaging – don’t throw them away! It also comes with six Mega Accustrike darts. The body of the blaster itself is roughly the same size as a Retaliator or Stryfe. With the stock extended, it’s the right size for kids, but a bit small for an adult frame.
Out of the box, the Bulldog shows some interesting design choices. The “deploy” button sits on the right side of the blaster, and when pressed lets the user extend and retract the various features. The blaster’s main grip is a bit on the small side, especially with the contours on the finger side. In addition, the space in front of the trigger is also on the small side; it at least features an open trigger design, so there’s hope for larger fingers.
The front sight has various level marks on it, like you’d see on a real ladder sight. Since the Bulldog comes with Mega Accustrike darts, however, the ladder sight actually becomes useful in aiming your darts, after some practice.
If you don’t like the ladder sight, you can simply pull it out of its socket, and use the top-mounted tactical rail instead.
The front foregrip is simple in shape, with light texturing, and while it’s not the most comfortable, it’s adequate.
The Bulldog is similar in setup to the Tribreak, albeit with all the pieces in line instead of at an angle. The plunger tube sits at the top, and feeds into a Smart AR assembly that fires whatever dart is next in line. The plunger head also doubles as the catching surface, as we’ve seen in many recent Hasbro-built blasters. The spring inside doesn’t feel especially strong, but it serves its purpose. Underneath all the bits that provide power are the racks and pinions used for extending the stock and foregrip.
It should be noted that, if you choose to do anything to the inside of the Bulldog, you will need to reshape a few things. The spring inside actually reaches full compression upon priming. In addition, there are several ridges built into the plunger head and the spring rest. They don’t appear to be structurally necessary, but they do result in it being impossible to stack an extra spring over the stock one. As always, blaster modification is a known part of the hobby, and is not encouraged by Hasbro or any other manufacturer. It just so happens that things are sometime built to discourage that.
On average, using the included Nerf Accustrike darts, the Nerf Bulldog averaged 67fps with the first barrel, and 59fps with the final barrel – due to the smart AR, this drop is expected. It’s also about the same performance as the Tribreak.
I got up to two darts per second in rate of fire, but since there’s only three shots, that’s not saying a lot. Reloading is improved, however, by the included three dart storage clip.
The Nerf Mega Bulldog is a decent blaster, and it does a better job of showing the effectiveness of the (more expensive) Mega Accustrike darts. It’s a bit small in some areas for adult hands, but it fills its role as a pistol nicely. In addition, the expanding platform gimmicks work and don’t feel flimsy in any way. I still personally prefer the Tribreak, but on its merits, the Bulldog is a good choice for a small Mega blaster.