The Nerf-Fortnite partnership keeps marching along and producing even more conversions from in-game weaponry to real-life foam flingers. The BASR-L was shown off by Hasbro at Toy Fair earlier this year. If you’re a fan of the games, it’s a nice blaster. If you’re just looking at it as a blaster, however…$40 is a bit steep. It’s still a fun blaster, but due to some compatibility and dart issues, you might want to leave it on the shelf (or else buy, then modify it).
Big and Goofy
The BASR-L comes in pieces; otherwise, that would make for really awkward packaging. Similar to the Longstrike in shape, it has the stock separate from the rest of the blaster. Simply press the two pieces together to lock the tabs in place and get a complete blaster. The barrel is not removable, however.
Upon assembly, you’ll find various levels of comfort. The stock itself is large, and long enough to be comfortable. The main handle is adequate (thumbhole stock designs are hard), but it’s not something that will make your hand hurt after extended play. Also, there’s the need to match the in-game model! There’s plenty of space up front for your off-hand to hold the blaster, and the entire thing feels really light. There’s not enough weight to make any part of the blaster become uncomfortable over time.
The single Nstrike rail on top also hides the jam door. It’s hard to use if you have a large attachment in the way (you know, like the included scope), but it’s still there in case of jams. The left side of the blaster features a jam button as well, which allows retracting the breech even if the blaster is primed.
The blaster is bolt-action, and indeed comes with two bolt handle that snap into place on either side, allowing both lefties and righties to use the blaster. However, since they snap into place, they don’t come back out without a lot of force (and possibly breaking tabs). So if you want to modify anything, I’d recommend doing so before adding both tabs.
Using the Blaster
Shockingly, a blaster stylized as a sniper rifle has slamfire! It’s not especially useful, considering the method of priming and the included six dart clip, but it’s a fun feature to have. If you have larger clips to load, the feature would be come more useful. Well, it would…but then we find a major flaw.
It may just be for aesthetic reasons, but the bottom slope on the blaster in the area of the magazine well prevents several types of drums and longer stick magazines from loading properly! You can, of course, remove some of the plastic to fix the issue…but I feel like Hasbro could have easily justified tweaking the design to allow compatibility. After all, eighteen round magazines (one of the mainstays of the line) are still sold separately, and when those can’t load…you have a small issue, to say the least. I wouldn’t be shocked if it got a mid-life redesign, like the magazine well of the Recon MkII did to fix a similar issue.
Finally, the blaster seems to not like all dart types. The Elite darts it comes with? They fire without issue. Accustrike darts? Dart Zone? Anything else? Due to the long barrel, it seems like anything with a large dart head (including Hasbro darts) hits the side of the barrel and loses velocity. You could, of course, open the blaster and remove the barrel. But at that point, you’re just throwing away plastic.
Using the included darts, I averaged 68fps and up to two darts per second using slamfire. However, the velocity of other darts varies considerably, due to the issues discussed above.
Modification and Internals
Admittedly, I was a bit lazy on this part. However, if you feel like opening up the blaster (and possibly fixing the issues discussed above), just watch this video!
The BASR-L is a fun blaster, but it has some flaws that make the $40 seem too high. That said, if you don’t mind opening it up and fixing a few things, it could be a good purchase. But even then, you couldn’t be blamed for skipping it. You shouldn’t have to remove the barrel of a “sniper” to ensure that all darts work.