When Prime Time Toys (maker of Dart Zone Blasters) filed trademarks for “Hydro Strike” and “Pulsar Pro” last year, I took note of them…and then forgot about it. However, after a certain video review launched on Monday, I quickly discovered that, over the past few weeks, PTT has been setting up social media and a product launch at Walmart. Their website, Youtube channel, and other media all quietly updated on Feb. 11-12, with social media efforts ongoing (Instagram and TikTok have no activity yet, for example).
Now that we have product info online, let’s take a look!
Context: Gel Blasters. Gel Blasters Everywhere.
For the past few years, gel blasters have exploded in popularity while also (in some locales) facing legal threats. Gel blasters have often served as a substitute for airsoft in many countries, especially in Southeast Asia and Australia. Even so, due to so many gel blasters looking like firearms, bans have resulted in many Australian states, China, and other places.
Stateside, however, some interesting trends have developed. The aptly named Gel Blaster launched with a Kickstarter in 2020. SplatRBall launched soon after, and the brand recently launched its second and third models. (I have the first, but an terribly behind at writing the review). With these blasters, the manufacturers have leaned towards designs that are clearly toy-like. Even if you’re launching water beads at 200fps!
As you can imagine, Walmart would want to have an exclusive line to grab some of that market (they’ve carried some of the SplatRBall blasters and accessories previously). Since Prime Time Toys already makes plenty of blasters for the Adventure Force line, it would seem they got the nod for making a gel blaster line, as well.
Of course, gel blasting isn’t a pick-up game; the need to hydrate ammo for hours means you have to plan ahead. But once that’s done, the blasting looks to be fun!
The first blaster available (mine are currently being shipped) is the Nebula Pro, a manually primed, spring-powered blaster. $25 gets a blaster holding 120 water beads, eye protection, 1000 rounds, and a container for hydrating and loading. The box claims velocities up to 160fps, though Drac’s video showed shots clearly exceeding that. You won’t win any rate of fire contests, but as long as you can aim, one shot is all you need.
The Nebula has two accessory rails, and appears to be similar in size to the (dart-blasting) Blitzfire X2. I’ll be excited to try this blaster out AND to open it up.
The Pulsar Pro, meanwhile, serves as the $84 flagship. It fits the “serious” gel blaster mold in layout, with the adjustable stock, front-mounted battery compartment, and motorized ammo magazine. The paint scheme, however, is anything but serious, and I’m wishing it was an option for Prime Time Toys’ dart blasters, too. Considering the similar power source (a 2S Li-ion battery), modes of operation (off, semi, full auto) and blaster layout, it’s essentially a direct competitor to the SplatRBall line. Once this becomes available for retail, I really want to make a side-by-side comparison.
At Last, Accessories
I’ll include the links for the relevant parts, like magazines and batteries.