*Author’s note: I did receive a Spectrum as a free sample from Prime Time Toys; thanks for letting me get an early peek!
The Spectrum, an online-only blaster from Walmart, costs $25 (plus batteries). It’s not only Dart Zone’s interpretation of the Stryfe platform, it’s also their first “regular” product outside the Pro series to use Nerf-compatible magazines. It’s a shame that it’s only online (for now), because it’s one of the best blasters that Dart Zone has made, and one that seriously outshines the current Nerf offering.
Well, it’s been a nice week for doing blaster reviews. Not only have I received a box from Dart Zone, but a free Gameface Prime blaster to review! As to the actual reviews, though…that may have to wait a few extra days, even if it means you see reviews in other places first. It’s all okay; I’m just moving!
Earlier this year, Hasbro showed off the Ghoulgrinder at Toy Fair 2020. It’s a little expensive for its functionality (ten dart rotating cylinder and Elite ranges). However, it also fits the current Zombie Strike aesthetic perfectly. So if your personal play fantasy is surviving the zombie apocalypse, the Ghoulgrinder works perfectly. And you might have a little fun on the way!
The Stryfe is possibly the most prolific blaster of the modern era of Nerf. It’s seen several iterations and variations since its debut in the NStrike Elite line, and is also one of the most commonly modified blasters out there. The Elite 2.0 line brings about a replacement for it, the Phoenix, featuring a chunky design and even more tactical accessory possibilities. But should you get it over past versions? Maybe not. Better blasters are already on the market, and if your intentions happen to include modification…you’re going to be disappointed.
When it was first introduced at Toy Fair 2020, Buzz Bee was unable to get the Rebel Mech prototype to the US due to pandemic issues. Since then, the base functions have changed. Originally, it was advertised as a full-auto blaster; whether due to engineering issues, changing price margins, or Walmart desires, it’s now a semi-auto blaster. This change, however, not only still gives us a competent blaster (and massive capacity) for $25, it also gives us one of the most mod-friendly electric blasters to date. One friendly enough that I paused reviewing things in order to design replacement cages!
I’ve been taking extra time on this review, mainly because I wanted to be as sure as possible about testing and trying different things with the blaster (trying to move may have also played a part). After the Nexus Pro emerged early onto Walmart shelves, I woke up at 5am just to make a two hour drive to Cincinnati, where one store was already putting out a ton of new blasters ahead of the official release. Since then, even with extra testing, I can’t help but wonder how good this blaster can be for the enthusiast branch of the hobby, provided Dart Zone and Walmart play their cards right. If you’re in any way interested in high fps blaster tag games, and especially if you’re just joining the hobby, this is possibly the best $50 you can spend right now.
Hold on, because this is going to be a long post!
(Note: the box clearly states on the back the recommendation for both adult supervision and eye protection for the user and people nearby. It also notes basic safety for using the blaster. Please follow that advice!)
After seeing the positive response to the gold Chaos blasters sent to various influencers last year, Zuru released their Chaos blaster again, this time with partly gold painted bodies. The Meteors in this “Royale Edition” are just now landing at Target in the US, in two-packs, and there seems to be more of a change than just paint. Old issues appear to have been fixed – even if it happens to come at the expense of the included ammo. And while it’s slightly more expensive…come on, they’re gold blasters!