Friday, July 22, 2016

Nerf Platinum Bow - GoPro Demo video (Toy Fair 2016)

POV Video firing the Nerf Platinum Bow at New York Toy Fair 2016



MSRP: $59.99
Coming out this Fall 2016

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Build Demo! KForce K-10V Time Lapse Speed

Building a KForce K-10V blaster (How long did it Take?)
Vas The Stampede




Spoiler: 

24 minutes

In a new installment, you see how long it took me to build one of the new K'Nex KForce Kits from K'Nex (that means, product provided, but my opinions are my own).

The "Build and Blast" KForce line has a lot of really good ideas in it, from the actual building and construction of the blasters (which any modder out there can appreciate) to the near-limitless possibilities what someone can build with a kit and a whole lot more K'nex pieces (something I would like to test for myself in the future).

I might be tempted to do a slower video in the future, mainly because while time-lapse is cool you don't get a feel for some of the mishaps I had during building (I think the manuals could be a bit clearer on instructions, but that's a discussion for another post, such as when I do a firing video). I wonder if someone who is familiar with K'Nex can do these builds faster, or if even someone who more regularly builds construction kits might have a leg up on me and shave time off what I did.

In any event, the line is still being supported and innovated on, and that's all one can really ask in a super competitive arena like blasters. Companies are going for range, capacity, aesthetics, and K'Nex continues to fuel imaginative building while trying to produce a blaster that fires on par with most others, even if rate of fire may suffer slightly.

So let's try this; if you have the same kit, or any kit that I post here, video yourself building it too and tag me in it! Whatever time I have, see if you can beat it or challenge me to build a KForce blaster faster than you (and get away with it)!

I still have a few more upcoming projects to do, so make sure to come back and keep checking for updates! Blaster reviews, photos, and the NvZ video are all on the way. Thanks again!

Friday, July 01, 2016

Nation Vs Zombies: The Pictures!

500 Players Descend on Missouri State University for Nation Vs Zombies: An Invitational
Vas The Stampede



THE GALLERY

600 Registered. Approximately 400-500 players. That was this past weekend at Nation Vs Zombies... the first (I think?) attempted event of this scale where players from all over North America (and beyond) were invited to come to Missouri State University and play a game of "Human Vs Zombies", mixing roleplay gaming elements, tag, and Nerf/toy blaster games in a two-day test of survival, planning, and cardio. More on the game later, but for now enjoy the gallery posted above!



Thursday, June 23, 2016

Weekend Update: Nation Vs Zombies


Heading to Nation Vs Zombies this weekend! Not as player, but in a press/media capacity, I leave tomorrow for what looks to be an HvZ of a different scale. They aim to have players from every corner of the United States (and what looks to be the continent, given players from Canada seem to be arriving as well) joining in the fight against the zombie infection. If you're going, drop a comment! I'll be doing interviews, taking pics, talking to players, and seeing how the action goes down.

Also make sure to check the action on my social:

Instagram
Facebook: #roadtoNvZ with the other players
Twitter
Periscope (hopefully, depends on the connection I have)



Also running for Open Play, The Thunderdome -I've checked out the arenas in Colorado and Detroit, this will be a little different, but all roads lead to flinging foam.


Friday, June 17, 2016

Unboxing Zuru Sample Box (Bug Attack, XShot blasters)


Unboxing Video: Zuru Samples arrived!



Many thanks to Zuru Toys for the samples!

Here's an unboxing while I get working on reviews. The Bug Attack Eliminator and I believe the XShot blasters are in stores already elsewhere, but they've been pretty spare in availability where I live. I am really just seeing them in larger quantities now, and even lost touch with Zuru until Toy Fair this year. If you've seen these already, great, I'm going to post a review later, and if you want to check it out, I hope to see you then!


Get Social:

Facebook - Foam From Above 
Instagram - Blasterbot1984
Twitter - @VasTheStampede
Periscope - @VasTheStampede

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Nerf Mega Mastodon: Postgame Writeup/Review

Nerf Mega Mastodon Postgame Writeup
Vas The Stampede

Testing if the Mega Mastodon gets 100' - 


Note: I will eventually add in-game footage using the Mastodon here. Watch this space for a future edit.

Basics:
Range: 80'-100'
MSRP: $79.99
Capacity: 24 Mega Darts
Includes: strap, blaster, ammo

Full Auto firing capability
 


 


Took the Nerf Mega Mastodon out for some gameplay this past weekend, and had some thoughts:

Nerf went big with the Mega Mastodon, without a doubt. Pretty sure this is the highest capacity Mega blaster to date, full auto, and definitely the one of the biggest builds probably for any other Nerf blaster I've seen. It has a big handle to hold it on top, two tactical rails along the top as well, and one more under the muzzle. The 6 D batteries sit in the rear part of the blaster, with the trigger, the accelerator trigger, and the handle. There are a couple of obvious attach points for the strap, and the "cage" on the underside also doubles as a stand of sorts to help rest the Mastodon upright. The top handle moves back and forth, pivoting on the insertion point for the post it is attached to. It's wide, mainly due to the drum. But the blaster itself doesn't seem too unwieldy, all things considered. I had no problem transitioning from running/moving/to firing position, or even letting the blaster sit at my hip off the sling. It was surprisingly easy to conform to a comfortable position on my body.

From Mega Mastodon


Mechanics:
 
The Mastodon is big, really big. So big in fact, I wonder how little kids may find using the blaster. From the bottom the cage on the underside of the blaster to the highest extension of the handle on top, the Mastodon measures at about 14". For me at 5'7" as an adult, I have no problem with that. The average US child maybe measures approximately 4' (source), so I don't know how easy a time they would have with this blaster, even with the strap (and factoring in the 6 D batteries). Having to hold the Mastodon at the hip also makes aiming challenging, if you are used to aiming down your sights or being able to angle a blaster down over cover trying to bunker someone, this takes some adjusting. Also, it goes without saying revving your motors before firing is a good practice to have, but the rev time seems a bit faster with the Mastodon. Also, with the nature of this blaster I didn't work too much on trying to find a range with the Mastodon parallel to the ground (flat), most of the time I had the blaster angled in game so my ranges reflect as such. 

It's also probably one of the more accurate Mega firing blasters I've used to date. The Mega Mastodon will hit close to 100', but the accuracy at that range isn't guaranteed (I say that with anything, and in the firing video above you can see the spread of the darts to the sides, in addition to the range.) Within 30-40, even 50', I was able to get hits reliably though! It required a bit of leading my target and I did have to use a couple of shots to dial in, but a little practice can go a long way with this blaster both in firing mechanics and reloading.

Naturally, as a right-handed person, I hold the Mastodon in my right hand and the rotation mech goes to my right. As such, I needed to stop periodically to reload the Mastodon either by trying to cross my body with my left hand and reload that way into the empty chambers, orient the blaster vertically, or reload the empty chambers in from left to right, starting with the chambers feeding into the Mastodon first from the left side of the blaster and trying to get into the chambers on the right. One trick I want to work on with this blaster is reloading empty chambers as they cycle around (using the strap to act as the stabilizing hand while firing, and my free hand to reload.) Still a work in progress, to say the least. Also, make sure you have a large ammo pouch! Mega darts already are big, and with the 24 dart capacity you'll eat through a lot of ammo using the Mastodon, for sure. Be prepared to carry enough to keep the Mastodon spitting.

With the strap, the Mastodon handles similarly to the RhinoFire and the Vulcan. The difference is the grip needed because of the accelerator trigger setup on the Mastodon versus the push button on the RhinoFire and the traditional trigger on the Vulcan. As a result, I found myself with my wrist on a weird angle sometimes while firing. I held the Mastodon typically at the waist, but with the handle and trigger a little past my back, which led to a touch of soreness after extended games. This was addressed by just keeping my handle hand in line with my torso. In a way, it reminded me of a Colonial Marine's posture holding a smartgun, with some obvious differences. This might make a lot more sense after you hold one.

Stay frosty, Nerfers.
Needless to say, the Mastodon needs 6 D batteries to run so the strap and using the top handle might be a necessity. While trying to one hand it might be hilarious, it can also do a number on your wrist. Between rounds, everyone made attempts to hold the Mastodon like a pistol, to hilarious effect. Personally, I'm going to use two bandoliers if ever I want to dual wield. The Mastodon didn't seem to eat batteries either, but my testing happened at a 4 hour Nerf war. The batteries I used were from the Dollar Store, and they held up fine during the day and even for my testing days before.

Running and gunning isn't incredibly easy with the this blaster, if that's surprising (which it shouldn't be) not like with more rifle and pistol oriented blasters like the Rapidstrike or Firestrike, for obvious reasons. I found myself doing more of the "stalk and shoot" approach, dodging darts as I could or crouching. Trying to aim the Mastodon well while in full sprint was not the particularly efficient I thought or effective. The volley of darts was usually enough to make folks hide and move, but I always had to keep in mind to keep cover in mind and run for a teammate if I needed to reload, assuming I even had a team. Otherwise, I'd run and hope no one noticed while I fed darts back into this monster. If I needed to move faster, I stopped aiming and just picked up the blaster and ran, it was just more efficient that way.

Left-handed? I went with the righty oriented handle placement with the pivot on the left side of the blaster, and I'm not sure if the peg to the top handle fits in the other way. It looks like it might be able to accommodate lefties in the other direction, but I don't guarantee that. If I get another Mastodon, I'll see if that works, or hopefully I can get an answer out of the design team. My left-handed friend didn't find it supremely comfortable trying to use the Mastodon the right-hand oriented way, though. I thought maybe since the rotation mech goes to the right while shooting then reloading might be easier, but she didn't find it that way. And yes, reloadi

Don't misunderstand me though! This is a SOLID build of a blaster. The raised "Mega" lettering, the top handle, the trigger, everything about it feels pretty strong. The rotation mech for the drum spins pretty easily too, but there are some caveats.

The most common issue I had with the Mastodon was trying to shoot in controlled bursts. If you go for a full 24 dart shower, the Mastodon functions wonderfully. But if you try to do groups of 3-4 shots, you might run into some jamming. What happens is the firing action, the rotation, and the feed gets out of sync if you try to group your shots and don't time a stop right, you will stop the cycle mid-feed of a dart, or in between the chambers of the blaster, so you'll suffer a misfire. I ended up having double feeds a few times trying to shoot a few darts at a time, and had to dig through the jam door to rip out a dart or push it back into the chamber. Other times, the rotation mech would be in mid-reset and would get stuck, I could not manually rotate it to load until after I resumed firing the blaster and heard it "click". With a little practice I could see this becoming less of a problem, the more someone learns about the firing cycle of the Mastodon. These instances of locking and dart jamming were on the minimal end of the scale too, not to the point where using the blaster was frustrating. But like I said, this blaster is full auto and truly excels when you rock and roll with that 24 dart payload.

All that being said, is it worth the $80? A lot will be said of its "war practicality" and "usefulness" in a stock Nerf war, but I liked it just fine. It turned me into a big(ger) moving target, cut my mobility a bit, and made aiming a bit of a challenge, but the range, the capacity, the full auto, and the aggro (people made sure to keep an eye on where I was, or if they heard my motors whirring to make sure I wasn't near them) was worth the tradeoff for me, and gosh darnit I just had a lot of fun with it! Of all the high-end items I saw at Toy Fair, this was definitely a "buzz-worthy" blaster in my book, and the one I came away wanting the most of the whole lineup from that trip. At this price it might make you cringe, but in this case I'd endorse the cost as being worth it for this foam launching monstrosity.

Questions? Comments? Did I miss something you'd want feedback on? Leave me a comment!

And don't forget to check out my social media:
Instagram: blasterbot1984
Twitter: @VasTheStampede
Facebook: "Foam From Above"
YouTube: "FoamFromAbove"



Friday, June 03, 2016

Nerf Alien Menace darts spotted?

Edit: photo was originally posted at blastermodshop (https://facebook.com/BlasterModShop/) on Facebook, just got brought up to speed.


Caught this on Instagram...Nerf Alien Menace ammo is available... Somewhere? Brace your wallets!

FOAMME FATALES

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