Friday, December 31, 2010

A Year Under the Barrel II: Nerf and other related foam blasters in 2010

What at year. So much has changed and happened this year, both in regards to this blog, other blogs, and playing with Foam Blasters. Nerf, Lanard, and BuzzBee remain major players but when there’s this kind of buzz the true winners are the end users, you and me that head to the stores to see what’s new.

For at least the last 2 years, FoamFromAbove (and other sites, as I’m sure you’ve heard) started working with Nerf, releasing official press releases and information as it comes down the pipe. What this means though is you won’t catch rumors, pictures, and vids of stuff that has not officially come from those we work with, or even mods to said blasters. That’s why I was able to put out pics of the original clear series last year before they fully hit stores(
From Recently Updated
)

and the initial US shots of the Stampede back in July at a media-only release event: (FFA IZ MEDIA)





Once again, the outreach is surprising from such a company, and the opportunity to talk to them is something I never would have expected ever in my years of writing this little blog.

As far as this year in foam weaponry went, Nerf’s amount of releases were insane. The N-Strike line was obviously the highlight, with the Stampede being released in September. Battery operated, fully automatic, using the quick reload magazine system for swapping magazines in and out (as opposed to ye olde front loading systems) it was something definitely new and added a different dimension to the game that we haven’t seen in awhile. It took what the Vulcan started, and did it it so much better. Later in the year, the Barricade Rev-10 came out, another battery operated blaster. This time, it was a turreted blaster in the spirit of the Maverick where you front loaded the turret, no magazine but it is a semiautomatic blaster, making dual-wielding much easier than even with the Stampede.

The N-Strike line also had some store exclusives added to its ranks on the US shores! The Alpha Trooper (http://foamfromabove.blogspot.com/2010/05/new-release-alpha-trooper-cs-18-blaster.html), The Spectre (http://foamfromabove.blogspot.com/2010/11/new-nerf-blaster-spectre-rev-5.html), and the Barrel Break IX-2 (http://foamfromabove.blogspot.com/2010/05/exclusive-nerf-n-strike-barrel-break.html) were out this year. The most unique of all these had to be the Barrel Break, with its mock-double barreled shotgun loading action. the Spectre was a definite improvement over a Maverick (less one shot), and the Alpha Trooper was a good alternative to the Raider (unless you already owned a Raider, which made buying the Trooper redundant, unless you were a collection completionist).

Nerf also took a stab at fashion, releasing a tactical vest




Camo Ammo

http://lh3.ggpht.com/_km53cj4uhRA/TEaYi1R9xQI/AAAAAAAABDc/KkRR7KUfYOo/s512/NerfCamoAmmo.jpg , http://lh4.ggpht.com/_km53cj4uhRA/TRlADr9AQwI/AAAAAAAACqc/MxQhBA4uryM/DSC_0265.JPG


Tending to use more N-Strike clip blasters, I haven’t been able to test the retrievability of the Camo Ammo fully.

As for the N-Force line, what else is there to say?

From FFA_NerfReleaseJuly2010


Nerf is still strongly supporting the melee end of things, releasing the Warlock Axe, Battlemaster Mace, and Stonewall Shield set. Look for the Vantage Sword in 2011!

I know, I know... “What about Dart Tag?” Well no worries. The word is out there and while I can’t say anything myself just yet... it’s coming.

In case you missed any of the sweet Nerf Dart Tag League news this year:



Two years running now, and the champs from last year repeated! Who'da thunk? Here's hoping there's a year 3, and good luck to NARF at getting another shot! (I'm from IL, I support the hometown guys!)



Not to say BuzzBee’s been quiet on their end, either! Some of the more notable releases this year had to be the

Hunter




The Powerstrike




And most recently, the Hawk. (Check out http://nerfornothing.blogspot.com for images!)

And what about 2011? See me again in January, and we’ll talk then! Some pretty big news in the works, and hopefully some tweaks to the site itself. In the meantime, thank you so much for your patronage, and visiting this little blog about silly toys and blasters.

Oh, and my fave blaster of 2010? The Stampede was close, but I think the barricade might have stolen the year for me. Anyone who has seen "Hard-Boiled" with Chow-Yun Fat knows exactly what I'm talking about.

'Til next time, remember to throw your blaster games how you wanna throw'em, and let the attendees sort it out.



HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!



P.S. I ignored commenting at length on the lawsuit Hasbro/Nerf filed on competitors BuzzBee and Lanard, as I'm really not qualified to do so. Hasbro won, and I'll leave it at that.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Random blaster test video!



The video explanation pretty much sums it up; Buzz Bee toys sent over a Thunderbolt for me to test and have a look at (they also sent a Belt Blaster; video on that later!) In case you were wondering what it is like right out of the box, here you go! Also featured; the Nerf Barrel Break IX-2 (purchased), Buzz Bee's Ultimate Missile Blast (not sent, this one was out of pocket), and Zyphoon's version of a ring shooter. Enjoy!

Monday, December 20, 2010

New from Funny or Die: Part 3 of their Nerf vid arc!



So hilarious. And girls can get in on the action too!

-VasTheStampede

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Nerf Funny or Die; Epic Nerf battle! (No, not EpicNerf)

Another installment of the always ridiculous Nerf-themed vids from Funnyordie:



Enjoy! Laugh. Live the dream!

Friday, December 03, 2010

THE RESULTS. IN CASE YOU BLINKED, "IT'S AGELESS" - NERF BATTLE OF THE ADS WINNER!

Were you watching "The Simpsons" a few weeks ago? Did you catch the winner of the "Battle of the Ads" contest? No? Well, head over to http://www.nerfbattleoftheads.com/ and check out the winner, "It's Ageless."

The ad kinda speaks for itself. Congrats to the winner and all who entered! There could be only one.


-VasTheStampede

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Hey chicago! Who owns harry potter laser tag wands?

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

New Nerf blaster: Spectre Rev-5!










Alright, the N-Strike Rev-5 has been out for a good long while now and I've finally gotten my hands on it. Looking at this thing right out of the box, you're looking at somewhere between 20-35' range so there's that question. However, the bread and butter of this thing is the streamlining between this and the maverick as you'll see in the photos.

Now, the Rev-5 functions just like the Maverick Rev-6 and the Recon CS-6 as far as the priming mech, there's a slide on the top of the blaster that you pull back, and it readies the shot. HOWEVER, unlike the Maverick the Spectre rotates every time you prime the blaster, not every time you pull the trigger. The action feels a bit tighter as a result and dare I say it I think it shoots farther than the maverick as a result.

The whole blaster feels more streamlined, between losing one chamber and everything in general it's a smaller feel, even with the stock and silencer on it. Don't think for a second though that fitting into the holster of the Nerf Tactical vest probably didn't play some role in this little piece of ingenuity.



The stock and the silencer; don't bother. The stock's super flimsy (although the flip-out motion is cool) and the silencer's just another faux barrel. But it looks cool too, so if that's your thing then don't let this reviewer stop you. In fact, here're some shots to show you how other things look on it:







I have a minimalist perspective on these matters though... so I like this:



But yeah, I definitely dig the feel of this blaster in its stripped-down configuration and the range is right where I think a sidearm (especially one that doesn't need extra mags) should be. Even if you have a maverick and a recon, this just might offer enough from using each to be worth your while. Minus the extra round, the mobility and range offered is enough to tilt my opinion of the blaster towards yes. Too often I find my mags run out, but then I have a Firefly handy, or when it was on me, the Spectre.

Now, about the barricade...? ANOTHER TIME!

How about a size comparison photo?

Spectre vs. Crossfire vs. Maverick vs. Triple Torch

ATTENTION HOLIDAY SHOPPERS: NERF STAMPEDE ECS VALUE PACK




If you haven't found your way to a Costco yet, you might want to make a point of doing that pretty soon. The Nerf Stampede was reported there in a special bundle!

For the relatively similar price you'd get at Target or Wal-Mart you get 4 (instead of 3) 18 round magazines, 2 (instead of 1) 6 round magazines, a bandolier AND carrying strap, 100 darts and the Stampede/shield/bipod. Batteries still not included. HOWEVER, quantities were limited, so make sure to call ahead if your store has any left. GET ON IT!
Just tried buying a sonic series nitefinder and could not! Proper release date is tomorrow!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

CBS NEWS COVERAGE ON: BLASTER MODS

Just something to think about when you have your nerf games and decide to uber mod your blasters. Remember, it's Nerf. Competition is fine, but there are other ways to do it without needing an uber blaster.


http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2010/11/23/nerf-gun-modifications-can-be-dangerous/

-VasTheStampede

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Fresh from Nerf; how to use your Stampede ECS!

There's plenty of videos out there, but this one's straight from the source!




-VasTheStampede

Monday, November 22, 2010

Hmmm, interesting news on Hasbro/Nerf and the green movement-

http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=68329&p=irol-newsArticlePR&ID=1499424&highlight=

A quick look over the way Hasbro has implemented more eco-friendly measures in their products; no longer using wire-ties in their packaging for instance!

What does this mean about the type of foam they use for darts? Is that even a consideration? Who knows, but definitely make sure to still pick up your ammo when you're done playing.

-VasTheStampede

Friday, November 12, 2010

NEW NERF BLASTER OFFICIAL - BARRICADE REV-10



Word from Nerf finally happened, and although SG and Kevinericon broke the news months ago, I'm finally allowed to discuss and comment on the NEW NERF BARRICADE REV-10 BLASTER!

NERF N-STRIKE BARRICADE RV-10 Blaster

· Motorized, semi-automatic Nerf blaster

· Revolving barrel

· Holds up to 10 sonic whistle darts

· Compatible with the Tactical Rail System and alternate N-Strike stocks.

· Will be available at most major retailers nationwide and HasbroToyShop.com


So the word is it's flywheel, but suprisingly good for a flywheel! I'm going to reserve judgment on it until I have one in each hand (yes, I'm going to dual-wield) but until I have one that's all I can do. I'm excited for this blaster, as it enables me to not need both hands to operate the blaster. More when I finally get one!

-VasTheStampede

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

New FoammeFatale!




Say hi to ALP from Australia! Fresh off the FB page, girls Nerf too!


Thanks again, ALP for letting me use your pic as another great addition to our "FoammeFatales!"


Want to be featured in this gallery, ladies or friends of ladies? Get some shots of yourself at play with Nerf or other foam related blasters and send'em to foammefatale@gmail.com! Once again, pics will NOT be selected if they are overly sexual/scantily clad/yadda yadda yadda. I'm not here to pander on this website!

-VasTheStampede

Monday, November 01, 2010

EpicNerf - HALLOWEEN 2010!

So, we Nerfed on Halloween! (Xposted on EpicNerf, too)



Here are the pics, and some highlights:

Flag zombies = WIN
Free Giveaways, courtesy of Nerf = WIN (1 Clear Deploy, 1 regular Deploy, 1 Longstrike, 1 1 Mission Kit Scope and Mission Kit Red Dot Sight)
Halloween costumes = WIN
Good group getting together = WIN
Oak Lawn = WIN

That's all! As always, if you don't want your pics up on the internet please shoot me word and let me know. ALSO... we had a special visitor to the war! But more on that closer to Thanksgiving. It's such great NEWS.

-VasTheStampede

Sunday, October 24, 2010

WORD FROM NERF: BATTLE OF THE ADS!

HASBRO ANNOUNCES TOP TEN FINALISTS

IN POPULAR NERF “BATTLE OF THE ADS” VIDEO CONTEST


Fans Compete to Win $10,000 and a Chance to Have Their NERF Video Air on Prime-Time TV

PAWTUCKET, R.I. – October 21, 2010 – For the first time in the history of Hasbro, Inc.’s (NYSE: HAS) NERF brand, fans were able to showcase their passion for NERF gear and game play in front of a national audience. Today, the NERF “Battle of the Ads” contest, which received nearly 1,500 submissions to its website www.NerfBattleoftheAds.com revealed the top ten finalists whose videos will be considered to receive $10,000 and air during prime-time television next month as part of the NERF brand’s official TV campaign.

“The quality and creativity of the over 1,000 videos we received for the “Battle of the Ads” contest made it incredibly hard to narrow it down to just ten,” said Kelly Stone, U.S. marketing director for NERF at Hasbro. “Entries were sent from fans of all ages from all over the country. The submissions were as diverse as the NERF brand itself, but there was one underlying theme connecting the top ten finalists: IT’S NERF OR NOTHIN’!”

Throughout the summer, fans and amateur film-makers were encouraged to submit their videos featuring one or all of the brand’s N-STRIKE, N-FORCE, DART TAG, SPORTS, and SUPER SOAKER segments. A montage of the top ten NERF “Battle of the Ads” entries will air during “American Dad” on FOX, November 14 at 9pm EST. Fans will have to tune into FOX again on November 21 at 8pm EST to see the winning video during “The Simpsons.”

Videos were judged based on factors including public vote, creativity, enthusiasm, and use of NERF products. The top ten NERF “Battle of the Ads” finalists, in alphabetical order, are:

*

Ben Boutwell - The Chase – Winnsboro, LA
*

Benjamin Radford - Elevator Ambush – Hendersonville, NC
*

Charlie Heller - Super Awesome NERF Showdown – Princeton, NJ
*

Dylan Bitton - Operation Overboard – Vista, CA
*

Gerhardt Slawitschka - N-STRIKE The Movie – Stone Mountain, GA

(more…)

*

Jeremiah England - It’s Ageless – Olathe, KS
*

Ryan Summersett - The Alleyway – Austin, TX
*

Stephen Pfeil - Lock N’ Load – Hammond, LA
*

Steven Mee - NERF Perfect – Yucaipa, CA
*

Spencer Lowery - The Evolution of Play – Chatsworth, CA


To view the top ten NERF 2010 “Battle of the Ads” contest finalists and learn more about official rules and conditions, log onto www.NerfBattleoftheAds.com. Keep up with all the latest action going on in NERF NATION by following www.Facebook.com/NerfNation, www.YouTube.com/Nerf, and www.Twitter.com/NerfNation.

Hasbro, Inc. (NYSE:HAS) is a branded play company providing children and families around the world with a wide-range of immersive entertainment offerings based on the Company’s world class brand portfolio. From toys and games, to television programming, motion pictures, video games and a comprehensive licensing program, Hasbro strives to delight its customers through the strategic leveraging of well-known and beloved brands such as TRANSFORMERS, LITTLEST PET SHOP, NERF, PLAYSKOOL, MY LITTLE PONY, G.I. JOE, MAGIC: THE GATHERING and MONOPOLY. The Hub, Hasbro’s multi-platform joint venture with Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) launched on October 10, 2010. The online home of The Hub is www.hubworld.com. The Hub logo and name are trademarks of Hub Television Networks, LLC. All rights reserved.

Come see how we inspire play through our brands at http://www.hasbro.com. © 2010 Hasbro, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

-VasTheStampede

Monday, October 18, 2010

NERF DART TAG LEAGUE - 13-17 YEAR OLD FINALS!



AND THEN THERE WAS ONE! Fresh from the Official Nerf Youtube Channel (http://youtube.com/nerf is a recording of the initial live broadcast from Las Vegas this past weekend of the Nerf Dart Tag League Finals in Las Vegas during the final stop of AlliSport's Dew Tour. After collecting regional winners from Boston, Chicago, Portland, Salt Lake City, and finally Las Vegas, those teams then squared off in Nerf combat. In the end, Chicago's own NARF took on last year's returning champs, Salt Lake City's Determinators. Who'd come out on top? Monstrous Midwest or Wild West? Check the video and find out!


Thanks to Nerf for another year of the tourney, and for AlliSports for providing the venue for this event!

-VasTheStampede

Thursday, October 14, 2010

NERF DART TAG LEAGUE - $25,000, THE FINAL BRACKET - NDTLWC!!

Fresh from the Nerf Dart Tag League (NDTLWC) grapevine!

"This Saturday the 2010 Nerf Dart Tag World Championship tournament will take place at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas. Like last year, the winning teams from each of the five regional stops will face off to see who wins the glory, and the $25,000. This year, Nerf is hosting a live streaming online “event” so that any fan of the official Nerf Facebook page can watch the finals in real time. All you have to do is “Like” the official page, then head to the NDTL Live tab at 7:00pm EST on 10/16."

LINK TO THE NERF FACEBOOK INVITE HERE:

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=110099462387490

Make sure to check it out!

-VasTheStampede

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

EpicNerf 4!

Stock ammo war footage from Oak Lawn, IL! The gametype featured is downed pilot. A full writeup of the gametype will be up soon!

(Also posted at epicnerf.blogspot.com)



-VasTheStampede

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pics from... EPICNERF

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Wow, it took me FOREVER, didn't it? - NDTL CHICAGO 13-17 FINALS



RHINOFACE VS. NARF FOR CHICAGO REGIONAL NDTL TITLE! (Mostly unedited, hah!)


-VasTheStampede!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

NERF! DART! TAG! LEAGUE!!!

It's in Salt Lake City this weekend! Ch-Ch-Checkitout!

http://nerf.com/ndtl



-VasTheStampede

Friday, September 10, 2010

The Nerf Stampede ECS? Yeah, I'd seen it...

http://foamfromabove.blogspot.com/2010/07/what-adventure-for-nerf-stampede-ecs.html

From this past July, at the Stampede pre-release! (If you haven't seen that article already, hah.


-VasTheStampede

Monday, August 23, 2010

Nerf Dart Tag League 2010 Chicago - Day 2!




Pretty self-explanatory, some of the hijinks from the Nerf Dart Tag League stop in Chicago from a few weeks ago. En route to the World Championships in LAS VEGAS, NV in October... here's what to expect. It was nuts, it was crazy, it was Nerf. Were the Nerfinators able to repeat?

Find out in the next update!

-VasTheStampede

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

NERF LINEUP RUNDOWN PT 1 - N-FORCE!

Courtesy of Nerf, here's some tidbits on what's out and what to expect!


NERF N-FORCE
New additions to the NERF N-FORCE line are designed for the ultimate in fantasy play and hand to hand battle – NERF style!

The 2010 N-FORCE collection includes:




NERF N-FORCE WARLOCK Axe Toy
(Ages 8 years & up/Approximate Retail Price: $19.99/Available: Now)
Enhance your N-FORCE collection with the mighty NERF N-FORCE WARLOCK Axe toy. At 30 inches long, the flexible yet durable foam axe is designed to enhance any fantasy battle. Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.

From FFA_NerfReleaseJuly2010


NERF N-FORCE Mace Toy
(Ages 8 years & up/Approximate Retail Price: $19.99/Available: Fall 2010)
March confidently into fantasy battle with the impressive N-FORCE Mace toy. The N-FORCE Mace stands just under 30 inches tall and sports a durable foam exterior. Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.

From FFA_NerfReleaseJuly2010


NERF N-FORCE STONEWALL Shield Set
(Ages 8 years & up/Approximate Retail Price: $19.99/Available: Fall 2010)
Protect yourself from attack as you strategically advance on your opponents with the NERF N-FORCE STONEWALL Shield Set. Equip yourself with the N-FORCE STONEWALL Shield and the Mini Sword to prepare for your next fantasy challenge or quest. Newly designed, the Mini Sword is small and lightweight. The STONEWALL Shield features hook and loop fastener straps for easy adjustment. Each set includes one N-FORCE STONEWALL Shield and one N-FORCE Mini Sword. Available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.

Continuing for 2010: (already out!)

NERF N-FORCE Sword
(Ages 6 years & up/Approximate Retail Price: $9.99/Available: Now)
Master your hand-to-hand battle skills with the first introductions in the NERF N-FORCE line. Standing 32 inches in length, the flexible, durable, foam N-FORCE Sword is unlike any NERF product before them. The NERF N-FORCE Sword is available in blue at most major toy retailers nationwide and HasbroToyShop.com.. Each sold separately.



NERF N-FORCE MARAUDER long sword
(Ages 8 years & up/Approximate Retail Price: $17.99 Each/Available: Now)
At 40 inches long, the N-FORCE MARAUDER long sword is both longer and wider than the previous N-FORCE Sword to help you march into any mission feeling confident and cool. Available in black at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com. Each sold separately.

-VasTheStampede

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Quick bit: The Nerf N-Strike Alpha Trooper CS-18!

From FFA_Alpha Trooper


We're looking at the Alpha Trooper CS-18 from Nerf's N-Strike line. It can be yours for $20, and is a Target-only exclusive (at least US-wise as far as I know.) Info on this was released months ago, and only recently has the blaster finally hit stores.

Stats:
- Slam-fire mode, like the Raider CS-35
- No stock, but stock from other N-strike blasters (the Raider, for instance) can work.
- Comes with an 18 round drum magazine

Some shots:

From FFA_Alpha Trooper


From FFA_Alpha Trooper


From FFA_Alpha Trooper


My Take:

I will admit, I knew it was going to be similar to the Raider, but this was ridiculous. The shell, with the exception of the pumphandle and the magazine location, were too close for my tastes. It felt like I spent $20 for the same blaster. Even with the (IMO) better underside location of the magazine it really did feel like another Raider.

Now now, don't worry, some members of EPICNERF looked, altered, and battle-tested Troopers and told me there are some other notable differences. The performance right out of the box rivaled and possibly surpassed the ranges of a stock Raider. After some alterations, it was even better. The jamming wasn't a problem, and the new pumphandle allowed for a Recon-style priming motion, in addition to the pump-action if that was your preferred motion. Not to mention the one-handed priming action, a la Linda Hamilton in "T2".

Now, if you don't own a Raider already, or are a collection completionist and have to have the 18 round drum, then this is for you. If you're left-handed, you too will benefit from this blaster as the magazine release button is on both sides of the blaster. The lower cost, the 18 round drum is certainly less bulkier to handle than the 35 round drum, and holstering this blaster may be easier for you without the front grip that the Raider has. Dare I say it, this might even outrange a Raider so ultimately the decision's up to you, foam fighter.

PHOTO GALLERY:


Feedback? Questions? Comment below, or shoot me an email! FoamFromAbove@gmail.com


-VasTheStampede

P.S. - Yes, it came with ammo ;P

Friday, August 06, 2010

NDTL2010_Chicago! (Nerf Dart Tag League, 8-12 year old division)

Hey hey! Look what I posted today:

Day 1 from the Nerf Dart Tag League action in Chicago, at the Dew Tour! This is the 8-12 year old group; 13-17 year old video will be up soon!


-VasTheStampede

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

NDTL - Chicago! The Pictures!

Day 1, 8-12 year olds:

WINNER: NERF NINJAS!

From NERF DART TAG LEAGUE 2010 DAY 1




Day 2, 13-17 year olds:

WINNER: NARF!

From NDTL 2010 DAY 2 - 13-17





Congrats to the winners, thanks to Nerf for being so cool letting me snap photos! Still working on the video, but it'll be up soon!

-VasTheStampede

Monday, August 02, 2010

Results are announced! - Chicago Regional NDTL winners!

NDTL Winners are now up at: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/NerfNation!! My own pics and videos will follow once I see they've put theirs up.


-VasTheStampede

Saturday, July 31, 2010

NERF OFFICIAL VIDEO - STAMPEDE RELEASE NYC

Need another look at the Nerf Stampede? Nerf released a tidbit of what they recorded from the event!



-VasTheStampede

Shoutouts to: Adult Fans of Nerf, Nerfguns.org, Nerfhq, and Nerfhaven!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

In the meantime, while the NDTL sorts itself out...

http://business-tech.findtechnews.net/2010/07/27/nerf-hasbros-play-in-the-toy-arms-race/

An interesting tidbit of information regarding Nerf today, and where it's been. Take a gander!


-VasTheStampede

Monday, July 26, 2010

Done and Done!

Nerf Dart Tag is done for 2010 in Chicago, IL. Wait for official word announcing the winners!

Congrats to all who entered and played, and stay tuned here for additional pictures and video!

Next Stop: PORTLAND, OR - August 12-15!


Thanks, it's Nerf or NOTHIN'!

-VasTheStampede

Friday, July 23, 2010

On my way to the ndtl in chicago!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

What an adventure... for the Nerf Stampede ECS

Well, if you've coasted the net and this blog chances are you've seen Hasbro/Nerf threw a shindig at Stout's in New York City to celebrate not only the past 40+ years of Nerf products but to herald the coming of the much-speculated 09/09/10 blaster - the "Big Blast" which is now officially called the "Stampede ECS-50".



I could tell you about the trip; from the hotel, to the transportation, or whatever but you want to know about the blaster.

Let's answer some quick questions:

Why?

Ever since the NDTL last year, I've been in touch with people who handle PR for Nerf. This resulted in an invitation to this media-only event. Media-only meant the attendees were adults, so the location of the bar (Stout's) was fine. Were this the NDTL, a bar would be... odd.

What?
The Stampede! Older Nerf products from the last 40 years (including Super Soaker that is now a brand of Nerf) like the Blast-A-Matic, Nerfuls, and even the Brainball (it was a brain-shaped football).

Shoot, pictures tell the tale:









Cammo Ammo:



MORE PHOTOS:
http://picasaweb.google.com/110890746836784809541/FFA_NerfReleaseJuly2010?authkey=Gv1sRgCM2fiILXuK_OWw#

Anyway. Ok, I posted some initial impressions of the Stampede before but let me expand a bit.

NERF N-STRIKE STAMPEDE
$49.99

- The first fully automatic NERF Clip System blaster to date (the vulcan was EBF, Magstrike was AS, and RF-20 doesn't use clips).
- Pop-out bipod, which doubles as a handle
- Removable shield
- The NERF N-STRIKE STAMPEDE ECS blaster also comes complete with one six dart Clip and three extended Clips which hold 18 darts each

Available at most major retailers nationwide and HasbroToyShop.com beginning 9.9.10.

(Thanks to Nerf for the run-down!)

There are multiple tactical rails along the top and around the muzzle for your other n-strike accessories. Personally, for laughs I like to use the tactical red dot sight.

You can expect 25-30 feet range-wise for any Nerf blaster right out of the box, and the accuracy's going to hurt a little bit based on the usage of streamlines (you can see a video of how the Stampede fires here:. Then again, are you really looking for something to shoot laser straight with the inherent nature of using a Nerf blaster? And hopefully out of 18 shots SOMETHING'll work. It felt a bit faster than the vulcan too, but when I can test one more thoroughly I'll make sure to check that.

The blaster holds comfortably size-wise but as you'd expect with something that uses six "D" batteries has a noticeable heft after holding it up at shoulder-height for a few minutes, bipod or no bipod. Also, don't expect to use the bipod laying prone using the 18 round magazine; it juts out further than the bipod extends.

The N-strike blasters are notorious for stuff slipping loose (sights on the rails, the flip clips) while running, but I don't think this is the case with the bipod and shield. Dare I say it I tested them thoroughly during the event, and everything held together pretty solidly.

Reloading was easy as pie this time around; previous blasters like the longshot, longstrike, deploy, raider, and vulcan all had a manual action in their reload cycle. The Stampede lets you drop a magazine and throw in a fresh one, no manual mechanism involved. This significantly decreased the reload time between magazines and the user error that would happen sliding a bolt or priming arm back and forth.

I'll revisit some of these points when I have a unit at-home; but these are my initial impressions. I understand that $50 is a lot, but hopefully the points I've provided make a good case. I personally look forward to swinging around with two of them at the same time each with a 35 round drum magazine. Also, remember what it sounds like each Stampede is coming with:

-shield
-bipod
-ammo
-3 18 round magazines & 1 6 round magazine (probably looking at 54 darts)
-The Stampede

So it's still a pretty sizable bunch of items you're getting.

Anyway, if you have any questions feel free to comment. Whew!

-VasTheStampede


P.S. - THANK YOU HASBRO AND NERF FOR HAVING ME THERE AND TO THE STAFF ON ALL FRONTS FOR ANSWERING MY QUESTIONS!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Sharing the linkage... someone else's take on the party in New York!

http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?art_aid=132235&fa=Articles.showArticle


From mediapost - Kelly Samardak!

Yeah, I'm "Foam Guy".

ANNNNND HER PICS

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Nerf Stampede Release in New York! - Part 2!



More video! This time with a bit more Stampede action.


- VasTheStampede


p.s. - Thanks Monique!

Nerf Stampede Release in New York!



-VasTheStampede

Friday, July 16, 2010

Photos!

Well, by the grace of Nerf I had the fortunate opportunity to attend a media event party that you've probably seen publicized all over the place by now. (Nerfhaven, gizmodo, nerfhq, the list goes on). I could prattle on about the showcase of 40 years of products Nerf put on display (no crossbows, calm down), I could tell you about the unveiling of the Stampede ECS and it's rate of fire and decent range (more to come when I actually get my hands on it), the camo ammo, the vest, or the N-Force Battlemaster Mace... but I have...

PICTURES!



Enjoy! If you have questions, please comment below or fire off an email at: Foamfromabove@gmail.com


-VasTheStampede

So... A blurry photo of the stampede. Better ones and video to follow!

orward to sharing more!
k range wise by a couple of feet and it definitely fires more reliably. pretty heavy as it uses six d batteries but the foregrip helps! Really looking f
Just a preview... We got a look at the 18 round magazine in the stampede and the shield. Right off i think the stampede might outperform the vulcan stoc

N force

Another shot of the mace @nerfnation

The stonewall shield set @nerfnation

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Nerf tac vest @nerfnation

Ok my stampede cell phone pics really suck so just wait for the full update later. Hah!
pede videos didn't come out so well my phone.
roducts from previous decades. I'll have more video and pics when i get home but my pics for now are from my cell. Apologies but it was dark so my stam
releases. That's what we saw... we got a firsthand look at the stampede. No troopers or barrel breaks but lots of other stuff and even some past nerf p
So real quick... tonight myself and a few other nerf guys from the net to be named properly later hit new york city to attend a media event for nerf new

Here we go!

Time to go to work @nerfnation!

Ready steady

Keep your eyes peeled here tonight and tomorrow... Good info coming!

On my way...

Testing!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Testing... To new york!

Monday, July 12, 2010

EPICNERF2

Big news later this week; but in the meantime!



EpicNerf style, in Oak Lawn, IL!

-VasTheStampede

EPICNERF 3 - PHOTOS!



- VasTheStampede

Friday, July 09, 2010

Trial Run! - FFA Dogtags!

Run up some dog tags to giveaway at wars and things where people find me; have a look! I don't have a lot of them right now, but if there's enough interest I'll do a larger run and start looking at how to price them out. At the moment, they're a bit more interesting to me than using regular ol' business cards :)



Let me know what you think, or better yet come find me at a war or other Nerf event! For instance, NDTL-action!

- VasTheStampede

EBAY AUCTION!

So, the activity group EpicNerf (of which I am a part) is looking to raise some dollars in order to provide darts, obstacles, and loaners as well as travel to other Nerf events! Snake51886 is taking care of a bulk of this initiative and looking to sell some stuff:

_______________________________________________________________________________________
Guns for Sale!
Hey guys,

I just put up some old and awesome Nerf Blasters in near mint condition on ebay. By purshasing and bidding, you support our entire nerfing group. The money we make from these sales help to provide, blasters, darts, cover, and refreshment at our events!

Nerf Powerclip Buy it Now

Nerf Powerclip Auction

Nerf Arrowstorm Buy it Now/Auction

All three blasters and completely stock and not modded. They all come from a smoke free and pet free home! Thanks guys!


Snake51886
_______________________________________________________________________________________


Thanks you all!


-VasTheStampede

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

SO IT BEGINS! NDTL! NERF DART TAG LEAGUE!

Hasbro's NERF Brand Teams Up Again with 2010 Dew Tour for the Second Annual NERF DART TAG WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP Competition
Regional NERF DART TAG League Tournaments Kick Off in Boston

PAWTUCKET, R.I., Jun 23, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- --Fans to Compete for a Spot in the NERF DART TAG WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP and $25,000!

Following an action-packed NERF DART TAG WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP premiere in 2009, Hasbro, Inc.'s /quotes/comstock/13*!has/quotes/nls/has (HAS 41.28, +0.01, +0.02%) NERF brand is back at Dew Tour to bring fans an awesome way to suit up, compete and battle it out, NERF DART TAG style. This summer as part of the Dew Tour's award-winning Festival Village, the NERF DART TAG League will host regional NERF DART TAG tournaments in Boston, Chicago, Portland, Salt Lake City, and Las Vegas. Teams will compete against one another in the NERF Battle Dome Arena for a spot in the final NERF DART TAG WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP event.

At each regional tournament players will compete in teams of four in one of two age groups: 8-12 years and 13-17 years. The winning regional teams will enter battle one last time at the NERF DART TAG WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP event in Las Vegas this October to show off their blaster skills and compete to receive ultimate DART TAG fame and win $25,000!

"The NERF DART TAG tournaments offer fans across the country a unique, competitive sporting environment to show off their blaster skills, strategy, and teamwork," said Jeff Jackson, vice president of marketing, Hasbro, Inc. "As a sponsor of the Dew Tour for the second consecutive year, we're thrilled to provide NERF NATION with an ideal arena for this popular competition and - based on the action we saw from our fans last year - to celebrate achieving the incredible with NERF!"

The 2010 Dew Tour features more than 150 of the world's top action sports athletes, competing in Skateboarding, BMX, and Freestyle Motocross, and will make the following stops:

-- June 25-26 -- Skate Open, Boston, MA -- TD Garden

-- July 23-24 -- Nike 6.0 BMX Open, Chicago, IL -- Museum Campus

-- August 12-15 -- Wendy's Invitational, Portland, OR -- Rose Quarter

-- September 16-19 -- Toyota Challenge, Salt Lake City, UT -- EnergySolutions Arena

-- October 14-17 -- Dew Tour Championships, Las Vegas, NV -- Hard Rock Hotel & Casino

For more information on 2010 NERF DART TAG tournament rules, eligibility, registration forms, and the NERF DART TAG WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP, visit http://www.hasbro.com/ndtl/en_US/Registration.cfm. NERF NATION can be followed on www.Facebook.com/NerfNation, www.YouTube.com/Nerf, and www.Twitter.com/NerfNation. Sign up for the NERF DART TAG League newsletter at http://reg.hasbro.com/Nerf/DartTagLeague/.

About Hasbro, Inc.

Hasbro, Inc. /quotes/comstock/13*!has/quotes/nls/has (HAS 41.28, +0.01, +0.02%) is a worldwide leader in children's and family leisure time products and services with a rich portfolio of brands and entertainment properties that provides some of the highest quality and most recognizable play and recreational experiences in the world. As a brand-driven, consumer-focused global company, Hasbro brings to market a range of toys, games and licensed products, from traditional to high-tech and digital, under such powerful brand names as TRANSFORMERS, PLAYSKOOL, TONKA, MILTON BRADLEY, PARKER BROTHERS, CRANIUM and WIZARDS OF THE COAST. Come see how we inspire play through our brands at http://www.hasbro.com. (C) 2010 Hasbro, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Dew Tour

The Dew Tour consists of five major, multi-sport events spanning across the country, with a cumulative points system, a $2.5 million competitive purse a bonus pool at year-end based on overall tour standings. The Tour features skateboarding (park and vert), BMX (park, vert and dirt) and freestyle motocross. At season's end, the overall points leaders in the five disciplines will be crowned year-end champions and awarded the prestigious Dew Cup. As part of an Alli property, key lifestyle elements complement the competitions at each Tour event including the Festival Village, specialty competitions, and live, cutting-edge music. The Dew Tour is broadcast live on NBC Sports with additional competition and lifestyle broadcasts on MTV, MTV2 and USA. The Dew Tour is also distributed on Fuel TV, Universal HD, and internationally on Eurosport 2, Fox Australia, Extreme Channel and Allarco Superchannel. The Dew Tour partners include Mountain Dew (tour title sponsor) and Nike 6.0, Wendy's and Toyota (event title sponsors). Associate partners include Ball Park, JCPenney, MATADOR by Jack Link's, Paul Mitchell, PlayStation, PowerBar, Sony and Verizon. More information can be found at www.allisports.com.

SOURCE: Hasbro, Inc.


-VasTheStampede

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

NERF CLEAR THE WAY SERIES PHOTOS

Pictures of the blasters Nerf Clear series limited edition blasters that Nerf sent me. Enjoy, and enjoy the few months before we CLEAR THE WAY for the STAMPEDE-ECS!



-VasTheStampede

Thursday, June 03, 2010

NEW NERF BLASTER ALERT: N-Strike Spectre REV-5 blaster



Here are the stats:

· N-Strike Spectre REV-5 blaster

· Combines fave features from the N-Strike Maverick REV-6 blaster and the N-Strike Recon CS-6 blaster

· Adjustable stock

· 5 dart rotating barrel with barrel extension

· Available exclusively at WalMart, October 2010


Yup, got this in my inbox today! So there you go, Target gets the Trooper, Toys R Us gets the Barrel Break, and WalMart gets the Spectre. See you in October!


- VasTheStampede

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Shoutout to the guys in Singapore! - Nerf Mission Zone 2010 - Singapore

Singapore has a new Nerf challenge of their own out there this summer! Checkit!


SINGAPORE MISSION

-VasTheStampede

OFFICIAL NAME FOR THE NEW NERF 09/09/10 blaster!

@NerfNation

It’s OFFICIAL Nerf Nation. The 9.9.10 blaster will be named the N-Strike Stampede ECS. Specs & details may still surprise you. Stay tuned.


Yup, ripped straight from twitter!


-VasTheStampede

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

EXCLUSIVE: NERF N-STRIKE BARREL BREAK




· August release

· Available exclusively at Toys R' Us

· Includes a Tactical Ammo Storage accessory which fits 8 additional darts

· Double-shot blaster

· Compatible with whistler darts

Thanks for the heads up, Nerf!


-VasTheStampede
Wahaha! Thank you for the info,N

Thursday, May 20, 2010

New edition of FoamTalk!

Hoppers, ranges, Grid Code, and more!

PODCAST

Speakers:
Mr BadWrench, Twitch, Talio, Prince Valor

Rated PG-13 for discussion of being without pants, certain lascivious acts, and more!

-VasTheStampede

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

NEW RELEASE: Alpha Trooper CS-18 Blaster!


Here's the new info I received in my inbox: You'll see it pop up elsewhere over the next few days I'm sure!




Nerf N-Strike Alpha Trooper CS-18 Blaster

· Available August, 2010

· Target exclusive

· Features new 18 dart drum magazine

· Rapid Fire blasting ability



So there you have it. More info as it comes out!


-VasTheStampede

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Back to Basics - The Movie!

As is the custom here at FFA, when I go to a foam dart fight chances are I'm going to be bringing along cameras. These, are some of the highlights from Back to Basics:

FoamFromAbove - Going Back to Basics! from Video Ninjas on Vimeo.



Enjoy! There's a lot of stock ammo, a lot of happy faces, and more!

-VasTheStampede

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Look Before You Leak




Guess what happens when we have a little down time between rounds at a Nerf fight?


- VasTheStampede

Friday, April 23, 2010

And lo, the story breaks - 09/09/10 blaster news?

Well, I first saw this on Nerfhaven and it looks like amazon.com and other vendors started listing for a toy called the....


Nerf N-Strike Stampede ECS-50.


So what does this mean, besides Nerf finally naming a blaster after me? (A guy can dream, right?)

Well, naming conventions being what they are this thing'll have 50 shots in some kinda automatic configuration (the listing says 6 "D" batteries needed, like the vulcan) and signs indicate clip system. It'll be out 09/09/10, suggesting the initial "Big Blast" moniker was possibly a code name.

I'm going to avoid speculating, but this is actually pretty interesting, and exciting! I almost hope there's an early release somewhere...



LET THE WILD RUMP-

Wait, no. LET THE SPECULATION BEGIN!

See you next time, but definitely at the release in September!

-Vas The Stampede (No, not like the Nerf blaster!)

Sunday, April 11, 2010

PICTURES - Gettin' back to where we began!



For anyone that wanted'em, say hi to the pics from Back to Basics in Oak Lawn!

A more detailed write-up to follow; but enjoy the pics for now! If you were there, hope you had fun!

And thanks to Nerf for sending some stuff our way to hand out! It was much appreciated! :)

GALLERY

Vas The Stampede

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Chicago Area Nerf 2010 - "Just in Case"

It's about that time -


Once more unto the breach, dear friends! In the Midwest, a good number of folks that Nerf in IL shelved their blasters since Nov/Dec 2009, due to school, weather, weather, and no indoor venue to play. Well, it's warmer now and a new round of Nerf/foam blaster battles have begun! Minnesota and Wisconsin had their events last weekend, and some of the folks in Chicago just theirs underway as well.

This event didn't carry the same kind of weight that the usual wars carry. This was conceived in all of two-three weeks, when a fight usually has a date set months in advance to give attendees enough notice. Some of us were getting a little restless but were not able to make the trip up to the MN event that weekend. Snake, one of the Chicago Area Nerfers here took it upon himself to host a small local "warmup" to get off his butt and hopefully indoctrinate some new faces to our little slice of hobby heaven.

He took a different path from some of the past events. He actively banned a lot of specific types of mods and blasters (some homemades, for instance) and even ammo. The basic rules:

"If you don't like it, don't show."
"Run your war how you want to run it."
"The host has a responsibility to make sure his attendees have a good time."

The focus was to get back to running around in super close quarters with epic dodging and some sword/shield/axe blocking. Not being paced off at huge distances behind sparse cover with tons of No-Man's Land. There's been talk of a power creep in the midwest but that's a topic for another day. Snake wanted to explore what going back to our roots with short ranges and stock ammo would be like after the previous few fights where this wasn't the case.

Either way, there was a decent show of people. About 12 people from the surrounding Chicagoland area showed up, some with a few fights already under their belt and a few who haven't been in a good fight yet. It was a good mix!

I personally had a good time. We were all laughing at numerous points during the day just out of the craziness of the action. The close ranges led to a lot of running and even though Oak Lawn has its own issues with cover the fact we could run and dodge pretty much compensated for that. The blasters of the day varied; the N-Strike line (Raider, Longshot, Longstrike, Recon, Nitefinder, Magstrike, etc.) all saw use in addition to one or two homemades, furyfires, and other off-brand blasters. The N-Force melee weapons also saw some action, coupled with shields. We didn't use "larger ammo takes out shield" rules, mainly because we forgot, hah.

We were in and out of rounds really quick, too. Last Team Standing, Last One Standing, Capture the Flag (lots of capture the flag), Protect the VIP, and Center Flag Push were all orders on the day along with switching teams every few rounds. It was quick, fast-paced, and only really slowed at lunch or when we needed water. But we were all running, so much for each game. Heck, at one point we even got to use the park/jungle gym, which adds a nice dimension to CtF. If anything, we needed more gametypes to throw in.

It was a good first war for a lot of people, and they say they'll be back for the next one. As far as being a good introduction for people into this hobby, I'll say, "Achievement Unlocked."


See you on the field!

-Vas The Stampede

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Preview Gallery!

Snake hosted a war this past weekend! A full writeup will follow (and hopefully a video) but in the meantime, here's the gallery!





Stay Tuned!

- Vas The Stampede

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

How they roll in the Pacific Northwest!

A couple of weeks ago I was checking out nerfhaven, and found this little thread:

Nerfhaven thread announcement!


So from what I can tell this group out in Washington state has a publicly accessible old fort available for their foam warfare! Illinois unfortunately is short on supply on things like this (believe me, I looked. Do you know of something I must have missed and live in IL? Let me know - foamfromabove@gmail.com). Either way, judging from the pics (gallery links to follow) the site works for indoor and outdoor foam flinging - hallways, corridors, multiple levels, surrounding vegetation, it's pretty intense. The group uses flagging tape and glowsticks, and even in broad daylight it looks like some of the rooms are just ripe for poorly lit "who's there!?" moments. Awesome.

The rules for this group and location are as follows:

"Rules:

All players under 18 need parental consent. That means they have to speak to ME directly. I need to do this for each war. I can meet or call your parents before the war if you would like. Lawsuits suck.

Eye Protection. We have extras.

OFFICIAL NERF AMMO ONLY. We picked up a wide variety (White, black, gray, and red) of dangerous homemade ammo with metal weights and washers poking out at the end of the day last time. They look like they didn't stand up to the concrete very well and we have no interest in having those things fired at us. I just picked up over 100 streamlines to replenish the communal ammo, so there is plenty to spare.

All modded blasters are subject to approval. These are point blank range firefights!

This is a state park. We keep it clean, respect other guests, and behave ourselves.

Any threats of actual violence, unsafe play, or other nonsense will not be tolerated."

Stock ammo, and point blank encounters = probably very limited mods. But in an area like this I don't see that being a problem. I haven't been to a proper indoor war yet, but they look like a lot of fun and something like this where you have the potential of both worlds is an interesting scenario. It looks like they're done for the year at this location but I am seriously jealous of you, Puget Sound/Pacific Northwest Nerfers.

Let this stand as testament that foam fighting doesn't end at mods and open fields. It's a big world out there, find some interesting places to play (preferably within legal statutes!)

Thankfully, "Flaming Hilt" was nice enough to let me link to his album:

Pacific Northwest Nerf!



And it looks like they had a freaking great time. Way to keep it lively out there, folks! One day, if I go to WA I'll look you guys up. Thanks for the cooperation, "Gunther!"



'til next time, Foam Flingers!

Vas The Stampede



Don't forget! Foam From Above is always looking for Foamme Fatales for our gallery! See the details in the right sidebar! Are you a girl who nerfs/male nerfer with females in your group? Let'em represent! Attention whoring photos/scantily clad ones are NOT what we're looking for here.

Monday, March 15, 2010

NERF DART TAG LEAGUE - HEADS UP! DEW TOUR DATES!

ALLI SPORTS ON FACEBOOK

Alli Sports, organizer of the Dew Tour finally announced the dates for the Summer Dew Tour, where the Nerf Dart Tag League takes place. Word is that the League is coming back this summer and running concurrently in Festival Village at each Dew Tour stop.

Anyway.... BACK TO THE ANNOUNCED DATES:

Alli Sports


**SUMMER DEW TOUR STOPS ANNOUNCED** June 25-26 Skate Boston; July 23-24 BMX Chicago; Aug. 12-15 Portland; Sept. 16-19 SLC; Oct. 14-17 Vegas

Being in Chicago, I'll be there!

- Vas The Stampede

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

How do you spell Spring/Summer? N-D-T-L

Word has it that the NDTL tour stops will be announced later this month, but in preparation for that announcement and the coming NDTL events let's grab a look at some of the current gear

- Furyfire



- Hyperfire and a Strikefire (aka Dart Tag Blaster, this is the original blue version. The pistol was first named the Crossfire.)



- Stormfire w/Capture the Flag Beacon



- New Dart Tag Fast Load Sleeves, and the Dart Tag Vision Gear! (Shown: old grey version. Also sold separately in white, navy, and black)



Lock and Load!

- Vas The Stampede

FOAMME FATALES

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