Monday, October 31, 2011

Chicagoland Dart Tag Society's Halloween Dartapalooza!

Gaming it up, in costume for Halloween! 

Monday, October 24, 2011

Fresh from MTV GEEK

One of many new toys to come from Diamond Select Toys, a steampunk statue. I like her Nerf Maverick repaint accessory.

Full article can be found on MTV GEEK
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Just a quick shot from the Humans Vs. Zombies game at University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, thanks to Random Fun Events , where folks from the Chicagoland Dart Society and Wisconsin Parkour also made grand appearances as fantastic mods and kickin' Original Zombies, respectively.  It was the first time I've played HvZ proper, and it was definitely a good time meeting everyone, flinging some foam, and seeing some wicked stunts.  I'll have a more proper writeup soon, once I'm done going through the grand ol' POV footage :)

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Light Strike - Here's a go

Light Strike - 

Assault striker w/target (3 different color variants) -  $39.99
Light Striker Pistol w/target  (3 color variants) - $29.99
Enemy Scanner (attachment) - $14.99
Rapid Fire Striker (attachment) - $12.99

Included power settings:

“Laser Strike” - 12 shots - disables enemy in 12 hits
“Stealth Strike” (silencer mode) - 12 shots - disables enemy in 12 hits
“Pulse Strike” - 16 shots - disables enemy in 8 hits
“Rail Strike” (powered shot) - 8 shots, disables enemy in 4 hits, slower reload than other modes, slow RoF (Rate of Fire)
“Sonic Strike” (powered shots) - 6 shots - disables enemy in 3 hits - slower reload and RoF
Rapid Fire Striker - Significantly more shots than normal “Laser Strike” mode, and in full-auto so impossible to really count amount of shots - disables enemy in 8 hits, slow reload, HIGH RoF
Enemy Scanner -
Detects enemy strikers in the surrounding area, aesthetically functions like a sonar, beeping in the direction players on other teams can be found, also increases damage from built-in weapons
Thanks to the fine folks at Light Strike, they sent along the above items for me to take a look.  All I can say is, “Impressive, most impressive.”

First up, your basic Striker.  It’s a pistol, with four buttons on top and the power switch.  Volume, shield, team select, and four weapon settings: Laser, stealth, pulse, and sonic.  It’s missing the “Rail Strike” the Assault model has, but you don’t have to hit a reload button.  Thematically, it’s as if the blaster “overheats” and needs to cool down.  The Striker also has a flip-up sight which is a nice touch, a jack for headphones.  It feels really good in-hand, the handles are a good size and fit both kids and adults (my 9 year old nephew had no trouble using it).  

Next, there’s the Assault Striker, a rifle unit.  In addition to to the same buttons the Striker has (but integrated into the body of the tagger, as opposed to the four buttons on top) It has the same weapon settings as the pistol, with the addition of the “Rail Strike” setting.  There’s also an additional “fingerprint scanner” that players must use to activate the blaster before it can be fired and a semi-auto (three round burst) mode, and single shot mode.  The bread and butter of the Assault model is it’s modular capability.  You buy an attachment like the rapid fire system, refractor cannon, scope, or enemy scanner and it changes the functionality of the striker.  So IN ADDITION to the settings it came with you now can expand your repertoire and play style depending on what attachments you’re using.  Attachments, that ACTUALLY do something!  And good range, reliability, and utility right out of the box.  

The strikers themselves overall have a nice weight, easy trigger action and just holding the trigger sends out a constant stream of shots.  And just because Wowwee makes “Paper Jamz” that doesn’t mean these strikers are paper.  It’s a robust plastic!  The strikers also come with an additional target that changes color based on your team selection, both for practice and if you want to add a layer of challenge to your traditional gametypes.

The strikers have their target on the front of the blaster.  This positioning leaves it easy to take some liberties, through testing we found hiding the blaster behind your back makes it easy to hide the sensor.  With the targeting vest this isn’t possible, as the sensors are out in the open, and maybe going prone is the only way to block the sensor after this.  Also, with more than 2 players putting the blaster behind one’s back won’t work with proper tactics.  One other thing is that when you play with just the blasters, a player can switch teams at any time.  It would be easy to switch teams without the vest, either on accident or if you were trying to cheat.  Also, respawning is done by just turning the striker on and off, so less scrupulous individuals might exploit this as well.

Now nevermind the strikers already get pretty much 50’ out of the box, but you’re also getting a multitude of different strikers in each unit, balanced out in power vs. rate of fire vs. reload time.  Throw in the attachments, the vests, the added factors of the ITS (Intelligent Targeting System) and you’ve got the makings for some pretty intense games in an immersive experience not really shown by anything else out there yet.  You heal, respawn, set timers, sentries, medic stations, and there are some serious pieces here for a grand game time puzzle.  The trick is just getting through that initial investment of all the pieces being sold separately, plus batteries.  Have no fear though, the attachments don’t require batteries.  Just the strikers, ITS, vests, and targets.  Each piece adds to the gameplay - vests make players able to heal each other, and the ITS has a number of different functions.  If you’re willing to make the investment you really wouldn’t regret it, there is definitely some serious potential for you and your friends depending on what you devise.  Light Strike provides the items, but the replayability and variety is definitely on the part of the play

A pretty serious oversight though has to be on the visibility of the lights on the strikers outdoors.  IN bright light, it's near impossible to read any of the light displays on the strikers.  In the video below, you might be able to see what I'm talking to about.  Bright sunlight just washes out the colors under the frosted plastic sections of the strikers. 

Here's how a little play went:

  • No clean up
  • Big ranges out of the box - 50’+, under 100 w/Scope attachment
  • Different play styles - high RoF./quick reload vs. high-power
  • Easy to track hits
  • Easy to pick teams
  • Out of the box, ready to go.
  • Reloading at the press of a button
  • Expand game play w/ other purchases, ITS and chest, targets - initial expense can be a hit, but really adds to the gameplay
  • Customizable experience
  • Lights are fun and bright, exciting to watch and fun to hear
  • Accuracy seems pretty spot-on

  • Expensive to get started, must remember you get multiple blasters with each toy.
  • Lights difficult to see in bright outdoor light
  • Easy to cheat
    • Respawning is too easy - easy to refill health and reset without anyone noticing
    • Easy to switch teams after a game has started
      • There is the chance this might add to gameplay as well (find the spy) but very easy to swap colors if players want to screw up a game type (this might happen on accident as well
  • Some weapons might be broken - the Scope outranges AND has a high RoF with the Stealth Shot.  Might need regulation on the part of the players, or it might not be as bad with more players.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Not at NYCC? Bring some of it home, N-Strike Barricade Bumblebee style!

Fresh from the inbox -

" wanted to give the Foam From Above fan community a heads-up on a limited opportunity to obtain the Nerf N-Strike Barricade RV-10 Special Edition Transformers Bumblebee blaster, which appeared at New York Comic Con earlier this month. Hasbro will be posting this item to for sale on the morning of October 19th, after 10am EST and we wanted to provide you with as much notice as possible!  Please keep in mind, remaining inventory is limited since the item was a hot commodity at the convention, but we’re glad we are able to make these remaining blasters available online."

So to sum up:  Go to the hasbro toy shop starting tomorrow, and keep an eye out on the Nerf Facebook
page to see when the news goes live there, and you too can own your own Nerf N-Strike Bumblebee Edition barricade! Pair it up if you own the Optimus Prime Barricade, or mix and match if you own either the original, Sonic, or Gear Up editions!  Great collectors, intended for kids, loved by completionists.  Transform, and Roll Out!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Nerf Gear Up Barricade in action - w the Chicagoland Dart Tag Society

A round of "Freeze Tag" while playing with the Chicagoland Dart Tag Society!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Nerf N strike double packs

Wal mart exclusive
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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Nerf Maverick, 3 different types

Testing the oldest, most recent, and a middle child of the Nerf N-Strike Maverick incarnations and repaints. All the Mavericks are stock, so these are ranges practically right out of the box.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Zing Toys Testing - Zcurve Bow and Hunter Crossbow!

Zcurve bow -

Zing Hunter Crossbow -

Holy crap, I just saw this- hiarious!

Compare and contrast - Buzz Bee TV ad vs. Nerf TV Ad

Draw your own conclusions!

Buzz Bee's Air Blasters:

Nerf's new N-Strike commercial:

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Vapor Atlas quick pic:)
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Friday, October 07, 2011

Halloween?  OH HELL YEAH:

You better believe I'm going.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Nerf Vigilon Inside Blast - Fresh from Nerf's channel!

Nerf's own video showcasing the Nerf Vigilon disc blaster.  How're you all liking the line so far?  Overwhelmed?  Under?  Liking the new ammo?  Have you taken it out into the field?  Let us know!  Personal favorite?  The Praxis.  Pump-action and ten shots, what's not to like?  Crosswinds?

Don't think they announced this one, an Inside Blast for the Speedload 6!

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Light Strike - finally!

Samples received, thanks light strike! Review coming soon.
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POV VIDEO - running a game of CTF with the Chicagoland Dart Tag Society!


Tuesday, October 04, 2011

New Nerf electronic gear coming out! Cameras, flash drives, oh my!

Some new electronics from NERF coming out, thanks to their partnership with Sakar toys!

"...Here are a few of the highlights:
  • Night vision goggles for see-in-the-dark fun
  • A digital helmet cam that can be mounted on either a helmet or bike
  • A pocket DVR with a preview screen
  • 2.1 and 5.1 MP digital cameras packaged with social networking software
Other products include a flash drive shaped like a Nerf Dart Blaster (awesome), an MP3 player, walkie talkies and flash light...."

They'll have more news as this develops!

vapor vs. xploderz!

Specifically, the Vapor Atlas 250 tests out against the Xground Pounder from Xploderz, with frustrating and hilarious results.
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Sunday, October 02, 2011

Red Bull? oh yeah :)

Totally awesome coincidence! Playing with the Chicagoland Dart Tag Society, and what showed up? A Red Bull car!
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chicagoland dart tag society makes a friend!

Nerf, red bull
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