Buzz Bee 30 Round
Story by Lanyx Desalia
How many times has a person in the Nerfing Community said the words “I hope they sell that by itself?” Since the advent of the drum magazine people have been clamoring to be able to buy one without spending the exorbitant prices often attached to buying expensive blasters solely for the high capacity magazine. It seems much like Dart Zone offering up a performance grade stock blaster, another company is finally listening to our hobby.
Expected to originally be released with the Buzz Bee Air Warriors Agitator, the Buzz Bee thirty round drum was mysteriously absent when the blaster was released. Of course there were a few obscure sightings, but nothing concrete or mass market seemed to be available. Now however it seems that Buzz Bee Toys will be offering its thirty dart magazine “à la carte.” According to the Buzz Bee representative at the Nuremburg Toy Fair the product will be available for less than $20 USD.
The few reviews of this magazine that are available online the only complaint was the fact that the clear plastic window is in the front of the drum, allowing your opponents to see how many darts you have left. This would be especially problematic during an HvZ. The problem being that the “Zombies” are not actually zombies, but still fully cognizant humans capable of logic and planning. Any zombie players could easily see when your magazine was empty or at least mostly empty and launch a concentrated rush. Such minor, trivial complaints are the reason modders exist.
An Update to the Alpha Strike Series
Story by Lanyx Desalia
Many people complain about ridged skeletal handles of the Alpha Strike Line. So many people have complained that it seems the giant toy conglomerate that is Hasbro has finally deigned to acknowledge us. User Rocketbilly on Reddit r/Nerf posted a picture of an new design of Fang QS-4 found in a UK Tesco. Soon after Nerf Taiwan on YouTube posted a video showing the old handles next to the new iteration. Nerfer_tw on Instagram also posted an image of the Fang QS-4 and the Cobra RC-6 side by side with their newer counterparts.
The new handles are made of a molded plastic that while appearing to be far more comfortable than the old ridged handles, honestly seems more like an afterthought. The new handles are made of black plastic, matching only the t-pull plunger rod on the blaster. They even changed the trigger color from black to grey. The only thing they did not update was the picture on the box, it hilariously still shows the blasters with the skeletal handles.
Unfortunately from watching Nerf Taiwan’s video, it does seem that the upgrade to the handle means we lost some small amount of performance. While this might seem like a big deal to some, we in the Nerf community must remember a couple things. Firstly, the Alpha Strike line is not really made for us, it was made for mass market appeal. This is readily apparent in Hasbro’s blatant corporate lies, such as branding each box “NUMBER ONE NERF BLASTER BRAND!!!” and “Use ONLY official Nerf Darts.” This is a knee-jerk marketing decision, caused by Hasbro getting worried that they are losing too much business to their competitors. Yes, competitors, there was a day, not so very long ago when Dart Zone, Buzz Bee and the like were considered “off-brand” but they have lately stepped up their games, making them legitimate competitors to Nerf. Secondly, these blasters are ridiculously hard to modify. Between plastic clips, and an almost total lack of metal, the Alpha Strike series is almost too simple to be of any use to modders.
Again, the new handle style appearing on Alpha Strike blasters feels more like an afterthought, something they snap on the blaster at the last second. Hopefully though this is a step in the right direction for Nerf’s Alpha Strike. Perhaps we will see more consistency and better quality in the future.
A Look Inside the Hammerstorm
Story by Lanyx Desalia
Also found at UK store Tesco the Hammerstorm is already up for sale. We’ve all been watching this blaster with no small amount of interest; wondering if this blaster is going to be up to snuff or more generic crap sold as “The Number One Blaster Brand.” Monkeytron Collective has taken it upon himself to answer these questions for us, bought the blaster the instant it was available and the first thing he did was take the Hammerstorm apart to provide inquiring minds with pictures of the internals. These pictures of the recent Alpha Strike release raise many questions about the direction the Alpha Strike line is going.
From the pictures provided by Monkeytron we can see this blaster is traditionally clamshelled, with screws and actual metal parts. UtterTravesty another popular source for news and friend to FoamBlast and This Week in Nerf asked a hardline question.
“Is it an anomaly? The first blaster in a series shift to standard quality? Or an unreleased blaster from a canceled line, being repurposed or retooled for a budget line?”
One thing is for sure, as certain as people like Drac, UT and myself are sure that this is just a reshelled Doomlands Negotiator this blaster lacks many of the mechanical designs and aesthetic stylings that make Doomlands intrinsically what it is. The design elements seem to skew more toward the newer Elite stylings of Nerf branding. Now we all eagerly await the release of the AS “Flyte” so we can hopefully see what path the series is going down.
Dart Zone Pro! At Target?
Story by Korit’al Desalia
If you have been around the Nerf online community at all since October 2019 you would have heard of the Dart Zone Pro. Dart Zone released only one thousand Collector’s Edition MK I, which was available only on their official website. There is hope for everyone, Target will be selling the Dart Zone Pro MK 1.1. We don’t have information about when they might be selling it, or for how much, but we do know is that it will be available online only. We don’t know if the one from Target will have any of the extras, and the internals may be different than the Collectors Edition. I know that Lanyx and I will be looking forward to when this is out.
Stock Blaster of the Week
Story by Michelle O’Shea
Some of us like weird gimmicks in our blasters, and since this is Stock Blaster of the Week, I chose one of my favorite weird picks. The Rebelle Diamondista is a blaster many instantly wrote off due to it’s uncomfortable grip, and questionable stylings. Hopefully I can get you to give this blaster another look, as I feel it has some interestingly fun mechanics.The Diamondista is a single shot spring powered blaster with one of the most annoying features a manufacturer every dreamed up, the dreaded dart lock. That said, the string actually propels the dart with a very satisfying sproing noise, that is much quieter than most springers. To operate it, you first draw the string back with your fingers, push a dart into it’s chamber, and then pull the trigger. It has a single tactical rail on the top of the blaster, and it’s translucent glittery purple bows are actually kind of cool. It originally retailed for $9.99, which is high for something akin to a jolt (single shot), but at least it came with 3 darts and a useless decoder?
On to the fun bit, as most of you are probably reaching for a blunt object to smack me with. Don’t just hate on the Diamondista, pick it up and fire it. It is incredibly fun for plinking around the house. RandomShadow averaged 51 feet with flat shots and nearly silent operation. That’s nothing to scoff at. It’s about as accurate as most non-modded blasters if you ignore the occasional wild flyer (we know elite darts suck). I wanted to hate the blaster due to it’s uncomfortable grip, but it’s really not terrible once you get used to it, and the quiet thwip you get with every shot is so intrinsically unique to the platform that I think it’s worth picking up.
Editorial: Loot Boxes
Story by Adrianna O’Shea
Recently, DragonBlaster10000 found an image of some Nerf styled surprise eggs at Kroger. These surprise toys strike a chord with me. I remember walking down the toy aisle as a kid and being able to see all the options laid out in front of me. If my parents decided to buy something, I would know exactly what I would receive. This is definitely not the case today. A huge amount of the shelf space are toys hidden away in secretive packaging and plastic eggs. L.O.L. Surprise Dolls, Super Surprise Safe, even Lego Minifigures. I’ve even seen some of these surprise packs at the Dollar Tree using properties as popular as Dragonball Z and obscure as Bananya.
Jackie Breyer of Toy Insider said “The best part of Christmas morning is unwrapping the gifts. The element of surprise. But these toys are kind of taking it to the next level. Now you can unwrap layer and layer and layers and it’s full of surprises and maybe that’s just as fun if not more so that the toy itself.” I’m not sure in what world unwrapping a toy is more fun than playing with a toy, but that aside, I think more than Christmas morning, these toys bear a resemblance to video game loot boxes. You have a vague idea of what you could get and spend money in hopes of getting the thing that you really wanted. Even Jackie agrees that the anticipation is exciting, but neglects to mention how it fades almost immediately after discovering the contents.
Why bring up this comparison at all? I believe it is a form of gambling. There are many countries attempting to enact legislation on video game loot boxes. Similar to casino gambling, they use a varied reward schedule, meaning you “win” and get that hit of dopamine sometimes, but don’t get it every time and begin to chase that feeling. That is how addictions develop. Children’s brains are even more susceptible to this than adults. It’s clear that video game loot boxes have a huge impact on children and I fear that the physical version in the toy aisle will be the same. You open one and it’s new and great. You open more and start getting duplicates. Each toy is progressively less exciting while being more likely to be one you already have.
Even if you don’t believe in the psychological impacts these surprise toys can have on children, think about how they are effectively hiding the quality of the toy before purchase. Without doing research, there is no way to tell if the contents are worth the price tag or even something you would want at all. If this Nerf surprise is listed for $30, what could possibly give you that value in that form factor that you couldn’t pick out specifically on the shelf?
Parents, if you want to surprise your kid with a fun unboxing, wrap a gift yourself.
Events Around the World
Story by Korit’al Desalia
If you are looking for some big name large scale Nerf events then here are a few to choose from. We have been informed that West vs Zombies 3 has been announced. It will be held July 17 to 19th at Oregon State University at Corvallis. Friday will be the meet and greet followed by the PvP tournament. Saturday and Sunday is the main event HvZ. If you are traveling Eugine Airport is about forty minutes away and Portland a hour and a half by car. The Portland airport has a cheap shuttle that will travel to some of the hotels, wait time is an average or one to two hours. Not sure you can make it to WvZ there are tons of other events to find and get to, here are a few of our top picks. FoamFest is the largest Nerf convention in Europe and will be held on April 18th in Bristol with games in the surrounding areas. If you are unable to make it to Europe you can stay in the states and try for HvZ Endwar which will be June 26th to 28th at State College, PA. They have FoamCon, Humans vs Zombies game, and there will be a tournament. Then in October is Ragnarocktoberfest in San Jose, CA. They will also have a convention, the stalking dead, and a tournament.
Mod of the Week: Alien Diatron
Story by Lanyx Desalia
Facebook Group “Nerf Cosmetic Modders Welcome” is brimming with so much wonderful content, it is often difficult to sift through all of the modifications and pick just one. This week was no exception, but there was one extremely colorful option that stood out from the crowd.
Group Member “Guz Mo” has presented us with this beautiful “Alien” themed Diatron Blaster. The sparkly purple and vibrant blue compliment each other perfectly, and the gold “cyber style” lines on the main body of the blaster are a wonderfully done accent that really brings a “finishing touch” to this mod. More gold paint lends an organic “alien scale” to the stock of the blaster. The other accent color is silver, and Guz Mo did a great job of adding the silver color where the Diatron feels more mechanic. The silver priming handle looks more greasy and natural at the pivot point.
The stock of the blaster is a Modulus Mediator Stock, and the “hidden blaster” in the end of the stock is even painted to match the rest of the blaster. Another nice feature of the blaster in the stock is that it gives the disc shooting Diatron an additional mode of combat, giving the user the ability to fire Elite Darts, albeit only two.
All in all, this work of art is something any alien, Covenant or otherwise, would be proud to use.
Featured Mod: Titan Prometheus
Story by Adrianna O’Shea
Modder Fireball from Ace Strike Force has brought us what we’ve been asking for! Okay, nobody has asked for this, but here it is anyway. This mod is the two behemoths of Nerf, the Prometheus and the Titan, smashed into a single gigantic and unwieldy package. I didn’t know I needed a massive rotating barrel on my full auto bucket of balls and here we are, just dripping with jealousy. Though it is a very dark paint job, I think that can be forgiven with the very large amount of exposed orange plastic in the barrel. Will the barrel improve performance? No. Does it matter? Not when you have 200 rounds! Children will quake in fear as this monster shambles towards them. I hope somebody has a nut gatherer, there will need to be some serious cleanup after this thing comes through.
Featured Mod: Resin Cast Talon Claw
Story by Alpha
Hello Ladies and Gents, this is Alpha, here with a very nice… mod? Build? Something?
Okay, let’s get into this. So… a few years ago, the Caliburn was first made by Captain Slug. An amazing blaster, with the ability of being 3d printed. This design has had many improvements and iterations over the years. One of which is the Talon Claw. This variant is smaller, and is designed to take talon mags, and talon mags only. Now, where am I going with this you ask? Well, over the years, 3d printing has gotten better with lots of new machines and even a new type of printing popping up. This new printing is call sls (edit if necessary) It uses a different technique of printing than the standard fdm printers. I won’t go into it too much, but while it is smoother than the fdm printers, it also has a few structural problems that have been encountered in the past, such as being a bit brittle. Well, one nerfer has found a way around that. He has used all his printing abilities to come up with something amazing… a sls printed talon claw! (Insert photo here). Who you may ask? Well, you should already all know his name by now, he is the nerfer with the bite, he is the speedster of the arena, he is…. DRAC the Unkillable. This blaster is really sleek, even using a metal trigger, sear, and plunger head. I have never seen a 3d printed blaaster look so nice, and that is including FDL 3s (sorry guys). This thing packs a punch, as expected of any Talon claw. Hopefully it serves him well over the years to come. The only bad thing about this blaster, is the fact that it’s not mine. That’s all for now. Alpha out. ab initio usque ad finem
Owner/Operators – FoamBlast Adrianna & Meishel
Editor in Chief/Main Story Boarder – Lanyx Desalia
Reporter – Korit’al Desalia
Reporter – Adrianna O’Shea
Reporter – Michelle O’Shea
Reporter – Alpha