Who doesn’t love nerf guns? From kids to teens and adults, everyone has their fun memory of an epic nerf battle with their siblings, cousins, and friends. These popular toy guns make you feel like a ‘badass’ in the comfort of your home. It’s truly fun, exciting, thrilling, and absolutely safe.
Because of their success, the company has launched tons of nerf gun models since 1969. Yes, it’s been almost 5 decades! And with so many nerf guns available on the market today, it can be truly challenging to find the best nerf gun that will get you on top of the game.
Well, not anymore.
Here is a collection of the best nerf guns today. Whether you’re into a cosmic war, military battle, or a zombie hunt, the following reviews will help make you select the nerf gun that’s best for you or your kids.
Top 10 Nerf Guns of 2018 Reviewed
- Top 10 Nerf Guns of 2018 Reviewed
- 1. Nerf N-Strike Elite Rampage Blaster
- 2. Zombie Strike Doominator
- 3. Nerf N-Strike Mega RotoFury Blaster
- 4. Nerf N-Strike Elite Strongarm Blaster
- 5. Nerf Rival Atlas XVI-1200 Blaster
- 6. Nerf Doomlands 2169 Vagabond Blaster
- 7. Nerf N-Strike Elite Stryfe Blaster
- 8. Nerf N-Strike Elite Rhino-Fire Blaster
- 9. Nerf Rival Nemesis
- 10. Nerf CS-18 N-Strike Elite Rapidstrike
- How to Choose a Nerf Gun
1. Nerf N-Strike Elite Rampage BlasterNerf Gun For Tactical Rail
If you want to have a superior edge over your ‘enemies’, you want a high-end gun toy that combines power and range. Perfect for tactical range shooting, Nerf N-Strike Elite Rampage Blaster is our top choice.
The first Elite series were launched in 2003. The latest elite Nerf guns, which were introduced in 2012, are more robust and firm and have improved firing ranges than their predecessors. The Nerf N-Strike Elite Rampage Blaster comes with 25 Elite Darts that fit nicely in a single drum magazine. Compared to previous models, the range and accuracy of this gun have significantly increased. Aside from this, there are many more things to love about the Rampage. First is the new color scheme which makes it look a lot better. Of course, colors don’t make the gun any better in the battlefield, but the overall appeal of Elite Rampage blaster is going to totally capture your attention.
This gun also features an excellent grip. It comes with a direct plunger system that makes it easy to use. Operating the Rampage is easy too, which makes it a top choice by many consumers. Another notable feature is the ‘slam fire’ which allows you to achieve 3 dart-per-second firing rate. Just keep the trigger pressed while moving the priming handle back and forward. To avoid potential jamming and damaging the darts, be sure to fully move the priming handle backward and forward.
- 75 feet range
- 25-dart drum magazine
- Usually jams
2. Zombie Strike DoominatorNerf Gun For Zombie Wars
Great for its quick-trigger function, a strong body, and rapid fire mechanism, with Zombie Strike Doominator, you will definitely hunt down a zombie by repeatedly firing at them.
This pump-action Doominator is packed with amazing features, including recoil, great trigger function, and 4 six-shot cylinders that make up an impressive 24-dart capacity. It comes predominantly in a funky green color with some moulded details meant to look like they’ve been assembled using workshop spares.
This nerf gun is a spring-powered blaster which requires a little work before you can start firing the darts to your target. What makes this toy gun more unique is that you can choose from the three mounting positions: straight down, right, or left.
The Doominator has an impressive grip with a handle made to look like it’s wrapped by a duct tape. In front of the grip and trigger, you will also find a knuckle duster-style lever, which allows you to switch between cylinders. It is also capable of rapid assault when switched to a slam fire mode.
- Large ammo capacity
- Fun multi-cylinder mechanism
- Some odd ergonomics
3. Nerf N-Strike Mega RotoFury BlasterShotgun Styled Nerf Gun
The Nerf N-Strike Mega RotoFury Blaster is a wonderful choice if you want mega large darts for a more aimed shooting. Even more exciting, these darts whistle through the air, alerting your playmates that you’re on track to gun them down.
Unlike the other Nerf guns, the Mega Series is popular for their whistling darts. This alerts your opponent that attack is underway. Apart from the huge darts, the Mega Nerf gun gives you a greater advantage over your ‘enemies’ with its super far range. It can fire darts to a distance of up to 90 feet!
This gun also features rapid-fire fury that allows you to fire 10 mega darts without reloading by holding down the trigger and pumping the handle. At the same time, you can also fire one dart at a time. Simply pump the handle then pull the trigger. Some users report that the pump tends to fail sometimes. By not slamming the pump every hard, this issue can be avoided. This awesome shotgun styled Nerf gun is ready for action anytime.
- Rapid fire mechanism of 10 Mega Nerf Darts per shot
- Rotating Drum
- Beautiful design
- Large and heavy (little kids might find it harder to use)
- Some issues with pumping
4. Nerf N-Strike Elite Strongarm BlasterInexpensive Nerf Gun
Designed for quick draws and fast firing, the Nerf N-Strike Elite Strongarm Blaster is an inexpensive choice for long-range shooting and jam-packed action.
In the battlefield, you need a lightweight weapon that’s easy to operate and quick to take action, just like the Elite Strongarm Blaster. This model is the best in blaster performance as it is engineered with amped-up velocity. This means you can fire at a more accurate and stable direction, even at extended distances. This gun features an excellent trigger action and a “Strongarm Slam” that lets you fire the darts in quick succession. It also has one tactical rail if you’re looking to add accessories as well as two-strap points if you prefer to sling rather than holster it.
- A range of 75 feet
- Easy to load
- Small capacity (only holds 6 darts at a time)
- Occasionally jams
5. Nerf Rival Atlas XVI-1200 BlasterNerf Gun For Intense Head-to-Head Battle
Check out Nerf Rival Atlas XVI-1200 Blaster if what you’re looking for is ultimate precision and power, and high-impact rounds. The Nerf Rival series are pretty awesome because they look like the traditional Nerf gun models but with high-impact rounds. The gun holds 12 darts in one magazine and fires two darts at a time. This is a great way to throw off your enemy!
This model uses spring-action mechanism to prime the blaster. Simply pump handle backward and forward, and it’s ready to take action. The powerful velocity and reliable accuracy of this gun toy make it a top choice by many. The double shot ammo is truly fun and exciting, but you’re likely to run out of darts quicker. It’s a bit bulky however (it’s designed that way) but you can easily get used to its shape and feel. Choose between the red and blue color.
- Blasts two rounds with one shot
- High-impact shooting
- Spring-action mechanism
- Limited fire power
- Jams are common
6. Nerf Doomlands 2169 Vagabond BlasterNerf Gun For Fast Firing Power
Imagine being in a barren, lawless wasteland of the after-earth. With the Nerf Doomlands 2169 Vagabond Blaster, you will be one step ahead of your enemies with its fast firing power.
The Nerf Doomlands 2169 Vagabond unleashes 6 darts in a row. You can fire one dart at a time or blast all the 6 darts through the slam fire mode. An interesting feature of this Nerf gun is the clear area that lets you see the firing mechanism inside. Unfortunately, the barrel of this Nerf gun is non-removable. This means it can be a little tricky to operate in case there’s a jam. It also does not come with that much ammo, so you may have to reload more frequently. The Nerf Doomland Vagabond series are also not ideal for long-range shooting.
- Pump-action blasting
- Clear area reveals firing mechanism
- Falls under mid-range price
- Relatively shorter range
- Needs frequent reloading (holds only 6 darts at a time)
7. Nerf N-Strike Elite Stryfe BlasterPistol Styled Nerf Gun
Featuring a motorized acceleration trigger, the Nerf N-Strike Elite Stryfe Blaster lets you fire up for maximum range.
The Elite Stryfe blaster allows you to fire one Nerf Dart each time you pull the trigger. However, you have to allow the motor to fully warm up before firing to aim a maximum distance. It features a quick reload clip that holds 6 Elite darts with any Clip System blaster. This gun toy is automatic and requires batteries to operate. It does have jamming issues too if you don’t allow proper rev up. If you have never played Nerf guns before, the Stryfe model is a great starter choice. Best thing is, it’s upgradable. It comes with 2 tactical rails and barrel attachments.
- Includes a tactical rail
- Quick Reload clip
- Motorized Firing
- Jamming issues
8. Nerf N-Strike Elite Rhino-Fire BlasterMachine Gun Styled Nerf Gun
This Nerf N-Strike Elite Rhino-Fire Blaster lets comes with a pair of barrels holds 25 darts each, totalling to 50 darts per reloading. That’s pretty much a lot for a full-blast battle.
With a range as far as 90 feet, the Rhino-Fire Blaster is a top-notch choice for all experienced nerf gun players. So far, it has the most number of darts in one reloading, containing two barrels that load up to 25 darts each. This gun is supported by a clip-system, along with two tactical rails and two strap points. You can choose to run and fire or stay put in one location and fire darts from there by attaching the tripod that comes with the package.
This Nerf gun features an internal flywheel system that creates an automatic mode of fire. What’s more, this model is less susceptible to jams. Unfortunately, this toy requires 6 “D” batteries to perform. It also has a bulky size, which makes carrying around awkward. The big size also discourages very young children to operate the gun in its full potential.
- Removable tripod
- Good power and range
- Rarely jams
- Power requirement is a bit too high (6 D batteries)
9. Nerf Rival NemesisHigh-ammo Nerf Gun
The Nerf Rival Nemesis has the largest ammo capacity among Nerf guns, containing 100 high impact rounds in a single reloading.
The Nemesis gun is the best choice if you’re up for some serious long series of Nerf war. It comes with a removable hopper which makes clearing a jam easier. Since it’s fully motorized, you can expect high-impact strikes all the time. This gun is recommended for children 14 years old and above. It’s kinda heavy but you can add straps to make it easy to carry around. The only downside is that it’s fully automated and requires 6 “D” batteries to operate.
- Hopper Fed
- Fully motorized
- Requires 6 “D” Batteries
- Fully automated
10. Nerf CS-18 N-Strike Elite RapidstrikeNerf Gun For the Competitive Warrior
Strike fast with Nerf CS-18 N-Strike Elite Rapidstrike. Featuring a motorized trigger and acceleration button, this blaster unleashes 18 darts in one reloading.
If you prefer a battery-powered Nerf gun that has a sleek design and basic features, you can’t go wrong with the CS-18 Rapidstrike. All you need to do is aim, warm the motor up, and fire. Of course, you need to reload the magazine with 18 darts. The CS-18 is the perfect size for adults and teens. This gun fires up to 90 feet, which is pretty incredible considering it’s basic design. It requires 4 C batteries to operate.
- Ammo Capacity
- Motorized Firing
- Jamming Issues
How to Choose a Nerf Gun
When shopping for a nerf gun, you should choose as if you are buying a real gun, in some ways. You should also know that much like real guns, each nerf gun model has its own benefits and drawbacks. It always falls into the user’s personal preference as to what makes the right nerf gun for them.
Manual vs. Automatic
To streamline your search, the first thing you need to do is to determine whether you want a manual or an automatic gun.
When using a manual nerf gun, you have to load each bullet individually. The ammo is stored in the butt end and you have to pop each piece before shooting. Manual toy guns promote better firing capacity without clogging the chamber. They also have faster ammo reload time. However, the biggest drawback is that you can only fire one shot at a time. Manual nerf guns usually take longer to load from the start as well.
Automatic nerf guns, on the other hand, contain small cartridges that facilitate rapid fire mechanics, giving you the ability to produce non-stop firing shots per round of ammo. They allow quick load from the start, faster response, and rapid fire. Nonetheless, they require longer reload time for the ammo and they use up ammo quickly.
Gun Size & Weight
This is a very important factor to consider as some nerf guns can be too heavy for young children or too light for older kids. Not only that, weight matters in the heat of the battle too. If you prefer playing the part of a heavily-armed defensive or stationary player, sniper-type guns that are bulky and heavy is definitely a good choice. But if you will be hunting zombies, or running after your enemies in a battleground, opt for a lighter gun so you can move around with less hassle.
Remember that all nerf guns are made of plastic and they all gain weight as you add more parts. This means that a nerf gun with a more complex design and added features would mean a heavier weapon and vice versa. However, there are nerf models that allow you to add or take out some parts, depending on your firing needs.
Nerf guns make use of three specific types of ammo which are all safe for humans and pets: suction dart, standard dart, and foam torpedo.
- Suction Dart – this is a foam dart that has a suction cup on the bottom. This type of dart has a good amount of velocity that makes it stick to almost anything.
- Standard Dart – compatible with almost all recent models of nerf guns, standard darts come in a variety of colors with either an orange or yellow tip.
- Foam Torpedo – this one creates a ‘thud’ when the target is hit. It also has a wider radius and contains more foam, thus the moniker.
Nerf foam darts range in size, but the standard is one inch. This is intended to allow savvy parents to be able to use the same ammo for different types of nerf guns.
Furthermore, Nerf has released two more modern ammo which both promise accuracy and better shooting experience. These are the AccuStrike darts which feature an improved tip design and are compatible with all standard NERFs, and the Mega dart, which is a bit bigger and creates a thrilling whistling noise as it flies through the air.
Furthermore, Nerf also has the ‘missile’ dart which is used as a secondary one-shot ammo by some NERF blaster models, such as the Elite Demolisher.
When on a battlefield, how far your bullet (in this case, the dart) can travel is very important in gauging your success. Whether you’re on a playground, in the backyard, or out into the woods, a wider range would mean a better chance of hitting your opponents. Most nerf guns can produce enough of an air blast to fire a dart up to 75 feet, which is significantly farther. But of course, hitting an opponent in that kind of range is more possible with an automatic gun because a manual gun requires a little more aim and luck as you’re only firing one dart at a time.
Perhaps the biggest challenge that every player faces during the game would be the reloading. While everyone is given time to reload their ammo during ‘time-outs’, if you’re in the middle of the game and it’s crunch time, you want to be able to reload as quickly as possible. Usually, nerf guns with drums are harder to reload and take more time to hook up properly before firing. If you want a nerf gun that takes a breeze to reload, you might be well off with the shotgun-like models.
If you or your kid is really into using the gun in more imaginative ways, you will surely fund nerf guns that can be configured so appealing. Certain nerf guns are designed to be configured, such as the Modulus Tri-Strike. You can disassemble the gun and make into whatever primary weapon you need for a specific game.
For a more fun experience, you can choose to purchase accessories for your nerf gun, some are sold by third-party manufacturers. Most of these accessories are purely for cosmetic purposes – they make your gun look cool but won’t really give you an advantage during the dartplay.
Perhaps the most useful accessories are the higher-capacity magazines, commonly called ‘clips’, which are manufactured by Nerf themselves. They come in various shapes and sizes and can be interchanged between models as long as you have the Nerf gun with a magazine that’s actually removable. Other helpful accessories include grips, barrel extensions, sights, and bipods.
Nerf guns are available in a wide range of prices. Before you shop around, it can be a great idea to determine how much you are willing to spend (at least an estimation) so you can easily filter out the models that don’t fall within your budget. What’s great about Nerf products is that they are all relatively inexpensive. Depending on the features you want, you can buy a Nerf gun from as low as $12 to as much as $70. But of course, if you’re up to a high-value Nerf toy that has the most amazing features, you can buy one for over $400.
Don’t forget to include the extra ammo in your budget. When it comes to Nerf gun players, there’s not enough number of ammo. The darts can get lost easily, especially if you or your kids love playing outdoors.
Nerf has been helping kids and kids at heart create epic toy gun battles since the 1960s. And despite the heavy competition, what makes Nerf guns stand out all through time is that aside from the fact that they are completely safe, most of them can be modified with official accessories.
With the wide range of Nerf guns, you will definitely find the best one that fits you or your child. Just make sure to take into account your personal preference, playing needs, and preferred size. This way, you can make the most out of your Nerf gun.