NERF vs. NERF: Gun Comparison

The world of NERF guns can be very confusing. There are hundreds of different blasters coming in all manner of shapes and sizes, to make things even more difficult some guns fire one type of dart whilst others shoot something completely different! Our aim is to be your guide through the weird and wonderful world of NERF and help you find your perfect blaster.

In total there are around 14 different ranges, to keep things simple we are going to focus on the most popular 4; The N-Strike Elite, N-Strike Mega, Doomlands 2169, N-Strike Modulus. We will go into detail on each range, providing an overview of the key features, specify the type of dart they use and also out favourite blaster.

NERF N-Strike Elite (Beginner’s)

Kicking things off is the N-Strike Elite range. As the successor to the original N-Strike range, Elite blasters have been going since 2012, making them some of the oldest blasters still in circulation. The core characteristic of N-Strike Elite guns is a fire distance of up to 75ft – a huge uplift from the ordinal N-Strike’s 35ft! The performance upgrade was thanks to the implementation of a “direct plunger” firing system which help drive more power to the dart but let’s get on with the fun stuff.

The N-Strike Elite range is typified by the distinctive blue/orange colour scheme which has become iconic for any NERF fan. There are of course a lot of variations within the range but as a rule of thumb, if your blaster is primary blue or orange there is a high chance it is an N-Strike Elite.

For NERF newbies the N-Strike Elite range is a perfect fit. N-Strike blasters offer the best range and functionality without adding any addition worries such as customization.

The Darts (Primarily Elite)

NERF N-Strike Elite 30-Dart Refill

The N-Strike Elite range can fire a wide range of ammunition but we must be clear, they cannot fire Mega darts. Your safest bate is to pick up a pack of N-Strike Elite darts which are thinner than their Mega cousins and specifically designed to be fired by Elite blasters. Though Elite darts should be your primary ammunition, you can also fire Tag and Suction darts – not to mention a large range of themed darts.

The Blaster: NERF N-Strike Elite Rough Cut

Nerf N-Strike Elite Rough Cut 2X4 Blaster

If you are looking for an easy to use, no nonsense blaster to get you going then we recommend you check out the N-Strike Elite Rough Cut.

The Rough Cut is a double barrelled blaster which fires two darts at once and has a pump action priming mechanism to cock the blaster. Once you are primed and ready, simply pull the trigger and unleash darts at an unsuspecting enemy. The Rough Cut comes with 16 N-Strike Elite darts and doesn’t require any batteries so you can start blasting as soon as you get it out the box. Enjoy!

NERF N-Strike Mega (Beginner’s)

The NERF N-Strike Mega range is actually, as the name suggests, a sub-series of the N-Strike Elite range. First launched in 2013, the Mega blasters are basically Elites on steroids! Making use of specially designed Mega darts, which are thicker than their standard Elite ammunition, the Mega range boasts a range of up to 100ft. To make things worse for your NERF opponents, Mega darts whistle (“scream”) as they fly through the air; so if getting hit by a NERF darts wasn’t bad enough, now your enemies will hear it coming. The N-Strike Mega range is typified by a bold red colour scheme. You may find some orange, white or black thrown in but if it is a red blaster it is almost guaranteed to be an N-Strike Mega  gun.

If you are looking for a NERF gun with a little more punch than the Elite range then an N-Strike Mega gun may be right up your street.

The Darts (Primarily Mega)

NERF N-Strike Elite Mega 10 Dart Refill Pack

Guns in the Mega range can fire standard NERF darts but we wouldn’t recommend it. As the actual barrels found in Mega blasters are a little bigger, smaller darts will fit but only a Mega dart will be able to reach to 100ft range as advertised. In order to get the best out of your gun you are best sticking with the slightly thicker and specially designed Mega ammunition.

The Blaster: N-strike Mega Cyclone Shot

NERF N-Strike Elite Mega CycloneShock Blaster

The Mega CycloneShock blaster is a lovely little NERF gun. Featuring a 6 shot rotating barrel, the CycloneShock lets you take more darts onto the field that your standard front loaded blaster. Simply pull back the priming mechanism located at the top of the blaster and you are good to go!

The CycloneShock is really straightforward and comes with 6 Mega darts. If you want to get into Mega blasters or are looking for a nice gift for a NERF fan, then you can’t go far wrong.

NERF Doomlands 2169 (Intermediate)

The blasters in Doomlands 2169 range may not have the same pedigree as N-Strike Elite or Mega guns but they are a lot of fun! First launched 2015, Doomlands guns are typified by their bulkier design and inclusion of transparent windows which let you see the inner workings of your NERF gun.

All blasters in the Doomlands 2169 series have a post-apocalyptic theme, meaning they often look a bit “ragged” and are much more intimidating than your standard gun. Doomlands blasters almost entirely orange in colour but all feature a distinctive clear window to let you see how your blaster works! Even though the Doomlands range is made up of some intimidating blasters they are still an absolute joy to use.

The Darts (Primarily Standard)

NERF Doomlands 2169 dart Refill Pack

The Doomlands 2169 range make use of standard NERF darts, which means if you have a load of extra N-Strike Elite ammunition lying about then you already have ammo for your Doomlands blaster! You can however get yourself some special Doomlands 2169 themed darts if you want to add a bit of pageantry to your NERF blasting. Like the other NERF ranges, Mega darts are not compatible with Doomlands so please don’t try and stuff the slightly wider darts down the barrel!

The Blaster: NERF Doomlands 2169 Persuader

NERF Doomlands 2169 Persuader Blaster

The NERF Doomlands 2169 Persuader 2169 blaster is one of our favourite blasters here at NERF Reviews. Featuring three vertically aligned, front loaded, barrels the Persuader is super easy to use and lets you bring some considerable firepower on the field.  What makes the Persuader stand out from the rest though is inclusion of a thumb controlled cocking mechanism, this means that with some practice you can actually dual-wield this bad boy! A seriously fun blaster and defiantly one to add to any NERF fan’s arsenal.

NERF N-Strike Modulus (Advanced)

Launched in 2015, the NERF N-Strike Modulus range is the epitome of NERF’s N-Strike technology. Focusing on customization and optimized design, the Modulus range are for the more technical NERF fan. That being said, like all NERF guns, the NERF Modulus range can be fired by an absolute beginner; it is the customization that requires a bit of knowledge.

There are literally 1000s of different variations when it comes to the NERF N-Strike Modulus range. Thanks to the inclusion of NERF rail technology, you can easily snap on and snap off a myriad of different accessories, stocks and in some cases even NERF guns! Many of the NERF accessories or “Modules” are purely aesthetic (such as the targeting scope) but things like the shoulder stock or blaster shield can really help improve your game. If you are looking for a full run down of the different types of NERF Modules then we would recommend checking out our dedicated NERF Modulus Upgrade page here.

In terms of styling, the stock Modulus blaster look a lot like the guns found in the NERF N-Strike Elite range. These blasters are built to be performance machines and therefore the actual aesthetic design can sometimes be wanting.

The Darts (Varied)

NERF N-Strike Elite 30-Dart Refill

When it comes to darts, the NERF N-Strike Modulus range throws the typical rules out the window. For example, the stock blasters all make use of standard N-Strike Elite NERF darts but snap on a missile launcher and you are ready to use NERF missiles! Our recommendation on this front is to really read the blaster type/attachment details, if you get a Mega barrel extension then you can start using NERF Mega darts.

The Blaster: NERF N-Strike Modulus Tri-Strike

NERF N-Strike Modulus Tri-Strike

As we have already accepted that the NERF N-Strike Modulus range is a little more advanced than your standard NERF gun, we have chosen a pretty complicated NERF blaster for our vs. guide.

The NERF N-Strike Modulus Tri-Strike is NERF gun Chimera, think N-Strike Elite darts are a little boring? Why not have a NERF gun which fires Elite, Mega and Missile ammunition?! The Tri-Strike is a literal walking arsenal with tons of customization opportunities.

The stock blaster is actually a relatively simply Elite blaster with a 10 dart clip and side mounted cocking mechanism. Things get a little more technical when you start adding on the included Modulus upgrades. Add on the Mega barrel extension and you have yourself a 4 shot, pump-action Mega blaster on the front! Not enough? Then add on the shoulder stock NERF Missile launcher and now you can hurl missiles at your enemies! Combine all three NERF types and you have NERFageddon on your hands.