Released in late 2016, the NERF N-Strike Elite Hyperfire is a full-auto flywheel blaster, with some very cool, sci-fi styling.
It also comes with a 25 dart drum, which you will need as you can fire up to five darts per second straight out of the box.
So, let’s pop some fresh batteries in, and see how it matches up to my favourite full-auto blaster, the RapidStrike.
- Impressive rate of fire for an unmodified blaster
- Accuracy is a notch above too
- Quieter operation than most flywheel blasters
- 25 dart drum as standard
- Thumb hole – I found it really uncomfortable!
- Stock was too short for me and no ability to change it
- The one I used could be fussy about the quality of the darts you feed it. It got jammed quite a lot with older darts
- Not enough tactical rails
- A little bit heavier than I would like making it more suited to defensive roles.
- Smooth and blazing fast rate of fire – great for suppression or covering fire
- Futuristic, sci-fi styling is a departure for the Elite N-Strike range
- Suprisingly accurate for a blaster that fires Elite darts
- Needs four “D” batteries to operate – not supplied
Full NERF N-Strike Elite HyperFire Review
Unpacking the Hyperfire you will find, the blaster itself, a 25 round drum and 25 darts to feed into the drum. And the instructions, don’t forget those!
It weighs around four pounds fully laden, which is not too bad, but noticeably heavier than the Rapidstrike. Much of this extra weight is down to the four “D” batteries mounted in the stock and can be accessed with the help of a screwdriver. These are not supplied so if this is a gift, make sure you order those as most people don’t have them lying around the house.
Once it is fired up you cannot help but notice how much quieter it is than the older flywheel blasters – my Stryfe almost deafened me when I fired it up after using the Hyperfire!
I’m glad they ship it with a 25 short drum, as a blaster that can fire this fast needs all that and more….and it would have been nice for NERF to include another and some more darts to help soften the blow of forking out the extra bucks to buy this over it’s older rival.
Changing the drum or magazine is easy. Extend the middle finger of your trigger hand to press the release button, then you can use your other hand to pop out the drum. It also worked fine with the larger drum and 18 round magazines.
The Hyperfire measures about two feet in total length, and about four inches wide. It is an interesting shape, far removed from the assault rifle styling of the Rapidstrike.
While I think it looks quite cool, the first thing that struck me was that it is seriously lacking in tactical rails – one compared to compared to its main rival’s four.
The rubberized ribbing in the grip is a nice touch, it has a good feel and makes it easier to grip. However, when I first picked it up I have to say that the way it felt wasn’t really to my liking.
The thumb hole seems to be in the wrong place and whatever I did I couldn’t get comfortable. Also, the stock is too short making it less that ideal to fire from your shoulder. There is no way to add a longer stock to it without getting into some proper modding, so I would seriously suggest that before ordering one, you try it out to see how it fits.
Loading & Firing
Just like other flywheel blasters, to fire, you spin up the flywheels, pull the trigger and away you go. However, the clever engineering folk over at NERF have also engineered a funky conveyor belt system. The belt has tabs that grip the darts, pulls them from the drum and holds them in place until you are ready to fire. When the trigger is pulled, the motorized conveyor belt spins and passes the darts to the flywheels, which fling them out.
There is another clever piece of design with the NERF N-Strike Elite HyperFire; the flywheels are slanted, or canted. This makes the darts spin as they fly out of the blaster and towards your opponents. This spinning action gives an effect similar to rifling in real fire-arms, giving you a tighter grouping and more predictable results.
While this is not on par with the Rival Range, it is noticeably better than other flywheelers like the RapidStrike or Stryfe.
The other thing you notice is how much quieter and smoother it is than the older full-auto blasters too. The combination of the quietness and smoothness makes you realize that NERF has really stepped up the engineering a notch.
This step up also shows in the new 25 dart drum clip. It is far better in operation than the older drums I have used. So much so that I gave it to one of the guys tasked to defend the camp in a recent game and he loved the extra rounds over his usual 18 round magazine that has been scouring eBay trying to buy one!
Rate of Fire
We have to give the rate of fire a near-perfect score. After all, how many other blasters have you used that let you fire 25 shots in 5 seconds with no modification?
The only problem is that it does jam, especially if your darts are a little worn, and it got worse as the batteries got older. The “D” batteries are large and comparatively expensive too, so changing them regularly should be budgeted for. Either that or look to get it upgraded to use rechargeable ones.
The first time I tried it out in the field, once I got into scavenger mode (something you are likely to do with this rate of fire!) I found it was jamming way too often compared to other full-auto blasters – my thumb got very sore priming my Hammershot as I fiddled around trying to get it unjammed on numerous occasions.
The HyperFire’s muzzle velocity was pretty impressive, with an average just under 75 feet per second, which is a few FPS better than the N-STRIKE ELITE average. We also found that the canted flywheels, while also improving accuracy, seem to help out with both the overall range and the consistency of the distance the darts flew.
This means that if you angle the barrel up to give the darts a good arc, you can rain foam down on an unsuspecting crowd at about 22-25m,
If you fire it flat, the range is still around 50ft/15m, and they are much more predictable, which means the useful range is better than pretty much any other unmodified blaster.
So does this all make the Hyperfire the new, awesome, full-auto primary weapon of choice?
If you need some covering fire, this is a blaster that will spray a lot of foam, very quickly and with the rifling effect of spinning the dart as it fires, the accuracy is a step up too.
However, while the inner workings boast some excellent engineering and mechanicals, they let down by a tendency to jam, especially with older, more beaten up darts.
Also, the grip was really uncomfortable and the stock is too short for firing from the shoulder, but I am over 6′ so it is probably well designed for the target teen market.
So while the Hyperfire’s technical performance is excellent, I found the practicalities let it down. But if it fits you, it makes a fantastic full-auto blaster for covering or defensive roles in a NERF war.