Monday, April 11, 2011

NERF Reveals Their New Vortex Series

(Image from Nerf facebook.)

As we close out Spring break and look toward the Summer season, NERF continues to tease their new line of blasters they call; Vortex. Many of the NERF Nation were waiting this morning with baited breath for written info, video and pictures detailing what this elusive Vortex line is all about. Yet 9:30AM EST came and went with no release. The tension on the facebook page was epic. Finally, twenty minutes late, the details trickled out in video. See for yourself:

NERF Staffer Tests the Range of a Vortex Blaster. (Image from Nerf Youtube.)

There were a couple of theories out there as to the new release. I know I saw the idea of discs a couple of times for sure, so props to you if you thought so! From the First Look there, it seems that they've effectively married their successful clip system endeavors with the novelty or intrigue provided by the Lanard disc shooters. I, for one, am rather excited to get a few in my hands and try them out.

If the test video is any indication of the true stock performance, we've got a far-reaching beauty on the way. Yet questions are already being raised about the effectiveness of a foam disc as ammunition. One user on facebook said, " . . . won't the disc curve like crazy?" In fact, you can already see a 'disc>dart' and vice versa war starting on the page. The whole range versus accuracy idea reminds me of the old Koosh Vortex line that you can read a little about below.


The Koosh Vortex Tornado. (Image from Nerfer Wiki.)
NERF calls the Vortex line the next evolution in blasters, though they're using on old school name. Koosh released their Vortex line of blasters in the late 1990s. Those blasters fired rubber rings instead of foam darts. While infamous for their indoor ranges, many jokes have been made about their outdoor short-comings. They weren't the most infamous series, but notablex and common enough to still be available at original cost or less on-line.

The NERF Vortex football. (Image from Google products.)

And many of us slightly older NERF fans remember the Vortex Football that debuted in 1993 from the company Oddzon. It was a finned creation that let one throw the ball incredible distances with a lot less effort. A common nickname for the first release was the "Flying Lemon". Other versions like the "Pocket Vortex" and the screaming "Howler" also became fan favorites. Hasbro eventually acquired the rights to the toy -as they do with most successful such inventions. They of course branded it under NERF.

Lanard Fire Shot (Image from Nerf Blaster Wiki.)

Then there are the Lanard Fire Shot and Zip Shot disc shooters I mentioned above. They're still available in some markets today. I suppose that until September, they enjoy leadership in the foam disc shooting area.

Though the name and the concept have been around, it looks like NERF will do what they are famous for. They'll take the ideas to the next level of production and show toy and foam fans everywhere what quality is like. From the little we know about it, Vortex looks like it can run as a sister line to N-Strike rather than a replacement which would be great news of both sides. Now all we can do is wait until 9.10.11 to get these beauties in our hands!

By Chris Jacobs

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