This year’s Nerf line focuses on Dart Tag, where participants run around with Nerf guns firing velcro darts at each other. One of a couple of welcome innovations in the Dart Tag line is that now they make clips for the velcro darts; however, the Swarmfire doesn’t need it.
Hasbro sent me some Nerf blasters to check out, and this one was my favorite of the lot for couple of reasons. First, it’s a electrically powered, fully automatic Nerf gun in the vein of the Stampede: you pull the trigger, and darts shoot forth until it runs dry. Unlike many Clip System products, however, the Swarmfire doesn’t have a clip; it has a Gatling-style bezel in front with openings for 20 darts. The most obvious benefit of this system is that you can load quickly and easily. Hastily shoving darts into a clip during a Nerf scrum is a recipe for a jammed blaster. With the Swarmfire, jamming is impossible.
Another bonus: you can use any kind of dart that you like. This is not true of all Nerf guns: Clip System models can only use CS darts, while the Maverick doesn’t seem to like CS darts and does better with suction-cup. The Swarmfire does it all — you can put any kind of standard Nerf dart in the baster and it will shoot them forth as sweet as you’d like.
The Swarmfire seems to have it all: high playability, low maintenance, fully auto, and can use any dart. Even better: the price, only about $30, far cheaper than either 2010′s Stampede or the Vulcan from ’09.