Monday, January 13, 2014

Hawkeye Longshot Bow-gus

What? No trick darts?!
Somehow Hasbro has done it again. They've gotten our hopes up, only to crush them again. While most blogs will undoubtedly be talking about whatever the new mystery blaster is that Hasbro is revealing today, instead we here at Bay Area Nerf thought we'd shake things up a bit. Break the mold. Not do the same-o same-o. Also, Hasbro didn't contact us about any exclusive reveals so...

Anyway, we're not talking about this new surprise blaster. We're looking at another blaster some of us have been waiting quite some time for, with many a rumor surrounding it and it's release as well. The Avengers' Hawkeye Longshot Bow.

Yes, it seems like only yesterday we were speculating on it's release. Rumors surrounded a Disney store exclusivity. Would it be a real bow? Would it have more than just "real bow action"? Would it be a re-shelled Heartbreaker? All these questions and more were answered.

Can Hasbro not afford a Hawkeye costume?
Recently, pictures began surfacing around the web of the blaster in package. Fans saw the advertised 40 foot ranges on the box and hope was lost. There still wasn't word of when this blaster would debut, or where it would be, but no one seemed to care anymore....

AND THEY WERE RIGHT! Except for all the wrong reason.

Ok, maybe I'm being a bit over dramatic here but the prospect of a new bow after the last offering from Nerf broke my heart (yes, that was intentional) was intriguing. Well before Nerf went bow-happy, I came across a little blaster called the Boss Bow at a Goodwill and thought "Why doesn't Nerf make something like this?!" Sure it was made for a bigger arrow and I had to mod it a little to get it to shoot regular sized streamlines, but when I did it worked awesome! It couldn't be that hard to do!

So, imagine my surprise when I saw this little guy sitting on the shelf at my local Toys "R" Us. I was prepared to see the 40 feet tag, but what I wasn't prepared for was how dang small this thing is! None of the pictures I had seen had any frame of reference, so I expected it to at least be the size of the Heartbreaker.  Of course it's not an official Nerf product, it's almost like by saying "from the makers of Nerf" on the box they can both attract and distance themselves from their own brand. People see the logo, and buy a blaster that uses the same darts as other Nerf blasters, but for those that might complain about it they can say that it's tot actually part of any Nerf line. Kinda genius actually.

Apparently, Hawkeye has some newfangled "H" symbol.
Now let's get to the nitty-gritty, how is this puppy? Well, as you probably grasped from the intro, it's a Jolt. Yep, That's about all there is to it. Somehow Hasbro managed to find a way to get a little more out of the same design. I mean sure, they gussied it up quite a bit more than they have in the past, but it's all there. Now, that being said, I feel that the claims of 40 feet are accurate, even under-stated. I mean the Jolt isn't really part of the Elite line, but it packs a punch for it's size. I don't think the Triad is getting ranges any better than this.

Shown full primed, with Jolt for size reference.
Needless to say, I was actually kinda happy with it's performance at around 50 feet.  What I didn't like was that it wasn't really a bow. It has a trigger. Sure, some storage space for some extra darts and novelty bow arms, but did that really merit the $14.99 price tag?! Nope, no way, especially not for most foam warriors. This might be kinda fun to field in a battle, but there's really no tactical advantage I can see. The biggest draw the Jolt has is it's small, concealable, and cheap, this is none of the above. Plus, this doesn't even have screws! That's right, it's riveted! Definitely made for an audience they don't want to be able to open and mod these things.
It flips! DO WANT!

It's pretty clear that Hasbro's target audience isn't quite the same one they have for most Nerf blasters, clearly it's a younger one. I'm sure they have a deal with Marvel/Disney since it's clearly a tie in for the Avengers Assemble show. It even advertises "Collect more awesome Avengers' gear!" with a picture of a new Iron Man Flip and Fire Gauntlet that looks like it fires elite streamlines as well. I can really understand why this product was made and can't fault Hasbro for it. I even understand why they tried to safely distance themselves from the Nerf brand as well.

I gotta say, aside from it being a bit over priced (and it's Toys "R" Us so, who knows if it'll be cheaper elsewhere) it's not a BAD product. From a Nerf enthusiast's perspective it's nothing to rejoice over, but from the mindset of growing the company and getting a younger audience engaged it's actually not a bad move.  Plus I love me some purple elite darts!  ~Josh

Next up, the Stealthfire Shield: 


  1. Something like this but firing mega darts might actually be very useful as an underbarrel grenade launcher type integration for primaries, provided that the draw isn't too long and get in the way.

  2. I was wondering if it was exactly this, a glorified Jolt. I've already written up the Captain America shield - it's really crappy. The target audience of little kids will love all the gimmicks with the unfolding, but unless you massively overhaul the internals, there's no use for the NIC.

    I did find that Iron Man Gauntlet for $12.99 at Target this morning; it at least performs as well as the box claims. I still need to open it up, though.

    1. Yeah, pretty much just a jolt. I didn't take it apart (since there are no screws) to do a measurement or direct comparison, but if they did make any changes, it didn't make any difference.

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