Yesterday afternoon, a Swiss German site put up a listing for the N-Strike Elite Rapidstrike CS-18. A French version of the same site added the same listing, but with a product description.
Le RAPIDSTRIKE est un pistolet 100 % automatique pour des tirs en rafale : jusqu à 3,6 fléchettes par seconde. Sa batterie est allégée. Elle est 75 % moins lourde que celle du Stampede. Pour une utilisation plus personnalisée, la crosse est ajustable. Contient 18 fléchettes!
or when translated through Google Translate.
Description translated: RAPIDSTRIKE the gun is 100% automatic gunfire burst: up to 3.6 darts per second. Its battery is reduced. It is 75% lighter than the Stampede. For a more personalized, lacrosse is adjustable. Contains 18 darts!
This blaster is most likely what was referred to as the rumored “new Stampede” I posted about on the blog about a week ago. As you read this post, please remember that this is all speculation based off a site listing, it’s photo, and it’s product description. As of March 15, there’s still has been no official confirm or deny of this blaster.
Just take a look at the above photo and take it all in. It’s a very awesome looking blaster to say the least. But it’s going to be a flywheel blaster, based off the comment that MyLastDart left on my blog post about the rumored Stampede. With automatic burst fire, the only other automatic flywheel blaster is the Nerf Vortex Nitron. Of course it might not be a flywheel blaster, but again I’m basing this post on what he said. I’ll talk more about the rate of fire later in the post, and compare it to other blasters later in this post. 3.6 darts per second is not a slow as you think it is.
There’s a clear clip on the blaster, and the darts look different with their black tips. Is this hinting towards new kinds of darts and a new clear clip? You can also see 5 different tactical rails on the blaster. MyLastDart has hinted toward their being an under barrel attachment of sorts that’s going to be released in the future. And it looks like there’s plenty of room on this blaster for that.
It also looks like there’s going to be 3 solid sling points, 4 if you count the stock area loop, on the blaster. This is very important for things like Humans vs. Zombies and indoor games.
There’s ALOT of initial thoughts and speculation going around in the NIC. I’ll list and talk about things like possible pricing, release dates, stock performance, ergonomics, special features, marketing, and more after the jump.
If you don’t feel like reading all the post, I’ve also made a video in which you can also listen to the things I discuss in this post.
– Possible Pricing: I’m thinking personally that it’s going to be about $39.99 in the USA. The N-Strike Elite Hail-Fire, Vortex Pyragon, and Vortex Revonix 360 all have price points of $39.99. The Stampede cost of $49.99 was a bit more justified because it came with 3 18 dart mags, the Rapidstrike seems to online come with just 1.
– Possible Release Date: I’m thinking Fall 2013 for this. Possibly August 1 like the original Elite line release. I feel like the Mega Centurion will be the big September 9 released blaster. When September 9 comes around for Nerf, there always release something innovative or something that raises the bar. With the Centurion and it’s ranges of up to 100 feet claim it just screams something new and exciting, and the Rapidstrike doesn’t really bring any particularly new to the table. It’s bring more of a level of coolness.
I’m thinking that with the new Rebelle line and the Mega Centurion coming out, Nerf wants to focus their effort and money promoting their other lines. We’ve also just gotten the Elite Stryfe, Rayven, Rough Cut, Triad, Jolt, Reflex, Firestrike, and Strongarm all this year in the Winter 2012/Winter 2013 release batch. If you add the Rapidstrike, that’s 9 new Elite products this year, so any more of them would be costly to make and promote. The Vortex series is not as popular as the Elite Series, so we’ve only gotten the Diatron and upcoming Revonix360. And don’t forget, we’re still getting new Vortex colored discs and Vortex blaster repaints as well.
– Possible Performance: Amongst the HvZ, indoor, and casual players, I could see this replacing the Stampede. Due to it’s better ranges, smaller price, increased future availability over the Stampede, arguably better looks, and higher rate of fire over the Stampede. The rate of fire in the description is 3.6 darts person. 3.6 multiplied by 60 is 216 darts per minute. Speaking of it’s rate of fire, I’ve clocked the Stampede in it’s stock form at 3 darts per second. I’ve also tested the Barricade and Quick 16 in Slam fire mode at 4 darts per second. And if you’ve user used or gone up against those blasters, you’ll know how fast they are.
MyLastDart mixed up his first Centurion post. He mentioned a blaster that had both 3 round burst and full auto. Perhaps this blaster could be it? The ability to full auto fire while holding down the trigger is a great ability to have to say the least. I have mixed feelings on the ability to burst fire. When playing with a Stampede, I just held down the trigger for a few seconds to give myself a burst fire feature. I tapped it once for a single fire. I’m not sure how easy it’ll be for you to switch firing modes on this blaster, but if it is easy, that going to be a major plus. I have a feeling that you hold down the second trigger and then the main one for burst fire. I’ll personally just stick to automatic fire for the most part.
– Possible Ergonomics: Unfournately, this is the probably the thing that we’re the most unsure about. We don’t really have a clue as to how wide, long, or big it is. The magwell and clip release look very similar to the Stryfe though, and thats a good thing I would say. All the added sling points now give us a solid option for one point slings (for quick switching to your secondary) or a two point sling (for carrying/walking).
I’m going to take a guess and say that this takes C-batteries. In the description it says that it’s lighter, but with a higher rate of fire then a Stampede. With such a high automated rate of fire, I’m guessing that it’ll need to take more current to do that. C batteries, rather then the AA that the Stryfe, Rayven, and Hail-Fire use, should be able to supply that need.
The ability to adjust the stock is a big plus. It doesn’t look like there’s notches in the stock though, so it might have all the way out, or all the way in like the Longshot’s stock. If it’s the case, I’ll be a bit disappointed in that. When I use a blaster, I have to be comfortable with it to get the best performance out of it. I use my Raider stock all the time because I love it’s ability to adjust for the different types of places that I play in. If the Rapidstrike’s stock feels too long or too short me me, I may end up not using it and go with something like a Stryfe instead.
– Possible Modding Performance:
If it’s built in a similar way to the Vortex Nitron, there’s a pusher rod that pushes the darts through the Flywheels. That process is electronically automated each time. If you wire more voltage to the push rod and flywheels though, you get something like this.
However, the Vortex series has a 40 disc drum that feeds well to complement that rate of fire. The most used, widely available ammo capacity is the 18 dart magazine. I feel like that would chew through ammo very quickly, and does not seem necessary to me even in games like HvZ. That particular dart rod pusher is running at 36v, so maybe something at a lower voltage would be better for this upcoming blaster. With the still high rate of fire in it’s stock form, I think that’ll be enough for users on the casual side of Nerf.
– My Overall Thoughts: This looks super duper awesome, and seems ergonomically good as well. I like the Stampede a lot, bought it right when it came out, and I’ll most likely doing the same thing with this blaster as well. The fully automatic fire is going to be very handy in all sorts of game. The clear 18 dart magazine will be handy and a another cool magazine to have. You’ll definitely be seeing Humans vs. Zombies games and Nerf wars with me using this in the future.