Review: Nerf Star Wars Han Solo & Rey Blasters
On a random Big W visit recently I was luckily enough to come across a pair of the latest Nerf Star Wars blasters, Han Solo's and Rey's. On the overpriced side of things (typical for the Star Wars branded blasters), but such is life. These two blasters are functionally almost identical (I'm yet to dismantle them but I'm betting the internals are an exact match). I'll go through the common details first.
These blasters have a four dart internal magazine (same as the Nerf Mega Magnus). Darts are loaded by pulling the top slide back to expose the internal mag, then load each dart, pushing the rest down (pretty much just like loading a standard magazine). Pushing the top slide forward then cocks the blaster and you're set. Pulling the slide back then forward allows a dart to load then cocks the blaster each time. On the left side of the blaster is what I'm guessing is a jam clearing button. It's not mentioned in the manual, but some other blasters have a similar mechanism. Lastly, there's a single tactical rail located underneath the internal magazine.
As appears standard for their cross-branding blasters, there doesn't appear to be multiple versions of these Star Wars blasters. There's just the orange trigger version, even for the Australian market, and the listed range is consistent at 20m (65'). Compared to some of my grey trigger blasters, the range seems almost identical. Accuracy is also about average compared to the greys. The four darts included are the blue Star Wars branded ones, J marked.
On to the differences: Rey's blaster has better colouring (in my opinion), being primarily white, with orange and grey trim. Han Solo's blaster is a very plain looking blue, again with orange and grey trim. The grey really doesn't go well against the blue, and I'm thinking that this one is heading to the top of my repaint list. I'd love to get it looking like the picture on the box, all grimy dark brown and metal. We'll see what can be done… Aside from the colouring, the most obvious difference is the scope on the top of Han Solo's blaster. As usual for Nerf scopes, it doesn't actually provide any magnification, but at least it can be seen through, and has a single sight marker at the end. Unlike the others though, this one is permanently fixed to the blaster. This would be because of the aforementioned cocking mechanism, as the scope is part of the top slide. And while it initially may not seem it, the scope actually makes the Han Solo blaster easier to cock, as you don't need to even grip the slide--you can just push against it (or even just push it against something else).
Both blasters have plenty of finger space in behind the trigger guard, but the plastic at the bottom part of the guard on the Rey blaster is noticeably thicker, and you can feel it when pulling the trigger. Combined with the slightly larger handle of the Rey blaster, this makes it just a little less comfortable to fire, especially for smaller hands. The pull strength on the Rey blaster also seems a little stronger, which doesn't help matters.
So all in all, while these two blasters may seen at first glance to be only differentiated by colour, I find that the Han Solo blaster is the more comfortable of the two to use. And hopefully once I get around to repainting it, it'll look cooler too!