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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Guest Post: Mega Centurion

The below is a guest post written by our friend in Australia, Trent
About a week ago I was walking through the local shopping center after going to the bank and decided to swing by the Toy Kingdom that I passed, next to the Elite blasters I expected on the shelves were a few things that caught my eye. Firstly a Zing Bow double pack for $50 and below that a few UMBs priced around $30. Funnily enough also on the shelf was a Rebelle dart refill pack but no other Rebelle products, What really was unexpected though was the stack of Centurions for $80 each just sitting on the shelf 5 deep. Living in Australia means sometimes blaster release dates can be a bit weird (I am still yet to see a RapidStrike or Stryfe on the shelves near me) but here in front of me was a Centurion with my name on it.

Monday, August 26, 2013

So, Pistols...

I bought some new ones. Not really big news but i thought I'd toss out some opinions on them, since I haven't written anything new in a while. I wanted to write on the Rapidstrike but really didn't find it that exceptional, though i'm sure that is going to draw some ire from all of our one readers. I would refer those readers to THIS article wherein I discuss how the Rapidstrike isn't really a game changer.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Rapidstrike CS-18 - Game Changer or Gimmick Gun?

Lots of other people have already covered the new Rapidstrike, but We havnt yet, and I need to start posting again. I'm composing this on my tablet at work, so I will blame any and all weirdness and/or errors on my favorite scapgoat, autocorrect.
Lets start with Style and segue from there. I'll give this one a A for Awesome. They only thing they could have done to mak me like  this one any more would have been to go all out and give it a SCAR stock, and paint the stupid stripe white. The muzzle is strongly reminiscent of the SCAR QCB, the stock is exceedingly comfortable (and thats saying something. I'm the proverbial "big guy". I usually feel like Agent J being issued the noisy cricket) and collapses enough to make a real difference in transport and handyness. I also switch shoot (ah the joys of ambidexterity coupled with dyslexia), and this feels much more snappy to swap from one stance to the other than my old standby, the 'Peede. It IS Less conducive to the one handed Schwarzenegger style of shooting that I enjoy so much.
Reliability takes a hit. The breech mechanism does tend to cause jams, though not frequently in my admittedly limited experience.  I also ran into a couple of other issues. The forward magwell safety hangs and causes a no power situation. There also seems to be a short that periodically cuts the power as well. I'll be looking into that when I dig into the guts of it.
Innovation is impressive, though im dissapointed that I wont be able to just drop the pusher mech into a stryfe. The pusher is smooth and consistant, and the dual voltage circuitry is a great idea that im going to be dropping into my stryfes. To expound, there is aperently a reisister in the primary power circuit bringing the voltage down when you spin it up with the acceleration trigger, and pulling the main trigger bypasses this part of the circuit,  allowing the motors to spin up to full just before you stuff a dart between the flywheels. Balance is much better than I expected with the forward battery compartment, though I use really cheap off brand c cells that have a very short life span and are very light to begin with. I honestly don't feel it would be that bad with Duracells. I also haven't found a barrel extention that works on it, though the only ones I've tried are one of Animal's homemades and the longstrike extention. I'll try a retaliator extention later, and a specter suppressor when I pick up an elite specter.
I have yet to battle test it, because its not a battle with 2 or 3 people, in my opinion. Thats just a skirmish, or possibly a scuffle. So no opinion there.
Lets see, to recap, on a 5 point scale:
Style: 5,
Comfort: 5,
Reliability: 2,
Innovation: 4.5,
Compatibility: D.
No score for battleworthyness.
That gives an Aggregate Score of  4.12 ish.,
note: Compatability gets a letter grade and isnt part of the aggregate score. I feel its important, but a low score doesn't affect the overall desirability.
For comparison, the Stampede would score around 4.75. S:5, C:4.5, R:4.5, I:5.
Overall, I Like the blaster, or will if I can get its issues sorted out. It also goes well with its stablemate, the Stryfe. Not stealthy, but sometimes thats not a drawback. I see lots of potential here,  and I hope I get to help tap it.
Later Yall,

Edit: So, I tried to open the thing up to fix the issues I addressed above. Others have posted about this one, but it seems Hasbro is welding the Rapidstrike together. There are 2 spot welds on either side, on the faux dust cover thats above the pistol grip. I'll update again when I figure out the best way to open the thing.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Science: FIELD TRIP!!!

So here I sit, again, bored out of my mind looking form something to write about and out of the blue, like an errant tennis ball to the back of the head it hits me. A few months ago I did an article, comparing the fire rates of various blasters for the purpose of debunking the claim that the Rapidstrike (which is out in the wild now by the way) in its stock for was faster than a well modded Stampede. This study turned out some nice empirical data, but also did so in a vacuum, only shining a light on one aspect of the blasters tested.

Somewhere in the next few weeks I will try to get some friends together to do a comparison of what I would consider Primary Combat Blasters. Tests will be done in a building with a few targets in tight quarters, to test rate of fire, ease of reload, range, accuracy and ease of handling. Some of these are very hard to test, but by having a panel of people run the gauntlet with a variety of blasters, hopefully we can come up with some interesting findings.


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