Nerf N-Strike Elite Mega Cycloneshock Review

At long last, the review you all waited for is here.After rigorous testing, including tedious photo sessions and editing, I finally got time to write a review of the Cycloneshock. Being a really sought after blaster for people, I wanted this review to be as honest as possible, even though I was very excited for this blaster.Now, after shooting it about a thousand times, I think I’m ready to give a formal review of the blaster!

The Box

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The box is a pretty standard open faced box we’ve seen recently from Nerf. It comes packaged with 6 Mega darts and an instruction sheet. This advertising tactic is working great for Hasbro, as the buyers can see the blaster before buying it, and it saves cardboard too!

First Impression and Aesthetics

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When you hold the blaster in your hands, it just feels electric. It has a very solid construction,bold lines, faux rivets, digital camo and most importantly, a very clean and appeasing paintjob. And that is not mentioning the sheer size of the blaster! The real head turner for this blaster is its unbelievably large but perfectly balanced proportions,and the rest of the subtle details and the paintjob just fall in to create a big, intimidating blaster. The grip is very solid and has a nice two-one colouring, and the handrail beneath the grip does not cause problems for bigger hands at all. To further add to its huge appeal,there’s a handgrip below the turret to aid two-handed use. It’s big, it’s red, and it’s gorgeous. What else do you need?

Moving on to the functioning parts, the trigger is pretty responsive, just like anything you would expect out of a springer, the cylinder is well designed and holds darts tightly enough to make a good seal. The priming handle, just like everything else,is huge. I compared it to my Alpha Trooper’s priming handle, and its larger than that. It has one tactical rail on top and surprisingly, no sling attachment points. Whether Nerf wants people to interpret it as more of a take-one-and-go-to-town type of blaster, I’m not entirely sure of that, and i have nothing to say about it either; talk about mixed feelings,right?

Reloading and Use

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This is where things start to get interesting, both in good and not-so-good ways. Using the blaster is as simple as it gets. Simply insert the darts in the turret and prime the bad boy. No flip-the-barrel-out shenanigans going on here. However, this also means that reloading the blaster is a little bit tedious,and it increases the reloading time just a bit.

Moving on, we come to priming the blaster. Again, the blaster scores much but misses a little. First of all, the draw is pretty long, meaning the blaster has a huge plunger tube inside(which it does), and more importantly, the turret rotates on priming the blaster, meaning that there is a very good seal between the plunger tube and the turret. However, my only gripe with the priming is that about 30% of the initial prime is pretty empty draw, and then suddenly, you run into all the rotation mechs and springs. It might seem like I’m being really picky, as one will not even notice it while priming it quickly, but the fault is there,and it’s really important to mention out all the faults in an honest review. The trigger only disengages the catch, so it operates pretty smoothly.Slam fire function was missing,but owing to the huge draw,it would seem pretty impractical anyway.

Performance

No matter how good a blaster looks, or how easy it is to operate, in the end, it all comes down to how well it performs. And fortunately, the Cycloneshock hits the mark fair and square.

For testing, I use my 30 ft indoor facility(my hallway) to note accuracy by eliminating all outside variables such as wind, temperature and humidity. For range and actual use, I use my 45 ft outdoor facility(driveway and lawn). The darts I use are lightly used Mega darts mixed with the new ones that came with the blaster.All outdoor tests were done on a sunny day, the temperature being 28 degrees celsius and no wind to talk about.

In terms of range, the Cycloneshock literally shocked me beyond consideration(see what I did there?). I was firing flat from shoulder height, and the first shot went completely straight and hit the opposite wall. Shots going beyond the 45 ft mark usually arc in midair, but this one didn’t. Thinking it was a ringer, I continued the testing, but the Cycloneshock continued to belt out shots(with just a little arc) that were consistently going beyond the 45 ft mark parallel-to-ground! No doubt, I had to change my location and moved to a field where the Cycloneshock got a chance to shock me even more! Parallel to ground, I recorded shots averaging at about 60 feet, with the upper ones going upto 66-67 feet, and the lower ones falling in the 51-52 feet range.Next, I fired shots giving the blaster an arc of roughly 30 degrees, and boy was I in for a surprise. Shots whistled through the air, all of them landing beyond the 60 ft mark, with the top shot being an astonishing 82 feet, and averaging at about 73 feet, and the lowest one at 61 feet. However, accuracy was compromised at the price of range, with shots veering wildly to the left or right, or sometimes just taking a sudden drop. Nonetheless, I was very impressed by the blaster’s consistent and superb range.

Now, after hearing so much praise for the blaster,the last thing you expect is bad accuracy. This has been the Achilles heel for many performance blasters, but fortunately, the Cycloneshock survives the scare by the skin of the teeth. Mega darts are not the most accurate darts out there, but they’re not too bad. They have a higher inertial mass compared to Elite darts and their tips are a tad bit more well balanced. Given this, the Cycloneshock  proves its mettle despite being paired with a fairly inaccurate dart. From 25-30 ft, it gets dart groupings of about 12 inches fired flat. At this distance, most of the blasters like the Retaliator and the Alpha Troopper CS-12 start to get a drop and fall out of the competition. Having said that, I think it’s safe to say that the Cycloneshock is accurate enough to save your name.

Reliability has become synonymous to Nerf blasters, owing to their rigorous quality controls and precise engineering.However, I ran into a couple of issues with the blaster, something I had not expected at all. One of the dart chambers is a little too tight for the dart to be inserted properly, so I had to squish the dart into the chamber time and again.I thought that maybe it will give a good seal to the dart, but instead, the dart misfired. It ran into the muzzle and was all bent up,so I decided to go easy on it,and inserted the dart just enough for it to fit snugly in the chamber, but this time,owing to the air gap between the plunger and the dart, it misfired again. As the darts got more used,they became a softer than before, and these problems stopped. However,when I fast fired the blaster, that chamber misfired again, this time spitting out the dart just enough to fall out of the muzzle,and this happened to me every time I used brand new or lightly used darts.However, I might have a blaster that has a kink.

Opinion

My overall opinion for the blaster is very high. It looks very good, it shoots very far, and it shoots very fast. It’s the most aggressively designed pistol on the market right now,and it redefines the Mega series completely.It might not be very accurate, but as long as you’re playing Nerf for fun, no matter if it’s inside in the office or outside in the park,the Cycloneshock never fails to impress! Go for it if you find it!

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