Saturday, 30 November 2013

Nerf Rebelle Pink Crush Review (20m Aus Grey Trigger)

Today I'll be getting back into reviewing things, starting off with the cheapest Rebelle blaster available in Australia, the Pink Crush.

The Pink Crush is Rebelle's standard pull back style single shot, and is thus comparable to the Firestrike or Nitefinder in design and role. It comes in a similar box too, although the open Rebelle style boxes are a little different to the regular open Elite boxes. Like Elites, it has a grey trigger as an Aus version, and has the Aus 20m range claim.
Nothing new or particularly interesting on either side of the box. I personally think the girls are a little too happy and are kinda scary, but that's just me.
 Opening up the box to get at everything non-destructively reveals a huge mess of cardboard held together with a little tape and paper ties. No Elite or N-Strike open box is this complex to disassemble.
 Out of the box, you get all this stuff: the Pink Crush (PC) (of course), its detachable bow arms, and 4 Rebelle darts (which are recoloured Elite darts) - 2 purple and 2 black. Also there's a manual, but this is a single shot pistol, so there really isn't any value showing it.
First up, I'll be quickly look at the bow arms when not attached to the PC. The bow arms are the unique trait of the PC, like the Nitefinder's and Firestrike's red targeting light thing. They are advertised as dart holders, and attaching it to the Pink Crush is supposed to turn the PC into a crossbow, which is of course rubbish. The bow arms have no effect on the firing of the blaster. They are detachable, so if you dislike them as I do you can just take them off.
Each side has slots in it in which darts can be fitted. Note that the fit is incredibly tight, at least on the Rebelle Darts. The two on the left are very secure, however the one on the right is quite loose.
With both sides of the bow arms, you have an extra capacity of 6 darts, which beats all other single shots. The Streamlines are not as secure as the Rebelle darts, however the ones closer to the middle are still reasonably secure. The extra capacity gives you a slight advantage over other single shot blasters.

I personally dislike having suuch external dart storate, as the bow arms get in the way of holstering or storing the PC. Thus I hardly ever use the bow arms, except when the PC is my only blaster.
On to the base Pink Crush, which is essentially a Firestrike. I have opened it up and can confirm that the plunger system is just a pink Firestrike plunger system, slightly altered to fit in the PC's shell.
As you can see it has a much smaller and sleeker design than even the Firestrike, which was already a compact version of the Nitefinder. This is largely thanks to the loss of the light and in built dart storage, as the dart storage is now done by the bow arms.

Though many people have openly voiced disdain regarding the Rebelle colour scheme, I personally quite like it. Though a pink theme was severely ridiculed by many, the Pink Crush isn't actually as pink as some people make the Rebelle blasters out to be, with pink simply being used for accents and a secondary colour on the printed design. White and grey are the main background colours, with the top layer of the design being done in a dark purple (which is actually quite close to dark blue) rather than pink.
Without the purple and pink accenting though, the Pink Crush would be an incredibly boring white and grey, so I'm glad they put such an intricate and, to be honest, neat wing style design.

One thing I will complain about is the grey trigger, which doesn't match the dark grey of the handle, or the white of the main shell. Or the pink and purple, or orange. I hate grey triggers, as much for its reduced power as its terrible colour matching. Seriously Nerf, you go to all the trouble of printing an intricate design on the shell to make the Rebelle blasters look good, and you slap on a horrid grey trigger? Surely you could have put pink/orange, whatever colour wasn't used for the 75ft versions. Seriously, they look terrible! And if I were inclined to use rude words on this blog, many of them would be used repeatedly to describe how much I hate the grey triggers.
The PC, as with all other similar single shots, has a single tactical rail on the top. Note that it lacks the grooves used by Slydev parts to attach, thus does not support Slydev parts. Also note the grey tactical rail lock piece.
Front view, showing the pink barrel and air restrictor construction. As said earlier the plunger system and thus also barrel is just a pink version of that found in a Firestrike.
The hole below the barrel is for attaching the bow arms, as you'll see later.
 The Firestrike had a handle significantly smaller than the Nitefinder, which some people criticised. The PC has an even smaller handle, with even my ordinary hands barely fitting on it. I'm not sure if girls have smaller hands than boys, or if the PC was aimed for even smaller children than usual, but I both like and dislike its small size. The small size fits in with the style of the PC being smaller than its equivalents, which is good aesthetically. On the other hand, it would be uncomfortable for people with larger hands. I can hold it comfortably, but just barely. Any shorter and it would be uncomfortable even for me.
The handle doesn't have the sharp hook thing the Firestrike had. I disliked that hook so its removal is a plus for me.
The PC does have a sling loop on the handle which is nice, but given how short the handle already is, the sling loop detracts even more from its length, which can make it slightly awkward to hold.
The plunger rod ring uses the curved Rebelle design, as opposed to the boxier Firestrike or Nitefinder pull rings. For me this is perfectly acceptable since the Pink Crush has a drastically different aesthetic design to either. What I dislike about it though is that the rear section of the ring is quite thin, thus pulling on it hard or with a strong spring cuts into your finger a little, making it uncomfortable. This is only really applicable for modders, since the stock spring is comparatively weak, thus a stock PC does not cut into your finger much.
Here you can see the priming distance, which I measured to be around 4cm. Pretty standard for a single shot.
With the bow arms attached the PC hardly changes. As I said before the bow arms have no effect on the functionality of performance of the Pink Crush, thus its purpose besides role playing is purely capacity.
Here you can see the dart 'bays' quite clearly, and the walls which squeeze and thus securely hold the darts.
From the front, you can see that the bow arms are pretty boring, being just solid pink. Such a large front wall does help to protect the stored darts, though it does make the Pink Crush look pretty dull from the front.
Here you can see the little white stick that the bow arms use to stick into the Pink Crush. The little orange nub also fits into a small hole in the bow arms. This makes the bow arms quite secure when attached to the PC.
Here you can see the Pink Crush with 6 extra darts. The extra darts give the Pink Crush a wing like effect, which matches the wing design on the shell.
Here is a short vid I made to test how secure the dart holders are. In short summary, the outer two slots are not secure, but the inner four slots are quite secure.
Here is the Pink Crush compared to its N-Strike and Elite cousins. Sadly I don't have a stock Firestrike or Nitefinder to compare it to, but you can see the differences surely.
One thing to note is that the Pink Crush is significantly lighter than either of the other blasters. Primarily because the Pink Crush doesn't have the targeting light, and thus saves a lot of space and weight. I quite like the lightweightness of the PC compared to the other single shots. Admittedly though my Firestrike is significantly heavier than a regular Firestrike due to its brass barrel.
The PC and Firestrike are basically the same length, although the PC is a little bit thinner.
Here you can see that while the handle lengths are similar, the sling loop in the Pink Crush's handle severely detracts from the PC's effective handle length.
Here we have the Pink Crush against my overhauled Nitefinder. Though it doesn't appear to be so, the Nitefinder's plunger is a fair length longer than the PC's, as the Nitefinder's PT goes right up to the front wall and a fully external barrel, while the PC has an internal barrel.
Here you can see just how much larger the Nitefinder's handle is compared to the Pink Crush's.

Using the Pink Crush is simple, as with all other single shot pistols. Prime the blaster, load a dart in, fire, repeat. The additional dart storage on the bow arms does help speed up reloading of the PC, but the fact remains that it is a single shot, thus is inherently slow at firing.

The trigger pull is pretty much identical to the Firestrike, firing on the first few mm of travel of the trigger. This makes it fire marginally earlier than blasters like the Nitefinder or Retaliator, which fire on the last few mm of trigger pull.

Ranges for the Pink Crush are around 15-16m flat, thus the claimed 20m shots are easily possible angled. This is quite good considering the usual quoted range of 20m, and this is a grey trigger unit. I have heard reports of Aus Firestrikes barely reaching 10m, as well as US spec Pink Crushes outranging their Firestrike brethren.
It's interesting to note that the Pink Crush seems to have a stronger spring than the Firestrike. The spring is harder to compress, and this is what gives the Pink Crush its superior range. That and the barrel of the Pink Crush lacks the usual air release hole. Why they'd give equivalent blasters different springs I have no clue.
Accuracy is good on good shots, but some shots veer off to the sides, dive, or fly upwards. This has been reflected in the Pink Crush's imperfect accuracy rating, but nevertheless most shots are accurate.
Rate of fire is as you'd expect for a single shot, one shot per 2-3 seconds depending on the user.

In summary, the Pink Crush is a good blaster. Though it is a little overpriced in some places at up to 15AUD thanks to its fairly pointless bow arms, it is available in BigW for the same price as the Firestrike, 9AUD. I bought mine from Target for 12AUD on sale. For a price equal to the Firestrike, the Pink Crush has superior performance and capacity, and is significantly lighter although it doesn't have the pointless Firestrike light. I'd recommend it if you don't already have a single shot, but if you do, then it's not really needed. For modding purposes, it's effectively the same as the Firestrike so if you prefers its design, go ahead. If you prefer the Firestrike's design though, go for that instead.

Pros: Superior capacity over other single shot pistols using bow arms, superior range, smaller than most equivalent single shots, bow arms hold darts securely, lightweight even compared to other single shots
Cons: Accuracy is not as good due to its use of Elite darts, bow arms add width to the blaster, bow arm dart holders are tight enough to squish darts, small handle

Power: 6.5/7
Accuracy: 4/5
Value for Money: 4/5
Usability: 4.5/5
Rate of Fire: 1/5
Overall: 3.63/6

Personal Rating:  4/5 - I particularly like the Pink Crush's design and extremely minimal weight, and it is my current favourite single shot.

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