Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Review: Nerf Rebelle Rapid Red (20m Aus grey trigger)

The Stryfe is one of the most popular Elite blasters, so it's no surprise that Nerf has remade it in a number of different forms. Perhaps the most unusual one is the Rapid Red, a Rebelle version.
 Front and back of the box.
All the stuff included.

The Rapid Red is distinctly a Stryfe-based blaster with the style of Rebelle - it has the same layout and design as the Stryfe, but has the smooth lines and colour scheme of Rebelle. I personally quite like it, though the grey trigger does look pretty bad.
Looking at the front. Note the battery tray door. Also note that the muzzle is a regular one and does not accept barrel extensions.
Looking down the top of the RR. Note the curves and the relative symmetry of the shell, in contrast with the Stryfe's one-sidedness.
Unlike the Stryfe, the RR holds its 4 AA batteries in the fore end instead of on the side. This allows the RR to be relatively symmetrical, as well as have a reasonably comfortable fore-end. I far prefer the RR fore-end to that of the Stryfe.

A look at the handle and trigger/switch positions. The RR handle is angled more extremely than the Stryfes, and its triggers are further away from the clip (mag) release.
My hand on the RR handle. The handle is quite small, my hand barely fits on it and the sling loop gap is noticeable and annoying. I can still reach the clip release with my middle finger reasonably, but the bulging curved trigger guard does get in the way.
The trigger is pretty smooth, and the accel trigger is also fairly good. I like the Rapid Red triggers the most of all the flywheelers I've tried.
The Rapid Red lacks the faulty dart sensor that the Stryfe has. This gives it inherently superior reliability to a completely stock Stryfe, though realistically ripping that piece out is the first thing you do with a Stryfe.

The Rapid Red comes with a special 12 dart clip (mag), unique not just because it's the only Rebelle clip (mag) so far. It has a unique lower clip (mag) design, with an angled bottom and smooth shell, and obviously a unique colour scheme. Functionally it performs just as well as an Elite 12 clip (mag).
Dimension wise the Rebelle 12 clip (mag) is mostly the same as the Elite 12 clip (mag), besides obviously the angled bottom making the Rebelle clip (mag) marginally longer.
The Rebelle clip (mag) also bulges out slightly, but not majorly.
The Rebelle clip (mag) matches the RR jam door pretty well colour wise.

Besides directly matching the jam door, the Rebelle clip (mag) fits well with the overall Rapid Red colour scheme, ignoring the grey trigger. The overall RR design is that of a large pistol/SMG style blaster, and it works decently well. I personally would prefer having a stock, especially considering the handle angle, but that is partly personal preference.

Here's the Rapid Red next to the Stryfe. The RR is overall bulkier in every aspect besides the handle, and the Stryfe's side mounted battery tray. This is also another good comparison of styles, the Rapid Red is smooth and curved, while the Stryfe is sharper and more tacticool.
A better look at the how the symmetries and bulk of the blasters compare. 

Finally for performance.
Unfortunately a grey trigger Rapid Red is no better than a GT Stryfe, ranges of about 9m flat are slightly optimistic.
Accuracy is decent, but not great. Even with the lack of power the darts like to not fly straight. At the usual 8ish metre away doorway I can get a majority of darts through without issue, but still a significant minority hit the frame.
Rate of fire is about the same as is normal for the Stryfe platform, though hampered slightly by the odd trigger guard. 5dps is not a problem, and higher can be achieved with the right technique, though such high ROFs are generally not usably effective.

The Rapid Red used to be available at BigW for 39AUD, down to 29AUD on sale, which is when I bought mine. I've only ever seen one shipment of them, they suddenly appeared for that one sale, then disappeared afterwards. 39AUD is pretty steep for effectively a Stryfe with a 12 clip (mag), since Stryfes were regularly 25AUD at Kmart. 29AUD is much more reasonable, on par with the regular price of an EAT when that was around.
The RR serves much the same role as an attachment-less Stryfe, a semi auto flywheeler pistol. It's quite effective (assuming you're not using a stock grey trigger one) for all round combat, not as accurate as most springers but generally faster firing. When properly modded the flywheel spin-up time becomes pretty much negligible, removing one of the major drawbacks of stock flywheelers. I take an overhauled RR as a backup primary at MHvZ, and likely other Melbourne Nerf events I'll hopefully get around to attending.
For its regular retail price, the Rapid Red is a buy only if you absolutely love how it looks, because 39AUD is too high for what it is. On sale the Rapid Red is a decent buy, not as good value as some other blasters, but it can be made into a very effective blaster. I've heard of some clearance sales in the US taking them down to 10USD and less - for those prices it's a definite buy, <15USD is an absolute steal.

Pros: Nice fore-end, doesn't have the Stryfe's terrible dart sensor, awesome clip (mag), relative symmetry compared to Stryfe
Cons: Somewhat small handle, has the same awful grey trigger performance as the Stryfe and Demo, lacks barrel and stock attachment points

Power: 3/7
Accuracy: 3.5/5
Rate of Fire: 4.5/5
Usability: 3.5/5
Value for Money: 3/5
Overall: 3.33/5

Personal Rating: 3.5/5 - with the exception of the slightly small handle, I like the look and feel of the RR, especially the fore end. I love the clip (mag) too. I do wish it was cheaper though. I also miss a stock, I like to shoulder clip (mag) system blasters.

A link to the review I posted on BlasterHub: link

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