Beginners’ Water Blaster Buying Guide of 2013

Let’s get back to the basics: Blasters. Most of the information/recommendations from last year still applies, but many blasters mentioned are even more rare than before, and we always have new/fresh Water Warriors blasters coming out.

Nothing has really changed since 2012, so if you need 50% of everything you should know about buying blasters in a nutshell, it can be summed up in one statement:

Don’t buy Nerf Super Soaker products!*

*The HydroCannon is the only exception that might be worth buying if you even find one, and if it fits your needs.

The current crop of Nerf Super Soaker products feature fancy colors, looks, and ergonomics, but don’t let that fool you. Their new backpacks hold as much water as a Water Warriors Gorgon, and every single Nerf magazine-fed water blaster is underwhelmingly weak by several orders of magnitude compared to better blasters available. A Nerf Super Soaker Thunderstorm takes about 4 to 5 seconds to shoot as much water as can be achieved in a single pump of larger blasters. A CPS 1500’s pressure chamber (how much water it can shoot at one time with the pull of the trigger) holds as much water as an entire drum magazine that Nerf SS provides. Look at the numbers and performance, not at the fancy gimmicks.

Now, I will split up this guide into two sections: Stock/Store and Alternative Sources.

Stock/Store: Blasters you can find on shelves.
Water Warriors:

  • WW Gorgon: Rare and difficult to find in stores now (at least where I am), the Gorgon is the most powerful blaster currently available on the market. Features high range, but output is below that of CPS’s. However, some warriors have reported that it’s effective against even a CPS 4100, and it can easily dominate virtually any XP class blaster, including the XP 150. Definitely worth picking up if you get the chance. Air chambers separated from reservoir.
  • WW Colossus 2: Slightly less powerful than 2012’s WW Colossus, but is more ergonomic and well balanced. Has separate air chamber for pressurization.
  • WW Python 2: More powerful than 2012’s Python, and is considerably more ergonomic and well balanced. Pressurized reservoir, no separate air chamber.
  • WW Drench ‘n Blast: Features dual nozzles and triggers. Pressurized reservoir, no separate air chamber.
  • WW Cricket: Older blaster still released/available in 2013, this is a fairly well-regarded “pistol”-class blaster perfect as a small sidearm. Pressurized reservoir, no separate air chamber. Typically sold in 2-packs, and are easy to dual wield.
  • WW Outlaw: Re-release of older blaster, fairly basic large-capacity pressurized reservoir. Other blasters, such as the WW Python 2, may be recommendable over this one for this size range of blaster.

You may find other Water Warriors blasters not listed here. However, the only pressurized WW’s you’ll find in stores are going to be air pressure.

Most new Water Warriors blasters of 2013 feature what appears to be a pressure gauge, but is actually an angle meter. Useful for long distance shots and for measuring ranges, but doesn’t seem to be an essential feature.

The Water Warriors line has remained where it has been in the past few years for the most part. The exception is that ergonomics have significantly improved in many new blasters. The Colossus 2 and Python 2 handle very comfortable and are well balanced. Older, less ergonomic blasters are still available such as the Outlaw.

Alternative Sources: Blasters that have to be obtained from friends, garage sales, eBay, Craigslist, thrift stores, etc.

This has not changed much. To sum it up, look for any CPS line blaster, or Monster. Some XP’s are also excellent as well as Super Chargers. Here are some favorites from the past that are still used in water wars today:

– CPS 1000*, 1200*, 1500/1700`, 2000^, 2100*, 2500^, 2700`, 3000, 3200, 4100
* Great for power mods! (Specifically the k-mod.)
^ Very powerful as stock, no power-mods needed.
` K-mods possible but typically not recommended.

– CPS 1-3-5: Gimmicky blaster, but very effective after some easy mods. (Plug all nozzles except main nozzle, drill main nozzle, K-mod.)

These classics have not changed, and are still the best of the best. Keep them working and they will be effective on the field.

– Monster, Monster X, Monster XL: Larger, higher capacity, a bit less powerful than the best CPS’s (2000, 2500) but still very heavy-hitting and effective. Monster is almost the same as CPS 4100.

– CPS Splashzooka, SC Power Pak, SC Big Trouble: Great fun to use for more casual water wars and are still considerably more powerful than most water blasters available today. Requires hose to use; you may also build a manual pump for these but that’s a hassle that I haven’t found to be worth it.

– SC 300: Most powerful air pressure blaster ever made, can take on most CPS’s. Not as powerful as the CPS 2000 but has much, much higher capacity and shot time. Large pump results in high pump volume. A bit fragile, use with care.

– XP’s: XP 150, 310, and XXP 275 are some notable blasters from these series.

So there you have it. Have fun shopping. Be sure to ask any questions you may have in the comments or on WaterWar.net.

Beginners’ Water Blaster Buying Guide of 2012

The blaster buying guides are being created to assist newcomers to know what to look for and what to avoid. They are short and get straight to the point with few details.

The basic, introductory bullet points are as follows:

  • There are two major brands of pressure based blasters: Water Warriors and Super Soaker. You will rarely, if ever, look outside of these two brands.
  • Availability varies heavily by store.
  • Blaster shopping on eBay is an entirely different matter and is barely covered in this guide. Please contact me or refer to the WaterWar.net forums for additional information.

It’s important to remember that the Super Soaker brand is a far, far cry from what it used to be. It is no longer anywhere near state of the art.

Buying Super Soaker branded blasters:

  • Anything labeled under the “Nerf” brand is mostly junk except for the Hydro Cannon. NEVER buy any blaster advertising the “swappable clips” gimmick. Avoid the Arctic Shock.
  • You might see blasters labeled “Max-D” or “XP”; these are older, fairly good blaster designs.
  • The Max-D 2000/3000 make good sidearms if you are looking for a small, low capacity, medium performance blaster. XP 270 might be around, and if it is, it’s a good option for fast players who need to stay light on their feet. The XP is more rare.
  • Max-D 6000: You may also find this blaster around; it’s a very good option as a lightweight blaster.
  • Super Soaker Availability: You are unlikely to see anything worth buying other than the Max-D 3000 or Hydro Cannon.
  • Hydro Cannon: Its use is limited, but it is still fairly effective. Has huge modding potential for those interested. You can add nozzles, modify/enlarge the pressure chamber, etc.
  • There’s a small chance of seeing the Iron Man 2 blaster, which is almost the same (slightly better) as the Arctic Blast.

Buying Water Warriors branded blasters:

  • Best of the WW brand: WW Gorgon, WW Colossus: These two offer large capacity (especially the Gorgon, carrying over 3L of water total) and very good small/medium stream performance. The Gorgon is becoming rare, while the Colossus is new and available for 2012. The Sphynx is no longer produced but is a good option if you find it.
  • You will see other air pressure based blasters, such as those from the Ultimate line. The Renegade or Explorer are probably the best options from here.
  • Sidearms: You may see the Goblin, Hydra, Python, Titan, or Viper.
  • Other WW blasters: Most WW products are fairly good quality, though their smaller blasters don’t always perform as well as their Super Soaker counterparts. Check reviews and see what’s what first.

Lastly, you’ll notice piston pumper based blasters; they do not have a trigger and can only be fired via pumping. These have limited use in most games (except single-sided games that involve one team being armed better than the other) and take very high levels of skill to use to be competitive with higher end blasters. They are generally not recommended at all unless you don’t have the money for anything better. (Rare exceptions exist; large syringe type pumpers can shoot fairly far with sufficient user strength and skill, and are also light to carry.)

The eBay/Craigslist/old friends option has not changed much over time. Your best bet is to find blasters from friends, but if you resort to eBay, you may end up paying heavy premiums for used items. That said, these blasters are by far the best of the best, and their performance in water wars will take you much farther than anything previously listed here. eBay bidding tips are out of the scope of this guide.

Keep your eyes and ears out for the following Super Soakers from the past:

  • Super Charger SC Power Pak/Big Trouble
  • Anything with “CPS” in the name (The CPS 1-3-5 needs to be modded to achieve performance the rest of the series is known for.)
  • Anything with “Monster” in the name

Look to none other than iSoaker and the WaterWar.net forums for more information. You may encounter broken items; refer them to someone experienced with them, or learn how to fix them yourself. (HBWW will provide introductions to this in the Workshop section later on.)

Good luck with your searches, and remember that your options are very open. As you can with desktop computers, you can modify or build water guns if you are interested in these options.