Nerf is immensely popular all over the world and in the United States especially. However, as time flies by and a nerf-head grows up into adolescence, he or she might feel that the foam darts that they’ve been shooting since they were younger children. What are they ever to do with the flimsy blue darts that they own? The Nerf RIVAL series which Nerf had released in the fall of 2015 was created as a way to satisfy the older fans. Nerf RIVAL was made with the age target of 14-years old and above. 

Thus, to make it more satisfying for the older kids, Nerf has to add more power to the blaster and they do this in many ways. The Nerf RIVAL series utilizes High-Impact Rounds instead of the traditional foam darts of the previous series. These High-Impact Rounds are shaped almost like golf balls and one has to wonder, how does the nerf gun ball fly?

High-Impact Rounds (HIR)

Nerf High-Impact Rounds

The HIRs come in a default yellowish color in packs of 25 for  RM 52 on Shopee while the same pack would cost around $14 on Amazon. Thin, ball-type ammunition for exclusive use with RIVAL goods is High-Impact Bullets. The rounds themselves, similar to those of a golf ball, have dimples pushed into them. The dimples were most likely introduced to assist with aerodynamics. They are made of high-impact foam, as the name suggests.


What are the dimples on the balls doing here? The dimples act as artificial turbulators, causing turbulence near the surface of the ball and forming two layers of air around the ball. The top layer goes faster than the bottom layer, i.e., air clings to the surface of the ball, creating turbulence. It minimizes the drag and allows the ball to go faster than a smooth one. This is a new term: drag. Drag is a force component that occurs as a result of a solid and fluid body velocity difference, and it opposes the solid motion through the air, the HIR round in this case. It is possible that a dimpled ball has just about half the drag of a smooth one. Due to the reduced resistance, the drag reduction makes the flight of the HIR round be quicker.

Use a Blaster

The Nerf Helios XVIII-700

Finally moving onto how to make a nerf gun ball fly, the best way to make it fly (also the easiest) is to just use any of the ball blasters that Nerf has in line. In my opinion, choosing any of the blasters in the RIVAL line is a good choice, but most precisely, the Helios XVIII-700. The Helios, as a Phantom Corps addition to the Rival side, has been on shelves for a while now. The Helios is a decent upgrade to the original Apollo concept, as you’d think. In service, it takes a bit of patience but is otherwise a reliable, smaller spring-powered primary. 

Like other Rival blasters, the Helios shares the same powerful, no-nonsense blaster body style. It has a wide handle, so it also fits well as a magazine. The blaster’s back is thick and angled, making it possible to be used as a shoulder stock. Underneath the stock sits a sling mount. A priming indicator also sits at the rear, showing when the blaster is ready to fire the orange plunger. On both sides, the safety switch rests, allowing for ambidextrous use.

The Helios is a blaster that’s easy to use, with one caveat. Usually, the loading mechanism works flawlessly, provided you can let the breech return naturally or force it back quickly enough to fit (if you’re not one to let go of the priming handle). The internal “barrel” can get stuck attempting to squish a Rival round by something else, leading to the consumer having to unjam the mechanism. It’s simply a matter of how and working as planned, the blaster functions.

Overall, the choice of this blaster was made as it is a fairly good performing blaster that is purely mechanical without having to think about the issue of the battery running out when using a battery-operated blaster.

Firing Mechanism: Direct Plunger

The Nerf Helios XVIII-700

Nerf has created many different ways to launch projectiles over the years. The direct plunger is one of the firing mechanisms that reside in some of the  RIVAL blasters. A direct plunger is a type of device with a plunger. Before the reverse plunger was adopted, it used to be the most common plunger type. However, in order to reach higher ranges, the most recent series of dart blasters, N-Strike Elite, has reintroduced the direct plunger with the RIVAL as well. The modding group however is known to prefer the direct plunger method, as it gives much more power to a blaster.

A plunger rod, a plunger tube, a plunger head, a catch, an O-ring, and a spring are the direct plunger’s main sections. The plunger rod and head shift back when primed, compressing the spring inside. The trap releases when the firing trigger is pulled, and the spring pushes the head of the plunger forward, and the air hits a dart, firing it.


A spinning, loosely cylindrical-shaped disc with teeth is what makes up the flywheel. It is a major component of blasters powered by flywheels. Within a flywheel cage, flywheels are most commonly arranged in vertical pairs with space in between for the darts to pass through, but they may also be horizontally arranged.

All flywheel blasters are either semi-automatic or fully automatic, and most require the use of batteries. To carry the darts to the flywheel cage and thus out of the blaster’s barrel, flywheel blasters would have either a pusher mechanism or a conveyor belt. In order for the dart to shoot properly, the flywheels first need to be spooled up, and so most flywheel blasters will have an acceleration lever or an on/off button to engage the flywheels by spinning up the motors.

To obtain the best performance, keeping the flywheels at full speed is critical. Rapid shooting can also lead to decreased efficiency in follow-up shots in unmodified blasters, which worsens as the batteries drain from a blaster. In order to operate, the first few flywheel-driven blasters were manually powered and had to be revved up by hand.

To conclude, the nerf gun ball or HIRs can be launched in any of the blasters of the RIVAL line that Nerf creates. Customers are able to choose whether to opt for a more mechanical action with a direct plunger system or have an easier time with a fully automatic flywheel system. Either way, you are for sure to have a really great time with the blasters! is immensely popular all over the world and in the United States especially. However, as time flies by and a nerf-head grows up into adolescence, he or she might feel that the foam darts that they’ve been shooting since they were younger children. What are they ever to...It's all about rapid fire nerf gun, star wars nerf gun, nerf laser tag and nerf gun mods.