Nerf guns are a great gift idea for kids who like active and imaginary play. While some nerf guns are simple shooters that come with an arsenal of darts, other products feature sound effects or are sold with moving target games for a more immersive experience. Whether you’re shopping for a toddler or a preteen, here are the seven best nerf guns for kids.
Best Nerf Guns for Kids
(Best value — $)
Why it’s great: These Nerf DinoSquad guns come as a set of two and include 12 official Nerf Elite foam darts. This nerf gun also has a dart storage clip, making it easy to load and reload as necessary during battle. With no batteries required, this nerf gun is simple to shoot and easy to operate. Your little one will also love the style of this nerf gun, which features bright colors and a fun triceratops design.
Keep in mind: Some customers say this gun doesn’t have a lot of power, but that makes it a safer option for kids.
Good for: Younger kids as this nerf gun is easy to use and recommended for children ages three and up.
(Highest quality — $$$)
Why it’s great: This NERF Modulus toy gun is one of the more high-tech nerf guns on the market. Featuring SwitchFire technology, this nerf gun includes three different firing modes. Kids can choose between single-fire, burst-fire, or continuous fire to determine the speed and quantity of darts released. A swivel handle helps stabilize shots while a storage stock provides two clips containing 24 Modulus Elite darts.
Keep in mind: This nerf gun requires four C batteries, which are not included with purchase.
Good for: Kids who want a bigger, more powerful nerf gun than the typical nerf guns on the market.
(Best sound effects — $$)
Why it’s great: This digital target and nerf gun are a great options for kids looking to improve their target practice skills. The digital target automatically resets after being shot down and features flashing lights and fun sound effects during use. Perfect for playing with friends, this shooting game keeps score of each shooter’s stats. This target game includes the digital target machine as well as a nerf gun, 60 foam darts, and two wrist ammo holders.
Keep in mind: Some customers say the targets are smaller than they expected.
Good for: All ages as this nerf gun and shooting game are designed for beginners and advanced shooters alike.
(Easiest to use — $)
Why it’s great: This NERF Zombie blaster is one of the more simple and affordable Nerf guns on the market. Available in three color schemes, this nerf gun comes with five foam bullets to load into the front rotating drum. This nerf gun doesn’t require any batteries and is praised by customers for its accuracy and suction power.
Keep in mind: This nerf gun only comes with five darts, but customers can purchase additional darts separately.
Good for: Gifting as this is a functional and affordable nerf gun for kids ages eight and up.
(Best for younger kids — $$)
Why it’s great: These dinosaur blaster guns are sold as a set of two and come with a total of 20 foam darts. Easy to load, this nerf gun also features a comfortable grip specifically designed for small hands. The foam darts have been tested and approved for safety to ensure your little one won’t get hurt while engaging in nerf battle with this gun. Parents praise this nerf gun for its extended shooting range and easy-to-use design.
Keep in mind: Some customers say there are some unexpected discrepancies between the two nerf guns included in this set, though they both work equally well.
Good for: Beginning nerf gun enthusiasts as these nerf guns are easy to hold and easy to shoot.
(Best for multiuser experience — $$$)
Why it’s great: This moving shooting game comes with two space blaster guns, 18 foam balls, a moving, mesh target, and a charging cable. The rechargeable target has a stable stand with two operating gears. Players can choose between a slow mode or a fast mode to determine the target’s moving speed. Kids will love shooting the space blaster guns included with this set, which boast a 20-foot shooting range and 360-degree rotatable handle. Parents praise this shooting game for being easy to assemble and easy to use.
Keep in mind: This shooting game is recommended for children ages five and up.
Good for: Playing with family or friends as this target game comes with two guns and is designed to be a fun shooting competition.
(Best shooting range — $$)
Why it’s great: Celebrated for its speed, accuracy, and power, this motorized nerf gun has a shooting range of 120 feet. Featuring a six-dart cylinder, this nerf gun is designed to be loaded from the back, making it fast and easy to reload on the go. This nerf gun comes with six Nerf Ultra darts, which feature an innovative flight tip, Aerofin technology, and are made from Nerf Ultra foam, allowing them to fly farther and faster than other foam darts on the market.
Keep in mind: This nerf gun is only compatible with the Nerf Ultra darts.
Good for: Older kids as this gun is recommended for ages eight and up.
FAQs about Nerf Guns for Kids
1. What should I consider when shopping for a nerf gun?
The most important things to consider when shopping for a nerf gun are functionality, durability, and age appropriateness. You’ll want to find a nerf gun that’s easy to use and built to last. The best nerf guns will have strong suction power and come with a clip of foam darts included. You’ll also want to find a nerf gun that can withstand some rough handling as this kind of toy is designed for active and intensive play. Lastly, you’ll want to take your little one’s age into consideration as some nerf guns are recommended for older kids while others are intended for kids of all ages.
2. What ages are best for playing with nerf guns?
Nerf guns can be fun for a variety of ages. However, some nerf guns are designed specifically for older kids while other nerf guns are more suitable for younger children. Because nerf guns require a certain level of hand-eye coordination and advanced motor skills, children should be at least three years old before playing with nerf guns. Some nerf guns include advanced features and are suggested for kids who are at least eight years old. Nerf guns also pose some safety hazards if not used properly, which is why it’s always important to follow your nerf gun’s specified age recommendations and safety instructions.
3. What safety precautions should I take when allowing my child to play with a nerf gun?
Nerf guns are designed to be safe for kids to play with. The foam darts shot from the gun are soft and not intended to cause harm. That being said, it’s always important to read the instructions that come with your nerf gun to ensure that your child is using it properly and safely. Also, be sure to check the age recommendations for your nerf gun. Some products are designed for kids ages three and up while others are recommended for kids ages eight and up.
4. What kind of dart bullets are best for nerf guns?
This depends on the kind of nerf gun you purchase. Some nerf guns can be loaded with universal foam darts while others require the same brand darts as the nerf gun. Be sure to read your nerf gun’s product description and instruction guide if you have any questions about which darts to use with your nerf gun.
5. What other gear should I purchase with my nerf gun?
There are plenty of bonus accessories to add to your kiddo’s collection of nerf artillery. If the nerf gun you purchased requires batteries, you’ll want to make sure to have the right kind on hand. Even if your nerf gun comes with batteries included, it’s helpful to have a backup stash to replace them when necessary. Other gear that will be sure to thrill your nerf enthusiast includes extra darts (just make sure they’re compatible with the gun you purchase), target games, or a tactical vest for nerf battle cosplay.
Nerf guns are the perfect gift option for kids who are high-energy and always on the move. A great way to encourage imaginary play, nerf guns also help improve kids’ hand-eye coordination and motor skills. When shopping for a nerf gun, you’ll always want to pay attention to a product’s special features and age recommendations as some nerf guns are designed for older kids while others are better for beginners. No matter which nerf gun you choose, your kiddo is sure to love practicing their aim and honing their shooting skills with their new toy. Thankfully, you won’t have to worry about your little one sustaining any real-life battle injuries as nerf guns are designed to be safe so long as they’re used as intended.