Monday, January 31, 2011

Water blasters: our personal favs

CPS 1200.. Find one and get a happy:)
We don't REALLY like reviewing old blasters, mainly because it's a bit of a tease really; it's like promoting something that's awesome but then going "sorry, you can't have one" given they're actually pretty difficult for anyone to acquire. When it comes to water warfare though, it's a doozy because most current day blasters are of the equivalent of spitting on someone as far as drenching is concerned, and yet we personally prefer water fights to any other type of blaster battle so we feel our lack of reviews for water based artillery is detrimental to the waterfight cause:)

So this will be one of the rare occasions where we'll go into a bit more depth on the older gear; our personal arsenal of choice does on the whole disregard current day stuff and we went back into time and acquired some of the more formidable water blasters of old for our skirmishes. If you can find any of these, do pick them up; if you're a water fight fan then you won't be sorry!

When it comes to water fighting, what we DON'T like is what's called piston-based or syringe style water blasters; that is, water blasters that don't have a trigger. They rely on pumping back and forth to fire your shot, rely heavily on using both hands to shoot and are all and all, not really that fun. They still do the job I guess, but when you think about the kind of artillery that was around a decade ago, it's just so dissatisfying.  A trip to Toys R Us is going to normally offer a lot of piston based water blasters; they're cheap and easy to make but we tend to stay away.

That being said, just because the water blaster has a pump and a trigger, doesn't mean it's going to be good, even if physically, it's rather large. There are a LOT of Super Soaker rip offs out there that resemble old school CPS style water blasters but don't have the correct internals to give you the CPS power and drenching capabilities. It might still pressurise your water tank, but poor seals and crap apertures result in disappointing results. Generally we also stay away from these sorts of blasters too (unless we're playing against little kids who we know will use them too, in which case, the cheapest and crappiest the better)

We're guilty of the CPS hype- yes there's a LOT of talk about the older Constant Pressure System (CPS) line of blasters that came out in the 90's. In a nutshell, what makes these blasters so awesome is they have a separate rubberised elastic chamber to expel the water rather than directly pressurising the water tank itself. As far as you need to know, is this means the blasters are a LOT more powerful and are very impressive on the drenching scale. For some reason, they don't make 'em like them used to (although the new Super Soaker Hydro Cannon is apparently utilising CPS tech) so if you want one, you're going to have to go vintage..

And look, it's hard to not talk about powerful water blasters and/or CPS without someone talking about the king-of -the -hill Super Soaker CPS 2000 but, while it's true about it being the most powerful water blaster ever made, this does not actually mean it's going to be the best water blaster for you to get (because ultimately there's not a whole lot of situations you'd really get to crack it out and it's ridiculous the prices people want for it). You can still get some amazing CPS based blasters that'll give you big daddy status in any water fight, so our advice? Do what we do and go after some of the lesser known, but still awesome CPS water blasters like the ones we're listing below- in some instances they're even better than the much hyped CPS 2000 AND they won't break your bank account.
Super Soaker CPS 1200
For us, CPS 1200 is probably our favourite blaster of choice in most skirmishes. It's definitely one of the more lesser known blaster that came out (I personally never saw it released in Australia at the time and never heard of it till recently) but it's a solid, well made blaster that is very impressive with ranges and soakage. I've seen brand new on eBay for around 40 bucks US (which I woulda snapped up some more if they'd ship to Australia!) and it's well worth it as it can definitely mix it with its other CPS based brothers.
CPS 1200 nozzle and neck pump
One of the real CPS family favourites would have to be the CPS1500. It's bigger than the 1200, and it comes with a switch that can change the apertures of your stream to be thicker and empty your tank faster. It does hold more water than the 1200, and is more recognisable; I found the size and weight of the blaster a tad un-wieldy and it does put pressure on the hand grip (kind of bends and squeaks a little) But the power on this bad boy is phenomenal. It'll dominate most situations and we absolutely love it. If you're lucky you can find one of these in really good condition (with no sun damage) under 80 bucks which is quite the bargain.

CPS1500. It's mega. No really.

The CPS 1500's aperture switch
When people talk about the BIGGEST water blasters around, the CPS 2000 and 2500 do take the cake. However this beast of a water blaster is the much lesser recognised and known, and therefore significantly cheaper CPS 2700. It's supposed to be an updated model of the 2500, it does come with three (if not somewhat awkward to reach) aperture settings, and more importantly, it's farkin' HUGE.
CPS 2700. Ugly.. yet devastating:) 
Fill this bad boy up and it's VERY weightly indeed. No wonder they come with shoulder straps. That all being said, it turns anyone who uses it into a crazy person with non stop laughter with very impressive performances, AND it does have a kick to it. Not really a fan of the way it looks, but it's amazing to wield. And we picked ours up for 80 bucks, which was a great buy.

The awkward to turn triple head selector for the CPS 2700
In more recent years, our personal favourite has been the Super Soaker Flash Flood. It utilises CPS technology and has two nozzles- one for standard water stream firing, but also a very cool "Flood" mechanism that empties a good amount of the tank on your opponent in one hit. I have to admit I once did this to a very annoying 5 yo kid in the head in front of his mother (naturally she was unimpressed) and it had me in stitches for ages:) 
This one's my personal fav..but I broke it:(
The blaster's size makes it very easy to carry around and it's quite comfortable to use, but it DOES admittedly have poor quality internals and my personal Flashflood had a snapped trigger spring so it's true quality ISN'T the best.. it's still absolutely awesome though but as with the others, is discontinued so its not that easy to find anymore. If you can't get your hands on one, the Super Soaker Arctic Blast or the Iron Man 2 blaster (which is essentially an Arctic Blast repaint) are decent substitutes with the same "Flood" mechanisms.

If you're REALLY hell bent on not getting something second hand and prefer more recent stuff, then you'll have to resort to disregarding the Super Soaker line and hit up the Water Warriors Pulse Master. Actually any of the Pulse series of water blasters are pretty good, but for maximum soakage, the Pulse Master is awesome. Three aperture settings and a very big tank make this blaster one of the closest things you can find in a domestic toy store to a CPS powered blaster. (If you can hunt down a Water Warriors Vindicator, then you're even closer but we have been yet to find one

Water Warriors Pulse Master. It's got some ballz.
Remember Water Warriors does come from the minds of those who worked with Larami, the original Super Soaker creator so they're not to be scoffed at when it comes to this sorta thing. My only issue is the hand grip is surprisingly tiny compared to the rest of the blaster.

While I do LOVE the CPS 2000,  it's cult status has been picked up on by eBay sellers and the relatively uninformed fans have assisted in jacking the price up to ridiculous plus 250 prices. I had a 2000 when it first came out, and then a 2500 a year later and both were prone to massive amounts of leaking and squeaking and their sheer size made it pretty unwieldy to use. Even as a crazy collector, I still just can't bring myself to go after one, given its size will add an extra 200 or so to the price in shipping. 500 plus for a second hand water blaster that I can't really use in a skirmish? I dunno..

Soo.. that's the round up of our personal arsenal. Feel free to post details of yours:)


  1. hey I know this comment is not relevant to your post today but i've got my hands on a Quick 16 and on the back of the box, the name of the blaster is "Sharp Shot".


  2. Managed to find an orig Super Soaker 50 in my garage. Sadly the pump is leaking :(

  3. I miss my Super Soaker 50. It was the first Super Soaker-ranged water blaster I ever got my hands on as a teen. I miss my Super Soaker 300 even more... It was so beastly and had the tendency to make any of your friends run for cover aka in the house where Mum would yell at you :P

  4. My personal fave is the Water Warriors Gorgon. Its got some good power, but damm annoying to hold.

  5. I get a happy! I found a NIB CPS 1200 at Goodwill for $10! :D

  6. I get more Happy!
    I found a CPS 2000 in the trash! And it works perfectly!
    It is missing its stickers, and is scratched quite a bit, but nothing beats a 50' 30oz/sec water gun!

  7. Which do you like more - the 1200 or 2700?

  8. I love my CPS 2700. I found mine for a dollar at a local thrift store in good condition (A few scratches and paint chips but no sun damage)which i immediately snapped up. BEST BUY EVER