Wondering how to have a Nerf war? It may be a good idea to look at video games — even if that’s what you’re trying to pull your kids away from! Video games have a lot to teach about fun ways to get competitive, from classic shooters like Halo to the infectious Fortnite, you can get great ideas for how to have a Nerf war from them.
One of the best ideas that comes from video games is capture the flag. Giving your Nerf warriors an objective can make for more exciting games!
Rather than fight against your kid’s love of games, find a way to combine them with exercise. You’ll find ideas for how to have a Nerf war that are more fun than you thought possible.
Why Have a Nerf War?
If you’ve got a kid who’s obsessed with video games, it may seem like there’s no way to get them out from in front of that screen. Fortnite is a juggernaut and it seems impossible to escape.
The good news is that if there’s a great way to get kids outside to burn off all that’s energy, give them a gun and something to shoot. Of course, make sure it’s a Nerf gun, and get a Nerf war started.
Wondering how to have a Nerf war? It’s not so hard. All you need are a group of kids with some energy to burn, and an arsenal of Nerf blasters. It isn’t as hard as you think it might be, and even if you arm them all yourselves, you won’t have to break the bank to do it.
How to Have a Nerf War?
How to have a Nerf war may not seem so easy at first glance. Organizing a group of kids isn’t necessarily the most straightforward process. But luckily, you’re not the first to walk this path. Whether you’re organizing for 10-year-olds or players of all ages, the most important thing is laying out the rules.
Rules and boundaries keep everything fair, but the next step is arming your players. Whether it’s a Bring Your Own Blaster game or you provide the weapons, it’s good to know what the plan is to make sure everyone has a good time. An important part of this is knowing who to plan for.
If you’re going for a birthday party, it’s probably best if you provide the blasters. That way, every player starts on an even field, and they’re not terribly expensive.
Alternately, you can ask that everyone bring their own blasters. If you’re planning for teens or adults, this is probably a better option.
Overall, take some time to think about what you want from your Nerf war. Consider the size and age of your group, and how long you want the war to last. In the right situations, you could have a multiple-day event on your hands!
The Classic Nerf War
The classic Nerf war is essentially a scaled-up version of the kinds of shootouts most kids have on their own. Grab your favorite Nerf blaster, and start shooting.
The good thing about this kind of Nerf war is that it has endless variation. If your kid is a big Fortnite fan, you could go for a battle royale scenario where the last kid standing wins. Switch things up with capture the flag and team elimination games, and you’ll be able to keep play going all day.
Whether you’ve got a backyard or a public park, we’ll teach you how to have a Nerf war the classic way.
Explaining the rules
As we’ve mentioned, one of the most important parts of learning how to have a Nerf war is learning how the rules work. Now, there are no “official” rules for a Nerf war, but there are plenty of ideas that will help you keep things fun and fair.
The most difficult thing to figure out is how hits work. In paintball, one hit means you’re out, but that’s hardly a fun method for how to have a Nerf war. The most popular methods use lives and hit points.
There are two main rules for lives in a Nerf war, which both give you a set amount of hit points per life. One way uses five hit points per life, and you get a 20-second cool-down period every time you lose one.
Another method uses 10 hit points but no cool-down. Set the number of lives depending on how long you want your Nerf war to be, and let loose!
Boundaries are essential to the fair play of a good Nerf war. Even the largest battlefields need clear boundaries to keep things fun and fair. Players won’t range out anywhere dangerous that’s out of bounds. They also make it easy to clean up all of the darts in between rounds!
Different play for different ages
Of course, one of the best things about Nerf is that it’s timeless! It never stops being fun to run around and blast your friends with darts.
For younger kids, make a game of it as much as possible! Give incentives for fair play, so that kids won’t want to cheat to stay in for longer. Instead of counting to 20, maybe the kids have to do their favorite Fortnite dance to get back in the game.
As for teens and adults, one big difference is that they will have and will want to bring their own blasters. There are a lot of resources for modding blasters to shoot farther and harder.
Allow modded blasters, but make sure that none of them are modded with dangerous additions, such as carbon dioxide canisters. These adaptations could make Nerf darts a potentially harmful projectile.
Humans vs. Zombies
Another popular way for how to have a Nerf war doesn’t have guns on all sides. Instead, it pits the living against the dead. You may have heard of Humans vs. Zombies on college campuses, but you can scale it down to fit a party or keep its longer format for a day or longer!
Humans vs. Zombies starts with most players as humans, who wear bandanas on their arms, trying to survive. At the same time, zombies, who wear their bandanas on their heads, are trying to infect humans to bring them to their side.
When a zombie is hit, they either have to tag a point or wait a set amount of time before coming back. For humans who get tagged, they become zombies!
This game is popular over multiple days, but can easily be scaled down.
Give your humans an objective that they must reach and defend, while the zombies try to defeat all of them. With a few extra zombies to start with, this can make for some pretty heroic Nerf war moments! And, it will even give you time to play some other different games at the same party.
Finding your participants
“What if they gave a war and nobody came?”
Well, if it’s a Nerf war, it wouldn’t be a lot of fun!
Fortunately, Nerf hasn’t built its reputation by being a boring pastime. If you’re wondering how to have a Nerf war for your child, chances are everyone in their class will want to come!
If you need a place to hold your Nerf war, it would be worth your time to find a park or other public space. It shouldn’t be too hard to reserve a space to duke it out!
Gearing up for War: Choosing the Right Blasters
Once all the logistics for how to have a Nerf war are taken care of, you need to actually arm your players! If this is a birthday party, it’s probably best to keep things simple unless you have a sizable budget for armaments.
One great option is the Nerf Strongarm blaster, which is pretty inexpensive even by Nerf terms. Still, consider having parents respond ahead of time if they’ll be able to bring any Nerf blasters.
Another great idea is stocking up on darts so that no one is left unarmed. These darts aren’t too expensive, and keep the war going until the sun goes down.
If you’re playing with younger kids, you may want to look out for the Nerf Rival blasters. These models use dense foam balls rather than darts, which fly farther than Elite darts. They can be a lot of fun for older kids but could be a little dangerous in younger hands.
To keep things fair, you may want to hide special “power weapons” around the field that players can pick up. These can change the course of the game and give players a chance to wield some exciting firepower.
How to have a Nerf war safely
Safety is a paramount part of how to have a Nerf war. Everyone’s there to have a good time, so make sure that no one’s day gets ruined by a stray dart!
We’ve already offered a few safety tips, like no guns modded with carbon dioxide canisters and clear boundaries. Another helpful safety option would be safety goggles.
You don’t need anything fancy, just the kind you’d find at any hardware store. You can easily stock up on a set for everyone at your party!
Declaring Your Nerf War
If you’re wondering how to have a Nerf war, you may be worried. Sure, it can be a lot of fun and a great way to get your children outside. But how can you regulate a Nerf war any more than a real one?
Hopefully, we’ve given you some tips. As you plan your Nerf war, feel free to brainstorm your own ideas! The most important thing is making sure is everyone is armed, and the rules are clear. If your rules are vague or not enforced, it’s easy for people to break them or feel like things are unfair.
Even if there’s a special birthday girl or boy, all’s fair in Nerf war. Make sure everyone gets to feel like they’re part of the game, and everyone will go home happy.