Best Nerf Guns for 3, 4, 5, and 6-Year-Olds

At my house, we have a particular love for Nerf guns. As a child, my husband and his siblings used to get a cheap Nerf shooter as the final Christmas present. Everyone would open their uniform presents at the same time and then run around and shoot each other amidst the chaos of new presents and shredded wrapping paper.

I have always loved that tradition and, when we started our own family, I wanted to carry it forward. Now that we have two boys and several years of Nerf experience under our belts, I have some strong opinions about Nerf guns. In my opinion, the best overall Nerf gun that is appropriate for every age is the Nerf Fire Strike Elite. Here’s a guide to the best Nerf guns for 3, 4, 5, and 6-year olds. Also, keep reading to find out which Nerf gun I’d pick for myself.

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What I Won’t Recommend
You’ll notice as you read through that I haven’t recommended any of the larger Nerf guns with clips. This is because I have personally removed so many shredded Nerf bits from fancy-looking guns that I will never buy (or give) any of those again. The level of frustration over a jam and the technical difficulty to clear the jam have always outweighed any benefits of rapid-fire action.

Another reason why I don’t like to have the larger guns is because I don’t like to store them. Right now, almost all of our Nerf guns and Nerf bullets fit into a cheap plastic hamper that sits in the corner of my son’s room. The only guns that don’t fit are the large, bulky Nerf guns that have clips.

Although storage of these Nerf guns shouldn’t seem like a big issue, having just two bulky guns takes up a lot of space. Inevitably, this space is on the floor somewhere, and I’m not a fan of stuff all over the floor. So, be aware that all of my recommendations in this article are for smaller Nerf guns.

Whether you’re shopping for a little one or yourself, you’re going to like the Nerf Fire Strike Elite. It’s the first Nerf gun we got, and now we own three of them.

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Features
This comfortable grip fits hands of different sizes.
Single-action shooting means that you won’t have to clear jams.
A laser helps you aim for your target.
Two storage slots below your shooter means that you can carry three Nerf bullets at a time.
Although this model comes with regular Nerf bullets, it can also shoot the Nerf suction cup bullets.
Technical Information
Product Dimensions: 2.4 x 9.4 x 5.6 inches
Item Weight: 5.6 ounces
Manufacturer Recommended Age: 12 months and up
Batteries Needed: 2 AAs
Are Batteries Provided?: No
Possible Issues
You might have issues with other Nerf bullets staying loaded. (We haven’t, though.)
After some unsupervised use, you may find that your child has somehow gotten the cocking mechanism off the track. It can be fixed, though. You may have to open up your gun to get it completely fixed, though.
Nerf doesn’t normally make weak guns, so make sure that no one gets shot in the face or at close range because it can hurt.

Best Nerf Gun for a 3-Year-Old

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3-year-old’s favorite Nerf gun is the Nerf Double Down Blaster. He can easily work the gun by himself, and he loves that it’s a double shooter.

Features
This Nerf gun is comfortable for hands of various sizes.
Young children can pull back the slide to operate the gun.
This double shooter also offers storage for four bullets beneath the barrel.
Although this model comes with regular Nerf bullets, it can also shoot the Nerf suction cup bullets.
Technical Information
Product Dimensions: 1.7 x 13.5 x 7.2 inches
Item Weight: 10.4 ounces
Manufacturer Recommended Age: 8 year and up
Batteries Needed: No
Are Batteries Provided?: N/A
Possible Issues
The second bullet may come out at half-strength.
Both bullets may come out at the same time but at a weak power.
The shooter may misfire or jam.
Make sure that no one gets shot in the face or at close range because it can hurt.
Your child may not be able to run the slide.

Best Nerf Gun for a 4-Year-Old

4

Although I have the Nerf N-Strike GlowShot Blaster listed as the best Nerf gun for a 4-year-old, it’s really great for any age. This small pocket blaster allows for spontaneous sneak attacks.

Features
This single shooter lights up and glows.
It’s one of the smaller Nerf gun models. This means it can kind of fit in your pocket, which makes it great for sneak attacks.
This is a great entry-level Nerf gun that’s very easy for young users.
Although this model comes with regular Nerf bullets, it can also shoot the Nerf suction cup bullets.
Technical Information
Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 8.5 x 7.4 inches
Item Weight: 3.84 ounces
Manufacturer Recommended Age: 8 years and up
Batteries Needed: 2 AAAs
Are Batteries Provided?: No
Possible Issues
As with many Nerf guns, there may be some issues with the slide or trigger over time.
Make sure that you don’t fire at close range or shoot the face. Nerf guns pack some power, so people could get hurt.

Best Nerf Gun for a 5-Year-Old

5

With two sizes of bullets and a top and bottom shooter toggle switch, the Nerf Dual-Strike Blaster is a little bit trickier than the previously mentioned models of Nerf guns.

Features
This Nerf gun fires one bullet at a time, but it holds 3 Elite bullets and 3 Mega Whistler bullets.
Use the toggle switch to change between the two different bullet styles.
The Mega Whistler darts “scream” through the air.
Although this model comes with regular Nerf bullets, it can also shoot the Nerf suction cup bullets.
Technical Information
Product Dimensions: 2.3 x 7.3 x 15.3 inches
Item Weight: 1.15 pounds
Manufacturer Recommended Age: 8 years and up
Batteries Needed: No
Are Batteries Provided?: N/A
Possible Issues
Your child may not be able to run the slide.
The bullets may sometimes fire two at a time with half the power.
Sometimes, the bullet may fire out with a weak power.
Make sure that you don’t fire at close range or shoot the face. Nerf guns pack some power, so people could get hurt.

Best Nerf Gun for a 6-Year-Old

6

My 6-year-old’s favorite Nerf gun is the Nerf Zombie Strike Crossfire Bow Blaster. He likes the coolness of carrying a crossbow with the ease of using a Nerf gun.

Features
This is comfortable and easy to carry for small and large hands.
The slide is relatively easy to work.
It fires 4 shots.
Shooting a crossbow looks so much more impressive than a regular dart gun.
The crosshairs allow for you to aim at your target.
Although this model comes with regular Nerf bullets, it can also shoot the Nerf suction cup bullets.
Technical Information
Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 16.5 x 12 inches
Item Weight: 1.63 pounds
Manufacturer Recommended Age: 8 years and up
Batteries Needed: No
Are Batteries Provided?: N/A
Possible Issues
Because it’s a crossbow, there’s a possibility that the string may break.
The bullets may sometimes fire two at a time with half the power.
Sometimes, the bullet may fire out with a weak power.
Make sure that you don’t fire at close range or shoot the face. Nerf guns pack some power, so people could get hurt.

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