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Steampunk & Nerf – Who or What is Steampunk?

To most people, the world of Nerf guns looks one-dimensional. Many only see it as a child’s game, something that they themselves may have grown up experiencing.

Others however, who take a deeper look into the realm of Nerf, come to realize there are many, many other layers. There’s a layer of college students that play Humans vs Zombies, and even one that is made up of working class tie-wearing-office-folk that have an office Nerf war or 2 a week.

One of these layers (the one that is the main point of this article) happens to consist of incredibly artistic individuals and fans of Sci-Fi.

So What Exactly is Steampunk?

Steampunk is defined as a A sub-genre of Alternate History that generally deals with advanced technology in the altered past. Another definition states it to be “an imaginary Victorian age, that features brass and copper clockwork and steam-powered inventions that go far beyond 1800’s technology. Steam powered mechanical wonders, optimistic gear driven computers, dirigibles, clockwork firsts, and stuff like that. (But don’t forget the goggles.)”
So how does it apply to Nerf? When it comes to painted Nerf guns, a popular term has been bouncing around. This term is “Steampunk.”

Chances are you’ve seen it around and mistaken it for a person (me being one of them, heh), but alas, it happens to be a word that describes this genre that has a dedicated following of fans, fans that are naturally drawn to Nerf.

It only makes sense why Steampunk fans are drawn to Nerf guns as most posses a Sci-Fi look, making them easy to paint and transform into a cool Victorian style gun that fits the Steampunk genre.

Example of a Steampunk Nerf Gun

This great example of a Steampunk style Nerf gun was made by LittleThingsinTN, who actually is in the business of selling creations like this.
steampunk nerf
As I am writing this, the above masterpiece is up for grabs on Etsy for $125, which actually isn’t too bad considering some modified Nerf guns for sale sell for over $125.
steampunk nerf
Etsy seems to have a good amount of buyers for this kind of stuff, as I’m seeing a couple have sold, like the one below.
steampunk nerf

Now You Know

As you found out above; Steampunk is not a person, it’s a genre, and now that you know the true nature of it, you have another area of Nerf to delve into and appreciate 🙂

On an ending note: if you’d like to learn how to paint your Nerf guns to look like the ones in the pictures above, then sorry, we don’t have that yet… but we do have a tutorial that shows you the basics :). You can find that tutorial here – Paint Your Nerf Gun.

jason lacey - November 1, 2016

the gun with the folding stock was created by me! Ottodestruct also known as Jason Lacey you can find more of my stuff here!

Derek - January 13, 2012

@harry don’t use spray paint, if you want a distressed antiquic(?) look, sand off the polished paint already on the gun and then hand paint a flat gray base coat then when it’s dry hand paint the spots what ever you want. Let that dry. Now more hand painting, use a blackish brown color and dab/smear it on very thinly.

wolferam - November 21, 2011

Not if you stop at just paint and gold elements really aren’t what you’re looking for. Brass and bronze are what you need. Gold is far too vibrant and doesn’t tarnish. You definitely want to destress and antique your gear to give it a more authentic, used look.

Harry - November 4, 2011

I’m buying the Nerf: Longstrike
And i’m planning to spray it black and put gold components on it.
Do you guys thing that sounds good?

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