I think I'll redefine the terms first for better analysis... (in a purely technical matter)
VELOCITY: Speed of the dart coming from the barrel, directly affects range, also can affect properties pretaining to soft cover. I figured velocity is better than range for discussion because TIS brought up standing behind a bush and seeing the darts get caught. The velocity of the dart is a lot more plausible to talk about because then you can consider range and power of the shot.
RATE OF FIRE: I'm keeping rate of fire because there it is the best way of describing how fast you can shoot off multiple shots.
CONSISTENCY: Accuracy is more of a user related topic. The consistency of the nerf gun is what makes accuracy better. If you clamp the nerf to a bench, you should hope that it hits the same point every shot given the same conditions. Not all nerfs are capable of this. For example, rf20 vs xbow.
If you're looking for certain performance in a nerf gun, you should look at it from the pure technical aspect. Don't talk about, "user b can reload his xbow x fast while user a can turn his at2k turret and pump y fast," when comparing guns. Doing so will only bring it to a point of user competence and preference. If we compare ever nerf equally in a set condition we can see that there are set categories each nerf falls into. ..
Single shot, multiple shot, long-range (high velocity), short-range (low velocity), and mid-range (middle velocity)
If you think about it, it's two different teirs of categories, one includes rate of fire, and the other includes velocity. And if you think more, there is a direct relation between velocity and rate of fire for most nerf guns (not like an FAR or 3dbbq home mades). If we take a couple extremes we can see the relation.
RF20: high capacity shot automatic, low velocity, poor consistency
Powerclip: middle capacity automatic, middle velocity, moderate consistency
Crossbow: singe fire, high velocity, good consistency
Our three nerf guns each exhibit a different play behavior. The RF20 is a "pray and spray" strategy that involves a high density of shots within an area. It has horrible spread and only is effect at 20' to 40' depending on mods. The Powerclip is a step up. Though it isn't an at3k, it still has moderate ranges that are better than the rf20. It has less shots but that means more air per shot resulting in better velocity. It also doesn't have as bad of shot spread. Then the Crossbow is the complete opposite of both of those. It has a single shot permanent barrel with a strong spring and high air volume. That means there will be better consistency over moving barrels or clips and a longer range due to the high velocity resulting from high compression and high volume.
All of those nerfs have good qualities and usefulness in different scenarios. Rate of fire won't get you jack squat if your darts fall 10 feet short and velocity doesn't mean anything if you are battling within 10 feet. The effectiveness of each attribute is really based upon play style and scenario. losers wouldn't want RF20s and rushers wouldn't want a titan. Balanced players who play the whole field need balanced guns to fit their needs. There really is no better attribute, it's all about how well the attributes fit into your style of play.
I personally prefer consistency, decent velocity, and higher rate of fire for my play style...
Edited by footemps, 31 May 2005 - 05:38 PM.