8 Best Laser Tag Sets | April 2017

We spent 31 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. Give your kids the most awesome gift ever - one of these laser tag sets that will let them blast their friends and siblings to pieces without anyone actually getting hurt. Plus they have the added benefit of shifting them out from in front of their TVs, smartphones and gaming systems and getting some exercise for a nice change. Skip to the best laser tag set on Amazon.
8 Best Laser Tag Sets | April 2017
Overall Rank: 6
Best Mid-Range
★★★
Overall Rank: 1
Best High-End
★★★★★
Overall Rank: 8
Best Inexpensive
★★★
8
The Smithsonian Set offers engaging entertainment without spending a fortune. The simple, compact design is easy to operate for ages 6 years and up, and takes up little storage space when not in use. The overall quality, though, doesn't seem built to last.
  • has kickback and reverberation
  • slides easily onto the hand
  • minimal special features
Brand Smithsonian
Model pending
Weight 15.2 ounces
Rating 3.6 / 5.0
7
The Nerf Lazer Tag Phoenix LTX set registers hits with lights, sounds, and vibrations for thrilling minute-to-minute action. There is also a recoil feature that engages with every shot fired, giving the gameplay a more realistic feel.
  • 2 colors for easy identification
  • contoured handle is easy to hold
  • batteries wear out quickly
Brand Nerf
Model 926922050
Weight 2 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0
6
The premium Wowwee Assault Striker features elegant lights, sounds and unlimited ammo to get you into battle mode. It is great for conquering individual challenges or creating ultimate team battles at parties or hangouts. Unfortunately, each gun is purchased individually.
  • customizable weapon features
  • can add on attachments
  • great quality but expensive
Brand Wow Wee
Model W3413
Weight 2.5 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0
5
The Nerf A0419 brings video game action to real life through the use of your iPhone or iPod touch, which allows you to shoot your way through virtual levels infested with hordes of aliens. They can also be used with friends for classic multiplayer battles.
  • guns are extremely durable
  • phones are well protected in cradle
  • safe for kids 8 years and up
Brand Nerf
Model A0419
Weight 3.7 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0
4
Simply Addictive Call Of Life Multiplayer includes 4 guns, each with an impressive laser range of up to 120 feet. Each time you lose a life, the gun vibrates, and you can check your health status at any time by looking at the meter on the side of the gun.
  • reloads with just a simple tap
  • nice quality built-in speakers
  • choose between four team colors
Brand LEGACY TOYS
Model pending
Weight 4.5 pounds
Rating 4.4 / 5.0
3
The Kidzlane Tag Game is a good value, considering the quality of the guns. Each one can be set to any one of four settings; pistol, shotgun, submachine gun, or rocket. They also make a unique noise depending on what type of gun you choose to use.
  • lights up and vibrates when hit
  • good for indoor and outdoor use
  • no limit to team size
Brand Kidzlane
Model pending
Weight 4.1 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0
2
The Power Brand Star Wars comes with two laser blasters and a stormtrooper backpack to store them in when not in use, or for taking them on-the-go. Each gun also has unique properties with specific strengths and weaknesses, like a farther range or faster reload time.
  • 120 foot laser range
  • expandable by purchasing more guns
  • blaster doubles as the target
Brand Power Brand Star Wars
Model pending
Weight 2.1 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0
1
The Hasbro Team Ops Deluxe System offers high tech fun and adventure for 2 players. This complete set comes with 11 preprogrammed games plus the ability to custom-design a virtually unlimited number of games, to let your imagination run wild.
  • real-time audio-visual feedback
  • great grip on the handles
  • can use shields for protection
Brand Hasbro
Model 71094
Weight 3.6 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

Buyer's Guide

Tag, You're It!

For anyone averse to the skin-splitting misery that is paintball or the traumatizing experience that is actual warfare, laser tag scratches your itch for combat without digging its claws in too deeply.

In a professional laser tag arena, you have to wear a miserably large, heavy plastic vest with sensors and a battery pack on it. Your gun is attached to your vest and your mobility is severely inhibited. The vest itself has its little sensors on the chest, back, and shoulders, and for some reason hits to all four spots count the same. I'm sorry, but it's much easier to survive a gunshot to the top of your shoulder than it is to your heart or your spine. That's just unrealistic.

The units we've evaluated here, by comparison, work on the same principals, but utilize much lighter and more effective technology, allowing you greater mobility and a more realistic game.

The biggest difference between the big laser tag operations and the games you get at home is that the home systems don't use the kind of lasers the pro systems do. Professional laser tag vests use a laser similar to what you get when you buy a laser pointer. Home systems, however, operate on the same infrared technology that you use in your television remote control, which is a little more forgiving of your shot accuracy, but also a lot weaker in its signal.

While some systems still use vests (which are much smaller and lighter than the vests of yore), the majority of laser tag systems on our list uses a small sensor built onto the gun itself. The advantage of this little sensor living on your weapon is that it requires you to purchase, organize, and power fewer pieces of hardware. The disadvantage is that it's a little easier to block incoming shots with your hands if you've got a cheater for a friend.

For The Love Of The Game

Laser tag has always been about the purity and simplicity of the game, and that game is a combination of interpersonal warfare and capture (or destroy) the flag, with two to four groups at odds against one another, each group responsible for protecting one or more large sensors situated at strategic points around the arena.

You have to form actual tactics with your team if you want to win, and that includes drawing the defenders of a given target away from their positions so you can hit it with as many shots as possible. The more shots you levvy against the target, the more points for your team.

If you like that target system, and you want to recreate it at home, that significantly narrows down the sets on our list that would be perfect for you, as only a couple of them have available target points for their games. That said, all you really have to do to create a similar experience is buy an extra gun for each side and set it up as an immobile target that each team must protect.

Some of these sets come to you in all their splendor right out of the box, but take a close look at each with specific regards to what you're going to get. As amazingly cool and as the Wowwee Assault Striker is with its many options for customization, it doesn't have a sensor of its own. The Wowwee system is a pretty complicated one, and the price tag keeps climbing if you want to have even a basic experience with it.

The only other thing to consider, and this has more to do with your intended spaces that anything else, is infrared range. A few of these guns very honestly advertise a usable range of up to 30 or 40 feet, while others claim effectiveness and accuracy at distances of over 200 feet. Those latter claims seem inflated, and in our testing, greater distances and more numerous obstacles (like trees, for example) exponentially decrease performance.

War Games Brought To Market

In case you ever find yourself on the verge of looking up the birth of a given technology, there's a pretty high chance that you could save yourself some time by just assuming it was made by the military. From the internet to LSD, the military has brought us some astounding technologies over the years, and laser tag is another on that long list.

In the late 1970s, the US military developed a system of infrared laser combat devices for training purposes. The disadvantage of these, of course, was the limitation of target realism. Since the soldiers in training couldn't feasibly cover themselves head to toe in infrared sensors, the system failed to accurately recreate a battlefield scenario.

The first toy company to make use of the technology didn't have laser tag in mind, however. Milton Bradley produced a phaser toy modeled after the weapons on Star Trek, which hit the market in 1979 and utilized the tech that would become laser tag. Within about a year, two other companies jumped on the design, creating the team-based sport of it.

Laser tag arenas cropped up in arcades at a steady clip throughout the 80s and 90s, with popularity waning some as that generation moved on to other pursuits. As those early players have had children of their own and sought out a little bump of nostalgia, arenas have begun to reopen around the country.



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Last updated on April 25 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.