With winter starting to give way, it's probably a good time to think about the best water guns. Sure, the weather is still pretty dicey and we're a ways out from any kind of heat wave. But you can save a fair bit on Super Soakers and water pistols ahead of season if you're quick, allowing you to unleash the hounds of (water) war when summer rolls round.
To help you choose the best possible implement of H20 mayhem, our experts have selected what they think are the best water guns here. There's something to suit everyone below regardless of whether you want cheap and cheerful water pistols or more premium Super Soakers.
We'll keep updating this list as we test more products ahead of summer, too - check back in every now and then to see what's hot for 2024.
Curious about how we've been able to settle on the best water guns, on the other hand? Simple - along with testing water pistols ourselves, we've been getting some advice from colleagues who've test-driven Super Soakers of all kinds. Our team has also spent a long time trawling through user reviews on Amazon, meaning you can rest assured that these pass the test.
Best water guns - quick list
Want to get into the action? You can see an overview of everything featured on this list below. Just click on the link if you'd like to find out more.
Best value water guns
Looking for a cheap and cheerful option that still delivers? Going by the overwhelmingly positive user reviews, these are some of the best water guns out there.
The best all-round water gun
Keen to cut loose? You can't do much better than this when it comes to water guns. It fires two streams in random directions, so there's no escaping its wrath.
Best water gun for capacity
If you want to avoid filling up your blaster every few minutes while still laying down the smack, this is a great option that'll serve you well.
Best short-range water gun
For those who like to battle up close, the Twister is ideal - it fires a jet of water in a double helix pattern, so it's near-impossible to keep out of the way.
Best premium water gun
If you're fed up of having to reload your water pistol on the regular, the Soakzooka will be your jam. This massive blaster can fit 55 fl oz (1.6L) in its tank.
Best water gun for cooling down
The summer heat can be punishing, so this option from Super Soaker should keep you nice and cool thanks to a compartment for ice cubes that chills any water inside.
Best combi-water gun
Why limit yourself to water pistols when you can get a blaster that also fires Nerf darts? This option deals in both H2O and darts, making it a great all-rounder.
Best water gun for young kids
Buying for younger water warriors? This is a great option because it's small and light enough to be used with ease, and it has the Fortnite cool-factor.
Best water gun for Fortnite fans
Those who love Fortnite will love this H2O-based version of the tactical shotgun from that game - it captures that distinctive, cartoony style perfectly.
Best water guns - value
As with so many toys, you get what you pay for when it comes to the best water guns. Usually, anyway; the Joyin 2 Pack is different. Despite being aggressively affordable, these water pistols are surprisingly good - and you're getting two for the price of one. That makes this blaster pack ideal for families with a couple of kids (or adults that are still kids at heart).
You won't get a pang of buyer's regret after breaking them out of their packaging, either. These water pistols have an impressive range of 30-ish feet that'll challenge many a Super Soaker. And although the capacity isn't as noteworthy, it's still pretty solid nonetheless.
Just remember, the Joyin 2 Pack blasters aren't as dinky as they might appear in promo pictures. These are larger than you'd expect, so whoever's going to wield them won't feel short-changed.
Best all-round water gun
Want to bring a touch of carnage to your backyard battles? Take note of this water gun. The pressure from firing causes two flexible tubes in the barrel to twist in every direction, and that sends streams of H20 all over the place. It's brilliantly chaotic, utterly random, and impossible to dodge.
The Hydro Frenzy isn't just about mayhem, though. This is a three-in-one blaster with a couple of very different settings, so it's not a five-minute novelty. Besides the mode listed above, you can slide the nozzle forward to provide a wider blast radius or lock those tubes in place for something more traditional. The latter catapults two jets of water straight ahead, and besides being quite accurate, their range is surprisingly good. In essence, this is a great multi-purpose option.
When combined with a reasonable price tag under $20 / £20, you're getting a lot of fun for your money here. As such, those wanting a more memorable Super Soaker will find this to be one of the best water guns for the job.
- Read more: Super Soaker Hydro Frenzy review
Best water guns - capacity
If you're keen to avoid refilling your blaster every few minutes, this particular Super Soaker is one of the best water guns there is. It offers a ridiculously large capacity of 65 fluid ounces (1.9 liters), so you're set for the long haul with this one.
Although that makes the Hydra fairly heavy, it's still straightforward for kids to fire if they're strong enough to wield it fully loaded. That's due to an easy-fire mechanism. Rather than a pump system, air pressure, or brute force, it uses a handle that you just pull to unleash a watery deluge.
And we mean deluge. This isn't a dribbling dollar-store pistol. The Hydra means business, and it's capable of utterly drenching your opponents.
Best water guns - short range
This isn't your average water gun; it's precision-engineered to cause delightful carnage on the battlefield. Rather than shooting a single stream, the blaster fires a double-helix of H20 to drench anyone in front of you no matter how much they try and dodge.
It's all down to a spinning cylinder at the end of the barrel. Using the gun's pump will cause that cylinder to whirl, sending out twin jets of water that are almost guaranteed to hit something. That makes the Twister perfect for folks who charge headlong into action - it's capable of blasting multiple people at once.
Although it requires force to activate properly (meaning very young warriors should look elsewhere), this is balanced out by not needing to aim. We're a terrible shot so ended up being grateful for that during our hands-on tests.
- Read more: Nerf Super Soaker Twister review
Best water guns - premium
OK, now we're talking. If you want to bring out the (literal) big guns, Super Soaker has you covered with the appropriately named Soakzooka. This is a bulky blaster for when 'subtle' just won't cut it.
Capable of carrying a massive 55 fluid ounces (1.6 liters), this is the sort of weapon that'll strike fear into the heart of your opponents. Throw in a range of around 25 feet and you can guarantee that everyone else will be running for cover sharpish. It's a monster.
However, its size doesn't mean the Soakzooka isn't suitable for the young water warriors amongst us. It's still one of the best water guns even if you're a kid thanks to an easy-to-operate firing mechanism - simply pull the handle to fire. That makes it well worth considering despite the higher price tag.
Best water guns - hot weather
The best water guns are ideal for cooling down quickly in the heat of summer, but none more so than the Freezefire 2.0. Thanks to a larger tank that can hold ice cubes alongside water, it fires the chilliest barrage on this list.
Sure, you don't have to arm it with ice if you'd prefer not to. But in particularly hot weather, it's the perfect choice. Especially thanks to its impressive range. Capable of firing up to 38ft, you can stay in the shade while sniping opponents. Nobody is safe from its wrath.
This particular Super Soaker is a more manageable size, too - it's not heavy or unwieldy like some of the competition. In other words, the Freezefire 2.0 is perfect for younger water warriors.
Best water guns - multi-use
This one does exactly what it says on the tin; alongside water blasting, it's also capable of firing darts just like the best Nerf guns. That makes it a good choice if you can't decide between the best water guns and a Nerf blaster - it solves two problems in one fell swoop.
Handily, the DartFire uses Nerf Elite darts as well. Because these are the bog-standard bullets of choice for most Nerf products, they're easy to buy in bulk. That makes stocking up on ammo nice and easy.
Not that this Super Soaker is no slouch when it comes to water battles, of course. Powered by a 40 fluid ounce (1.1 liter) capacity, the DartFire is able to blast water up to 38 feet. That's not bad going for something in this price range.
Best water guns - for young kids
If you're hoping to get the best water guns without splashing out both literally and figuratively, this Fortnite-themed Super Soaker is a fair place to start. While it isn't as powerful as other blasters, it's cheap and will do the job very nicely. It's a damn sight better than dollar-store equivalents, too.
Plus, few water pistols look this cool. Based on Fortnite's Hand Cannon, it's a pitch-perfect recreation of the gun from the video game (albeit in family-friendly purple and orange). And even though it's prone to some leakage, the HC-E's low cost and awesome design make up for that.
It doesn't require pumping up either - just fill it, aim, and pull the trigger. That makes this one a great Super Soaker for children who want to get into the action as quickly as possible.
Best water guns - for Fortnite fans
Fortnite and Super Soakers are a match made in heaven, so this is arguably one of the best water guns of the bunch. Combining the video game's distinctive look with an ability to drench your friends, it's sure to go down very well for fans of the series.
While its range isn't massive (which I suppose makes sense, considering the fact that it's based on Fortnite's Tactical Shotgun), the TS-R's capacity makes up for it. Able to carry 36 fluid ounces, this isn't a one-hit wonder that'll run out after a few blasts.
The firing mechanism also ties into its identity as a shotgun - the TS-R is pump-operated. This does make it a little trickier to use for small children (and we're disappointed that the trigger is fake), but it is pretty satisfying nonetheless.
Best water guns - FAQ
What is the most powerful water gun?
If you're looking for the best water gun that balances price with power, the Super Soaker Hydra is a front-runner with few rivals. Thanks to a handle pump that unleashes a deluge of water, it'll completely drench opponents in no time at all. Although it'll get through its 65 fl oz (1.9L) tank faster than you'd expect, there aren't many alternatives within the same price range that can challenge it.
More premium options offer an even stronger performance. We've yet to go hands-on with it, but the SpyraTwo has been making waves in recent years (quite literally). Indeed, the company claims that it is the "world's strongest water gun". This is thanks to an electric pump that fires pellets of water rather than the usual stream.
Which water gun shoots the farthest?
After a lot of research, we've discovered that the Stream Machine TL 750 might just have the longest range of all the water guns we've looked at - more specifically, it can fire "up to 70 feet", which is a whole lot more than the majority of the competition. Want a water gun that can shoot the farthest? Take a look at the Stream Machine.
By way of context, your average water pistol can shoot a distance of 5 to 40 feet. The vast majority tend to fall around the mid-30s, and the bare minimum range we'd recommend is 10 feet unless you're opting for power (as is the case with the Super Soaker Soakzooka) or sheer soaking capability.
How much does the most powerful water gun cost?
If you're looking to get your hands on the most powerful water gun to make your friends run for cover, you can expect to pay $20 / £20 as a bare minimum for the privilege (a Super Soaker Hyrda costs roughly that amount, for example). However, top-of-the-line blasters can set you back a fair bit more so we'd expect prices to rise to the region of $30 / £30 at most. Basically, the more powerful your water pistol is, the more expensive it's going to be.
Well, we say 'at most'. There are super-advanced blasters that'll really knock your socks off like the SpyraTwo, but those will put a significant dent in your wallet of $100 / £100 or more.
For more offers everyone can enjoy, be sure to check out the top board games for kids and board games for families. As for other outdoor distractions, be sure to check out the latest offers on Nerf bullets.