“The excitement of load, lock, and let ‘er rip!”
In 1974, Hasbro released Ricochet Racers — action-toy playsets that combined target shooting and race cars.
At the heart of each set was a Ricochet Launcher, a large rifle equipped with a bolt-action lever and spring-loaded firing mechanism. Instead of bullets, the rifle’s ammunition of choice was a cartridge fitted with an elongated race car.
Once a cartridge was loaded and locked, kids could shoot cars across floors and over stunt ramp, aiming at a series of targets provided. A unique ricochet sound accompanied each firing. A built-in safety mechanism prevented the gun from discharging unless it was placed on a flat surface with the barrel sloping downward.
Hasbro initially designed 6 different Ricochet race cars and included one or more of them in each playset. Each car was either red or blue and given a unique name, including Boss Big Shot, 440 Magnum, Strip Shooter, Hemi Shot, Hole Shot .38, and Bluesteel.
Ricochet Racer playsets included the Marksman Set (with a belt to hold cartridges), Ricochet Western (including a silver-dollar saloon target with swinging doors), and the Super Duel Set (featuring 6 plastic barrels, 2 jump ramps, and a silver dollar target.)
Before the line was discontinued, Hasbro also released a Ricochet Racer Set that featured 2 Marvel superheroes, Spider-Man and Captain America. The set included two superhero cartridge-cars, a ramp, a spider web target, and a different colour rifle and decal set.