I bought this crossbow pistol because my family's favorite character on The Walking Dead, Daryl Dixon, uses a crossbow to take out zombies, and we thought it would be fun for target practice. It was only [amazon_link asins='B00JS56OPI' template='PriceLink' store='boingboing' marketplace='US' link_id='b78c14e7-0995-49eb-9043-8d36aaee419f'], and I didn't expect it to be very powerful, but I was wrong. A bolt shot from this thing could kill someone. It easily penetrates plywood. I'm not sure if a bolt could go through someone's skull, but it would definitely lodge itself in a leg, arm, abdomen, or neck.
If you buy this, give it the same respect you would a firearm. It's not a toy, but it sure is fun. That said, I don't think anyone under the age of 18 should use it without adult supervision.
It doesn't require a lot of effort to cock it, but a smaller kid would not be able to figure out how to do it. The safety automatically engages when you cock it, thankfully. The crossbow comes with three aluminum (very sharp) bolts. You can buy a pack of 36 additional bolts for $(removed)