Spike Shooter and ShotGun Review

Spike Energy Drinks are marketed to athletes (bodybuilders) and not the general public because of their high caffeine and other stimulant content.

The were even once banned by 7-Eleven stores because of some people’s adverse reactions to consuming them.

Here we review both Spike Shooter and Spike Energy Drink (once called Shotgun).

Spike Shooter

Quickly, because I’m under the influence, I had a Spike Shooter this morning and I’m feeling pretty good. Not out of control good, but good enough that I’m just going to go ahead and ask you all right now to excuse any typos or grammatical errors. My fingers are a bit shaky.

As far as taste and color go, think of a slightly more carbonated Redline. It’s pretty sweet and it goes down easy, plus it’s only 8 oz. so what the hell. Make no mistake though this is no Redline. Redline is certainly a glorious, magical elixir, but it is not a toy. It’s got strange chemicals in it that make you feel all tingly and invincible.

Spike Shooter is kind of a different animal though. It’s feels like more of a normal (albeit strong as hell) energy drink while Redline is some crazy stuff for, like, athletes and superpeople. Spike is potent, but I feel really anxious right now. Usually the more engineered bodybuilder kinds of drinks give me a more subtle rush. Drinks with Yohimbine are usually kind of unique too. I’ll get a really strong shivery sensation, like having goosebumps for an hour straight or something. I also notice a big pump if I drink something with Yohimbe before a workout. Not so much with this stuff though. I forgot about the Yohimbine until I reread the can.

spike.jpgI guess I want to compare it to Redline because of the reputation so let me put it this way:

When I drank the Spike Shooter, I was driving and I got the urge to turn the music up really loud. Like obnoxiously loud.

When I drink Redline (which is–I’ll admit–periodically), a mischievous leprechaun suddenly appears and kidnaps my stereo then jumps around the inside of my car, taunting me with the promise of the kind of sweet relief that can only come from that fantastic note. Intense negotiations ensue until we can strike a deal, the terms of which usually involve me promising to give up at least one of my vices, and the little bastard finally relents. Also, my steering wheel turns to liquid and I have to pull over for a while so I can argue with myself over federal monetary policy, David Lynch films, and whether or not I could pull off flat-front pants.

Good times though.

With that in mind, please don’t take Spike Shoo….aww screw it. Believe the hype friends. It’s true. I just realized that I’m pretty effing cooked right now. I drank it five hours ago and I’m still cooked. In the hands of a lesser being, I could see this stuff causing trouble. If you’re an experienced traveller though, just be aware. I’m jittery as hell. I’m afraid to get up from my desk for fear that I may say something untoward and embarrass myself in front of my coworkers.

Good stuff. Be careful with it. Please.

MARGINALLY RELATED EDITORIAL NOTE: My integrity is not for sale! Not even for UFC tickets…Or rounds of golf at expensive country clubs…Or consumer electronics. Nothing. Really.

I recognize the power of The Fiend and I promise to use it for good instead of evil. We’re here to help, remember? No shilling for the man here.

That being said though, you Howling Monkey people are alright. Despite our continued skepticism over your caffeine content, we appreciate the samples–especially since you sent them after the review went up. Now just start putting the real amounts on the can and you’ll be well on your way to being good guys instead of bad guys.

We’ll consider these a gift in appreciation of the invaluable services that we provide for the good citizens of the world. It’s hard work and the Monkeys will serve us well during the long hours we spend wandering around in a caffeine induced stupor, I mean working on the site.

God, I am wired.

Spike products are highly caffeinated and should only be used as directed.

Spike Shotgun: Renamed as Spike Energy Drink

spike-shotgun.jpgFor all those who like big 16 ounce cans…

The legendary Spike Shooter now has a big brother: Spike Shotgun (currently at biotest.net).

It looks like the blend is similar to Shooter, but the caffeine concentration is less.

SPIKE® Shooter Formula 2,650 mg
– N-acetyl-L-tyrosine
– Beta-alanine
– Caffeine anhydrous

Spike Shotgun contains 350mg caffeine per 16 ounce can (Shooter has 300mg in an 8.4 ounce can).

Review & Taste Test

There is a five-letter word in the Energy Drink market that has caused quite a stir in the past year. Often invoking fear and panic attacks, angry mothers, raised eye-brows and talking that even someone on cocaine would have trouble keeping up with. Some of you might be frivolously counting the letters of your favorite drink, but I assure you, it’s no diablo, rather, something far better.

SPIKE: Shotgun is going to blow you away.

The West Gets Wilder

Before Shotgun I’d never really considered the meaning of Shooter, although I’m starting to see an American-West theme here. Now that I have thought about it though, both names perfectly describe each drink. SPIKE shooters are similar to an Energy Shot, a lot of ingredients condensed into a small amount of fluid meant to be drunk quickly. SPIKE shotguns on the other hand, are less condensed, with slightly less caffeine PER FL. OZ., (21.88 mg/oz VS 35.71) but more caffeine PER BEVERAGE (350mg VS 300) meant to be drunk over a longer period of time (or shotgunned if that’s what you’d prefer).

Opening the new 16 oz. can I was more excited than I have been for quite some time. Let’s just say that if the can had been covered in wrapping paper, Christmas would have some serious competition. I popped the tab, threw my head back in anticipation, and prepared for a double sized dose of SPIKE shooter bitterness…

There is a god people, and apparently he loves SPIKE. Not only does the new Shotgun not taste like complete and total ass. It actually tastes, dare I say, good. Take the old SPIKE flavor, remove that twangy-tart unripe attempt at a berry flavoring, sweeten, water down a tiny bit, and you’re left with something I would be content no, enthralled to drink everyday.

Caffeine Corral

Ingredient-wise, Shotgun has been modified slightly from the original Shooter formula but don’t be too put off. That well known SPIKE wallop is still alive and kicking. The main difference between formulas is the removal of the caffeine alternative Yohimbine (which is also an aphrodisiac) and the addition of the naturally occurring Amino Acid, Beta-Alanine.

Beta-Alanine is not seen often in energy drinks but contributes to decreased-muscular fatigue in athletes and decreased muscular degeneration. Combined, these changes gave a “smoother” feeling energy-buzz that didn’t feel like my nerves were being shredded as the caffeine jumped from cell to cell. My hands didn’t shake (as much) my heart didn’t race (as much) and I didn’t get that nervous feeling in my stomach, at least, not as much.

Yohimbine has strange effects on the nervous system that I can’t say I’m sad to see go away with Shotgun. Then again, there is something unusually kick-ass about flooding an already caffeine saturated body with large amounts of Yohimbine, and that is exactly why SPIKE shooter can never be completely replaced.

12 Gauge and a Magnum

SPIKE shooter’s have been my energy drink of choice since they came out and I have never failed to feel some sort of effect from them.

SPIKE shooter IS the standard for how I judge energy drink effects, and few others are able to come close. The one down side to Shooter is that it can be overwhelming and SPIKE shotgun does a perfect job at filling in for the times I’m tired but don’t want to, or can’t be, ultra wired. Shotgun is starting to trickle in to local liquor stores for around $3 per can but if you get really desperate it can always be purchased in a 24 pack over at Biotest for USD $59. Together, the SPIKE family is shaping up to be the reason for envy at many beverage companies and could easily fill a spot in anyone’s everyday lifestyle.

Overall Score (5/5)

Review by Josh (blog: Cubicalism & Coffee)

Drinks are reviewed by an independent drink reviewer and do not necessarily reflect the views or beliefs of this site.

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  • Marcus Hanneman

    I love my flat-front pants so much, it makes me hyper.

  • scum1

    Thanks for this review as well as the site in general. Now if I can just find some of this localy I’d be happy.


    Check out your local biglots store for cheap energy drinks. I got a case of Von Dutch for 6 bucks and last night I got some Jokers and Bookoos for 60 cents a can!

  • Ed Crudge

    You can also get Spike Shooters at t-nation.com. Damn, I love this stuff!!

  • Guan-Wen

    I concur, i took it with a thermogenic, bad idea hehe but i handled at work

  • Chief2hairs

    I just had it for the first time at work yesterday, and half a can got me pretty pumped up.. i finished the whole thing by 930pm, and then couldn’t fall asleep ’till 6:45 am. i didn’t feel any more wired than sobe no fear or full throtle, but it lasted 3 times longer or so. overall it did its job, but i got slight amphetamine paranoia when it wore away, i guess i can’t have 300mg of caffeine in that short a period of time

  • sdp

    The first paragraph described EXACTLY the way I feel after drinking Spike . . . it’s sooooooo good!

  • I like spike because it has a fair amount of caffeine in it, but I really can’t stand the taste of fake sugar. I hate diet sodas with a passion, and it’s hard to get past that with spike.

  • Spudman

    I agree. While ingesting a large amount of caffeine really is quite fun, I’d rather just drink a whole crapload of wired or nos.

  • Erica

    Spike Shooter is all HYPE. all the warnings labels, the crazy signs they put up behind the glass door at 7-11, all that ‘hardcore’ marketing they put out, it is all just hype. after all the stories i heard, i expected to be bouncing off the walls, however, i was just fairly more alert than i was before drinking it (the whole can). it really isn’t significantly more energizing than a can of Redbull. if you are used to drinking Redbull, you will be let down.

  • 650mike

    I agree, its not necessary to have all the warnings. It is a tasty drink and it does the job of waking me up without all the sugar.

  • Jay

    Hey just got out of the hospital after drinking 3 spike’s in 6 hours. My was beating 150 times per minute for 2 hours starting one hour after I finished the last can. I know I shouldn’s have drank that many but I could drink a dozen redbull. There are diet supplements in there that are exteremly dangerous. I basiclly overdosed on diet pills and they had to counteract with sedatives at the Hospital. Just be careful people this can and will happen to you. They told me at the hospital someone came in two days earlier who had only drank two cans and had the same symptoms. A resting heart beat of 150 is about the scariest thing that can happen to a 23 year old. I kept wondering which would be my last. And again YES I DRANK TOO MANY.

  • Tom

    Actually the main ingredient in Spike Shooter is something called Sulbutiamine and is part of the proprietary ingredient. That’s what makes it different from Red Bull, Rockstar etc.


  • Kevin

    I love Spike. It’s basically what keeps me running especially since I have finals right now. I’ll drink around 5-6 cans in a 12-24 hr time period when I need to, and I’m pretty used to caffeine, energy drinks, etc. Spike just really gives me a rush though. I usually order 4 cases at a time from T-Nation because that’s the cheapest way to buy them.
    As far as taste, I LOVE the way Spike tastes. It’s like a magical elixir.

  • jose ramirez

    I knew nothing about Spike until i got it at the store, i never read the warnings on the can but after drinking one can at work (i bought 2), i started shaking and could’nt speak without stuttering, my heart was going nuts and i was sweating like a fat guy in vegas, im just glad i got rid of the other can, i gave it to a friend and he was ok, maybe im just a wuss, so if you can take it right on, im sticking with my monster.

  • WellIm 25% into my first SPIKE. I bought this the same time I got 2 redbulls and a Rockstar. I prefer Redbulls hands down for taste. Ill buy the rockstar only because they are also larger sponcers for most of the Freestyle Motocross dudes. I gotta support my peeps yo..

    well I figured Id try this SPIKE shit. havent heard anything about it. When I saw the can at 7-11 i figured what the hell, ill give it a go.

    This little can about 25% into it now has me amped up. Seriously. This sh!t takes hold faster then redbull. I had a staff meeting the other day on a redbull (the larger one) and my director gave me crap about talking to fast! haha I wonder what they will say after one of these? hahah

    Anyway, I think the fake sugar taste sucks! It reminds me of a strawberry drink from back int he days when I was a kid but a diet version? It has the after taste of a spoon full of Splinda. Good news is that is is small so take little sips or down it.

    Ok, ill finish up this hog and see how I feel after that. I dont want to be too amped up and not be able to concentrate ya know.


  • chris

    I’m so glad I found this site. I’ve been reviewing Energy Drinks and trying new ones (you’re missing a few 😉 ) for years, and no I can rely on someone else for info!

    I can relate to the feeling you got from this, though. It was “wired wednesday” 3 years ago at the local coffee shop. It ended with light trails and wishing I could get sick.


    I ordered a case of SPIKE. After drinking my first one I felt a normal energy buzz, increased focus, and a strong desire to complete projects and clean various things. Ya know I couldn’t sit still. After drinking SPIKE Shooter every morning for a week, I woke up w/ headaches, had eerie euphoria a half hour after drinking spike. after it wore off, shakes and paranoia / anxiety. Just take in moderation even the caffeine tolerant like myself can become weak when exposed to the other ingredients for a long period of time.

  • ben

    This is definitely strong stuff, the taste isn’t bad though appearance wise it reminds me of a mad scientist’s test tube concoction. I am highly caffeine tolerant, and this stuff really gave me a kick in the ass. I think it’s because of the concentration in a small 8.4 oz can rather than the actual amount of active ingredient. Sort of like the espresso of energy drinks.

  • john

    I really like the taste of this. I only need 1/2 a can tops and I feel great. I definitely wouldn’t drink a full can my first time and would not combine with other caff products. I still don’t think I’ve had a full one in a 24 hr. period. This stuff is serious and has a lot of stims in it so don’t treat it like an ordinary energy drink.

  • I tried a Spike Shooter for the first time today. It definitely did more for me than the other energy drinks I’ve tried (Redbull, Rockstar, Sobe, NOS).

    Cautious because of the warnings and horror stories, I drank just a little over half the can at first. That took, at most, 15 minutes. Then, I sipped the rest occasionally to finish the whole can in about 3 hours. I was a little jittery, but I was certainly able to function. I probably could have been pretty lively, but I kept it under control because I was at work. My heart rate was in an acceptable range, but I did seem to have to pee a lot

    For comparison purposes, I weigh about 190 pounds, and I don’t really drink my caffeine. I never drink coffee and don’t even drink much soda. The only time I use energy drinks is when I expect to be tired. This morning when I drank the Spike Shooter, I had had about 6 hours of sleep.

    I got started on energy drinks at lock-ins for the youth group at my church, and I mostly only buy them when we’re going to have one of those. However, what I have left over, I’ll drink on some mornings if I didn’t get much sleep. That was the case this morning.

Last Modified: September 12, 2014