This is a new type of release for me. I have dabbled in some other Star Wars releases, but never Star Wars Galaxy. I wasn’t very familiar with the previous releases, but decided to take the plunge. Galaxy features contains cards of various artwork, rather than images directly from the source. While it gives you some fun re-imaginings, not every piece is a win. Overall, it’s a very fun release, though.
The first thing to really jump out at me is just the size of the box. It seems with modern releases, a sealed box is a fairly compact unit. This is not. Instead of a small footprint, this is a similar size to an 80s wax box. There’s a lot of air inside the box, but the packs are presented more than just packed in.
The release contains a number of parallels, plus a handful of insert sets, all featuring artwork. Each box contains 24 packs of 8 cards. It advertises 2 hits per box, including 1 autograph. The autograph checklist is rather large, so you may dig pretty deep with your hit.
This is a little bit of a different release for me. I generally like the NXT brand and previous card releases, but this year it seems to be focusing on a much higher price point. It features two 50 card subsets, one concentrating on the roster, with the other looking at Matches and Moments from the year.
In previous years, you could find this release in blaster boxes at retail. This year, however, it is a hobby only release. At $200 per box, it seems like it may be difficult to find true value in this release, but it advertises an incredible 10 autographs per box. While NXT definitely has its following, this seems more like a prospects release where you really won’t know the full potential of some of these characters for a few years. Even the big names will probably get much bigger once they hit the grand stage of the main roster.
This box contains 10 packs, with 7 cards per pack, including a total of 10 autographs. This box contained:
The Then Now Forever release, essentially series two for the flagship release of Topps WWE cards, rounds out the year’s big four releases. It’s not just the base set that continues the same numbering as previous releases. There are also many tribute sets adding additional cards to earlier sets. These are usually exclusive to some store or type of pack.
The base set contains a mix of Smackdown, Raw, 205 Live, NXT, and Legends to round out the wrestlers featured. It features many debuting athletes, along with the flagship rookie card for Ronda Rousey. You also get the regular complement of parallels, to go along with insert subsets paying tribute to the 25th anniversary of Raw and Hall of Famer Rowdy Roddy Piper. Each box advertises two hits, including one autograph.
This release comes as the post season is coming to a close. That’s rather fitting because while it is not the last release of the year, it does provide a bit of a wrap up for a lot of collectors. It features players making their debut during the season, as well as veteran all stars and other traded players.
It’s a very familiar set. Boxes contain 10 packs of 50 cards each. Every box advertises three hits, one of which is an autograph. We see the continuation of some insert sets, like the 1983 35th anniversary, but also includes some new insert sets such as international affair. As an added bonus, during the initial hobby shop release, each box also included two bonus packs, containing 4 special 1983 Chrome cards.
This is an interesting release this year. Archives normally comes out around late May, but as the summer started, there was talk about it being pushed back until August. That much isn’t particularly unusual. Releases get delayed frequently for any number of reasons. What is unusual, is what happened in August.
The cards hit retail in August, but hobby was nowhere to be seen. It
wasn’t really clear when hobby was coming, or why the delay, but hobby was eventually released on October 24th. There are a lot of rumors about why, but I’m curious to see what it does to the product. I feel like a lot of people had a chance to get their fill at retail long before hobby hit stores. It’s interesting to see how few of some autographs really hit the market from retail, though. It’s also apparent that some retail redemptions came back and were packed in live for hobby, which is a benefit, I guess.