If you havent seen Star Wars yet, you are probably in the minority. It has quickly become one of the biggest movie releases ever, and Topps has been at the forefront of the trading card part of it since March. Now that the movie has been released, Topps has started to release some of their best and brightest, to much fanfare among SW fans, and non-sport enthusiasts.
Star Wars cards are known to bring some insane asking prices:
Of all the sets out there, there are two big ones that even I have busted boxes of. Yes, you heard that right. There are sets that are non-sport on shelves that I have actually wanted to open. Star Wars High Tek and Star Wars: The Force Awakens are so hot that it is very difficult to find MSRP priced boxes anywhere, and for good reason.
Starting with High Tek, it is one of the only Star Wars products to have hard signed autographs. This is actually a pretty big deal, as non-sport autographs are notoriously hard to obtain. With actors, getting them set for a signing can be an exercise in futility, especially actors who are as in demand as the SW ones are. Companies like Cryptozoic have done great work with on card autographs in the past, but their products are typically not on the scale of what Topps is doing here.
In my opinion, a theme like High Tek was made for something like Star Wars. The acetate and the design work is almost too perfect a fit. The checklist is pretty impressive in its own right, including the first hard signed autographs of John Boyega, or Finn from the new film. Naturally they are selling for a ton.
Like many of the non-sport sets these days, 1/1 sketch cards are a big part of the allure as well. Topps has a stable of sketch artists that do some pretty incredible work, and High Tek has a lot of quite impressive examples.
As for the flagship set associated with the Force Awakens, there are a million reasons to rip some packs if you can get your hands on some. Not only do they have some incredible sketch work of themes from the movie, and the autograph checklist is quite strong to boot. There are extremely rare mystery redemptions that should end up as Daisy Ridley, which are easily some of the most valuable non-sport cards released this year. If you have seen the movie, you know why. I wont spoil it.
When you see the prices that some of the relics and other cards can get, it might bring about questions of whether or not you are collecting the right thing. Star Wars is the gold standard right now, and Topps has been making great cards since 1977. The retro themes in the Force Awakens set brings about all sorts of interesting nostalgia, and that’s just the base cards.
Last but not least, Topps has absolutely blown the doors off the digital side of things with Star Wars Card Trader, which has been releasing amazing Episode VII content since Force Friday. They are finding ways to get national publicity around the app, and continue to prove that physical cards are almost second fiddle to digital. If you havent played SWCT, now is as good a time as any to get signed up and start trading. Check out my other blog – digitalcardcentral.com if you want to read up on what the app is all about.
It should not surprise you that there is such a huge market for SW related materials, and Topps could not have been more lucky to have the license in place during all the madness. Its worth checking out the products if not only to see what non-sport sets look like.