This year’s third go around for flagship Topps, 2012 Update, has been live for a few days, and we are starting to get a clearer picture of the surprises lurking in the set. Although I am still not sold on its place within the calendar, it seems as though there are some cool looking cards that can drive the desire to purchase some packs for high end chaser people like me.
Here are some of the bigger hits posted so far:
I like the addition of the all star relic cards, as they are really well designed this year. The one thing I don’t like is that these are warmup used, not game used, something that has always bothered me. Collectors love unique hits, but these types of cards aren’t really that unique anymore. Regardless, the design is still really nice on them, even on the normally hideous jumbo relics and jumbo relic autos (check out this one for an example).
Topps also highlighted some of the heritage of the set this year with the golden engravings cards, which I think is a really cool idea. Its one thing to go through a product and litter it with relics that are no longer worth the value of the fabric that makes up the swatch, its another to try to add unique non-player connected content like coins and engravings. I think there needs to be more focus on driving content like this, as Upper Deck once realized with the creation of the rare but awesome Shadow Box cards. Its not all about autographs and jerseys to drive new ways to get people to buy in, and I am glad that Topps found a few ways this year.
My favorite of these have to be the Hall of Fame plaque cards, featuring an engraving like etching that resembles the one in Cooperstown. I think these could have been better with the actual plaques, but the words would be so tiny that no one would be able to read them. The cards are really well designed, and its really too bad that so many of these guys aren’t around to sign autographs. Having auto parallels of these cards would be ridiculously cool.
Update has its merits, no doubt about it, but this is not a product that I am one to buy a bunch of boxes of. With 2012 Topps Five Star just around the corner, I can only hope that the innovation continues through the biggest product and finale to the 2012 card season. Of course, then its on to 2013 products, and Update will be long forgotten as all products usually become.