Before I start my review, I would like to say thanks to the WONDERFUL people at Panini America for providing us with this box to review. Here are many places you can find Panini America: official site, blog, Twitter, and Facebook. If you don't follow them at all..you should! They interact with you on Twitter, have contests on their blog and Facebook and the site is also fun to visit!
Now onto the review:
BOX BREAK DOWN:
- 6 Packs Per Box, 5 Cards Per Pack
- One Autograph Per Box!
- One Memorabilia Card Per Box!
- Eighteen Cruasde Cards Per Box!
BASE CARDS: .Crusade's base cards look quite impressive with the lion in stone design etched into the background, name in silver and when opening up a pack of Crusade it's great to see all of the vibrant color that the Crusade Prizms bring against the white-tinted base cards. It's an eye catcher for sure! In each pack you will get 2 of the base cards or 1 base card and 1 insert card and three of the Crusade Prizms.
The base set consists of 200 cards made up of 100 veterans, 50 rookies and 50 retired.
INSERTS: For me its all about the Crusade Prizms not that the regular inserts are ugly but in comparison with the Crusade Prizms unless you are color blind your eyes will drift that way. Also believe me when I say you have no idea how eye stunning these things are til you have them in person.
Crusade Prizms also feature three new color variations: Teal #'d/249, Orange Die-Cut #'d/99 and Purple #'d/99 all of which made an appearance out of the 18 Prizms found in a box. I was also fortunate to pull a Crusade orange die-cut: #'d to 99 of Larry Sanders.
It would take some effort to put together a set of Crusades as there are 300 in the set. But, it would be one amazing accomplishment!
I also pulled a 1/1 black base card parallel of Moses Malone. There are gold and black parallels of the rookies, veterans and retired.
New to this years Crusade product is autographed sets Hardwood Homage and Sultans of Springfield, featuring autos from legends of the game and members of the Basketball Hall of Fame.
As for autographs in this product, its well rounded. The designs stick with the theme of the product.
OVERALL THOUGHTS: I don't know if all boxes are packed like this with low numbered autos and 1/1's but I know after opening this up I want more! The design is spectacular, the Crusade inserts are mind blowing, and the price vs value is excellent. I will say the Crusades alone are worth the risk of this product and with so many other options it offers and being under $70 a box, why not give it a try.
Another thing to note about Crusade is a powder substance that you will immediately notice when handling the cards. I can try to explain what it is but it will serve you best to go straight to the source, Panini's blog The Knights Lance. I have provided the link with that info below: