by James Morisette
Fresh of a successful rookie campaign, Topps is poised to bring back one of its bigger sellers from last year’s football card releases. Set to hit store shelves in December, 2013 Topps Strata resolves to give collectors even greater access to sleek autographed relic technology than it did last year, including the much coveted shadow box autographed rookie cards.
Topps might have a lot of work do a lot to outperform itself this year, especially after creating so much buzz in 2012 with its jersey and shadow box autograph releases of Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III.
This year Strata boasts 36-point stock base cards along with the usual variety of autographs, relics and die-cuts and will showcase a fresh batch of star rookies like Cordarrelle Patterson, DeAndre Hopkins, Montee Ball and Geno Smith.
Every Strata hobby box will contain 18 packs. Pricing for Strata hobby boxes, individual packs and cases are still pending but you could reasonably expect them to fall in the $80-90 range.
The 150 card base set includes the 100 top performing NFL superstars. It also includes the top 50 NFL rookies moving into the 2013 season.
Also included in Strata this year are its base rookie parallel cards. These cards (available in retail and hobby), range from bronze (#’d to 150) to Sapphire (#’d to 50) to Ruby parallel (#’d 1/1). Every base rookie parallel card will also have a printing plate #’d 1/1. These are available in hobby only.
Like last season, Strata will also deploy its popular range of base rookie and veterans autograph cards. These cards feature action shots of top veteran and rookie players. The big prize in this parallel set will be the Quartz Parallel 1/1 (also available in hobby alone).
- 1 Autographed Relic Card
- 1 Autographed Card
- 1 Relic Card
- 1 Rookie Die-Cut Card
Cases will include:
- 1 Strata Signature Relic Card
- 3 Clear Cut Autographed Patch Rookie Cards
- 3 Rookie Patch Cards
As far as new additions are concerned, Strata will release its new line of Quartz Pigskin Parallel cards. Strata will also unveil its first edition of Nike Swoosh Parallel. Both parallels are #’d 1/1 (hobby only).
Also new in 2013 are Strata relic cards (bronze parallels and patch parallels) that include rookies and veterans. Sequence numbers for bronze parallel cards range from 150. Sequence numbers for patch parallels are as follows:
- Gold (#’d to 90)
- Sapphire (#’d to 70)
- Emerald (#’d to 35)
- Ruby (#’d to 10)
- Quartz (#’d 1/1)
While this year’s issue of Strata has big shoes to fill for those who fell head over heels with the brand’s inaugural release (you can click here to see what they’re selling for on eBay now), it still holds a hearty high-tech punch. Strata also seems to have the right amount of diversity in its portfolio to perform.
Whether these two elements will be enough to help 2013 ToppsStrata avoid that sophomore slump will be for collectors to decide.