Topps must have gotten intimidated by Panini's Adrenalyn packages with 4 packs and a 252 card plastic binder. Topps upped their starter price from $4.99 to $5.99 and added a 14 page mini binder with four pockets per page. Topps has been tweaking this product like crazy the past couple of years trying to figure out how to market them in the US. Anyone buy any of the circular Hockey Attax cards? This is a step in the right direction, a low price point combined with a couple of promos in the binder (good for kids to keep the cards in) and a Legends foil chase card (good for gullible adults who think these will ever be worth anything). I share Topps' obsession with games on trading cards so I really, really want to like Attax. Let's take a look at the contents of this sucka.
The mini binder has a checklist on the inside. NFC on the front, and AFC on the back. My Falcons have 7 cards in the set, including the Matty Ice card that was showing on the front. Not surprisingly, The Cowboys and Steelers have the most cards in the set at 10 apiece. The Browns and Raiders bring up the rear at 3 cards each. There are at least a few rookies in the set including Sam Bradford and the Overrated Gator.
There are no card numbers in the set. There is also no indication of which players have Attax code and foil variations. Not a really big deal as this is a set for beginning collectors, but I would have liked to have seen the list of foil Legends cards.
Here's the rules of the game. Like all other Attax games it is basically War with a tiny bit of strategy involved. I like that they incorporate the touchdown and field goals in the scoring. Points off of turnovers is also a nice touch. A football game should be scored like real football.
Also included is a playmat designed to look like a gridiron. Game instructions are also on the back of this mat.
There are thirty cards included in the starter deck. In order to play the game, you need a 16 player team of 8 offensive and 8 defensive players. You math majors have already figured out that if you want to play an actual game of this stuff you'll need two starter decks. This is standard operating procedure among Trading card games, so nothing to get worked up about. If you're really cheap, you could get a single pack to get enough cards to play a game, but you'll be using a lot of quarterbacks on defense. There are also jumbo packs out there for $4.99 with 34 cards if you are not a fan of the mini binder. I pretty much had to build a team out of my starter deck even though I have no one (and no second team) to play against.
A team consists of 8 offensive players and 8 defensive players. Two of the offensive players must be quarterbacks. The rest of the offense and all of the defense can be whatever position you want. I'm as surprised as you that Matt Ryan didn't make the starting lineup.
Dan Marino Legends foil
Matt Schaub code card
Steal that code kiddos, I don't want it.
Dan is obviously my Legends foil card. And a very nice card indeed! Matt Schaub had a surprisingly good statistical season for the Texans last year. Sometimes I think what could have happened if the Falcons had not traded Matt the offseason that Michael Vick imploded. then I remember that had Schaub been on the team, Bobby Petrino would likely still be our coach. *SHUDDER*
Adrian Peterson Superstar foil
Michael Turner Red Zone foil
Ray Rice code card
If you have those three backs on your fantasy team, you've pretty much won your league. Now that I've said that, Purple Jesus will break his leg, Michael Turner will be abducted by aliens and Ray Rice will quit the league to become a full time Tea Party protester.
They can't all be inserts... Nice solid group of wide receivers there. Who is the elite WR in the league right now anyway? Take a year off of Fantasy Football and you forget everything you know. Yes that is a hint that you can get a real patsy sucker for your league if you have an opening.
Ok, time for the defense.
I got three out of the seven Falcons in the set in one starter deck. Nice. Abraham needs to step it up this year if we want to make the playoffs. Patrick Willis isn't a lineman, but the Linebackers are dominated by...
Jonathan Vilma Hot Pack
As you can see, foil parallels give your player a little stat bump. Vilma is a solid defender so he can anchor the linebackers any day.
Darrell Revis code card
Wow, Charles Woodson just keeps getting better with age. Or maybe he got better once he left the Raiders. I love all the Revis drama in New York. Much better than the Haynesworth drama in Washington. Gawd, I hate Mike Shanahan. In my old fantasy league, we picked individual defensive players for our team. After the greats got picked we usually went with the dude with the weirdest name. Nnamidi Asomugha would have certainly been picked.
In the pack there were:
21 base cards
4 code cards
2 Red Zone foils
2 Superstar foils
1 Legends foil.
You're not going to get any supaMOJO hits, but it's a decent cheap rip if you're bored and the binder is useful at least. We'll see if Topps soups up their 2011 Attax baseball product since they're never ever doing Topps Total ever again because they are a bunch of poopyheads. That's right, I went there. Poopyheads.