Base Card Design:
Last year when I seen the design, I was in the middle on if I liked it or not. After seeing them in person I give it a better score of a 8 out of 10. The one thing that popped was the photography, it did seem Topps took more care in the photos this year verses some years in the past. I do like the short print cards are mostly a theme of great catches.
Die Cut Insert:
These cards are where I really had to step back and say WOW! The refractor and die cut quality just make these cards pop and speak greatness! This insert was a truly great surprise in the packs I opened. I give that a 10 of 10!
Chasing History Insert:
Not a bad looking insert, another round of former players such as Babe Ruth above. This year Topps theme is the Chase. So almost every card has something to do or say about chasing something. Such as a player has xx amount of home runs and trails xxx from the record. In the time of steroids, is chasing a record really matter anymore? If people who hold the records can't even get into the Hall Of Fame, is it really that desirable or hold that prestige anymore?
Chasing The Dream Insert:
1972 Topps Minis
Again I feared another vintage mini set, but it is hard to hate on one of my favorite vintage Topps designs. One thing that you didn't see in 1972 were teams such as the Rockies or Blue Jays in that design! 9 of 10!
Calling Card Inserts:
I may be in a minority that thinks this card style is a tad boring. It has a vintage looking feel, but there is just too much empty space, maybe putting a typical vintage stadium painting in the background could liven it up. I give a 5 of 10.
Gold Cards /2013
This has been a pet peeve of mine since 2010, if you are going to number a card, make it look right! Don't just throw some random ink on a card and call it numbered. Either stamp it, or leave it off! I like the gold boarder but I was hoping for the foil stamping to come back. 6 of 10.
The past two years we have gotten a little burned out on those gold sparkle cards that sometimes hurt our eyes, now Topps came back with something new! I like the green look, I guess because it looks more grass. 8 of 10!
Blaster Rookie Patch:
Another year of Topps using blasters to give patch cards. This Series there are two different sets. The one here is the Topps Rookie Patch. It looks somewhat similar to the silk cards, but not as rare. I like these more than I like the player patch cards. I like Topps gives a added special card in Blasters and it is good they are changing it up a bit. But one thing I have noticed in the past two years on the odds Blaster boxes no longer have relics or autos listed. I am guessing we are sacrificing getting that 1 in 9 box relic to get a patch in every box. If you haven't noticed, check the odds on a retail pack and then check the odds on a blaster pack. It kind of sucks to know that once you open the patch there is a zero chance of any type of hit, even if it was a long shot.
Monster Slabbed Award Relic
Here is another thing that seems to be here for good, these pin type cards. Last year was pins and rings, this year silver sluggers, Cy Young...etc. They are cool cards, but I don't know if I personally value them as high as I seen them on Ebay. Again value is different for each collector. 8 of 10
Love them or hate them, these little pieces will always be around. There are several different types of relics in the Topps product, but the Chasing History seems to the be the most abundant. I like the design, the photo and relic are a great fit. Last year the basic relic had a lot of empty wasted space. 9 of 10
OVERALL 7 out of 10
That is up from my pre release numbers of 5 of 10. This years release I feel is MUCH better than the 2012 Topps Series 1 release. This is just my opinion on what I think, if there is something I didn't like that you may like, just remember all collectors aren't or like the same thing.