After far too long a break, it's time for another unboxing. This month I decided to go with a titan of the subscription box world, Loot Crate. When I first started looking into boxes, this one got set aside due to having what I viewed as somewhat lackluster offerings. However; over the summer they're boxes raised dramatically in quality with plenty of cool exclusive stuff, especially in the heroes and villains boxes. I even hunted a joker figure from the villains box down on ebay for my brother. With nothing else of interest in the September box offerings and the promise of an exclusive Supernatural item, it seemed like the right time to give it a go. Did it live up to expectations? Let's find out.
First off, we should note the theme for this month is Summon, so a general mix of magic/mysticism/the occult was in order. It's a fairly appropriate theme for this time of the years as we kick off Halloween festivities without jumping in completely. Overall, they abide by a theme better than other boxes I've tried which garners a few points.
As for the service itself; the box is fairly cheap at only $19.99 shipped with plenty of coupon codes floating around for anyone who wants to shave off a few bucks. Their website is nice & functional, very easy to access. Shipping was....ok. I'm not used to having things sent through Fedex so I don't know if this is normal, but despite one of their trucks going around town yesterday, they left my crate with the post office where it sat for a whole day before being delivered. Just seems very odd to me. You don't run a ball all the way down the field only to hand it off to a different team for the touchdown.
Once the box was open and my hand went searching inside, the first thing I felt was a lump of cloth. It's a Pikachu knit hat with lil pokeballs attached. I'll admit to not being a fan of Pokemon, or headwear for that matter, but I don't completely dislike this. Thing's well made and big enough to fit even my massive dome. Just a shame that I only wear hats for about 30 minutes of winter. It's not really an issue though as my sister has snatched this up as her own.
The second item on hand is a Hearthstone stress ball. Guess stress balls show up quite often in boxes but it's a first for me and as a very touch sensitive type it's definitely a fun item to have. Interesting looking too.
Next came another of the highlight items. When the theme was announced, the art included Homer Simpson and they noted there would be a kidrobot item included. I surmised this could only mean the Homer Buddha and boy was I on target. Very happy to have this lil guy. From his donut throne to his prayer beads and pretzel accessories this is just one awesome figure. To top it off, the regular price for one of these on is almost as much as the crate itself.
Even though I've been a fan of Supernatural for years, collectibles related to the show have never managed to enter the house. Naturally this made the prospect of an exclusive more than a little interesting. The final product is a little mixed though. It's a lil replica of Dean's Impala. I'd come across some of these at the store just a couple nights ago so I wasn't sure what made this one special. The key difference is this Loot Crate version has the original Kansas plates from the pilot episode while the mass market version features the later Ohio plates. Not exactly what you'd call a big deal and I'm disappointed it's not something more character focused since this month's art showed Castiel, not some classic car. It's not an awful item. I'll definitely hold on to it and place it on the shelf with other goodies. Just wish they'd had something slightly more unique than a really nice Hot Wheel.
Lastly we've got the smattering of tiny bits & pieces. Every Loot Crate comes with a pin, so that's joined other pins on the lampshade. The solid coin was a promo item or something from Blizzcon and it's pretty cool. In fact, my coin flipping nephew pestered me into letting him have it. The coin's also perfect for scratching off the code on the voucher for exclusive Hearthstone cards. Never played the game. Not sure if I'll give it a try and use the code or maybe sell/give to somebody who's already into it. There's also a flier for some Master Summoner app that uses augmented reality features to interact with your box once it's been turned inside out and turned into a summoners book. Yes, even the box itself is a toy with these guys. Lastly is the magazine which tell you all about the items, clothing available through the lvl up programs, a few articles, and stuff for a Summoner Wars card game (not the plaid hat one). Dunno for sure if it's supposed to work with the aforementioned app or what. Haven't taken the time to find out.
In the end I'm fairly satisfied with Loot Crate. This month didn't live up to the expectations set by the previous three but overall it makes up for shortcomings with a combination of good price, decent service, some customization (the lvl up cloths), you get the idea. It's good stuff. I'd rank it above box of dread and comic bento, maybe even toy box since it has the advantages of lower price and shiny new items. My sister actually wants to subscribe for next months time travel theme which works out great as I've got some other boxes to try. Speaking of which, the plan for next month is Marvel Collector Corps with their villains box. After that, November will be all about Killer Crafts Friday the 13th box. If you're an Elm Street fan, they're using that theme in October. I'll wait for Jason.
That's all for now folks. There are plans for two more blog entries before this month is out. In the meantime wish me luck cause I'm going to the yearly pumpkin carrying contest. Few things embody fall quite like an armload of gourds.