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Topps loads its hobby box for 2015 Major League Soccer with autographs and relic cards there are five big hits promised in each and in a low end product, that pretty good.

More on that soon. First, the basics.

The base cards are distinguishable by three different logos. Most of the cards have the club crest in the upper left hand corner, while All Star and Under 24 logos are also part of the checklist. Included within the club logo cards are photos of players as shown during the MLS draft. These cards have a vertical design and feature each player wearing a scarf with the logo of the team that drafted them. I think that was a nice touch, and I found 17 of these cards; the one of Orlando City Akeil Barrett depicts the Jamaican born forward sporting a sharp red and white bowtie. Nice.

Of those base cards, 146 had the club crest, while 24 of them carried the Adidas Under 24 logo in the upper left hand corner. These are cards of players who began their MLS careers before turning 24. An additional 21 carry the 2014 All Star logo for a total of 191 cards. Unfortunately, there are 12 doubles that prevent the base set from being complete.

The parallels are hard to find (look for the number stamped in gold foil on the back of the card). The one I found was a gold parallel of Sporting Kansas City midfielder Paulo Nagamura. Is it my aging eyesight, or are the A and R in the font used by Topps in this set almost indistinguishable? Especially when they are placed next to each other.

There was one variation short printed All Star card of Sporting Kansas City forward Dom Dwyer. The base card shows Dwyer in a striped shirt, while in the variation he is wearing a black shirt.

For the design in this set, players are shown in sharp detail against a soft focus background. The layout is mostly vertical on the card front, and while I am not a big fan of horizontal design for base cards, the ones included in this set work well. For example, card No. 91 shows Chicago Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson stretching to stop a shot; the horizontal shot works perfectly here. Galaxy midfielder Marcelo Sarvas (No. 75), delivering a scissors kick, were the best of the lot. Some of the others had some curious crops (it always helps to get the feet of a soccer player in the shot), but overall the idea worked.

Topps is promising two autograph cards, two relics and an auto/relic card per hobby box.

The first hit was a Kits of the Game relic of Seattle Sounders forward Obafemi Martins, numbered to 85. This is one of 40 relics in this subset, and the design is horizontal with a nice green uniform swatch. national team at the World Cup in 2014. The card is numbered to 35, and the signature is on a sticker on this card, whose color scheme predominantly green.

The third hit was another Kits of the Game relic card. United goalkeeper Bill Hamid and also was numbered to 85. Another green swatch, this one a little darker than the one on the Martins card.

More green was apparent in the fourth hit, a sticker autograph card of Chicago Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson. That because Johnson is wearing a green uniform. The card, however, qualifies as a black parallel numbered to 10, because of the black background behind the ball in the action photograph.

This hobby box had a bonus. In the final pack, I pulled a 1/1 magenta printing plate of Orlando City SC goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts.

There were three different types of insert cards I pulled. The first was Presence of the Pitch, which depicts player emotion as they run down the pitch. The photos are tightly cropped and there are 25 in the set. They generally fall every six packs; I hit the average by pulling four of these cards.

The second was called Gameday Heritage. This is a 10 card subset that focuses on the atmosphere and fan enthusiasm. The final insert consisted of 15 mini cards sketches. These are not minis in the traditional way Topps has used for its baseball sets, for example. The height of these cards are the same as the base; its, the width that is shorter.
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