SECTOR GUIDE: Playing Cards / TCG special - ToyNews

SECTOR GUIDE: Playing Cards / TCG special

ToyNews highlights what some of the firms in the TCG sector have to offer...
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With the likes of Moshi Monsters and Match Attax currently notching up significant sales at retail and riding high in NPD, the trading card and traditional playing card sector is one to watch.

Esdevium 01420 593593

Esdevium is best known as the exclusive UK supplier of the Pokémon Trading Card Game, but is also a key supplier of other TCG properties including Moshi Monsters, Yu-Gi-Oh, Match Attax and Magic the Gathering.

The Pokémon TCG looks set for another busy period with the August release of Pokémon TCG Black & White – Dragons Exalted. The game includes the launch of a brand new Dragon-type Pokémon, providing both exciting characters and new ways to play the game.

As Topps’ toy trade partner, Esdevium always lists core TCG product in he form of both starters and boosters. In addition to this, the firm supplies gift tins of Topps’ TCG product exclusively, most notably for Moshi Monsters and Match Attax. A third series of Moshi Monsters is due for launch in November. This will also include a gift tin exclusive to Esdevium.

In addition to TCGs, the company offers a wide range of playground crazes and general collectables including Tomy’s Gacha toys and Gogo’s among others.

The Pokémon Company 01420 593593

The fifth Pokémon TCG: Black and White expansion pack is called Dark Explorers and introduces the new Darkrai-EX plus a line-up of Darkness-type Pokémon, such as Zoroark, Umbreon and Sableye.

In addition, the pack includes a run of Unova and non-Unova region Pokémon-EX cards, which are more powerful Pokémon that can deliver attacks on opponents. Darkrai-EX is joined by Tornadus-EX, Kyogre-EX, Raikou-EX and Groudon-EX, all featured as Pokémon-EX cards and rare Ultra full-art Pokémon-EX cards.

Other features include over 100 cards (including three Shiny Secret rare cards), more restored Pokémon options and a parallel foil card guaranteed in each booster pack.

ach new theme deck and boost pack also includes an in-pack code which unlocks virtual cards for play in the Pokémon Trading Card Game online.

Cartamundi 01268 511522

Cartamundi’s flagship playing card brand, Royal Flush, is the UK’s bestseller.

“Alongside a new branded playing card range (Ace, Diamond and Joker), Royal Flush was primarily developed to replace the evergreen Cartamundi playing card, Stratus,” says Jonathan Rose, the firm’s UK sales and marketing director. “It has since become the leading branded playing card in the UK, with distribution in every High Street and positive feedback from retailers. Brand growth will come from targeting new distribution channels, packaging refinements and new product launches this year.

“In a tough market, we are justifiably proud of achieving our goal to make Cartamundi the number one playing card company in the UK.”

A range of children’s card games completes the set: lion, giraffe, gorilla and snake. In addition, the firm has Jungle Snap, Pairs on Wheels, Happy Families and Farmyard Donkey.

Cartamundi also has a range of licensed cards. These include Ice Age Continental Drift card games – Playing Cards (£2.99), Pairs and Donkey Game (£2.99) and a 2-in-1 Game Set (£4.99). To celebrate the 50th anniversary of James Bond and the release of Skyfall, the firm is launching the 007 50th Anniversary Playing Cards (£3.99), plus the 007 50th Anniversary Compact Poker Set (£34.99), while there will also be Skyfall playing cards and poker sets launching later on in the year.

On top of this, the company has a Madagascar 3 collection, including Happy Families (£2.99) and a Gift Set (£9.99). Other family friendly releases include the Brave 4-in-1 Game Set (£4.99) due in August, a special Christmas gift set of Star Wars 3D Playing Cards in Metal Box (£9.99) and card games to coincide with the film, Rise of the Guardians.

Spin Master 01628 535000

Boys’ action property Redakai features Blast 3D technology and stackable gameplay that shows the impact of each move as it happens.

There are two versions of gameplay – Basic and Advanced – with the goal being to defeat opponent’s characters by playing attack cards. Stack attacks damage opponents, while stack monsters power up defences.

The Redakai product range was launched in the spring and includes a Starter set for basic gameplay, booster packs containing additional X-Drive cards including rare and super rare, and a Dual pack for two player gaming. The X-Drive cards will be refreshed with new sets throughout the year.

Once the basic game is mastered, players can move up to advanced Redakai gameplay with a tournament-ready deck of Blast 3D X-Drives.

The Structure Deck comes with an exclusive Monster card, while for intense battling action, the Redakai Championship Set is a battle-ready pack with comes complete with a card screen, draw deck, battlefield and 44 X-Drive cards.

Topps 01908 800123

Topps continues to enjoy strong sales of its Moshi Monsters range of collectables. The second edition of the stickers launched in April and sales are already significantly up on the first release, which stayed on sale for over 12 months.

The Moshi Mash Up trading cards, also in their second series, continue to perform well, too, regularly appearing in the top five of the NPD sales reports, eight months on from launch.

Topps also released a new set of Moshi Tattoos in May.
The firm’s next big entertainment release this year will be the third edition of Moshi Mash Up trading cards, arriving in September.

The collection will have additional game elements and a code breakers theme. It will include packets, starter packs and tins.

Click Distribution 01604 877888

Click handles a number of the top selling trading cards and games.

Recent launches include the Bin Weevils TCG, which is the fastest growing children’s social network site aimed at kids aged between six and 12. On top of this, a new Skylanders TCG is to launch, with over 200 cards to collect, plus the Angry Birds Trading Card collection.

Click also has a new series of the Moshi Monsters Mash Up Code Breakers featuring a host of new characters, plus new Scratch and Sniff cards and Thermo-Reactive ink cards to look out for.

There will also be a new series of Match Attax 12/13, UEFA Champions League Adrenalyn XL 12/13, Star Wars Force Attax and WWE Slam Attax.

Panini 01892 500100

Distributed by Click, the Bin Weevils Trading Card Game features all of the key characters, Bin Bios plus location and shopping cards and a secret code card inside every packet.

The collection includes 162 base cards, 19 glitter foil cards, 19 rainbow foil cards and 25 coded cards. The Starter Pack (£4.99) comes with a collector’s binder, game board, three trading card packs, a limited edition card and three special codes.

The newest launch from Panini is Kid Icarus Uprising. Over 40 million people in Europe have played the Nintendo game, with over 100,000 units already sold.

There are 1.4 million members on Club Nintendo and 12,000 Kid Icarus card packets sold out on the site in one day. There are 404 cards to collect which include special codes. A Starter Pack (£5.99) includes a binder and three trading card packets.

The Official Trading Card Game of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games includes 250 base cards and 100 special cards, including 50 glitter foil cards, 40 super foil cards and ten ultimate foil cards. Starter Packs (£4.99) include a collectors’ binder, game board, rules sheet, three trading card packets and a limited edition card.

The In Thing 0845 365 3030

The In Thing has been distributing trading cards for over ten years, with the company’s most consistent performer being Yu-Gi-Oh.

A top five product for the firm, Yu-Gi-Oh holds the world record for card sales, with over 25 billion cards sold worldwide. The new £1.75 Battle Pack is rapidly turning into another top seller; with pricing from 79 pence, it can offer a 45 per cent + retailer margin. Also available are standard boosters (£3.79) and decks from £7.99.

The In Thing is also taking pre-orders for the £16.99 Christmas Tin and the £24.99 Legendary Collection sets, which are due in September. Last year, both sold out before the release dates.

Meanwhile, a new card creating attention is Cardfight Vanguard, with both boosters and decks available.
The In Thing also distributes Match Attax, Moshi Monsters, Pokémon and Redakai, plus a range of trading card protection.

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