Well I bet you were not expecting this eh? I guess if you kept up with the mail call posts you would have known I had these. So here’s the deal… this site is all about exploring the weirder side of this hobby, we’re focused on AliExpress cards from China for now – that’s just because I have a lot of those. But we’re not going to judge here, if it’s weird, we’re going to take a look and we’re going to archive it. So of course we’re also going to look at these My Little Pony cards. If this is too much for you, might as well bail now cause waifu cards exist, and I also have those to get through at some point.
We’ve opened 10 boxes so far on this site, I even ranked them all over here. Those have been your typical male-oriented products: Transformers, Gundam, Dragon Ball Z, Demon Slayer – that kind of stuff. And that is a big part of this little area of our hobby, but it isn’t the only part. Women exist. They have money and they buy things. So of course companies create products to cater to that market. But really what does it matter in the first place? If you enjoy a property, and you think it’s worth collecting – go collect it, don’t let anybody stop you.
So these are My Little Pony cards. I’m an old man but not too old to be aware of the internet memes around this media property. Those maybe started out as just jokes but it became big enough that it honestly revived this brand for Hasbro. They now make a new show, movies, comics and yes – trading cards.
This box of cards is from the second series of cards released in China, and it is the 5-yuan box which is the most expensive level for this set. This box cost me around 22$, I ordered it in a larger order from Anime Card Store on AliExpress. The mail call post has photos of the package this arrived it, it was very well packed but still has some corner damage on the box which is unfortunate but something you need to accept in this hobby.
The box is gorgeously printed, as a 5-yuan box this is the premium showpiece product for this set, so it makes sense that Kayou would go all out. All those silver lines making up the background pattern of the box are etched with rainbow foil. There are lots of example cards and artwork on all sides of the box, except the bottom. For a non-pre-release set this is one of the best looking boxes I’ve seen.
That picture above is a really close up shot of the box before I unwrapped it. Notice it has that security sticker/tape around it like you’d see on a box of Magic cards or something. I’m never sure if what I’m buying from AliExpress is a legit, licensed product, a counterfeit of a legit product – or just an unlicensed product. This tape makes this seems like it might be legit – but the box looked like it had been searched when I opened it. The dividers weren’t attached correctly and the packs were just all loose in the box – this is not how a 5-yuan box is usually packed in the factory, I know cause I have a lot of them.
So I suspect that this vendor, Anime Card Store, is one of those that searches boxes, takes the promos and weighs packs to find the best cards. I kind of knew they’d do that since they sell singles on their shop — any vendor that sells boxes and singles is highly likely searching the boxes. If you can, stick to vendors that don’t mix businesses so openly like that. Or if you’re me, just buy everything from everyone and sort it out later – no don’t do that, never do that lol.
On the back of the box is more great artwork, but also the manufacturers markings. Here we see the same stuff we’re used to on the left, but something new on the right. That box with 10:20, 6:20 and 4:20 in it is a rarity distribution guide. These were not on any of the other boxes I’ve opened, it’s a sign that this set was printed recently as the anti-gambling laws that require this are very new to China. They were implemented to fight loot-boxes in video games but apply to any blind-box product, so that includes trading cards.
We’ve talked about the “yuan” level. This word is literally the Kanji for coin, but has a wider connotation then this. Right now 1 yuan is worth about 15 cents. So a 1-yuan box of trading cards, which would have 36 low-rarity packs in it should be costing just about ~6 dollars, if this worked the way Arizona Tea does. In reality these boxes cost more, and shops don’t always sell 1-yuan packs for 1-yuan – sometimes, but not always.
This being the 5-yuan version of this set we’re only getting 20 packs in this box. The box is huge compared to what is inside, there are spacers in the box to keep the packs in two neat rows and push them forward. Everything about this is designed to sit on a high-traffic retail shelf, like the checkout counter of a grocery store.
So back to those rarity markings. Notice how they are all out “:20” meaning out of 20 packs? The rarity levels are different in each box, that’s the most important thing you can learn about this hobby. If you buy a 1-yuan box, you get a lot of cards but low rarity cards so you end up with a lot of dupes on the low end and just a handful of high end cards. Sometimes, like with this set, the best rarity is not even in the 1-yuan pack AT ALL!
You see from that chart that each pack defaults to 4 R and 1 SR, that’s just like everything we’ve opened so far. But, because these are 5-yuan packs those upgrade to up to TGR rarity at 10:20 odds – so about half the packs in this box will be upgraded like that. Next level will SSR and R packs, these should be about 6 of the packs – again on average so across many boxes you’d see this number. And then about 4 of these packs should have a UR or above in them. So for only ~5 more dollars vs the 2-yuan packs (they don’t make a 1-yuan of this series) you will be getting significantly more rare cards.
As for the set itself, well I bought it based off the marketing materials again as I’m not in China and can’t actually go browse a shop for these. Those materials look great, each of the mini sets in here seem like they’d be really fun to collect. Some of the cards, like the pirate costume ones, are so cute I think even a non-fan could appreciate them. Those pirate cards are why I bought these, I really hope I get one in this box.
As you know we don’t usually open the packs right away, instead we open one now and then put this box aside. I’ll post the cards I get in the next article, and then it’s time to pick a new box to take a closer look at.