Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Virtual Dunk

I am a pretty big college basketball fan.  I have lived in North Carolina now for almost a decade.  When I first moved here I was pretty adamant  about not latching onto one of the big four ACC schools that are within 100 miles of my front door.  Three of those, Duke, North Carolina, and NC State, are all within 30 minutes.  My neutrality went out the window at some point about seven years ago when I went back for a Masters Degree and attended NC State.  Go Pack!

I've followed a few former NC State players in the NBA and will occasionally also check in on a few other players I watched in the ACC conference, or Mizzou players.  I grew up in Missouri, so I stay loyal to the Tigers, but their games are not on here very often.  I will also check out the Hornets on occasion, but I cannot say that I am a regular watcher.  My favorite NBA players to watch at the moment are Phoenix Suns forward, and former high scoring ACC Player of the Year, T.J. Warren and former Mizzou guard Jordan Clarkson.  I miss T.J.....

Anyway, I recently decided to try out something a little bit new with the NBA on the recommendation of a few other collectors around the internet.  Yes, it's more digit cards, but they are really cool.  Don't be a wet blanket about this post.  Read on....

I have been on the Panini Dunk App for a little more than a week and I have to say that it might be better than the other two card collecting apps I have on my phone.  The other two apps, just for reference, are the Star Wars Card Trader and Bunt.  I have bad luck with Bunt, still fun though and baseball cards will always be number one in my hobby interests.  Star Wars is fun, and I have some good cards, but it gets really complex at times.  The Dunk app is great because it is simplistic.  Don't blow it Panini.  Here's what I like about it.  

The cards have a decent design.  I realize that some of this product is geared towards kids and I sure that kids probably really like the looks of these cards.  I can accept the fact that I am a thirty something playing with an app for kids, no shame.  The base card design is not really a deciding factor for me on this product.  In my opinion the best feature of the card is the back.  

Star Wars card obviously do not have stats, but neither do the Bunt cards.  I have stopped even flipping the Bunt cards over to the back.  I know there is a bunch of fantasy points and the what-not that I am not interested on the other side.  The Panini Dunk cards have actual basketball stats and include the players performance in their latest game.  While there are stats on the back, they are not overly complicated.  See kid friendly, again.  Stats on the back is a plus.  

One of the other pluses for me, don't blow it Panini, is the fact that the main emphasis of the app seems to be to put together a complete set of basketball cards.  Imagine that.  Dunk includes a checklist that is broken down by team showing the percentage of cards from each team that the collector has in their collection.  You can also see your progress in chart form......

Again, this seems really kid friendly with the circles and the pie pieces around the edges to indicate whether or not the collectors have finished the team sets.  Again, the fact that the product places a square focus on collecting a set is a real positive in my book.  This concept seems to be lacking in most of the digital products I have experienced.  

Let's talk about the subsets and inserts.  The subsets are all draft related and count towards your completion of the set.  The Karl-Anthony Towns card shown in the picture below is one of the Draft cards in the set.  

The inserts are not bad to collect either.  It seems like Topps and Star Wars Card Trader have new inserts daily.  Right now, Panini Dunk has the Prestige set.  It has the feel of a parallel set, those things that Topps overkills with pink and camo, but not every card in the set has a Prestige parallel.  Does that make it a skip parallel?  Collectors can use credits to upgrade base cards to get the Prestige cards, pull them out of packs, or trade for them.  There is a trade area on the app.  Here's a look at the Prestige cards....

Overall, this is a really nice app.  It's definitely got a lot of kid appeal to it, but set that aside and consider the fact that it is the only card app that focuses on building a set.  The cards have actual stats on them.  The inserts and subsets are simplistic and not difficult to find.  Best of all, this is a free app.  If you have not checked out this item give it a try.  

1 comment:

  1. I've been playing around with this app a little bit the past few days after seeing some of your tweets about it. It's a little buggy and not super intuitive, but I really like that it's geared more towards their sticker album apps (where the goal is to collect all the cards, not to create another unfair virtual marketplace) and I love the current stats on the back.

    What's up with the KJ McDaniels card, though? That kind of looks like Damian Lillard with a headband.