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DRAGON BALL UNIVERSAL (Panini)

EDICOLA NEWS: THE REVIEWS nr. 355

album: Dragon Ball Universal (Panini)

stickers: 204 (1-180, H1-H24) + 6 cards limited edition
starter pack: album + 5 packets + 2 cards limited 3,90€
box: 24 packets (5 stickers per packet) 0,80€ each
blister: 5 packets + 1 card limited random 3,90€
hard cover: album + 5 packets + 2 cards limited 19,90€

Dragon Ball forever! There is no other manga or anime that has had such a continuous and massive presence on newsstands, in the form of stickers or cards. Panini but also Edibas, Diramix (still) and other publishers. A mainstream that knows no decline in popularity, although the manga and cartoons, the first ones, are already about 25 years old since they first arrived in Italy.

Let’s dispel a doubt: this album is not linked to the premature death of Akira Toriyama which left a deep veil of sadness in all of us, the gestation of a Panini album has months of preparation. On the contrary, it was time for a product to be created that brought together the entire saga.

The album is very interesting, fun, colourful, inevitably also evocative, worth collecting. But it also makes us think of a missed opportunity: in recent months Panini has retraced its steps by re-proposing a special formula for us, recently seen with Tex and Mickey Mouse, with the paperback album, rich in content, non-trivial stickers and cards to be kept inside. The target is certainly the adult one which also covers the wide (fortunately) world of comic collectors, is the gigantic manga audience perhaps less accustomed to this type of proposal? Who knows, but for some characters an attempt could also be made… Dragon Ball, One Piece, Captain Tsubasa, Slam Dunk and perhaps re-presenting the great characters of the past, starting with the big robots.

In reality and in this case perhaps it couldn’t have been achieved anyway. The lack of cards (not considering the limited ones) is probably not due to an act of kindness on Panini’s part but due to the simple fact that there is another publisher, Diramix, which for years has held the rights to create collections of cards, albeit laminated and albeit with a good number of gaps, in our humble opinion.

Commercial choice or necessity for distribution rights, this makes the album much more usable, economical and lighter than, for example, the latest ones dedicated to Naruto and One Piece, where the useless cards find space in the equally useless boxes. It’s true, there are 6 limited cards, but no one is obliged to collect them and they are not in fact part, in the strictest sense of the term, of the collection.

6 limited cards which, honestly, could have been avoided by offering two in the hardback. The other four pairs are found in the starter pack, the last two are random in the blister packs. On the other hand, they are all products that can also be purchased in comic shops; if it seems that for a good part of the newsstands the fate is unfortunately sealed, that at least, in our little world, comic shops are always taken into consideration. Other two are not distributed in Italy.

Returning to the idea of a different album, precisely to pay homage to the great mangaka who passed away, a collection could be created with the name, for example, “The art of Akira Toriyama” which not only refers to anime or OVAs but also to comics from which they take inspiration, not only Dragon Ball, but also Arale and everything else. Indeed, it could be a good formula for many other artists of the ninth art, Japanese, European or from the American continent.

The collection is however simple and direct, which is why it is appreciable. The album is equally divided into four large chapters, with a logical and also chronological path. To the delight of the nostalgic, we will always start with the first legendary series of Goku as a child. Stories that we know by heart and from which the subsequent series took inspiration.

The captions are successful and effective, they are the right combination of the text, the stickers and the images printed on the album. If you have read the manga or more likely you have seen the cartoons, let yourself be carried away by the pleasure and the good feeling of already knowing what will happen on the next page.

Clearly it wasn’t possible to mention the whole world of Dragon Ball, whoever made the album certainly knows the character, it seems that the key moments are almost all there. Dragon Ball, for example, is very focused on the different editions of the World Martial Arts Tournament.

Following Dragon Ball Z, the format continues without knowing a moment of respite, as do the subsequent Dragon Ball GT and Dragon Ball Super, where it is, inevitably, the division between the various sagas that takes over. It is also an opportunity to recognize and remember many cartoon protagonists, if in fact the texts tell the stories, the stickers often show the characters. Not only Goku, Vegeta, Junior… but also many others.

The central poster is well done. In general the album paper is of good quality, not excellent but improved compared to what we have seen recently (someone said “the Spider-Man Miles Morales album?”), here there is no risk of the annoying and unacceptable problem of detachment of the central page. The poster, which can be opened, so it is not necessary to detach it, is a perfect lifesaver.

In addition to being really guessed, the page with the Dragon and the seven spheres. The older ones among us may have very different memories of the pleasure of opening central posters inside magazines, but Dragon Ball remains something far above… many other situations!

Stickers on which important specific work has been done to make them new, some could only refer to something already seen but in general it seems to us that Panini have not limited themselves to making a copy and paste of what has already been produced previously. Well-made, effective, interesting album, which we believe will not disappoint, not even parents who for once can not faint over their children’s collection. The frantic search for innovative and alternative products is not always necessary, here you can breathe 60 years of Panini and the air you breathe is really good.

(EN)

Dragon Ball Super Hero TCG (Diramix)

EDICOLA NEWS: THE REVIEWS nr. 264

album: Dragon Ball Super – Super Hero TCG (Diramix)

cards: 162 (1-162)

starter pack: album + 1 packet 7,90€

box: 20 packets (6 cards per packet) 2,00€ each

Easier to find Haaland’s rookie than to understand all the Lamincard collections released on the ever-beloved Dragon Ball character! Even just the Diramix editions, even worse if we start from the legendary Edibas which has the merit of being the first to truly believe not only in the character but also in this transparent version of the cards, the lamincard, Italian pride.

Finally, after so many years, Diramix creates cards that are recognizable from the previous ones, in a simple way. Not only for the title of the series that we find on the individual cards (which, however, might not be enough if another super hero is subsequently made) but because the year of production is finally reported, in this case 2022.

It is a detail that we have always reported in our reviews of previous collections, we do not have the bravado to think that this change is related to someone in Diramix who has read our site, but we were probably not the only ones to have reported the problem.

The 162 cards are the classic standard of the Diramix collections, the specials seem to us to be higher in number than the norm. We find them scattered in the collection and they are all from number 127 onwards. The choice, up to a certain point understandable, of having 9 rare golds, the last of the series from 154 to 162, is also renewed. only to give an indication on the development of the game which, honestly, we think interests a small part of the potential buyers.

Compared to the previous series, one card less for the same expense of 2.00 euros. Yet another collection of Dragon Ball cards?!? If they continue to release them and at an average of two per year, it means that they have a good audience of loyalists and true believers.

(EN)

DRAGON BALL ULTIMATE TCG (Diramix Italy)

EDICOLA NEWS: THE REVIEWS nr. 234

album: Dragon Ball Ultimate – TDC (Diramix)

cards: 162 (1-162)

starter pack: binder + 1 packet 6,99€

packet standard : 7 cards 2,00€ (20 packets per box)

packet limited : 11 cards + 1 card ltd edition 5,00€ (10 packets per box)

How many albums have come out of Dragon Ball?!? Has anyone kept the count? Stickers we have had several Panini albums and other publishers. The cards first with Edibas then Diramix .. Probably there are at least twenty, maybe more. A sign that the myth continues to be strong and pleasant. All beautiful but, perhaps we are old, we still do not understand why Diramix (and Edibas before) insists on not personalizing the various collections, so that, subsequently, they are easily recognizable.

This detail, perhaps of little importance for card collectors, for us who come from the stickers, makes the collection unattractive, given over time the difficulty in recognizing the single card of which collection it belongs. Surely it is our limit .. be patient.

Of course, after so many releases it is also difficult to be original, opening just one packet different images seem to us already seen. The lamincards, gloriously born in Italy, are still a valid product, if kept with care. In fact, the transparent part is easy to get dirty.

162 is the perfect number, linked to the spaces that we find inside the binder, so there is no doubt that it does not undergo variations collection after collection. It is very appreciated that Diramix prints the numbering of the cards to be affixed on the sheets, other publishers have also eliminated the small adhesive to be attached. If you collect stickers or cards, you are probably aces with the 9 times table! 🙂

As happened with the previous “Ultra Power”, the last 9 cards are limited edition. The absolute protagonist is the dragon Shenron. To find them you need to buy the special packets. To check if by purchasing the box of 10 you will find the nine different limited cards. Probably not, so good luck swapping!

(EN)

DRAGON BALL SUPER ultimate warriors (Panini)

EDICOLA NEWS: THE REVIEWS nr. 216

album: DRAGON BALL SUPER ultimate warriors (Panini)

stickers: 204 (1-180, X1-X24)

starter pack: album + 5 packets 3,90€

box: 36 packets (5 stickers per packet) 0,80€ each

By presenting the Harry Potter album in recent days, we liked to highlight the success of the saga which seems to have no slowdowns and consequently Panini continues to churn out albums. The same can be said for Dragon Ball, where two publishers are involved, the Modena house for the classic stickers and Diramix for the cards. Fortunately! We add, because it allows you not to have useless soups between the two collections, those who love sticking stickers have their albums, those who prefer cards have their binder.

If anything, the problem with Dragon Ball is being able to keep up with the story that has evolved and expanded dramatically over time, this new album is dedicated to telling some of the best known sagas.

The album is therefore divided into 5 chapters, each referring to a saga, film or epic moment in the character’s history, jumping between the various moments of the manga and cartoons.

Not everyone will agree but we also appreciate Panini’s choice on how to set up the album, to make it more captivating, the stickers to attach are much more than the 204 mentioned, many are in pairs so as to expand the fun. In addition there are the legendary shaped ones, which seem to have recently rediscovered in Modena and then we dream of an explosion of shapes as happened in some albums of the 70s.

In addition to the shaped stickers, we find the special classic glitter and silver, the latter for the central poster where 24 characters from the various universes are placed. Here, a good idea for the next album (because so much will come), would be to make an encyclopedia of DB, where to present all the characters of the saga card by card. In reality, perhaps an album would not be enough, but in the meantime, let’s go!

(EN)

DRAGONBALL SUPER Ultra Power (Diramix)

EDICOLA NEWS: THE REVIEWS nr. 185

cards: 162  (1-162)

starter pack: album + 1 packet 4,90€

packet standard: 5 cards 1,00€ (box of 24 packets)

packet metal : 9 cards + 1 card  ltd edition 5,00€ (box of 10 packets)

The years go by but not the Dragonball fever, 2021 also has its own album and could only be the first, to this should be added a sticker version of Panini and after the summer probably a new collection of Diramix cards.

It is difficult to be innovative or original, especially taking into account that many collections have come out of cards, from Edibas to today. For this new edition we see some news and it is quite interesting.

The number of cards remain the classic 162, unlike the previous collections we do not have a final part with the battles and the unicolor back but these are mixed with the rest, a pleasant solution, it makes the collection more uniform without the detachment that characterized the previous editions. Another detail is a greater number of horizontal images, perhaps not perfect to be positioned vertically in the binder but more dynamic and with greater choice for the publisher in selecting cartoon frames.

The real news is another, there are no maxi cards (excellent, we probably weren’t the only ones not to consider them) but on the contrary we have 9 limited edition metal version cards. Limited Edition to be defined, as they are an integral part of the collection, numbered from 154 to 162 are sold separately in special packets. We can say that Diramix took a cue from the Adrenalyn Premium packets and have developed a similar initiative on Dragonball. Similar but different, as written they are numbered, therefore necessary to complete the collection.

It should therefore be clarified whether these nine cards will then be ordered later as missing or not, logic does not help us, being part of the numbering they should be orderable, on the other hand the concept of limited edition would be dropped if they could be requested after months. To each his own opinion, our advice is to buy the special packets, an important but sustainable expense.

Speaking of “figurine”, we rarely focus on the costs of the packets, but merit must be given when publishers present products at low prices, at least compared to the average. Five lamincards for € 1.00 is very good compared to other products. Credit must be given to Diramix for this, as well as the detail of numbering the sheets of the binder. Among other things, non-causal binder, probably created ad hoc by the publisher for this collection and the previous ones, hence the wise solution to always keep the same total number of 162 total cards.

(EN)

DRAGON BALL SUPER: SAGA COLLECTION (Diramix Italy)

EDICOLA NEWS: THE REVIEWS nr. 135
cards: 172 (standard 1-162 + maxi 1-10)
starter pack: € 5.90 album + 1 packet + Maxi Card box
packets: € 1.00 (5 cards)
maxi card packets: € 5.00 (1 maxi card + 10 cards)

Dragon Ball is there! Years pass, but our Goku continues to be present in newsstands, not only with the various editions of his manga but with always new collections of stickers and especially cards.
So much so that since the time of Edibas it has become increasingly complicated to recognize the various releases, for those 90s it is practically impossible, for the more recent ones it is not immediate.
Having the checklists, over time, becomes essential.

This is the period of Dragon Ball Super, the lamincards as always are very beautiful but .. similar .. in fact the problem in the long run with this type of product is becoming rather repetitive.
After all, the main characters are always the same and it is not easy to be original. With the problem of recognizing the cards between one series and another (dear Diramix, it would be enough to put at least the year of production on the back). The linked game also partially reproduces what has already been seen.

A solution for the future (we are sure more lamincards will come out, probably as early as 2021) could be to create puzzle cards, so that 9 in the binder create a unique image. Panini did it with Frozen2, Blue Ocean did it with Lego Ninjago, come on Diramix, you can do it too.

A small detail compared to the past is the presence of the box to contain the 10 maxi cards, for those wishing to complete the collection, the advice is to buy the box directly, it should help to find all the different ones.

(EN)

DRAGON BALL SUPER 2 (Panini)

EDICOLA NEWS: REVIEWS nr. 120

stickers: 204 (1-192, P1-P12)

starter pack: album + 5 packets: € 3.90

packets: € 0.80 (5 stickers)

comment: it’s always Dragon Ball mania! The albums of the famous Japanese manga can be defined as a collection in themselves, many have come out over the past 25 years, even worse if it extends to the cards and even more to role game cards.

So difficult to create something new and original, Panini then turns to the guaranteed used and creates an album in some way summarizing the Super universe. Extremely different product, for example, from the one made for Harry Potter Saga, a choice probably due to the fact that the market is already saturated with Diramix lamincards or simply a matter of rights.

It therefore comes to think that it is a choice more dictated by the need to put on the market a title that still sells anyway. The album is still nice, in the first part we have all the heroes of Dragon Ball, from the legendary Goku, to Vegeta, to everyone else. The main ones have over 5 stickers each between puzzles and specials, surely no fan is unhappy. After a (much) faster rundown on the enemies, the album ends with the epic sagas we have enjoyed over the years: the battle of the Gods, the resurrection of F, the Champa saga, Trunks of the future, the tournament of power, the survival of the universe.

Double central poster, inside there are 12 numbered stickers P.

The format of all stickers is classic with red outline (I sincerely prefer the “widescreen” versions used for example for the Avengers, when making albums on films or cartoons), special glitter and some nice shaped, necessary to make the completion of the album more funny.

Standard album, good starting point to get to know the Super universe of Dragon Ball.

(EN)

DRAGONBALL Z LAMINCARD (Diramix)

EDICOLA NEWS: REVIEWS nr. 107

card: 162 (1-162) + 10 maxi cards (1-10)

starter pack: album + 1 packet € 5.90

standard packet: € 1.00 (5 cards)

maxi packet: € 5.00 (9 cards + 1 maxi card)

comment: Diramix releases dedicated to Dragon Ball continue, after the last Super collections here is the Z one. The formula may seem similar but in reality some details make it different from the previous ones.

The base is still the same, 162 cards divided into characters (Single), battles (Versus) and special holographic. Lamincards work, always have their charm, national pride having been invented in Italy, the only drawback is that the more the outputs increase, the less ease in recognizing which collection they belong to, at least in the immediate term.

The big news of this edition are the maxi packets, from the cost of 5.00 euros each with the guarantee of finding three specials among the nine present and above all a maxi card.

The maxi card is not used for the game, but is purely collectible and there are 10 in all, with unpublished and special images created for the occasion. Reading on the internet, the purchase of the box of maxi packets does not guarantee to find them all (except of course always desired lucky moment)

A detail that seems such, but personally I have greatly appreciated, concerns the collector. Finally goodbye to the stickers to be attached to number the pages, but the same are already printed on the bottom right. Someone will obviate the fact that there is still talk of plastic, however believing that the album is not disposable is sincerely welcome, a little less the useless envelope that contains it, maybe Diramix will find a solution for the next releases.

Great job Diramix, now a pleasant confirmation in the publishing field!

Final judgement: 8/10

(EN)