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Saturday, July 25, 2015

#LootCrate Review: July 2015

Can Loot Crate keep up its successful run with July 2015's Heroes2? Read on to find out!

Review by Matt Cummings

The subscription box Loot Crate has amassed a stellar run recently, having delivered exceptional boxes in March, April, May, and June. But potential problems threaten subscriber support, as the company tries a new upgrade plan that could see their mainstay - the shirt - available only in higher-priced boxes. And while I like July's theme of HEROES 2, the lack of a shirt is a lingering concern.

We've noticed that USPS and other carriers are doing a better job delivering the boxes, as this one is missing the usual dents and scratches that plagued earlier deliveries.

Upon cracking the case, we see a neat Batman figure but no t-shirt, a real bummer but one almost made up by what looks like a sweet Batman figure. Last month's Tron-inspired Optimus Prime was perhaps one of its best ever, and I was hoping this month for a worthy opponent. Its lack of appearance is definitely felt here.

First up is a Star Trek air freshener in the form of the Vulcan greeting/goodbye of "Live Long and Prosper." Being a Trekker, I appreciate any month that includes a little love.

I wasn't as impressed with the Legend of Zelda wrist band, but I could see where fans of the game would be thrilled. It's something you can get at Hot Topic for a couple of bucks, and will probably get tossed in to an eBay lot. Still, add a fun sword and a costume and this would look great.

One of the best items this month is this Batman multi-tool. As you can see in follow-up images, it contains two screwdrivers, a bottle opener, and a key chain. Although it's a little big to fit in my pocket, I'll definitely be hanging it on my my fridge. It's made of high-quality metal, which I hope means many rounds of The Dark Knight assisting me as I go into Beer Battle!







This is a very small (and I mean small, and oddly shaped) Wonder Woman 1940's era poster. It looks fabulous, but again at just 10.5"x9.5 (yes, an odd size to be sure), there's no standard frame that will accommodate it. I'll have to research framing options, but it will most likely include some sort of matting. But overall, it's a keeper.

One of the best books ever added to a Loot Crate, The League of Regrettable Superheroes chronicles the origins of several poorly-conceived heroes. My favorites include Thunderbunny and Skateman. Just awful, but the book is a fun read, and this edition appears to be a Loot Crate exclusive.

Brawlhalla is a free-to-play online game that subscribers can various skins, weapons, and characters using the free code on the back. I didn't have time to check it out, but some should find the free upgrades to be at least mildly entertaining.

Although the image is hard to pick out, this month's pin shows The Dark Knight in his classic position high above the city of Gotham. It's clearly the best pin we've gotten from them in quite awhile, and it will find a place of honor among my other flair. Yes, I did just throw in an Office Space reference.

This month's HEROES 2 theme is also duplicated inside the pages of Loot Crate Magazine #24. There's terrific articles that include an interview with Director John Schnepp, who recently finished the documentary The Death of Superman Lives: What Happened? And as always, we get to see what's in the Mega Crate - which goes to one lucky subscriber - and the Mini Mega, which is handed out to 20 others. Some lucky subscriber is taking home a Mega Crate that includes a Tomb Raider-inspired Xbox One, an HTC One M9 smartphone, Star Wars R2-D2 Sixth Scale Figure from Sideshow Collectibles, and several other very cool items. Mini Mega winners receive a Mini Batman Bat-Signal and a Justice League Superman 3D Puzzle. Hey guys, where's my prize?



The next set of images reveal the centerpiece of July's Crate: a QPop figurine of Batman in his 1960's television-era costume. He looks a little young (not a big deal), but the construction is top-notch, although some images might not suggest that. Believe me, once you open this bad boy you'll be pleasantly surprised.

But what takes this to another level is Loot's shipping box, which eventually forms into a building (WHAT?!) that you can place alongside The Detective. That. Is. Awesome!! I've always hated the idea of throwing away old Loot boxes, as they could have merged with the collection in some way, rather than rot in a landfill somewhere. Apparently someone has been entering my bed chamber to listen in on my dreams. Check out these images, as well as the very simple directions. Well played.









In the end, July 2015's Loot Crate celebrates the HEROES 2 theme quite well, with a collection of good- to high-quality gear, including a terrific Batman figurine. I'm disappointed that the shirt was apparently replaced for the figurine, and would have traded all of the other items in the box for just the figure and a shirt only. Loot's decision to possibly move the t-shirts to a higher-priced box is a real concern. If they do so and the items they replace it with aren't as good, I will have to consider other options, which does not include upgrading to the higher-priced box.

Discuss this review with fellow SJF fans on Facebook. On Twitter, follow us at @SandwichJohnFilms, and follow author Matt Cummings at @mfc90125.

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