Tuesday, July 16, 2013

2013-2014 Upper Deck Trilogy Review

Here it comes... the DOUBLE ROOKIE CLASS!!! Both Upper Deck and Panini are majorly hyping this year's crop of rookies, and Trilogy is the first product out of the gate with to feature their cards (though technically the retail version of 13/14 Score did come out yesterday). Trilogy is a very interesting product as it has been out of the Upper Deck release schedule for a few years. It has returned with a new configuration and higher price tag. Let's take a look and see what Trilogy brings to the table.

Base Card Design -
The Trilogy base cards have a classic SP-ish design to them. They are very clean, primarily white cards with modern graphics and foil touches. It's a mature and understated look that really does work. The background of the card features triangular shapes that make complete sense for a product called Trilogy. The cards are a bit thin for my liking, but overall they still look good and have a premium feel about them. If I had to make a complaint, I wish Upper Deck came up with a more radical design for these cards - they really could have called this SP 3.0 or something like that given the similarity to those cards.

The Trilogy backs are interesting in that they feature absolutely no on-ice statistics. Collectors will find a paragraph of information along with the player's number, position, and vitals. The design of the card backs go along very nicely with the front. As usual, Upper Deck does a bang up job of unifying the look of the card on both sides; the color scheme, fonts, and graphics match up nicely.

Rookies in Trilogy have an interesting serial numbering system. Each rookie has three versions: level 1 numbered to 699, level 2 numbered to 399, and level 3 numbered to just 49. Each version of rookie card features a different design to them. The level 1 rookie of Jonathan Huberdeau shown above is all foil with a 'zoomed out' full body shot. It's a very good looking card that reminds me of the fully foiled Trilogy rookie cards of the past.

The level 2 rookie cards look to have a closer mid-body shot of the player. The graphical elements on the card are a bit larger as well. Notice that the golden foil lines on level 2 are much thicker than those on the level 1 card. And though I didn't pull a level 3 card in my box, I have seen that Upper Deck has chosen to use up-close head shots of the players for those cards. I think that this particular tiering system is very interesting. Not only is the numbering different, but so is the design. It will be very interesting to see how collectors react to having three rookie cards of the same player in Trilogy. It's perfect for a product with a 'three-theme', but will it confuse collectors? That's my question. Also, which card will collectors deem to be the 'true' rookie card? Time will tell!

Base Card Design Score:

Inserts/Game-Used/Autos -
Each box of Trilogy comes with three mini boxes of three packs each. Upper Deck states that there will be a rookie autograph in every mini box. Each pack has a 'hit' in it, be it a memorabilia, autograph, or crystal card. In total, collectors can expect to pull nine hits per hobby box of Trilogy.

Crystal cards are new to Trilogy this year. Though Upper Deck is touting them as something new, they are very similar to the thick Frozen in Time inserts from past iterations of Trilogy. The Crystal cards look very nice. The card has a three dimensionality to it. In the far background there appears to be a cracked ice surface; the image of the player floats above it. I do like the look of these cards and though I'd rather have an autographed card, I think I prefer getting this to pieces of jersey. The Crystal inserts feature active and retired players at various tiers of difficulty. The Paul Coffey I pulled comes 1:66 packs. Getting any Crystal card is 1:9, which translates to one-per-box.

Triple jersey cards of National Trios and Past/Present/Future stars like this card above can be found in Trilogy this year. These triple jersey cards are probably the most boring cards that you can find in the product. Though there are three swatches of jersey on the card, the swatches are pretty small, and jersey cards just aren't that exciting anymore. I get the fact that putting three jerseys on the same card is the Trilogy theme, but these cards are just tired. It could be the design though... while I like the picture of the flag in the background, the rest of the card looks like it came from an un-used SPGU Authentic Fabrics idea. These cards should have, and could have, been done much better.

The Trilogy Signature Pucks autographed card is a take on the old Sweet Shot concept. I think collectors will enjoy these cards - if the pen ink doesn't smudge like mine did. Pucks are an integral part of hockey, and featuring the puck like this is fun. The card is well designed. There is a movement to these cards that is created from the circular lines emanating from the rubber puck. It's a cool effect. Obviously the puck is not a game-used item, but I think it works better than a cut of an actual game-used puck. The size is right, and I really enjoy the team logo affixed to the front.

Ice Scripts are back for collectors to find in this year's Trilogy. I wonder if I should call these acetate cards or Crystal cards... I'm not sure... but what I am sure about is that these cards look great! The clear space for the autograph is a perfect idea. Unfortunately for me, my Tavares autograph was smudged. Had it been a clean autograph, this would have been my favorite pull from my box. As it stands, the Tavares card is going back to Upper Deck for replacement. I hope this isn't a problem with the entire run of Ice Scripts. If it isn't, these cards will be a favorite amongst collectors.

Besides what I pulled from my box, those who buy Trilogy will also find base card autograph variations as well as Clear Cut Combo autographs. I don't believe that their are patch cards in this year's Trilogy, so don't expect to find a triple patch variation of the triple jersey cards. All of Trilogy's insert cards have different tiering. You're going to want to check each one to see if it is a short print or not.

Inserts/Game-Used/Autos Score:

Overall Rating -
Upper Deck has done a good job of re-booting their Trilogy brand. I can honestly say that I really enjoyed opening up the box! Their goal was to up the premium feel for Trilogy, and they succeeded. I definitely thought that this version of Trilogy was of a higher quality than the Trilogy brand of the past.

With premium quality comes a premium price tag. A three-mini box (nine pack) hobby box costs a little under $300. That's quite a bit! The high price tag may scare off collectors from purchasing this product. It might be a good idea to get in on group breaks of this rather than breaking it by the box for collectors who usually don't go for boxes in this price range.

Trilogy has always been a product with a high price tag, but now it's even higher. I wonder if it will translate into higher resale values. As expensive as Trilogy was in the past, cards were never big money makers compared to the price of a pack or box. I think the final pricing of Trilogy will depend on how collectors assess Trilogy. Will they lump it together with their past memories of it, or will they see it as a new premium hockey product?

For me, I really liked opening my box of Trilogy. Getting nine hits is really fun! For those who can afford it, I would say get it. It's a very fun break... and who knows... maybe this double rookie class will be great! If it truly is, then it's definitely a smart buy. With full boxes being so highly priced, I wonder if many collectors will go for mini boxes or packs of Trilogy. That is definitely an option for those who have dealers that are willing to break the product down into its smaller bits.

My only issue with Trilogy was with some card quality problems I found in my box. Hopefully that is not something that others will be plagued with. I'd be glad to try another box though!

Overall Rating:

Check out my break of 13/14 Trilogy from D&P cards in Sacramento, CA:


  1. thats lucky there are three levels of rookies lv 1 to 699, lv 2 to 399 and level 3 to 49. all rokkies in this prouduct has one card for each level. i think this is a good idea because it makes it alot harder to collect all of the rookies.

  2. I love that the decided to keep the old school look with the box.

    The base card design is clean and I love it. The rookie card design is fantastic and I love the how it is the 3 level system makes it fun to try and collect.

    The insert cards are simply fantastic. The puck auto's are super nice with the ripple effect around the puck. The Grigs also looks amazing mainly because I am a HUGE SABRES FAN.

    Overall I must say this product gets my highest rating yet at a 9.5/10

    Youtube: Starnsfan00

  3. Trilogy is one of those products that are expensive but have good high end quality cards. This years for example has a good rookie class from Nail Yakupov, Alex Galchenyuk, ect.
    Trilogy has nice looking cards too. The crystal inserts are so awesome. UD has done awesome with this product. I hope they can continue this product for the years to come.

    Youtube: jtayl132

  4. Really sweet product! Every box that I have seen so far has impressed me quite well! Myself as a hockey card collector and much others have been waiting for a new hockey product season to come out with new and improved rookie cards! Considering this product came back again really surprises me because it was in stock a few years back and came back again. In my consideration this product is really worth your money and is better than the first ever trilogy to come out!
    Youtube: Graboguru

  5. For a little under 300 bucks for a hobby box, im torn to whether it is a great deal or if UD is making out like gangbusters. I think the hype of a double rookie class and coupled with the fact that next season will be a full NHL season gave UD the opportunity to price it at 300 bucks.


  6. Looking at the cards, the design looks really nice, especially the ice scripts and all the rookie autos! I have seen a few box breaks and it looks like getting good rookies is fairly common even though it isn't the double rookie class yet. I feel like it does look like sp authentic, but it does look nicer in my opinion.
    YouTube: MrCardCollector97

  7. This product looks really nice. all the cards look amazing. It just looks very rushed though. We are barely into free agency and it seems like they just slapped this product on the shelve. That design is nice but there execution was terrible. I would give it 9/10 but its rushed and they are still missing some rookies who debuted last season I give 6/10
    Youtube: Capitals103

  8. To be honest I dislike this product! Way to expensive I mean you could buy Beatle two boxes of prime for this stuff and compare hits, rarity, etc... I'm never buying this product I'm not trying to be"mean" but we have our own opinions! YouTube:XxFusionzJxX

  9. i think product looks relley good and i like that thier is all the higth end rookie in this product they are that not hard to get but i think they could have added a few more sub sets in it but all in all i like this product.

    youtube:alwamwejwemw breaks

  10. To be honest .................. this product is LOADED! The price at $300 may be a little high, defintely not in my price range, but you can always buy single packs and still have a chance at pulling something huge! This is an ideal product for group breaks. My only complaint is the sticker autos, I mean, UD surely had enough time to do on-card autos. Overall, I'd give it a 8.5/10 stars just like you! I had very similar thoughts. Thanks Luke!

    Youtube: mtn8ice

  11. This version is not as good as the old trilogy the ice scripts look better in the old one and in my opinion the only good thing about the product is its upper deck and u can get gretzky and the double rookie class YouTube:ottawafan4life

  12. I really like the look of trilogy and the cards in it., i wish it wasnt as expensive as 100$ per mini box and 250-75$ per full box but still great product and awesome review!

  13. Trilogy was a product I was looking forward too see, but now seeing all kinds of breaks on it...I honestly think it's not too great. I don't think the Value is there in my opinion...300 bucks, too much for a box of cards, and hard to collect. Don't get me wrong, they are some great looking cards, but Upper Deck, Panini etc. Are making it difficult to collect the sets we want to achieve for how much products are...My opinion

    YT - Datsyukify

  14. This product is just great. I don't think anyone can complain! The rookies are amazing, the design is awesome and the odds of pulling sick cards is totally in your favor, you can't lose!
    The only thing that I slightly dislike about the product is the price point but other than that, its fantastic!

  15. I like the Rookies in this product as well as the base - just not sure about the jerseys or the crystals, haven't seen in person yet so that could change. Love the puck autos.
    David E

  16. I like the concept of having a hit in every pack, but with incredible ideas comes a big price. I think it's a bit too much for some collectors, but the cards are really neat. I really like the puck signings and the rookie variations will be something that some die-hard collectors will look forward to collect.
    Youtube: TheNumberOneHabsFan

  17. This product I like a lot but its not my favorite. Those cards you pull are amazing too bad some where messed up but at least you can send them back. But overall I say this is a great product. And if you see this can you email me because I've been trying to contact you about a Dan Boyle auto sp authenic card and its on card for trade if you have any NJ Devils card.
    Youtube - Josh k
    email- kristiansenjosh@yahoo.co,

  18. Awesome Product!!

    YT:Hockey card colect131

  19. Pretty decent collection in my opinion. I don't usually deal with hockey cards but since I've started looking into them I've seen that Upper Deck's cards usually hold good standard and although this isn't my favourite collection I am looking forward to some of their future releases. Great review by the way, you obviously know your stuff.

    YouTube Username: KingOfTheJungle7602

  20. This box is so cool going to get some for sure. It is pricy though so I might just get some singles on ebay.


  21. I do like some of the sets within trilogy like the ice scripts and puck signatures. Although, there weren't enough sets and it seems like it is very repetitive. I give it a 7/10.

  22. Hey Luke!

    Another great review as always.

    Where do I start? Let's see...

    Well may as well start with the base and work my way up to the hits. The base design is stellar. It is some of the cleanest stuff I have ever seen. I absolutely love it.

    I personally got to go watch 3 boxes get busted today at my LCS with my buds. They pulled a puck autograph /13 of Fleury and much more. I think that the product missing out in patches kills it a bit for me. I just think patches are essential. There are also not enough sub-sets. Those are the only two issues that stand by me with this product. Other than that, I love it. It is clean and there are a ton of great autographs!

    Thanks for a great review and take care!

  23. Great review as always! Love reading your reviews! I think trilogy is just great, I really live those puck autographs and with the gold ink they look even better!
    Youtube- BlueJaysFan65

  24. Love this product.I got the 2 of the best cards I have ever pulled in a pack.I pulled a signature pucks of sidney crosby and a wayne gretzky ice scripts autograph.I didn't pull those 2 hits in the same box. My youtube username is Erik Karlsson.

  25. the price is a little to high but I love the rookie autos

  26. First of all great review!
    I think this product is cool but a bit overpriced and definitely not something new collectors should bye. but has a great mix which is always great.

  27. I really liked your review also i think trilogy is worth it if you buy a case or a whole box because it seems like you could lose your money if you buy a mini box. also my youtube name is: superryan3

  28. Great review as always, with Trilogy I would agree with people on here on buying a whole "Box" and not just a mini box inside the box to make sure you do get your full value worth


  29. I love the product. I find the puck autos are beautiful and the fact that it has the new rookies is awesome. The only bad thing about the product in my eyes is the triple jersey.
    Yt: zachman598

  30. I love this product looks really great!
    Youtube Irbehockey cardcolcet

  31. Love the product and awesome pucksignings BUT its to expensive for the majority of the collectors..

    youtube: MrThendro

  32. This product looks awesome! Hope to get a box soon. \


  33. I love this product. The cards should provide good value over time. A great way to start the Hobby Season!

    YouTube: Luke Farmer

  34. I think that the product looks really good but the price is alittle to high

    youtube; simon anctil

  35. Nice Huberdeau. Some really awesome looking cards in there, but that asking price definitely doesn't have me rushing out to get a box. Probably take a punt on a mini-box for just a taste.

    - reebz0r

  36. This Product looks very good. I like simple design on cards. I really like the Puck Auto's and Rookies. The price point is a little high but it looks worth it. I Probably just bust 1 or 2 packs.

    Youtube: Sports149

  37. this product is pretty good i my self am not a big fan of the price but i would like to try a mini box maybe or even a pack. Also i love the idea of the past present and future cards they are just really unique to me because when i was younger i always tried to come up with some sort of cool card idea like complete nets with a piece of the camera lens post and net and the first one that i came up with was the past present future from when i was little so really cool to see my ideas come to life!!!
    youtube letsgoducks813

  38. I loved the puck cards. awesome break Luke, too bad some cards were damaged. YT - CUB3Jsg22

  39. The three tiers of rookies seems like a bad idea to me. I feel that if i were to pull a rookie from the 399 or 699 tier people wouldn't really want it because there is a 49 tier version available from the same product. As for the jersey cards I completely agree with you. They are almost the same as before and i Have never really liked the design of trilogy jersey cards.

    YouTube: andicardsnstuff

  40. Hey Luke! I really enjoyed watching your break. I really love trilogy and the overall designs. I find the base cards look very similar to 12-13 SPA and I wish they were a little more creative. As for the inserts and autos, I love the double rookie class and most of the autos except for the ice scripts. I hate how you can barely see the auto but, they hold quite a bit of value. I loved your break Luke but I don't think I will be buying a box in the 250$ proce range but maybe a mini box! Spuds CardCollections

  41. Nice Break! A bit too much money a for too little hits for me, but still cool! That Huberdeau was awesome! too bad you got none of this years top picks


  42. I agree on what you said but I'm sorry because your tavares was smoushed.


  43. nice break like the desigins and names but price is too high when the price goes down i might pick some up

    you tube canucks rule

  44. Woah - If money was freely available, I'd buy several boxes of this product. I think I have a new favourite envy...

  45. I really like Trilogy. I believe it was very anticipated by many card collectors. I don't really like the price of the box. But there was some pretty nice hits. And the condition the cards were in sucked but you can always send them back. I give it 8/10


  46. Loved the rewiew, I just think that the price is too much for the hits that you get, I rather stick to rookie anthology or something else than this.

    YT: money426

  47. Not bad price value for 6 autos and 2 jersey cards. I didn't have a problem forking over the cash. Better rookies this year too, so more fun to open. I like the ice scripts and rubber puck autos. Sorry to see yours were smudged, not cool... But overall a great product that left me smiling and satisfied.


  48. it sucks that you payed a lot of money for sum of the cards were smudged that is not like upper deck but there is sum nice cards in the set


  49. I love that they brought it back! I love the crisp base set and the ice scripts! Thanks for the contest!


  50. Like you said the price is high but I believe their are some nice rookie cards in this product. Plus people are looking for the first rookie card of certain players.

    YT - OnlyTheMagnificent

  51. The price is a little high for me but the rookies can have some great value! I might have to pick up a mini box in a couple months. I really like the idea of the puck auto cards but I think they should have numbered them, glad that trilogy is back!

    You tube: Alissa Carlson

  52. Did you also get this for free?

  53. Nice break. I want to buy a box now. YouTube xXOpTiMUsSMuRFXx

  54. I really want to get a box of this but it's way to expensive in my opinion

  55. I would really like to buy a mini box sometime, maybe on my birthday I could buy one. Joe Smith

  56. Trilogy is a very interesting Product. I really like all of the rookie level designs, the cokour scheme works well along with the auto and player image on all of the cards. It's interesting with different levels, but it also make the set very hard to collect, and to have Three different rookie autos in the same Product isn't right.

    The plexi cards are really sweet looking. I Think they work awesome in hockey Products where both ice and plexi glass are related to them. The ice scripts are nice looking as well!

    The triple jersey cards are very boring though. They are not even numbered, and I don't like the design either.. For a Product where a mini box COSTs around 100 bucks I would be that happy to pull it.

    The puck autos is a really good idea, with the puck material feeling to it. Though a few desingn elements aren't perfect on those, and it can stil be very improved!

    After all, I'm really happy that the "Double rookie class" has entered the scene!

    Youtube: Majlfp

  57. That Stefan Matteau is really nice! Trilogy is a great product to start the double rookie class season off.

    YT - desarge44

  58. Complete garbage and overpriced. Should be a $100 box. The rookie numbering is a bad idea too. Just too many printed. Selling like crap.