Topps is the most well-known name from the physical sports trading world, and it has been around since 1938. Recently, they released digital versions of their MLB trading cards on a platform called WAX, and it is supposed to be like a baseball version of NBA Top Shot.
Topps MLB NFT released its packs on April 20th, and they cost $5 for a standard pack and $99 for a premium pack. The premium packs contained more and better cards than the standard pack, but on the resale market packs are now selling for anywhere between $100 for a standard and $1000 for a premium.
After having played around with the WAX platform, I would say that there is a much more significant learning curve than there is for NBA Top Shot. The great thing about NBA Top Shot is that it is so accessible to everyone, as cards and packs are sold in USD (and can be bought with credit card).
While the Topps NFT allowed pack purchases with credit card, any cards on the resale market require users to use the WAX token. This is kind of like Bitcoin and Ethereum, and the price can fluctuate on a day-to-day basis. However, this also means there is a learning curve for users, as they have to learn how to buy items with cryptocurrency instead of traditional cash/card.
On the other hand, the WAX platform does allow for some cool customization options that NBA Top Shot does not have; for example, every week, Topps allows you to “burn” some of your NFTs for better cards (basically you trade in multiple lesser cards for one good card). Also, Topps has a feature where you can auction and trade your cards, which is different from NBA Top Shot (where you can only buy cards at listed prices).
Overall, the NFT industry is so new that it is still difficult to tell where the industry is going. I am skeptical of whether it will have staying power, but after playing on NBA Top Shot and the Topps MLB NFT for the past couple of months, I can say that the best NFT platforms do a great job of keeping users engaged and active in the platform. Additionally, both NBA Top Shot and the Topps platform have been able to create incredible user communities where people all around the world interact with each other. This makes it possible that digital trading cards will come to replace physical trading cards, especially as technology improves in the future!
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