07th Jun2017

Product Review: “Super Smashing” ZBox

by Phil Wheat

nintendo-zbox

Official description: Love all things Nintendo? Check out our Super Smashing box that celebrates everything about the influential Japanese company, which pays host to some of Nintendo’s greatest heroes. From the iconic Mario to the Hero of Time, you’ll be sure to find something you love in this Super Smashing box. This box will be paying homage to some of the most iconic video game characters in history. This Special Edition box is sure to sell out fast, so grab it now to ensure you don’t miss out on this exclusive box, packed to the brim with awesome Nintendo-themed goodies.

It’s been a LONG time since I ordered a blind box from anywhere; and I used to get a LOT of them! The reason? As with many people who get caught up in mystery box collecting – one: the costs really started to mount up and two: after a while I felt that the quality of the particular boxes I was buying had started to drop off dramatically. To the point where some of the contents were of the types of items that you can pick up cheaper from discount retailers like Poundland and B&M. But I still had the mystery box itch and – after an email popped up in my inbox – I decided that the new “Special Edition” Nintendo-themed ZBox fron Zavvi would scratch that itch.

Yeah, it didn’t. In fact it only served to reaffirm why I stopped buying them in the first place!

The Contents:

  • Super Mario Bros 8-Bit Coasters
  • Super Mario “Yoshi” Character Keyring
  • Legend of Zelda “Link” Glass
  • Legend of Zelda Hyrule Pen and Pen Topper
  • Super Mario Donkey Kong Family action figure 3-pack
  • Nintendo Controller Snapback Baseball Cap

zbox-nintendo-contents

See what I mean? Not that inspiring; and certainly nothing you couldn’t pick up elsewhere if you so wish (in fact a LOT of these items are sold in Game stores across the UK). Where’s the cool “only available in this box” item that you get from a myriad of other mystery box companies these days? Where’s the wow factor? This box certainly isn’t “Super Smashing” that’s for sure. In fact it more like a “Meh” box to be honest…

Don’t get me wrong, some of the items included are pretty cool. I really like the cap – it’s easily the best thing in this box; and if it wasn’t for the defects in decal on the “Link’s Glass,” that would be a winner too. The stained-glass window design looks cool and the colours are vibrant, though the QC on this product needs some improvement: the glass itself was cloudy and could’ve done with a real good cleaning! What is a disappointment are the coasters… Yes, the 8-bit, original NES-styled designs may look cool but the actual product is made out of compressed paper/cardboard. Now, I don’t know about you, but I use coasters to keep drinks and spills off my table. Get these coasters wet however and they’re likely to disintegrate… another defective product lol! But hey, at least – if you should so wish – you can use the various coasters (you get a LOT, 20 coasters to be exact) to re-create a level from Super Mario Bros. Maybe as a piece of art perhaps?

Speaking of defects – that’s the main reason I’ve never bough the small Super Mario Donkey Kong figures in the ZBox – the paint apps are terrible and there’s zero quality control. To get a set here is OK, I guess, maybe you can justify getting these for “free” if you tally up the RRP on the other items included.

But my biggest bugbear, and one that I perhaps shouldn’t be THAT concerned about, is the fact that his entire “Special Edition” ZBox just came packed in a standard shipping box from Zavvi! No bright red box as pictured on the website (and pictured above), not even the usual printed brown box that comes with other ZBoxes. Nope, just a crappy cardboard box. Which is why this is a written review, rather than an unboxing… After all, who wants to see anyone taking products out of a bog-standard cardboard shipper?

Value For Money?

Despite any disappointment I may have had, it’s always worth taking a objective eye on mystery boxes like these – and the best way to do that? Compare the cost of the box with the cost of the items at retail. So, the breakdown:

  • Super Mario Bros 8-Bit Coasters – £5.99 (Nintendo Store)
  • Super Mario “Yoshi” Character Keyring – £3.99 (Amazon)
  • Legend of Zelda “Link” Glass – £6.99 (Amazon)
  • Legend of Zelda Hyrule Pen and Pen Topper – £2.99 (Nintendo Store
  • Super Mario Donkey Kong Family action figure 3-pack – £4.99 (B&M)
  • Nintendo Controller Snapback Baseball Cap – £13.99 (Nintendo Store)

So, that’s a grand total of £38.94; and the FULL retail price of the box is £34.99. Which means this box is just under the retail price for these items. Which, in all honesty, means that – if you don’t want all the included goodies – you’re probably better off sourcing the items you want from online stores. UNLESS you have a discount code… and we do!

If you want to take a chance on this ZBox for yourself, you can get £10 off with the code SMASH10 – which may soften the blow on any disappointment when it arrives…

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