Part of the price drop has to do with the per-box content. Hits were reduced from six per box to four per box, and Panini also increased production numbers on the cards. For Example, previous Dominion base cards were numbered to 199, compared to this year's 299. Inserts were done the same way, too. For example, Peerless Patches cards and Autographed Patch cards were numbered /40 and /60, respectively. This year, that number has jumped to /60 and /99. They also reduced the sive of many of the jersey and patch swatches that are used for these cards.
Despite all that, Dominion is still a great set to go after, and not you get the same great cards at a MUCH more affordable price point.
Here's a video of what my box gave me, with scans to follow:
Base: Tyler Seguin 234/299, Brett Bellemore 5/299
Out of the six cards included in this box, four were hits, meaning that the other two were base cards. Mine included one regular base card and one rookie card. I would assume that the pack-out breaks down to one card being a regular card, and the second being either a rookie or parallel, but I could be totally wrong on that. The way the rookies work out in Dominion is essentially on a three-tiered system. The big names on the rookie card market are given the autographed patch treatment, "lesser" rookies are just having autographed cards, and lesser rookies than that, just have regular non-auto, non-relic rookie cards.
Rookie Auto Patch Ryan Spooner 78/299
Spooner is starting to become more and more productive as an NHLer. After going pointless in four games during the 2012-13 season, he has picked up 9 assists in 15 games so far this year. He has yet to pick up his first NHL goal, but that should come in due time. I do have an issue with this card, though. These are supposed to be autographed patch card, but if you look close at the swatch, you'll see nothing more than a solid jersey piece. This wouldn't bother me if I was promised an autographed memorabilia card, but if it's supposed to be a patch, I want it to be a patch.
Showcase Pan Pals Jack Campbell & Jamie Oleksiak 21/99
While my wife & I have lived up in North Dakota & Minnesota for the past two years, it's inevitable that we'll head back down to Texas, so maybe it's not a bad idea to get a head start on a Dallas Stars collection. Either way, this is a dual autograph card featuring two Dallas rookies. Campbell made his NHL debut on Oct. 20, 2013 against the Anaheim Ducks, but let 6 goals by in a 0-6 loss. So far, it has been his only NHL game, but being a 1st round draft pick (11th overall) in 2010, I'm sure the Stars still have big plans for him. Like Campbell, Oleksiak is also a first-round draft pick (14th overall in 2011). He played in 16 games dirugn the 2012-13 season, picking up two assists, and has made it up to seven games with the Stars so far this season.
Complete Rookies Christian Thomas 3/25
I always love the "Complete" cards, as they feature the four key on-cardboard elements of any hockey sweater: the solid jersey, the prime jersey, the patch, and the fight strap. Fortunately, despite a limited amount of space available, Panini gave me a right-down-the-middle seam for the prime piece, and a three-colored patch. Thomas, so far, has played just one NHL game with the New York Rangers, which took place during the 2012-13 season, where he went scoreless. Thomas was traded from New York to the Montreal Canadiens in July of this year for prospect Danny Kristo. In juniors, however, he was involved in a much more high-profile trade, being one of many pieces in the deal that brought John Tavares from the Oshawa Generals to the London Knights.
Autographed Patches Vincent Lecavalier /99
You may have to use your imagination on this one, but it's actually a pretty awesome pull. While some of the memorabilia pieces this year ar a little smaller than in years past, the autographed patch cards still give you a pretty good-sized piece of memorabilia. I'm not sure if LEcavalier will be pictured as a member of the Tampa Bay Lightning or of the Philadelphia Flyers, but I'm pretty certain that it will be a Lightning patch, which should make for a fantastic-looking card. Of course, it's never great when the top hit from the box is a redemption, but Lecavalier has had plenty of autographs in past products, so I'm not too worried about him not returning these. It'll only be a matter of time.
Well, my very first box of Dominion to bust from any year, and I must say, I'm a fan. Of course, I've bought enough singles off of Ebay to firmly establish just how much of a fan I am, but even opening up a fresh box is a fun experience. And with the price drop, Dominion is now more accessible to fans who may have never had a shot at it in previous years.