Series: Dragonball Z
Main distribution: United States / Japan
These are trading cards from Dragonball Z from Artbox. This series is called the Hero Collection Series 3 and contains 72 cards and 12 Special Prismatic Cards, making 84 cards total. There is also an additional Promo Card. The numbering continues from Series 2. The images are based on the Majin Buu Saga and Fusion Saga.
Artbox (also known as DBA Artbox Entertainment or Japan Printing Products USA Inc.) was an American publisher of trading cards and Collectable Card Games. Their headquarters was in San Clemente, California, USA. A subsidiary of Ensky (Formerly Amada Printing MFG. Co., Ltd), Artbox Entertainment was established in 1995 as a United States based company to manufacture and market popular licensed products by specialising in the category of printed toys and collectables. Founded over 65 years ago, Ensky is Japan’s leading manufacture, marketer and distributor of licensed products. With strong support from Japan’s leading manufacturers, Artbox Entertainment was well equipped as a leader of printed toys and collectables for licensed products.
They gained many licenses, including Dragonball, Dragonball Z, Pokémon, Sailormoon and many more.
Here I’ll show my Dragonball Z Hero Collection Series 3 cards.
The cards are recognisable as they have a black border around the image with Dragonball Z on it, as well as the card number and the series name. The back has a character picture and Japanese text.
They came in 5 packs. I always kept one of the pack’s designs with my cards. Each pack also came with an advertising card, which I kept as well.
I got 61/85.
My uncle worked at the NATO, an American base, which had an American shop that imported stuff from America for the Americans based here. Occasionally my uncle brought me along and I would buy tons of cards there. I would also ask him to buy me some every time he went. This was the only place I could find these at. Which also made it hard for me to get them. I also had no one to trade with as no one else collected these (nor could get them really).
However, I wanted to get the previous series complete first, and so focussed on those more. In the end, I either ran out of money or the shop sold out, but I could no longer get these anymore and never completed the set. I managed to get a few more that I was missing 2 decades later from an American that posted several for sale in a vintage Dragonball group on Facebook. As I was buying from him anyway to finally finish of Trading Card Series 3, I added these to make postage a bit more worthwhile. I still don’t have all though.
And I would still like to get them all, as I love the Hero Collection Series, but there are other card series I only miss a few from, and would like to finish them off first. Finding 24 missing cards is no small feat after all, but if anyone has them, I’d be interested of course.
Got any more details / information you think I should add? Or did I get something wrong? Do you own any of these cards? Or do you have the full set? Do you agree or disagree with my findings? Let me know in the comments below!