What are NBA Top Shot Packs? Top Shot Explained
by Christian Hardy
Top Shot Moments are the digital form of sports collectibles, but just like with sports cards, new Moments always come in packs. Packs are the most exciting way to start your collection on Top Shot, or add to your collection once you’ve started.
Top Shot packs are available on a limited basis, but new Top Shot collectors can start by buying their Starter Pack — containing three Base set Moments — for $9. Packs can be purchased via credit/debit card or with Dapper Balance, which can be topped up with marketplace sales, credit/debit card deposit, or cryptocurrency deposit.
But what’s in those Top Shot packs, and how are the Moments distributed? And when can you buy Top Shot packs? Don’t worry, we’ll answer all of those questions for you here. If you’ve started your collection, you’re well on your way to scoring more packs and more historic NBA Moments.
How to Buy a Top Shot Pack?
NBA Top Shot packs are released in limited-time pack drops. A time for the queue, price, contents, and quantity of packs is specified before these exclusive pack drops, so every pack drop is a lot like a social gathering — for NBA fans.
The Top Shot Pack Queue System
Every pack drop uses a randomized queue system to determine who will get access to purchase a pack. For more exclusive packs, especially rare and legendary pack drops, the demand will be higher than the supply, so not every collector will get a pack.
For these more hyped drops, collectors can gain access to additional queues by meeting Collector Score requirements. The higher your Collector Score, the better chance you’ll have of scoring a pack, as you’ll have the opportunity to get into more queues with gradually less people.
Learn more about Top Shot queues directly from Top Shot.
Parameters for Collector Score will change drop-to-drop, but Top Shot aims to incentivize collectors to collect for better access to high-quality packs. For most pack drops, there is a strict limit of one pack purchase per collector.
Plain and simple: if you have a high Collector Score, you’ll have a better chance at scoring some of the rarest Moments on Top Shot through packs.
When is the Next Top Shot Pack Drop?
Top Shot will announce pack drops via Twitter, Discord, and oftentimes email. Follow and turn on notifications for the Top Shot Twitter account, the Top Shot updates account, and MomentRanks for all news about pack drops so you don’t miss a beat.
Other than occasional stress tests that can pop up at any time (which are only Base packs), all packs are scheduled and communicated at least 12 hours in advance.
Top Shot Pack Tiers
Every pack contains a different variety of Moments. Just like Moments, packs have rarity tiers, but they also can have varying amounts of Moments.
For example, Base set packs contain only three Base set common Moments. However, Premium Packs — a rare pack — contains one rare MGLE Moment and five Base set common Moments in Series 2. Then there are legendary packs, like Holo Icon in Series 2, which contained six commons, three rare MGLEs (x/499), and one Holo Icon (x/99)
Can contain only common Moments, which are currently any mint over 5,000. Includes common special sets like Hustle and Show or Cool Cats.
Always contain at least one rare Moment and common Moments. The max mint count for a rare Moment is 4,999 (low is 500), though the highest rare mint count in Series 2 was 1,800.
Always contain at least one legendary Moments, usually a few rares, and several common (Base set) Moments. The max mint count for rare Moments is /499.
Special Sets Pack Drops
Many pack drops introduce a new set to the Top Shot ecosystem, many of which are rare and legendary sets. For example, after the 2021 All-Star Game, Top Shot released the rare 2021 All-Star Game set, which included Moments from every player who played in the game. These packs cost $229 in Series 2 and included six Moments — one All-Star Game and five common Base Moments.
New pack drops and new sets often follow cornerstones throughout the NBA season, like the end of the NBA Conference Finals, announcing the Rising Stars rosters, or the NBA Playoffs. Each of these sets have their own pack drop(s), sets, artwork, and Moments.
If there’s something exciting going on in the NBA, there’s probably exciting Moments to follow that will come to Top Shot via packs.
After a Pack Drop: Challenges
All of the unique sets, outside of the common Base set, are tied to challenges. Challenges (and Showcase Challenges) are the only way outside of packs that new Top Shot Moments enter the ecosystem.
When a new Top Shot pack is released for a new set, these Moments in the set will be used in a challenge and not released in packs.
For example, not all of the 2021 Rising Stars players were available in the Rising Stars packs. Zion Williamson and Anthony Edwards were reserved as challenge rewards. To receive the Williamson or Edwards Rising Stars Moments, collectors had two weeks to collect all nine required Rising Stars Moments in their collection. If you hold all nine requirements as the time expires, Top Shot will airdrop you a challenge reward.
Top Shot likes to save some of the most iconic Moments for these rewards at times. In the case of the Rising Stars set, the Edwards challenge reward was his dunk over Yuta Watanabe, arguably the dunk of the year.
Challenge rewards are randomly distributed to those who completed it, adding an extra layer of gamification to the rewards.
Learn more about completing Top Shot Challenges in this video:
Top Shot Packs: A Summary
Packs are an easy entry point into the Top Shot world, since any new user can buy their Top Shot Starter Pack, then gain access to a Booster Pack by using the marketplace. And you never know what you might pull out of a pack.
Once you have joined a few queues and scored some packs, you can build a solid collection of Moments, and qualify for more exclusive pack drop queues only available to certain collectors via Collector Score.
Fingers crossed for that #23 LeBron Moment randomly loaded up in one of your packs!