June 19, 2024

Gabbing Geek

Your online community for all things geeky.

Mystery Geek Box Monthly Subscriptions: The Good, The Bad, and The Geeky


Mystery box subscriptions are all the craze these days. You know what I’m talking about, right? Mystery subscription boxes are mail order boxes filled with stuff that you pay for on a monthly basis. The catch is that you have no idea what is going to be in the box month-to-month. You have to go on faith that what is being delivered, will match the value of what you’re paying for the monthly subscription. And depending on what you subscribe to, you can open your mystery box and it may be filled beyond the value of your monthly fee, or you may come up short. It’s a gamble. And with a million different subscription themes out there; boxes for dogs, for foodies, for grooming, for geeks, etc, etc. You have to be sure you know what you’re getting into. Curious? Read on.

Within the past year I started hearing more and more about subscription mystery boxes. Specifically a friend of mine told me about Loot Crate, which inspired me to do a little research. What is this thing called Loot Crate? And where do I get one? When I took to the interwebs, I was a little overwhelmed. Just do a quick Google search for “Geek Mystery Box Monthly Subscription” and check out all the different options that come up. Actually – save yourself some time, and check out our handy-dandy-list-of-truth below (in alphabetical order):

That’s 22 – count them – 22 geek theme mystery box subscriptions! THAT’S JUST BANANAS. B-A-N-A-N-A-S! And honestly, I don’t know if I found them all, probably not. So if you know of a geek subscription box that I didn’t list, let me know, I’d happily update the list.

So what now? You have our Gabbing Geek list of truth, but what do you do with it? Subscribe to each one? HA! That’s totally up to you, but let’s look inside each one before you subscribe your life away. In an effort to better understand each geek-box-subscription, I did a little research. Here is what I reviewed:

1. Cost of subscription
2. Value of the box based on inventory of items.

First, I gathered cost/value comparison information & pictures from My Subscription Addiction unless otherwise noted. Second, I personally ranked the subscriptions from WORST to BEST based on my own perception of value. My hope is that these mini overviews will help you determine for yourself if the cost of a geek box subscription is worth the price.

#22 – Box Of Dread:


Subscription Cost: $20.00
Estimated Box Value Based on August Inventory of Items: Less than $10.00

  • All Cheerleaders Die Bag
  • Cthulhu Novelty Bottle Opener
  • 50% off coupon code for the Stan Winston School of Character Arts.
  • Wolf Creek 2 Promotional Postcards
  • Aftermath Mask
  • Open Wound Tattoo
  • Cabin Fever Patient Zero Hand Sanitizer

Jenny’s Thoughts: When you look at the picture above, it looks like you could have easily gotten these items for free at any comic-con. Hell, I bet I could get these items for free at a local comic book store because most of it is crap. The only redeeming thing is the Cthulhu bottle opener, and even then I wouldn’t spend the $20 price tag for this box. Hopefully other months are better, but for now, I have ranked this the worst.

#21 – Infinity Crates:


Subscription Cost: $40.00
Estimated Box Value Based on December Inventory of Items: $30.00

  • The Mighty Thor Tee
  • Funko POP Vinyl in Poison Ivy
  • Groot & Rocket Raccoon Holiday Mini Poster
  • Magnets
  • The Hobbit Vinyl Sticker
  • Cadbury Dairy Milk Buttons

Jenny’s Thoughts: I wouldn’t have ranked this so low on the list, but unfortunately for this UK based company, the $40 price tag is more like $60 when you factor in shipping and handling. And based on the inventory of items, I don’t think it is worth the cost of the box including shipping it from the UK. Sorry Brits! I can get that here in the US cheaper at my local comic book shop. You may have different thoughts on that, but I’m looking at the over all cost vs. value.

#20 – Anime Bento:


Subscription Cost: $35.00
Estimated Box Value Based on Google Shopping My Figure Collection October Inventory of Items: $35.00

  • A Neon Genesis Evangelion package
  • Green tea flavor Pocky
  • Moe-Chan Card
  • Attack on Titan Sticker
  • Kill la Kill Patch
  • Miku Figureine
  • Orchis Figureine

Jenny’s Thoughts: I am not an anime fan – so this box is naturally low on my rankings due to the contents. But it also hit the low rankings due to the fact that when I Google searched the items for pricing, most of the prices added up below the subscription cost. That being said, I was generous when I started adding everything up. The box is probably worth less than $35, but with most of the contents coming from overseas, it was hard to tell. The only reason this is ranked higher than #21 – Infinity Crates, is because the overall sticker price for this subscription + shipping/handling is less than the UK company’s cost. Subscribe at your own risk.

#19 – Nerd Block Jr. Boys:


Subscription Cost: $13.99
Estimated Box Value Based on October Inventory of Items: $25.00

  • TMNT Keychain Plush
  • Dragons Riders of Berk Dangers of the Deep Graphic Novel
  • Savvi Costume Face Tattoos
  • Nitro Grinders
  • Super Mario Mini Figure

Jenny’s Thoughts: I don’t know about this one guys. Honestly, because I don’t have children I don’t know if I’m the best judge for whether this box would be fun for boys. But just looking at the contents I’m less than enthused. Is it worth the $14 + shipping? Meh, I didn’t think so. The toys/features look boring. But maybe there is some little boy out there that thinks this is awesome. Who knows. This is one that you’d need to watch over a few months to see if the value varies.

#18 – Booty Bin:


Subscription Cost: $49.99
Estimated Box Value Based on Google Shopping the February Inventory of Items: $49.00

  • Pop Rocks
  • Slave Leia card holder
  • Mo Money Sticker
  • Handmade Firefly Pillowcase
  • Dice Stress Ball
  • Qman Figureine
  • “I So Out Geek You” key chain

Jenny’s Thoughts: This was a hard one for me. When I started to Google the cost of most of these items, it was hard to find exact matches. For example, the Mo-Money sticker was not available, nor was the handmade Firefly Pillowcase, so I had to make an educated guess. That being said, the only thing I found of value would have been the pillow case. The other items seem like worthless filler, and if I’m paying a company $50 for a subscription, I don’t want to feel like a pillow case is the only item that matters. Sorry Booty Bin, I wasn’t impressed.

#17 – My Geek Box:


Subscription Cost: $30.00
Estimated Box Value Based on January Inventory of Items: $38.00

  • My Geek Box Magazine
  • DC Comics Justice League Comic #3
  • Geek Shield Tee
  • Judge Dredd POP Funko Vinyl
  • Superman Energy Drink
  • Batman Keyring

Jenny’s Thoughts: This is another UK based company, which means shipping/handling are going to be a factor. I actually didn’t mind the contents shown in the picture, the shirt looks a little cheap, but overall, the contents seem fun, and if I was unboxing it, I would have been happy overall. The only issue I have with this is that it is coming from the UK which means that you’re paying more like $50 once everything is said and done. And I don’t know if the contents match the overall price I’d have to pay to get it to me.

#16 – Geek Me Box:


Subscription Cost: $29.99
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items: $42.00

  • Hero Vs Hero Tee
  • Assassins Creed Connor (with Mohawk)
  • Sonic the Hedgehog Mini Morphed
  • Pac-Man Keychain
  • Dragon Ball Z Chromium Archive Edition Trading Cards

Jenny’s Thoughts: I may have unfairly ranked this one low, but hear me out. The price for this box is $30 for the subscription (which includes shipping/handling). That being said, there are other boxes on this list that offer just about the same amount of items for a lower subscription cost. It’s not that the items are bad, actually they are pretty awesome. The T-shirt looks to be of good quality, and the mini figure is fun, plus you get your very own Assassin’s Creed action toy (if you’re into that thing). When subscription boxes are competing for price vs. value, I think you can do just as well with some of the lower priced companies out there.

#15 – Hero Crate:


Subscription Cost: $29.99
Estimated Box Value Based on December Inventory of Items: $37.00

  • Marvel Comics Air Freshener
  • Captain America Mug
  • POP Funko Vinyl Captain America
  • Cap’n Ameri-Crunch Tee

Jenny’s Thoughts: Just like #16 – Geek Me Box, this is another subscription where I actually like the contents of the box, I just don’t want to pay the $30 subscription price. The thing that separates this company from the others is that there is no actual subscription or shipping and handling fee. You pay the flat rate price of $29.99, and they ship you a box. This would be a great box to test out, I just don’t know if I want to pay the $29.99. Call me cheap. But I do like the concept of no fuss, no subscription. This is one I’ll be tracking for a while.

#14 – 1UP Box:


Subscription Cost: $12.92
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items: $31.00

  • Super Cross Bros T-Shirt
  • Walking Dead Wind-Up Action Figure
  • Nintendo Mushroom Candy
  • Toy Grenade
  • Zombie Anit-Virus Hand Sanitizer

Jenny’s Thoughts: As we get close and close to #1, it’s going to be hard to delineate between each subscription. This wasn’t so bad – I just wasn’t as impressed with the contents as others. The only thing I really like based on the photo is the T-Shirt. I would wear the T-shirt. The other stuff is just filler, and thus not really worth the cost of subscription + shipping/handling.

#13 – Collectible Geek:


Subscription Cost: $15.25
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items: $67.00

  • Tauriel POP Funko Vinyl
  • Slytherin and Gryffindor Patches
  • Hermione Time Turner Necklace
  • Lord of the Rings Ring Pendant
  • Game of Thrones Mystery Minis Vinyl Figure
  • Game of Thrones Necklace
  • Exclusive themed poster
  • KRE-O Dungeons & Dragons Army Builder Pack

Jenny’s Thoughts: I was torn. As much as I am a HUGE fan of Lord of The Rings and Harry Potter, I couldn’t bring myself to rank this one in the top ten. The value is there, at least, the PERCEIVED value is there. The items certainly are fun, but I had to think….would I actually wear the necklaces or sport the patches. And as a 35 yr. old woman, the answer is no. Probably not. Which then makes most of the items useless to me. Sure, I’m a collector, and like to have moments of my favorite geek franchises, but I’m also selective about what I collect. This is probably better suited for someone younger than me who is cool with collecting anything and everything. That being said, the ring is pretty rad… I may rethink this in the future. I’ll keep my eye on you Collectible Geek!

#12 – Marvel Collector Corps:


Subscription Cost: $25.00
Estimated Box Value Based on Inventory of Items not available. First box ships April 2015.

Jenny’s Thoughts: This is a little unfair to some of the previous boxes I’ve ranked and to Marvel, since they haven’t shipped out their first box. But I ranked them above some of the other boxes because they promise to be %100 exclusive. They also promise to offer apparel, funko-pop, and other awesome Marvel items in each shipment. And let’s face it, I’m definitely Marvel biased. The box sounds pretty awesome to me, but we’re yet to see the first box. So they don’t make the top 10, but they are not the worst of them out there.

#11 – My Geeky Goodies:


Subscription Cost: $24.99
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items: $43.00

  • He-Man and the Masters of the Universe Volume One DVD
  • COPS Volume 1 DVD
  • Eternian Academy T-Shirt by TeeMaki.com
  • Kre-O Transformers Ultimate Kreon Collection
  • Mordles Blind Bag Edition by Toyfinity.com
  • My Little Pony Friendship is Magic Figure

Jenny’s Thoughts: This is a pretty cool box. Mind you, the box is a little pricey, but at least they don’t charge you shipping. I like that aspect. The price seems fair for the inventory of items received, and they are items that are fun and not something I would usually seek for myself. This is one I would track for a while as well, to see if they do well on consistently packing their boxes.

#10 – Nerd Block Jr. Girls:


Subscription Cost: $13.99
Estimated Box Value Based on January Inventory of Items: $25.00

  • Olaf Beanie Baby
  • Despicable Me 2 Minion Finger Puppet
  • Hello Kitty First Aid Kit
  • Shopkins Seasons 2 Blind Bag
  • Harry Potter Figures (2)

Jenny’s Thoughts: I don’t know who is curating the Nerd Block Jr Girls vs. Nerd Block Jr Boys, but the girls box for January was far superior. They really know girls. With items centered around Frozen, Hello Kitty, and Harry Potter, the value of this box for the price is spot on. I can just hear the squeals for miles when some unsuspecting little girl opens the boxes of surprises. As I have been saying, consistency is key, so it’s worth the research into ongoing months.

#9 – Horror Block:


Subscription Cost: $19.99
Estimated Box Value Based on January Inventory of Items: $47.00

  • Normal People Scare Me Tee
  • Good Guy Tee
  • MadBalls
  • Living Dead Dolls Figurines Pink Posey
  • Rue Morgue Magazine
  • The Twilight Zone Comic Issue 1: Shadow and Substance

Jenny’s Thoughts: I’ll be the first to say that I’m not a horror fan; but this box seems pretty awesome for people who are! Immediately I thought of one of my husband’s friends who I know would love this box (Jordan, I’m looking at you). For $20 this box offers two tee’s! That’s value enough right there. Well done Horror Block – I’d be curious to see what your other months look like.

#8 – Nerd Block:


Subscription Cost: $19.99
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items: $47.00

  • Titans Vinyl Figures: Better Call Saul
  • Flashsicle Tee
  • Cliccors (Set of 2)
  • Star Wars Comic
  • Nerd Play Series 1 Cards
  • Paladone Drum Desk Set

Jenny’s Thoughts: This is the 3rd Nerd Block subscription in the top 10. That should say something about this company. Fun T-Shirt, fun comic, fun figurine. This box has got it all. This is one that I will be watching for a while due to the price point, and the overall perceived value.

#7 – Aboxalypse:


Subscription Cost: Starts at $10.00 but is customizable to your budget.
Estimated Box Value Based on Nerf Herder’s ($50) March Subscription Inventory Of Items: $87.00

  • 3 Star Wars Command Plastic Figure Packs
  • 2 Portal Sentry Turret Blind Boxes
  • The Crow Funko Pop
  • Harley Quinn Funko Pop
  • Daryl Dixon Chopper Funko Pop
  • Star Wars Comic w/Think Geek Varient Cover

Jenny’s Thoughts: This is a tough one. Based on the subscription description, you get to choose your level of payment for goods received. Meaning, if you only want to spend $10, you can, and you’ll received $10 worth of stuff. And so on up the food chain. The more you spend, the better stuff you get. That seems a little risky to me. But based on Nerf Herder’s review, the box he got for $50 doesn’t seem too bad. This is why they make the top 10. I like that it’s customizable, but I also like that the items shipped were pretty good collectable items. This is one in which I would proceed with caution and research if I were you.

 #6 – Hero Box:


Subscription Cost: $49.99
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items Of Items (as per Nerf Herder): $75.00

  • Shazam! T-shirt
  • 2 Pair of Captain America Socks
  • Superman Keyring
  • Superman Water Bottle
  • Captain America Bag
  • Superman Window Decal
  • Action Comics
  • 2 Buttons
  • Magnet
  • Superman eraser
  • Papercraft item

Jenny’s Thoughts: I really loved this box (well, the photo of it at least). Looks like a really fun box. And based on Nerf Herder’s description, he really liked it as well. The only reason why I didn’t rank this higher is because of the $49.99 price tag for subscription. Looks like a solid box, just a little too pricey for my blood.

#5 – The ZBOX:

zbox 2

Subscription Cost: $13.99
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items (as per Warped Factor): $72.00

  • The Walking Dead MiniMates
  • DVD Zombies: The Living History
  • Zombie Badges
  • Zombie Hunting Permit Car Sticker
  • Brain Licker Candy
  • Green Vinyl 7″ Single Featuring Music From John Carpenter’s The Fog
  • Limited Edition Zombie T-shirt Illustrated By Artist Dan Mumford
  • Zombie Themed Socks

Jenny’s Thoughts: Zbox is newer into the game, and they have a lot of options on their website. By the looks of the contents of the box, you really are getting some cool geeky stuff. And the price isn’t bad either. Just be cautioned, this is a UK based company – which means shipping/handling need to be considered. But based on the customizable contents and the estimated cost of delivery, it looks like this is a solid box. If anyone has experience with Zbox, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

#4 – Geek Fuel:


Subscription Cost: $13.90
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items: $47.00

  • Batman Pacman Tee
  • Retro Magazine “Best of Year 1″ Issue #0
  • Space Invaders Soap on a Rope
  • Pin and sticker for Read Retro
  • DC Comics Superhero Pint Glass
  • Worms Downloadable Game w/ Gummies

Jenny’s Thoughts: Solid, solid, box. This is one that I’m considering looking into as an alternative subscription. Love the T-shirt, the fun themed soap on a rope, great pint glass (wonder woman always gets me). And for the price, it seems right in line with the perceived value.

 #3 – Comic Bento:


Subscription Cost: $17.50
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items: $60.00

  • Ms. Marvel
  • Miss Fury
  • Shutter
  • Buffy The Vampire Slayer

Jenny’s Thoughts: Who doesn’t love comic books? And in this case – graphic novels. That’s right, Comic Bento doesn’t send you single issues, they send you graphic novels. And with the average price per graphic novel at $15 per book, the value vs. subscription cost is off the charts. I’m seriously considering this one as a new subscription, just don’t tell my hubby.

#2 – Arcade Block:


Subscription Cost: $19.99
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items: $57.00

  • Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask Tee
  • Link Plush
  • Hyrule Mouse Pad
  • StarFox Coffee Mug
  • Pac-Man Key Chain
  • Sonic Buildable Figure

Jenny’s Thoughts: Another solid box by Nerd Block. Obviously they know what they are doing. This will have been their 4th box in the top 10! I love gaming centered themes, and I think any gamer out there would too. This time Arcade block went above and beyond their subscription value with some really cool items. Kinda wish I had that StarFox mug in my house, too bad I subscribe to another service.

#1 – Loot Crate:


Subscription Cost:$13.95
Estimated Box Value Based on February Inventory of Items:$60.00

  • DIY Munny Figure
  • Rock Paper Scissors Dice
  • Hex Bug Ant
  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
  • Waka-Waka Poster by Manny Peters
  • SkyBound Games SUPERFIGHT Card Game

Jenny’s Thoughts: Okay, full disclaimer – I’m a little biased to Loot Crate. I’ve been subscribing to them for the past 6 months. But here’s the thing – I have been more than happy with each shipment. The consistency of their boxes is outstanding. Don’t believe me, go out on the internet and read the reviews and watch the unboxing of so many other subscribers. Loot Crate knows how to diversify their geekiness. Sometimes you get shirts, sometimes socks, sometimes books, sometimes toys/collectables, etc. They also have offered their subscribers exclusive items (of which I have partaken). So that is why they get the #1 spot, not just because I love them, but because so many other people do as well.

Update! Update! Since writing this article, 18 new boxes have come onto the market. For a review of those new boxes please see my article: 18 New Geek Monthly Mystery Box Subscriptions To Check Out

And if you want to see how they all rank against each other, please check out our page: Ultimate Monthly Mystery Geek Subscription Box Rankings

So there you have it. The Good, the bad, and the geeky. Something to remember before you move forward with any subscription, is to look for consistency. Read the reviews of current subscribers. Watch the unboxing videos that are out there. I personally subscribed to Loot Crate and have been really happy with their overall service and offering of products (and no, they do not pay me to say these things). But there is also something to be said about Nerd Block – with so many of their subscriptions found in my top 10. With any subscription, some months are going to seem better than others, but like I said before, do your research and look for consistency. After putting so much research into the 22 subscriptions I’ve listed above, I am definitely more curious about a few of them. I’ll most likely keep tabs on the top 5 to see how the next few months pan out.

But what about you? Was this helpful? What are your thoughts on geek subscription boxes – and do you have any experiences you’d like to share with Gabbing Geek? Be sure to let us know in the comments!