4 minute read
We have all seen expensive deck boxes that protect your deck from a hurricane and claim to lock your cards away with a 10 inch padlock. But not everyone has the means nor the needs for such luxury. If you just want a box to put your deck in then this Ultimate Guard Deck Box could be the solution for you. How does this simple container compare to the all singing all dancing options on the market? Let’s find out…
Table of Contents
How is the build quality?
This Ultimate Guard Deck Box is made from a single thin sheet of acid free, non-PVC plastic, folded and pressed together to form a box. It really is that simple of a construction. The joints are merely stamped together through heat and pressure with no glue used at all. They can be pulled apart with enough force, but shouldn’t pop open on their own.
The hinged lid of the box is a continuation of the single sheet of plastic and is therefore not detachable. The hinge forces the lid to snap back when idle which can be annoying when trying to put 100 double-sleeved cards inside. There is no locking mechanism and the lid relies on friction from a precision build to stay shut.
As is to be expected, thin plastic offers little resistance to bending and can be warped with ease. Even so, we feel like the design and construction of this simple box is about as good as can be achieved with the materials used. The joints are strong and the plastic, while bendable, is still a rigid shell that will offer a reasonable level of protection for your cards.
The Deck Case has a simple design, with a snap-back lid, and is held together with a series of small joints.
It is worth noting at this point the similarities of the Ultimate Guard Deck Case to the Ultra Pro Eclipse PRO Deck Box. In fact, you could be forgiven for mistaking them as the same product! The only notable differences are that the Ultimate Guard Deck Case is 1mm smaller than the Eclipse, as well as the plastic being 0.1mm thinner.
Much like the Ultra Pro Eclipse Deck Box, we can only give this basic build and design a 5/10 for build quality and toughness.
Does the Ultimate Guard Deck Case 100+ fit 100 double-sleeved cards?
Yes, plain and simple. Not only can this deck box fit 100 double-sleeved cards from Ultimate Guard or Ultra Pro (some of the thinnest sleeves on the market) but it also holds 100+ double-sleeved cards in Dragon Shield Sealables and Mattes (which is the thickest normal sleeving combination). With 74mm of storage space, the Ultimate Guard 100+ Deck Box is one of the most spacious offerings on the market. Not bad for an entry level box!
To see exactly which combinations of sleeves will fit into this deck box, please visit our Deck Box Comparison Tool.
How secure is the Deck Box?
Unfortunately, the charm of this simplistic plastic deck box fails to step up to the challenge of serious deck security.
The lid is strong enough to keep the cards secure when simply flipped upside down, but even small movements thereafter are enough for it to open and threaten the release of its contents. Ironically, the snap-back nature of the lid, which can be annoying, acts as a safety net to prevent the cards from fully spilling out. That being said, this will only work to an extent and the box performs poorly in our upside down shake test.
A closeup of the hinge of the lid which acts as a final line of defence against card spillage.
So, no latch, velcro, or magnets. No strap or band. Not even a notch. Just the slight friction of the lid in contact with the main compartment. Simply put, the design of the Ultimate Guard Deck Case offers little security for the cards inside and if used for transporting your cards, we would advise packing it well to prevent it from moving around. We give this an underwhelming (though not totally unexpected) 3/10 for security.
Is there anywhere to put accessories?
No. If you are looking for an affordable Ultimate Guard Deck Box with room for accessories then consider the Ultimate Guard Boulder ‘n’ Tray.
How much will this Ultimate Guard Deck Box set you back?
Now, one of the best things about this product is the cost. At £2.25, it is entirely aimed at the budget market, and is one of the cheapest 100+ deck boxes available. Great for anyone looking to organise decks at home or for a beginner not wanting to commit to spending heaps of money on more expensive options. At the end of the day, money spent on accessories is money not spent on the cards themselves.
The Ultimate Guard Deck Case comes in a huge range of colours along with a handy write-on label sticker.
Closing thoughts - Is this the Ultimate Guard or did it ultimately fail hard?
The Deck Case is a great at-home storage and organisational option for your pre-built decks and even comes with a free ‘write-on label sticker’ to help in this regard. The Deck Case will also fit neatly into larger organisational boxes like the Ultimate Guard Hive, and Gamegenic Dungeon. We must note that the Deck Case is heavily branded on 3 of its sides with logos and promotional text. This could be off putting to some players who would prefer a blank shell for their indexing needs.
The similarities between the Ultimate Guard Deck Case and other entry level deck boxes such as the Ultra Pro Eclipse and Gamegenic Deck Holder cannot be ignored. The Deck Case differentiates itself by being cheaper than the Eclipse and offering more storage space than the Deck Holder. The ultimate low cost storage option!
Build Quality and Toughness
74mm - fits any 100 double-sleeved cards apart from extra thick inners.
Hopefully, after reading this review, your expectations are not misaligned with the reality of this deck box. It is not the ‘Ultimate Guard’ for your precious cards, but it is a great solution to some specific problems.