I always wonder how many LootCraters can’t wait to rip everything out of the LootCrate to play with it, and how many keep their LootCrates an intact collectible, just one black brick in a wall of LootCrates. I ask this because it’s very human to want to keep a set together, and LootCrate definitely does their best to put together a compelling collection. Everything feels like it belongs together, and it is complemented by the wonderful box art in the interior, so it feels almost like the contents grew organically inside it, like an alien seed of awesome nerdiness.

Undoubtedly, there are young LootCraters’ mothers that have collapsed the black cardboard boxes like so much rubbish, and wrung incalculable anguish from their children. If this happened this month, I really feel for them, as this month’s box interior was particularly spectacular, recalling many days I spent on not just first wave coin-op video games like Space Invaders, but the entire genre of alien invasion, which covers not just gaming, but science fiction books, comics, movies, and TV shows.

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Aliens have been invading my imagination for as long as I can remember, and as I am in the camp of LootCraters that rip everything out of the box and start playing with them immediately, you can imagine my enthusiasm as I admire and ecstatically play with professionally peruse the pieces in this month’s crate.

This month’s theme, Invasion!, contained a variety of collectibles from several science fiction franchises of video games, TV, and movies.

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The highlight this month was the X-Files: The Day Has Come t-shirt from Threadless. Not only was this shirt exclusive to LootCrate, its designer, “nicebleed,” won a contest sponsored by LootCrate and Threadless with this design. So when you put on this t-shirt, knowing that it is both an exclusive and a design prizewinner, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that while the truth is out there, the shirt is only for you and other LootCraters.

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Next up is the exclusive Alien Facehugger Plush from Kidrobot, which comes with an elastic band so that you can simulate movie memories from Aliens. This facehugger has a case of the snuggles and an emoticon-like face that should get a smile from anyone not carrying an alien symbiote in their guts.

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Manufactured by A Crowded Coop, the exclusive Space Invaders Vinyl Figure takes the iconic video game baddie and makes him into shelf candy. The artful box is just as cool a display item as the vinyl figure.

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Quantum Mechanix provides an exclusive and officially licensed The Fifth Element Prop Replica Multi Pass that displays Leeloo Dallas’ ID, but you can also swap it out for your own ID.

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Additionally there are two Quantum Mechanix exclusive “Invasion” Mini Art Prints tucked in the box. The 9″ x 6″ prints feature the one-sheet movie poster art from The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951) and The War of the Worlds (1953).

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From LootCrate Labs you get the exclusive and officially licensed X-Files LED Flashlight and 3 AAA batteries. The accompanying description notes that it bears a “super strong, high-projector beam,” and is “water-resistant with an anti-shock switch.”

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Wait! That’s not all! LootCraters also get the Brand New and Exclusive January 2016 Invasion! Loot Pin, which has on its tag instructions for how to get the 1st issue of Charles Soule and Alberto Jimenez Albuquerque’s Letter 44 on comiXology.  Long time LootCrate fans will immediately notice that the pinbacks from previous sets have been upgraded into a quality pin that will remind some of Disney theme park pins.

The January Invasion LootCrate was a great example of the fun that can be had by opening a LootCrate every month.  In 2016, every LootCrate will have a t-shirt, and the pinbacks have been upgraded into cloisonné pins, so there are two more reasons to buy them, along with the ongoing sense of randomness and excitement that comes with getting a grab bag that you know will be stocked with something good.  Next month’s theme, Dead, will contain exclusive items from The Walking Dead and Deadpool, including not only a t-shirt but two collectible figures, and you still have fifteen days to be in on the goodies.

To read NerdSpan’s January review of LootCrate’s subscription service for gamer fashionistas, LVL UP+, follow this link.

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