In a departure from their Star Wars issues within themed series, the New Zealand Mint is today releasing a new Darth Vader coin in a format rare at this mint, although not so elsewhere. The two-ounce ultra high relief silver coin has probably been the darling of the modern coin market over the last few years, no doubt because it offers a perfect balance between impressive detail and reasonable cost.
Just like the seminal Classic Star Wars series, Darth Vader is the initial subject of choice; a wise one given how ultra-iconic the character is. A waist-up image of the cloaked Vader wielding his lightsabre is just how you’d imagine the character to appear. We’ve not seen one in hand or obviously a similar coin from the NZ Mint as there aren’t any, so clearly we’re looking forward to seeing one of these. Cleanly struck coins like this one nearly always look far better in hand than in the images, particularly from this mint. The Classic Star Wars series is universally of an extremely high standard, something not always apparent from the official images.
With only the lightsabre ‘blade’ recieving some colour treatment, this is essentially a clean, proof-finish design and all the better for it. Issued for Niue, the effigy of QEII sits in the centre of the obverse along with the inscribed date, issuer and denomination. Packaged in what looks to be a better than normal box, a certificate of authenticity is enclosed and it all ships in a lightly themed outer shipper. Mintage of these is lower than for the classic series at only 5,000. That’s still a big number for a modern commemorative coin of this specification, but remember that most of these will head to the movie memorabilia market, so don’t expect them to sit around at your local dealer for too long.
Selling for $175.00 USD, it sits right around what you’d expect and it should be available for sale later today from either the NZ Mint website, or from a plethora of local dealers, including some of our sponsors. Sadly, there’s no sign of a Darth Minion coin…