German mint MCI has debuted what should be the first in a new series of two-ounce, high-relief silver coins showcasing some of the warrior castes that have defined the path of world history through the centuries. It’s a similar concept to the New Zealand Mint issued Warriors of History series, although for design the new MCI coin has more in common with the current trend for high-relief mythology coins than it does that part-coloured range.
First to be issued is a subject that almost defines the moniker Legendary Warriors, the Samurai of Japan. It’s an eclectic design full of disparate elements and yet one that screams Samurai at the top of its voice. There’s certainly no mistaking who is being featured here. The layered look of the artwork, enhanced by some serious high-relief, works well. The mounted Samurai in the foreground is dynamic and is placed in front of a traditional medieval Japanese building. Behind that is a bamboo pattern upon which is inscribed the coin title. The date and composition are inscribed at the bottom – we’d like to see at least one of those moved to the obverse to keep the main artwork a little less encumbered, but we’re nitpicking here.
Issued for Burkina Faso, an African state that MCI issue a large proportion of their coins for, the obverse has that nations emblem on it, surrounded by the inscribed issuer and denomination. The coin is packaged in one of those acrylic-block display frames that we think are about the best way out there at the moment to show off coins. Unlike the NZ Mint ones with their discrete closure magnets however, the ones used by MCI have highly-intrusive enclosures in them. We’d definitely recommend a look at something a bit more subtle, but the use of this type of frame is a positive step for sure. It’s all packaged in a red coin box inside a themed shipper sleeve, along with a certificate of authenticity.
Available to buy now from MCI-Mints own estore, Euromunzehandel, it’s selling for a reasonable €139.95 Euro. That puts it at a pretty competitive price mark for this genre. A fine debut and a big step up in MCI’s ability to do impressive levels of relief. We think those interested in Samurai culture will find much to like here.