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Rare Nintendo game is $40,000 windfall
« on: March 02, 2010, 01:10:06 AM »
This rare game sold for $41,300. Impressed by the story of the North Carolina eBay seller who stumbled upon an ultra-rare, $13,000 Nintendo game? So were we -- and so was Kansas reader Dave, who headed for his basement to see if there was video game gold lurking down there.

"We had quite a collection (185+ games) that has sat in our basement for over 20 years," Dave told Y! Games. "The games were on a list to be brought to Goodwill – in fact, within a month, Goodwill was going to have them."

To his astonishment, not only did he find a copy of the same game that just fetched over $13,000 on eBay -- highly sought-after collector's item Stadium Events -- it was in perfect condition, right down to the original shrinkwrapping and Richard Gordman pricetag. (A mere $29.99, if you're wondering.)

"Now I’m not much of a collector, but I know that having a factory seal is good," he said.

But he's only just now finding out quite how good.

As it turns out, the game's unopened condition makes Dave's copy of Stadium Events three times more valuable: he sold it on auction site eBay for a breathtaking $41,300. It's thought to be one of only two shrinkwrapped copies of the game still in existence.

Why had he never unwrapped it? He couldn’t see the point. Stadium Events needed a special floor mat controller to play, and Dave couldn't find one.

"The pads weren't available when we went to purchase it," he said. "We never got around to returning the game...lucky us!"

"Lucky us" indeed. Nintendo bought the rights to the floor mat controller in 1988, and recalled the few copies of Stadium Events that reached retailers. Fewer than 200 games are thought to have escaped destruction, and fewer than 20 are thought to still exist. Dave's procrastination earned him a $41,270 profit, which he and his wife plan to invest.

"After taxes and tithing, the rest of our part will be going to a retirement account that has been decimated by the dot-com bomb, 9/11, and the recent market problems. Not very sexy, but needed." He's also going to auction off the rest of his Nintendo paraphernalia.

If that's inspired you to comb your basement, attic, or other dark corners for valuable 1980s video game memorabilia, don't underestimate the demand for even the most everyday of Nintendo collectibles -- this box of Nintendo breakfast cereal sold on eBay last week for over $200. And if you think you've happened on a valuable game, check it against the list here to avoid disappointment.

Most Expensive Nintendo NES Games
 
Some of the most rare and expensive games ever are from the Nintendo NES. Below is a list of the rarest and most expensive Nintendo games and what makes them so valuable.

The list is ranked by highest recorded sales price per game.

Stadium Events
New Price: $41,300 Used Price: $1,000
An auction for a sealed copy of Stadium Events set a record for the highest priced game ever sold. The game was released in a limited number of stores in 1987, but Nintendo bought the rights to this Bandai game so they could release it as World Class Track Meet. This is considered to be the rarest of the licensed NES games with only an estimated 200 copies in existance. Don't confuse this with the PAL version (see below) which is not as rare but looks very similar. You can use a Stadium Events version guide to tell them apart.

Nintendo Campus Challenge 1991
New Price: NA Used Price: $20,100
In 1991 Nintendo held a video game tournament at college campuses across the country. For the competition they created a cartridge which had three games on it, Super Mario 3, Dr. Mario, and PinBot, and a 6 minute time limit. Only one of these is known to exist and was found at a ex-Nintendo employee's garage sale. The game sold on ebay this past summer for $20,100.

Nintendo World Championships Gold
New Price: NA Used Price: $18,000
Considered to be the "Holy Grail" of game collecting by many, it is no longer the most expensive video game or even the most expensive Nintendo game. Nintendo gave away 26 of these gold cartridges after the 1990 Nintendo World Championships (see below). The game cartridge has Super Mario, Tetris, and Rad Racer on one cartridge and gives players a combined score for all three games after playing for six minutes.

Nintendo World Championships Gray
New Price: NA Used Price: $5,500
The gray version of Nintendo World Championships is not as rare as the Gold version, but still sells for more than $5,000. Nintendo held a video game competition in 1990 to determine the best Nintendo players in three different age groups. The winner in each age group and each city was given a gray cartridge as a prize so only 90 of these exist today.

Myriad 6-in-1
New Price: $5,000 Used Price: $985
Myriad 6 in 1 is a collection of six games on one cartridge. Myriad bought all the remaining 6-in-1 cartridges from Caltron (see below) as they were going out of business. Myriad then changed the sticker on the front and added a unique serial number to each cartridge. The game was unlicensed by Nintendo and there are thought to be fewer than 100.

Stadium Events PAL Version
New Price: $4,000 Used Price: $990
The European version of Stadium Events is not as rare as its American counterpart, but is still an expensive NES game. The PAL version was released in multiple languages so some versions have English wording, while others have German or even Dutch. The game isn't as rare because Nintendo never recalled it like they did with the NTSC version.

Caltron 6-in-1
New Price: $1,775 Used Price: $860
Caltron 6-in-1 is an unlicensed game for the NES and is notoriously bad. All six games are of very low quality and this helped limit the number of games sold. Caltron Industries shut-down as a video game publisher after this game came out and it is the only game they ever released. The six games on the cartridge Cosmos Cop, Adam and Eve, Magic Carpet 1001, Balloon Monster, Porter, and Bookyman, are all take offs on other popular NES games.

Peek-A-Boo Poker
New Price: NA Used Price: $1,300
Peek-A-Boo Poker is another unlicensed game for the NES, but it is also adult rated. The game is basically strip poker on the NES with female characters on the game removing clothes if you win. The game was made by Panesian, the same publishers who made Bubble Bath Babes and Hot Slots, which are two more pornographic games you will see lower on this list.

Bubble Bath Babes
New Price: NA Used Price: $725
Bubble Bath Babes is an adult version of Tetris with bubbles. You arrange bubbles of similar colors so they are touching and they disappear. The game was produced in very limited quantities and were sold in VHS style boxes instead of the usual NES game box. Very few of these ever sold because it was only sold through Video stores, and not game stores.

Cheetahmen II
New Price: $870 Used Price: $650
Cheetahmen II is a sequel that was never officially released. It was completed by it's developer but never sold. In 1997 all 1,500 of the games were found in a warehouse and sold in the secondary market. The game has so many bugs that it considered almost unplayable. In-spite of its poor quality it will still fetch more than $600 on a regular basis.

Hot Slots
New Price: NA Used Price: $550
Hot Slots has you play a slot machine on the NES but at certain times during the game pixelated woman without much on will show up on the screen to say something. The game was only sold through mail-order to video stores and for obvious reasons was never licensed by Nintendo.

Punch-Out Special Edition
New Price: NA Used Price: $415
A gold version of Punch-Out for the NES. 10,000 copies of the game were made and given out as part of a Nintendo Golf competition in Japan. The game is for the Famicom in Japan. The special editon was actually released before any other version of Punch-out and doesn't even have Mr. Dream or Mike Tyson as the final fight. Super Macho Man is the last character in the game.

Mr. Gimmick
New Price: NA Used Price: $200
Mr. Gimmick was came out in Japan as Gimmick and Europe as Mr. Gimmick. The European version is the rarer of the two. The game plays like a traditional platformer but is notoriously difficult. The Electronic Gaming Monthly reviewed the game in their American magazine so it was thought it might come out in the US, but the game was never released stateside.

Flintstones Surprise at Dino Peak
New Price: NA Used Price: $170
Surprise at Dino Peak was the second Flintstones game for the NES but it came out three years after the Super Nintendo released. Most gamers had moved away from the original Nintendo so the game sold poorly, which makes it quite rare today.

Devil World
New Price: NA Used Price: $150
Devil World was designed by Shigeru Miyamoto and published by Nintendo, but is still a rare game. Devil World plays very similarly to PacMan but depicted the Devil and other religious symbols. Because of this Nintendo never released the game in North America, which makes it the only game designed by Miyamoto that didn't come out in the USA.

Other Expensive Nintendo Games
Little Samson - Used Price: $120
190-in-1 Cartridge - Used Price: $105
Bubble Bobble Part 2 - Used Price: $100
Panic Restaurant - Used Price: $100
Action 52 - Used Price: $75
Bonk's Adventure - Used Price: $65
Secret Scout - Used Price: $60
Megacom 76 - Used Price: $56
King Neptune's Adventures - Used Price: $55
Power Blade 2 - Used Price: $55
Snow Brothers - Used Price: $55
Menace Beach - Used Price: $51


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