Remember when video games used to be way more expensive than they are now? Back in the days of the NES and SNES it wasn’t uncommon for games to sell at retail prices of $80, and considering inflation, they were really closer to over $100. For a single game! These days it’s hard enough for a developer to sell a game for $70 let alone something close to $100.
Now imagine if some of those same games started costing hundreds of thousands? If not millions? Well a recent auction is taking some of the classic games we grew up with and raising the price of them to astronomical levels. Just a couple of days ago, the record for the most expensive video game ever sold was broken at an auction when an unopened copy of The Legend of Zelda sold for $870,000.An NES game? At that price? What’s next? A Nintendo 64 game like Super Mario 64 selling for $1.5 million?
🎉#HERITAGELIVE #WORLDRECORD!! Super Mario 64 – Wata 9.8 A++ Sealed, N64 Nintendo 1996 USA just sold for $1,560,000 at #HeritageAuctions, smashing previous mark of $870K, set Friday at Heritage for The Legend of Zelda! https://t.co/SUgiijkkzL#SuperMario #Nintendo #N64 #WATA pic.twitter.com/rHpTuZl95l
— Heritage Auctions (@HeritageAuction) July 11, 2021
Oh. Well, that’s an extremely expensive video game! Some might say that is way too much to spend on any video game, but this just appears to be the path that old Nintendo merchandise is following these days. It’s just hard to make sense of why an old game, even a classic like Mario 64, would sell for this much. It’s not like the game isn’t readily available on multiple consoles and easy to play. Having a sealed copy of Mario 64 is a bragging rights title and little else, but if that’s what they want to do with their money then there isn’t really anything we can do to stop them.
The concern here is that older games selling at exorbitant prices are going to lead to making an already difficult hobby, like retro gaming, even more difficult. The price of retro games went up pretty significantly in 2020 with everyone seeking out older games to play while they were stuck inside, and if newer copies of these games are going to start breaking the million-dollar barrier then there’s no telling what kind of effect that could have on other games. Hopefully, this is more of a one-off moment and not a sign of things to come. The last thing we need is for retro video games to go the way of Pokémon cards.