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$1000k Heritage Auction sale of.....Super Mario Bros.


Active member
Sep 9, 2011
Should be 100k

Retro video games are a hot collector’s item: A rare, sealed copy of Super Mario Bros. for NES, which was released in 1985, just set a world record when it sold for $100,150 in a recent auction.

This mint-condition copy of Super Mario Bros., which was sold by U.S.-based Heritage Auctions, was the first-ever video game to fetch a six-figure mark for a vintage video game sale, USGamer reported.

From 1985 to 1994, Nintendo reprinted Super Mario Bros., however the first two variations are sticker-sealed copies that were only buyable in Los Angeles and New York during the test market launch of NES. This unique copy of Super Mario Bros. is the only known sticker-sealed copy, and it was granted a Near Mint grade of 9.4 and a “Seal Rating” of A++ by Wata Games, a grading video game company. So basically, it was in incredibly good condition when it reached the auction block.

On Feb. 6, a group of collectors purchased the game, including Jim Halperin, founder and co-chairman of Heritage Auctions of Dallas, Zac Gieg, owner of Just Press Play Video Games in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and Rich Lecce, pioneering video game collector, and owner of Robert B. Lecce Numismatist Inc of Boca Raton, Florida.

“Super Mario Bros. is not only the most recognizable game of all time, it saved the video game industry in 1985,” Deniz Kahn, Wata Games’ president, said in the Heritage Auctions press release. “In terms of rarity, popularity, and relevance to collectors, this game has it all. Mario is the most recognized fictional or non-fictional character in the world, more so than even Mickey Mouse.”


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Last edited:


Sep 2, 2012
Hey, I love that game but paying 100K just cause it has a sealed sticker is insane. BTW, why are retro Sega Saturn games so expensive? I was always curious about those, but I don't know if I want to drop a couple grand for the 5-10 games I'm interested in.


Well-known member
Aug 7, 2008
Video games come with their own whole universe of minutiae for what makes certain items more desirable than others. Just like a non-card-person can look at two cards and ask,"These two cards have the same picture of the same player, but this one has green foil and that one has red. Why is the green one worth 500 times what the red one is?" and you'd have to explain production numbers, perception of the brand or card company, an other intangible, subjective ideas. Even cards that are extremely apples-to-apples and one is vastly preferable to another and there isn't always a compelling reason.

Mighty Bombjack

Active member
Aug 7, 2008
Side story:

In 1999-2000, I started hoarding NES games. My then-girlfriend (now wife) had a job working 90-100 hours a week, and I was working 40 (as a tour guide at the Louisville Slugger museum, thank you very much - easiest 8 bucks an hour I'll ever make). In my boredom, I found a system of arbitrage between Funcoland (the huge corporate used-game seller at the time) and a little hippy-owned shop on Bardstown road called Buy-Sell-Trade (2-for-1 trades on anything they carried). Without going into too much detail, I could spend a couple of dollars at Funcoland, and a couple more on gas driving back and forth between the two places, and end up with 10-15 NES carts that I didn't have before. That was also when I discovered eBay (sent a lot of USPS money orders for NES lots, swapping out or selling the ones I already had).

Anyway, after I got married and moved to Europe, I stored away around 340 NES games (along with a few systems and various accessories). If memory serves, that's getting close to half of all games made for the system (unlicensed and all). After four years ion Europe, we needed money for grad school, so I listed most of the games and stuff on eBay in one big lot, which sold for like 2k. Nice little score and return on investment, especially considering that I saved the top loader and the 30 or so games that I actually enjoyed playing (still have them in my bedroom, and they play OK on HD TVs as long as you don't need to use the gun - my sons occasionally ask to play Contra with me, which I always happily oblige).

Side story over.

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