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Friday, July 20, 2012

The 12 Rarest & Most Expensive Video Games

Video game collecting is becoming big business with record prices paid for video games on a regular basis. What are the rarest and most expensive video games of all time? Read below and see if any of the games you own are worth a small fortune?


Rare & Valuable Video Games


Nintendo PowerFest 94 [Super Nintendo]

Most Expensive Video GamesHighest Price: $23,100 | See Current Prices

Nintendo held a fourth video game competition in 1994 called "PowerFest 94". For this event they produced roughly 30 special Super Nintendo cartridges containing Super Mario: Lost Levels, Super Mario Kart, and Ken Griffey Jr Baseball. Again, each player had 6 minutes to get a high score and the top scores were invited to San Diego for the finals.

There are only two of these cartridges known to exist today. But both have a different scoring system (one from the finals and the other from the preliminaries). The most recent sale for PowerFest was for $23,100.

Nintendo Campus Challenge 91 [Nintendo NES]

Rare Video GamesHighest Price: $20,100 | See Current Prices

Nintendo held a video game competition in 1991 that traveled to college campuses through-out the USA. Players competed on a special game cartridge that allowed 6 minutes to play Super Mario 3, Pin-Bot, and Dr. Mario. After 6 minutes you received a high score and winners in each location were invited to a final event to crown the champion.

After this competition was done Nintendo destroyed all the cartridges, but one was found at a garage sale in New York. It has been sold to several different collector's and the highest recorded price was $20,100. If all of these were supposed to be destroyed but one survived, maybe more of the original 30+ cartridges are out there too.

Nintendo World Championships Gold [Nintendo NES]

Rare Video GamesHighest Price: $18,000 | See Current Prices

In 1990 Nintendo held the first of their video game competitions in the early 90's. It was similar to the Wizard movie with a grand champion Nintendo player named after preliminaries and a final tournament. The cartridge consists of Super Mario Bros, Rad Racer, and Tetris and allows only 6 minutes of gameplay before awarding a total score.

After the competition was finished Nintendo made 26 gold colored cartridges to give away as part of a promotion in their Nintendo Power magazine. There are only 13 known cartridges so there are 13 more of them that were thrown away or are sitting in an attic somewhere just waiting to be found.

Stadium Events [Nintendo NES]

Rare Video GamesHighest Price: $14,890 | See Current Prices

The Track and Field game with the power pad that everyone remembers when they were kids was not originally made by Nintendo. It was developed by Bandai and released to the public for a very short time before Nintendo decided to buy the rights and released it themselves. The games that were sold to stores were supposed to be sent back, but not all of them were.

The cartridge itself sells for thousands of dollars but is much more valuable when it includes the original box and manual. Another, less rare version, exists that was sold in Europe. Make sure you know which version you have if you find it.

Nintendo World Championships Gray

Rare GamesHighest Price: $11,500 | See Current Prices

This is the gray version of the same game seen previously on this list. The gray version is much more common but still sells for a premium price.

During the competition Nintendo gave away Gray versions of the game to winners at each of the preliminary locations and in each of the three age groups. That would account for 90 of these cartridges. Each cartridge has a number on it and the numbers go much higher than 90 so collectors think there might be more than 90 in existance.

Ultimate 11

Rare Video GamesHighest Price: $10,000 | See Current Prices

Super Sidekicks 4: Ultimate 11 is one of the few sports video games to become very rare. It was developed by SNK in 1996 and was the fourth title in the Super Sidekicks series. You play as one of 80 different national soccer teams and try to win the tournament.

It is unknown exactly why, but very few copies of this game were ever made for the home Neo Geo console (AES as it is known). The game very rarely comes up for sales but the last time it did the game sold for $10K.

Kizuna Encounter [Neo Geo]

Rare Video GamesHighest Price: $10,000 | See Current Prices

Kizuna Encounter is a fighting game similar to Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter II. The game was sold on the home Neo Geo and the arcade version (MVS) as well. The MVS version is fairly easy to find, but the home version from Europe is extremely rare. There are estimated to be about a dozen copies.

With such a small number of cartridges people question if the game was even commercially released in Europe or just a prototype. This is another game that you need to be careful which version you have. The Japanese version looks identical in every way except for the packaging. The game only sells for big bucks when the full packaing is included.

Blockbuster World Championship II

Rare Video GamesHighest Price: $8,000 | See Current Prices

In 1995 Blockbuster Video held video game competitions all over the country featuring two games, Donkey Kong Country Competition from Nintendo and Blockbuster Video Game Championship II from Sega. Competitors had to choose between Super Nintendo or Genesis. The Genesis cartridge contained versions of NBA Jam Tournament Edition and Judge Dredd.

Competitors could win the Donkey Kong game for Super Nintendo, but each store was told to destroy their copy of Blockbuster World Championship. Not every store manager did as they were told and a handful of these cartridges have found their way into collector's hands.

Turf Masters [Neo Geo]

Rare Video GamesHighest Price: $8,000 | See Current Prices

A golf game for the Neo Geo. Neo Turf Masters was released in arcades, in CD form, and for the home Neo Geo console. The home console version is extremely rare.

The game has since been released on the Wii Virtual Console and in SNK Classic discs for PS2, Wii, and PSP so only collectors are willing to pay the big bucks for the original cartridge.

Mr. Boston [Vectrex]

Rare Video GamesHighest Price: $7,200 | See Current Prices

The Vectrex was a video game system released in the early 80's. A game called "Clean Sweep" was developed for the Vectrex and the Mr. Boston liquor company decided to give away a limited number of Clean Sweep games that were branded as Mr. Boston Clean Sweep. The gameplay was the exact same but had a different cover.

There are only five known copies of this game but the exact number made by Mr. Boston is unknown. Even though the game is available in very small quantities it isn't as expensive as other games because the Vectrex was never as popular with gamers.

Atlantis II [Atari 2600]

Expensive Video GamesHighest Price: $5,000 | See Current Prices

The original Atlantis was a popular game for the Atari 2600. The developer held a competition asking people to take a picture of their TV screen showing their high score and mail it in. Multiple people maxed out the high score so the publisher made a limited number of Atlantis II cartridges which had faster enemies and mailed those to the high scores in order to determine the best player.

The game was never commercially sold so the developer decided to save money and reuse the artwork and cartridge from the original game. Because of this the game looks identical to the original. The only way to tell the difference is to start playing and look at the font on the scoring screen.

Uncharted 2: Fortune Hunter Edition [Playstation 3]

Rare Video GamesHighest Price: $4,990 | See Current Prices

The newest game to make the list, Uncharted 2 Fortune Hunter Edition is a special version of Uncharted 2 given away in a promotional contest. To enter you needed to play the demo of Uncharted 2 during one weekend in October 2009. Sony randomly selected 200 people who played as the winners and mailed them the game.

The game includes a limited edition replica dagger from the game, an artbook, guide book, and the game itself. The highest recorded price for the game is $4,990.


See What Your Games Are Worth


The list is ranked by the highest recorded used price.

31 comments :

The Schlock said...

you should make an article about the most rarest games that were available via retail only. That way the unwashed massed, such as myself, could kick our own ass that we didn't buy these games when available.

JJ Hendricks said...

@The Schlock - Great suggestion. I will work on an article like that for the future. The top of the list would be Stadium Events.

Anonymous said...

how would i know if the stysem i have are of any vaual.

darktone said...

Great article. Never heard of 2 of these games. I wonder if we will ever see another campus challenge.

ccc said...

I wish they would do another competition, maybe tie to MLG somehow. I'll get to work on it after my procrastination meeting tomorrow..

JJ Hendricks said...

@anonymous - This very website has all the info you would need to price your games. Go to PriceCharting.com and search for the game you have. It will show you how much it is and historic prices too.

Anonymous said...

I would also like to point out that the Uncharted 2: Fortune Hunter's Edition was available as a prize to the top team of players who participated in the Uncharted 2 game tournaments that were held 7-10 days before the game was released. I attended one of the tournaments and participated but was defeated by another team.

Anonymous said...

You need to update now, there was a recent auction that sold a prototype zelda 1 for the nes for $55,000

Anonymous said...

What is this?

http://item.mobileweb.ebay.com/viewitem?itemId=261166859418

JJ Hendricks said...

@anonymous - that is a Zelda II prototype cartridge for NES. It is a fairly rare item, but that asking price seems ridiculous to me. $76,000 starting bid? I doubt it would even fetch half of that.

Anonymous said...

Was that you on pawnstars jj hendricks?

JJ Hendricks said...

@anonymous - Nope, I wasn't the collector or appraiser on that Pawn Stars episode. It would have been really fun to be on the show.

Anonymous said...

what about akalabeth?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Akalabeth-World-of-Doom-blue-disk-version-by-Richard-Garriott-for-Apple-II-II-/230908736394?pt=Video_Games_Games&hash=item35c33bb38a

Anonymous said...

I would like to thank you for the info JJ. Years ago my uncle gave me hundreds of nes and snes games. He said he worked for nintendo. Me and my friends were the happies kids in town. There is some weird games and weird looking games. Me and my friends never thought anything of it we just played the games and had a blast. We played them for a few years. Moved on to better things like girls lol. So i put them in storage boxes and there they sat for years. About a week ago my uncle past away. RIP. I was talking to my aunt and she asked me if i still had the games my uncle gave me. I told her of course i do those games brought me endless hours of fun. She say me uncle loved talking about those games. I forgot all about the games till my aunt brought them up. So i got home and invited a few buddies over pulled the boxes of old games out of the closet. We had so beers and played some games. One of my buddies was going through the games. He jumped out of his chair like he see a spider. He hates spiders lol. We all had a lot to drink by then and he just kept rambling about seeing one of those games i had was on pawnstar. We all laughed at him and told him that show is fake and setup its not real. He finally shut up and we played the night away. The next day he kept texting me about that game and text me some pics and a wedsite of it. Told me i had to check it out right now. I caved in and went to your wedsite JJ. I couldn't believe my eyes when i saw that game on your site. It is the 1990 world championships gold and i have the gray cartridge to. lol. I recognized a cut up looking game that you can see the chips ans circut board on it. I have the 1991 nintendo campus challenge. I started going through all the games and found more. My findings for the nes was the 1990 world championship gray and gold, 1991 nintendo campus challenge, punch out special edition, flintstones suprise at dino peak and the list goes on etc... My findings for the snes are the 1992 nintendo campus challenge, 1993 starfox super weekend, the 1994 nintendo powerfest, 1995 donkey kong country blockbuster, super metroid, Castlevania Dracula X and the list goes on etc... Just about every game i have that came with a box and guide i have but some of the boxes are not in the best shape. I would like to thank you for having this info your website. In 15-20 years i will sell them off to help add to my $retirement$. Thank you uncle RIP and thank you JJ.

JJ Hendricks said...

@anonymous - Can you please send me an email via the contact link on this site? I would love to see pictures of these items. Some of these would be only the 2nd or 3rd known copies to exist.

I would love to see the items and write an article about your story.

Anonymous said...

I would like to thank you again JJ. I am sorry but i would like to keep everything anonymous till i am ready to present my findings to the market. That will be when i think the market is at it's peak. I don't what to offend you JJ but i am an ivestor not a colleator i have no colleators pride in the games i have. To me the games are worth pennies but great memorys. I think keeping the market blind to what i have will help the market peak faster an prime it for when i am ready to sell. I wrote you not to sell but tell you my story and thank you for your website it holds alot of great information in the gaming world. I see you take great pride in what you do i respect that. I will visit your website time to time to check market values and read some of your articles. I am not in to the gaming world but your articles are interesting and intriguing. Thanks again

JJ Hendricks said...

@anonymous - I can definitely understand your desire to stay anonymous. Can you send me pictures of the items at least? I will not publish any thing about them or post the picture anywhere.

I would like to see this haul of rare games though to 1) verify your story and 2) it would be great to see all of these in one place.

Anonymous said...

How Convenient.....

If you were an investor and not a collector then you would have known what you had at least.

I would love to think the story is true but I doubt it is.

Anonymous said...

Wow buddy that is an incredible haul. Sorry about your uncle he must have been an important man to have had a haul like that. I hope you dont hold out to long on selling them. I would love to get a chance at buying some of that haul. "Congrads to you man"

Anonymous said...

That story is a load of bullocks. Why would you post it in an open forum if you wanted to "keep the market blind to what you have." Funny that you should have several of the rarest games known to man and feel the need to brag about it, yet want to keep it a secret and not produce any tangible proof.

Anonymous said...

I say bullshit!! In this economy, you would be selling faster than Lindsay lohan driving drunk! Post pictures! Proof is in the pudding..

albina N muro said...

Nintendo held a fourth video game competition in 1994 called "PowerFest 94". For this event they produced roughly 30 special Super Nintendo cartridges containing Super Mario. gaming HQ

Anonymous said...

This rare find can be looked at 2 ways one is he may be lying or 2 truth. So if u think a few words will create a higher price on ur Games never will happen without some kind of proof. I know as a fact u can get more than expected with proof. Without it nothing. As for jk inquiring. For a pic of all those rare games in one persons hands is the words of a avid fan, collector etc. I'm sure ur into some hobby. Think of whatever ur into and a rare find. Wouldn't u like to just look at that item even if its a pic or in person. U should let them take a peek. This could be the closest thing to the HOLY GRAIL for some. So don't be a tease.

Anonymous said...

what a load of crap...the guy probably still lives in his momma's basement at age 50. I call bullcrap

IKUMZIINURAZZI said...

How & the hell you would've known then you nincompoop !

Anonymous said...

lolz. that guy is such a troll- bullshit about the games. i ran into people with 'amazing' comic collections in the past, got to look throuh their shit and guess what? it was shit. this guy is the same. better for him to have his BS story to talk a bout than have it all shotdown as garbage were you to look at it

Dinart Filho said...

I guess you should include "phantasy star 1" for sega genesis in your list, since there were just 900 cartridges out and vanished within one hour in 1994:
I guess you never heard about, check it out:
http://home.comcast.net/~edoscuro/mdj_ps1.jpg

JJ Hendricks said...

@dinart - That image you showed was for a Japanese version. Was this ever released in the USA for Genesis? I can't find any info on that.

We have the original Phantasy Star for Master System in our database. It is fairly rare.

Anonymous said...

Wheres Superman with yellow lettering and comic sticker cover from Sears only for Atari 2600? And what about those blaster shots? Looks like they came from Sandpeople

Jolly said...

A good list of the most expensive video games. These are very expensive video games but also fantastic game choices for playing. Every gamers have dream to play such type of expensive and amazing games.

Kanmani E said...

Awesome Games :)

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