Monday, May 20, 2013

Which Video Games Are Increasing in Price the Most

SNES Price Index
During the 12 months video game prices have increased sharply for many consoles. The average SNES game has increased 35%. NES is up 23%. And the average N64 game is up 40%!

Games for non-Nintendo consoles have increased too, with Genesis up 14% and Saturn up 10%.

The average vintage video game has increased in price 9.5% during the last 12 months.

Are the increased prices evenly spread across games or are certain types of games increasing more than others?

For this article we looked at the price of the game to see which is increasing more expensive games or cheap games.

Before reading further, stop for a minute and ask yourself which games you think are increasing in price the most. Did you take a guess? Alright, continue reading.

Price Change of SNES Games Based upon Price in 2012

We compared the prices for every Super Nintendo game at the beginning April 2012 and the beginning of April 2013. Every game was grouped into ten categories based upon the 2012 price.

Decile 1 is the 10% of games with the lowest prices. Decile 2 is the next 10%. Onwards until Decile 10 which is the 10% of SNES games with the highest prices.

The table below shows the average price per decile in 2012. The average change in price from 2012 to 2013 and the % change.

Avg. Price 2012Avg. $ ChangeAvg. % Change
Decile 1$0.87 $1.01 116%
Decile 2$1.24 $1.97 159%
Decile 3$2.11 $1.61 76%
Decile 4$3.13 $1.50 48%
Decile 5$4.36 $2.30 53%
Decile 6$5.64 $1.71 30%
Decile 7$8.13 $2.01 25%
Decile 8$11.46 $2.66 23%
Decile 9$19.30 $6.37 33%
Decile 10$92.74 $19.34 21%

As you can see the lowest priced games jumped in price by the largest percentage. The most expensive games actually increased the least, up only 21%.

Games like Populous, FIFA 96, and even Shaq Fu have increased substantially from their prices last year.

Expensive games like Harvest Moon and Lufia have increased in price quite a bit, but on a percentage basis it has not be as large a jump.


PBR Light said...

This confirms what I have been suspecting. I think the end of last summer is when prices really started to heat up. There are a few games that I have saved searches of on ebay and rather than going down in price or catching someone slipping, prices have been climbing.

mndrix said...

The results surprised me. I guessed that expensive, collectible games accounted for most of the increase. I speculated that collectors getting 0% interest on their savings accounts decided to put that money into collectible games which might increase in value over time.

I was obviously wrong. It looks like this is just the standard 17-years-after-release lifecycle:

Rory said...

Your last point about which Decile increased the most on avg is really just a math logic question. If the market as a whole is increasing obviously the largest avg % increase is from games with the lowest or near lowest prices. Volume is a key to any meaningful return.

1,000 of the cheapest games shows the same return as 52 of the most expensive games

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info.

JJ Hendricks said...

@rory - If the overall market is increasing at 30% per year, every decile would be increasing at 30% per year if every game was the exact same.

That is not what we are seeing.

When we are talking about percentage change the lowest priced deciles are increasing the most while the higher priced deciles are increasing less.

In terms of dollar change the larger deciles are increasing more.

If you bought 1,000 of the cheapest games it would cost you $870. At end of 12 months, that $870 would now be $1,880.

If you bought 52 of the most expensive games it would cost you $4,822. At the end of 12 months they would be worth $5,828.

In both scenarios your investment increased by about $1,000, but one only cost you $870 initially and the other cost you $4,822.

If I were to offer both of those game investments to someone, everyone would choose the cheap game investment. You make the same amount of money with less cost.

This is why percentage change is the metric we looked at and not dollar change.

Dave W said...

I love seeing data like this. Please keep it up!

RE said...

Sega Genesis games are still way undervalued. The fact that they used solid plastic boxes might explain that.

Unknown said...

Snes and n64 will go down eventually, I remember this happening with Atari games... My point of view is that late snes and n64 generation are now adults with jobs, and will start buying nostalgia games.. I remember spending my first salary on a n64dd.

Btw has everyone notice stunt race 64 and clay fighter directors cut??! It's ridiculous how agame with 20.000 copies (clay fighter) is selling for that much.. Stunt racer was like $25 cib now is around 300$ must be a nostalgia glitch...

Unknown said...

In fact I saved clay fighter on my eBay searches, at least 4 pops up per week

Craig said...

I don't think so Juan. Atari was pretty cool when I was 4-10 yrs old but Nintendo is a big name market with seriously iconic titles and characters. So, I think, as long as Nintendo keeps coming out with new consoles and handhelds that keep these names big with the kids NOW, things can only get better. For instance, my nieces are 10 and 11 yrs old. They LOVE Zelda and Mario (yes I know, Mario was on the Atari, and they still sell!) and don't even touch PlayStation or Xbox.Their is probably a million other kids like that out there. So when they grow up and get jobs and decide they want to collect or just relive a bit of their childhood, that's 10 years from now. In ten years or so, iconic names and games for any Nintendo system will still be collected, I'm sure of it.... Atari has its games of value but not the impact on gaming that Nintendo did. I was an Atari gamer, but when Nintendo came out, I forgot it ever existed, except the console and 60+ games I hauled around from place to place over the last 15-20 yrs. Also, as a Nintendo collector, and a PlayStation gamer, I love to see Xbox taking the collecting out of there equation. I just can't stand Xbox and even tho I love playing the PlayStation, just really not as fun to collect (although I continue to buy and keep sealed games of the rarer games and collector edition stuff for PlayStation)... BUT NOTXBOX!!!! Keep them NES, SNES, N64, GameCube, Wii, DS's, gameboy games handy....I think itll be worth it! ITS NINTENDO!!!!! Atari was too short lived.

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