NFTs are all the money-making rage lately, but it seems a good ol’ fashioned vintage video game will still make you big bucks at an auction.
Heritage Auctions sold off an unopened, pristinely packaged Super Mario Bros. from 1986 for a grand total of $660,000. According to AP News, it was a Christmas gift. Whoever it was intended for must not have been a huge video game person, because it sat untouched in a drawer for 35 years with all of its original packaging intact.
The back of the most expensive Super Mario Bros. game ever.
Perhaps even more bizarre, the seemingly inconsequential packaging was a key factor on whether the game sale would net hundreds of thousands of dollars.
“This particular copy was produced in late 1986, which means it was one of the earliest copies produced that had plastic shrink wrap, rather than sticker seal, and a perforated cardboard hangtab,” said Valerie McLeckie, Heritage Auctions Video Games Director, in a statement. “By early 1987, Nintendo was producing a version that had another new variation to their original packaging.”
Because of the rarity of the specific game copy and its flawless condition, it was rated at a near-perfect 9.6 out of 10 for auction.
In comparison, the previous record holder for highest game sale at Heritage Auctions was an original Super Mario Bros. 3 game, netting $156,000 in Nov. 2020. This, too, was bought and forgotten about, building up value over the years.
Heritage Auctions also sold the 1987 version of Super Mario Bros., rated a 9.4 out of 10, in July 2020 for $114,000. In 2019, the same game sold for $100,150, and in 2017, eBay seller DKOldies sold their version for just over $30,000.
SEE ALSO: ‘Breath of the Wild’ reinvented Zelda games. ‘Bowser’s Fury’ does that for Mario.
If you somehow still have an interest in buying the latest record-breaking copy, Heritage Auction’s website currently allows you to make an offer to the owner for $990,000 or more. You know, pocket change.
Ironically, this particular Super Mario Bros. was priced at only $25 at its 1985 release in the US. So if you don’t have almost a million dollars to blow. try buying a $60 Super Mario game sometime this year and forget about it for a couple decades. It’s possible you’ll be patting yourself on the back for an incredible investment down the line.