Nintendo World Championships is the Holy Grail for game collectors, and now one collector has snagged a copy for a small fortune.
Made in 1990 for a special competition of Super Mario, Rad Racer, and Tetris, the game was never commercially available. As time went on, a handful of copies have made their way into circulation, and now one of those is for sale.
If the winning bid is legitimate, it would mark a huge increase in price for the rare game. A previous auction of Nintendo World Championships fetched $11,000 for a copy in much better condition. The one for sale on eBay is tattered, with the front sticker ripped almost completely off.
The owner explained that the game was defaced by someone who had no idea of its value.
“This is known as the infamous ‘Mario’ NWC cart that someone probably wrote on there long ago not having a clue what they actually had,” the seller wrote. “Still, case in point, this is an authentic, original NWC cart from the championship back in the early 90s.”
Still, the game is seen as an amazing find.
“It’s like finding the rarest Ferrari but with a scratch — you’d still buy it,” said Chris Scullion, games editor for Computer and Video Games. “They are considered the holy grail among Nintendo collectors.”
Nintendo games have become quite a collector’s item, especially some of the rare titles published for the Nintendo Entertainment System. Last year, a North Carolina woman picked up a copy of the game Stadium Events at a Goodwill store for $7.99, later learning that the game was one of the most sought-after titles for the system.
There were only an estimated 200 copies of Stadium Events published, and experts think that only ten complete editions of the game remain. And some of those owners didn’t know exactly how valuable that game is — an unsuspecting mother accidentally put her son’s copy on eBay and was shocked to see the bidding top $15,000.
Oddly enough, the Nintendo World Championship auction also came from North Carolina, not far from where the Goodwill game was discovered.