An incredibly well-preserved copy of the original Super Mario Bros. has sold for an eye-watering US $100,150 ($140,977) at auction, becoming one of the most expensive games ever sold.
While the game itself isn’t all that rare, this particular copy is, being one from an early 1985 test launch of the NES console in New York and Los Angeles. Its incredibly mint condition combined with that rarity is what made its price tag so huge.
Sold by Heritage Auctions, the cartridge “set a world record for a graded game,” so it’s definitely up there in terms of price. As The Verge points out, it might not be the most expensive game ever, but it’s certainly the most expensive one that’s been professionally graded and certified.
In other words, I wouldn’t go rummaging through your box of old Nintendo games just yet. Your plebian copy of Super Mario Bros. is probably worth jack all, unless it’s still in the box and in decent condition, of course.
It was purchased by a group of collectors who will share ownership of the game, which I can only assume will end up like that episode of The Simpsons where Bart, Milhouse, and Martin share a copy of the very first Radioactive Man comic, only to destroy it.
It’s certainly not the first NES game to sell for tons, and it likely won’t be the last, so if you do happen to be sitting on some ancient games still in their boxes for whatever reason, make sure you hold onto them.