The only factory-sealed copy of Donkey Kong - Wata 8.5 B Sealed [No Rev-A, Round SOQ, Mid Production], NES Nintendo 1986 USA with a three-screw cartridge drew two dozen bids until it reached $72,000, more than tripling pre-auction estimates.
The result also helped set the tone for a selection of games that accounted for $1.055 million in total sales in Heritage Auctions
' Comics & Comic Art auction. The result marked just the second seven-figure total for video games in any auction at Heritage. Total sales for the four-day event reached $12,108,466.
"Since this copy of Donkey Kong is the only known copy of its package variant to exist in factory sealed condition, we did anticipate that it would likely be one of the top performing lots of in this auction. Especially since its particular package variant is one of the hardest to find of all the variants that exist for the title in complete in box condition." Heritage Auctions Video Games Director Valarie McLeckie said. "Aside from this, the video game results all around were quite strong some even fringing on surprising!"
The variant of the auction's top lot is said to be the rarest of the title. To find one in any condition, much less one graded at 8.5, is inarguable rarity.
Super Mario World - Wata 9.0 B+ Sealed [Made in Japan, No Warranty], SNES Nintendo 1991 USA also kicked bidding into high gear before finishing at $50,400. The finest example ever offered by Heritage Auctions prompted 28 bids for the launch title for the console. Early sealed retail copies are rare in factory-sealed condition for this game, because a cartridge was originally included as a pack-in game with the earliest iterations of the Super Nintendo console itself.
Interest in Super Mario Bros. 3 - Wata 9.0 B Sealed ["Bros." Left, First Production], NES Nintendo 1990 USA has climbed steadily since a higher-graded copy set a world record in Heritage's November auction. Two dozen bids drove this copy of the "Left Bros." variant to $40,800, a price that reflected the surging demand and the exceptional condition of this copy.
The most pristine copy of Super Mario 64 - Wata 9.4 A+ Sealed, N64 Nintendo 1996 USA ever offered through Heritage Auctions far surpassed pre-auction expectations when it brought a winning bid of $38,400. This title rarely gets offered in such a high grade, making it understandable that more than two dozen bids poured in before it changed hands.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tournament Fighters - Wata 9.6 A Sealed, NES Konami 1994 USA, believed to be the rarest video games in the Turtles franchise on the Nintendo Entertainment System, drew 33 bids before it sold for $38,400. Considering it been around for nearly three decades, the condition of this copy is exceptional, which was verified by the flurry of eager bids.
A 2 Code variant of Donkey Kong 3 - Wata 9.2 A+ Sealed [Hangtab, 2 Code, Mid-Production], NES Nintendo 1986 USA, a new entry in the collecting world, finished at $38,400, thanks in part to the A+ seal rating.
Demand was expected to soar for the highest-graded copy of Michael Jackson's Moonwalker - Wata 9.8 A++ Sealed, GEN Sega 1990 USA, and it did, as the game sparked 44 bids before finding a new home at $38,400. . One of the rarest sealed games for the Sega Genesis, it is the single highest-graded copy of the side-scrolling adventure starring the King of Pop.
Other top lots included, but were not limited to:
Super Mario Bros. - Wata 7.0 B+ Sealed [Hangtab, 2 Code, Mid-Production], NES Nintendo 1985 USA$36,000
Popeye - Wata 8.5 A+ Sealed [No Rev-A, Round SOQ, Mid-Production], NES Nintendo 1986 USA $32,400
Contra - Wata 9.2 A+ Sealed [Rev-A, Round SOQ], NES Konami 1988 USA $31,200
Super Mario Bros. - Wata 9.4 A Sealed [Oval SOQ R, Later Production], NES Nintendo 1985 USA $31,200