The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Saturday, December 4, 2021

Super Mario 64 video game sells for $1.56 million
Super Mario 64 - Wata 9.8 A++ Sealed, N64 Nintendo 1996 USA.

by Neil Vigdor

NEW YORK (NYT NEWS SERVICE).- An anonymous buyer has paid $1.56 million for a 25-year-old copy of Super Mario 64 in its original packaging, a record price for a video game, according to the auction house that sold it.

Heritage Auctions said that it received 16 bids leading up to and during the live auction Sunday for the mainly pristine condition 3D Super Mario game, which sold for about $60 when it was released in 1996 and was the bestselling game for the Nintendo 64 console.

The top bid was $1.3 million, according to Heritage Auctions, which added a buyer’s premium of 20% to the gavel price to bring the total to $1.56 million.

The price sent shock waves through gaming and collecting circles, even after a recent uptick in five- and six-figure sales of rare video games to investment-minded buyers. The sale was announced just two days after Heritage Auctions said that an early production copy of The Legend of Zelda from 1987 had sold for $870,000.

Valarie McLeckie, the consignment director for video games at Heritage Auctions, said Monday that she was astounded by the outcome of the Mario 64 auction.

“I was blindsided, to be quite honest with you,” she said. “Never in my wildest dreams did I expect the price that was realized would become a reality.”

The game, which was part of a private collection, is sealed inside a clear plastic case resembling the anti-theft boxes used by retail stores. It includes a certification from Wata Games, an authentication company, attesting to its “like new” and factory-sealed condition, in its original shrink-wrapping.

McLeckie said that video game characters often evoke a sense of nostalgia, particularly Mario, who, with his brother, Luigi, first appeared on the screens of Nintendo players in 1985 in Super Mario Bros.

In the original game, Mario must save the peace-loving Mushroom People from the Koopa, a tribe of turtles known for their black magic. The game spawned an enduring theme song and multiple variations, including Super Mario 64, in which Mario faces an array of obstacles and adversaries as he tries to rescue the kidnapped Princess Peach from the villain Bowser.

“He’s like the Mickey Mouse of video games,” McLeckie said of Mario. “He’s just so recognizable and really resonates with a wide audience of people.”

Chris Kohler, a video game historian and the editorial director of Digital Eclipse, a video game studio that makes collections of classic games, said Monday that he would have expected an older video game to contend for the sales record. He said that collectors could find copies of Super Mario 64 — not in mint condition but with the original box — for much less.

“That was what kind of blew me away about that sale,” he said.

Kohler said he remembered spending part of his first paycheck on Super Mario 64 when it was released.

“If you had told me at that point that somebody was going to buy a sealed one for $1.5 million in 25 years’ time, I don’t know what I would have done,” he said.

Many buyers are new to collecting video games and have crossed over from comic books and coins, according to Kohler.

Don’t expect an unboxing video from the buyer, whom the auction house declined to identify. McLeckie laughed when asked whether the collector would actually play the game.

“I can say with certainty they’re going to leave it as is,” she said.


In April, an unopened copy of Super Mario Bros. that had been bought in 1986 as a Christmas gift but sat forgotten in a desk drawer fetched $660,000, a record at the time, according to Heritage Auctions, which also brokered that sale.

Then on Friday, a 1987 edition of The Legend of Zelda sold for $870,000. Heritage Auctions said it was one of two sealed copies from the game’s earliest production runs that had been authenticated.

As the sales records keep toppling, the resulting frenzy has sent serious and casual gamers alike rummaging through their drawers and closets.

“As you can imagine,” McLeckie said, “I’ve gotten a lot of inquiries this morning from hopefuls that maybe their video game is worth $1 million.”

This article originally appeared in The New York Times.

Today's News

July 14, 2021

Medieval French coins unearthed in Poland? A mystery begins

Getty exhibition reassembles Medieval Italian triptych

Super Mario 64 video game sells for $1.56 million

Frans Hals Museum acquires Dirck Hals and Dirck van Delen masterpiece

Michael Landy's art of destruction

Pace Gallery appoints Jessie Washburne-Harris as its new Vice President

9/11 Museum's 20th-anniversary exhibitions become victims of cuts

Springsteen presents Holding Patterns, a solo exhibition by Amy Stober

For Spike Lee, the secret to surviving Cannes is sleep (and cool clothes)

Cari Sacks is new Board Chair at Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

Los Angeles's first digital art fair, File Not Found, announces 2022 launch

RETNA's tribute to Aaliyah is the 'queen' of Heritage Auctions' July 28 Urban Art event

Andrew Lloyd Webber's new act: Activism

A festival has a monumental premiere (and some other operas, too)

Rosie Cooper announced as the new Director of Wysing Arts Centre

Joe Bonamassa stands to forever reshape the music industry with NFT of 'one-song music industry'

'Boyz n the Hood' at 30: A vivid examination of white supremacy at work

Emerging from COVID, small theaters in Los Angeles face a new challenge

Byron Berline, master of the bluegrass fiddle, dies at 77

SFER IK Museion announces Marcello Dantas as new museum Director

Rachel Kent announced as new CEO of Bundanon ahead of new museum opening this november

Neue Auctions announces online Summer Estates Auction

Suzy Delvalle named Interim Director of Socrates Sculpture Park

Admiral Lord Nelson's protégé's gold medal sells for £120,000 at auction

What should I do if I was scammed by a Kot4x broker?

A Brief History of Tennis Skirt and Best Source to Get Them Cheaply

Questions To Ask Yourself Before Buying a New Car

Online Business Banking Accounts Crafted For You: Which One To Choose?

Importance of Art and Music in Online Casino Slots

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

sa gaming free credit

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site Parroquia Natividad del Señor
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful