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Vintage Super Mario Bros. game sells for record-breaking  $114,000 at auction

A sealed version of NES’ 1985 Super Mario Bros. video game with a cardboard hang-tab. (Wata Games)
A sealed version of NES’ 1985 Super Mario Bros. video game with a cardboard hang-tab. (Wata Games)
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14 Jul 2020 08:07:22 GMT9
14 Jul 2020 08:07:22 GMT9

Carla Chahrour

The highest-graded copy of a 1985 Super Mario Bros. video game has been sold for $114,000 in an auction, breaking the record for the single most expensive video game ever sold.

The record-breaking sale took place during the third session of Heritage Auctions’ Comics & Comic Art event on July 10, in Dallas, United States, and was won by an unknown buyer, according to a news release from Heritage Auctions.

Originally released for the Nintendo Entertainment System console, the auctioned game was listed in excellent condition and graded at a 9.4 out of 10 as indicated on the sticker on the top of the box, which verifies its condition.

This particular version of the unopened Super Mario Bros. copy was considered rare due to

the cardboard hang tab underneath the plastic, which indicates that it was part of one of the first variants produced in the US after Nintendo started using shrink-wrap to seal the games rather than stickers, the company said in a news release.

“The demand for this game was extremely high, and if any lot in the sale could hit a number like that, it was going to be this one,” Heritage Auctions Video Games Director Valarie McLeckie said.

“We knew this would be a strong live session, but I don’t think anybody could have anticipated how much bidding action there was on Heritage Live! and the phones. These results only verify Heritage Auctions’ position in this rapidly growing market,” McLeckie added.

The sale eclipsed the previous record amount for a video game, which was a $100,150 bid made in February 2019 for an unopened copy of the same game.

The Super Mario Bros. copy that set the new video games benchmark was part of a collection of video games from the 1980s and 1990s that sold to various buyers for to $699,648, which was significantly higher than Heritage Auction’s initial target of about  $428,000.

Other titles that also drew in bids during the auction include “Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!” an 1987  NES video game that sold for $50,400.

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