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On The Table Read Magazine, “the best entertainment magazine in the UK“, are you having a new years clean out? Are you looking to make a bit of extra cash? We check out the top ten most valuable vintage video games you might have stashed in a drawer.

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Vintage Video Games

The air is crisp with New Year’s resolutions, the scent of fresh starts clinging to the very curtains. And what better way to usher in a new chapter than by exorcising the ghosts of clutter past?

Amidst the carnage of old books and mismatched Tupperware, there might just be buried treasure; vintage video games. Those pixelated relics of a simpler time are just waiting to be unearthed and given a second life.

Remember the clunky cartridges, the satisfying click as they slotted into the console? Remember the grainy graphics that somehow painted worlds more vivid than any high-definition screen could ever hope to achieve? Remember the heart-pounding battles, the mind-bending puzzles, the sheer joy of losing yourself in a digital wonderland?

It’s time to dig them out of the old cardboard box in your attic and see if you have something valuable hidden away that you could make some money with in 2024!

Top Ten Most Valuable Vintage Video Games

A study conducted by video game platform analyzed the results of over 32,000 auctions on Heritage Auctions to determine which video game or memorabilia has been sold for the largest amount from 2019 onwards.

Super Mario 64 – Wata 9.8 A++

First on the list is a sealed copy of ‘Super Mario 64 – Wata 9.8 A++’ produced in 1996 by Nintendo and sold in 2021 for a whopping $1,560,000. The game was awarded to a US buyer after being contended among 16 bidders for three days.

As the game was released for the first time in 1996 and produced exclusively for the platform Nintendo 64, this might be one of the very first copies ever sold at the time.

The game’s synopsis sees Mario travelling to Princess Peach’s castle to receive a gift, only to find the Princess and her servants imprisoned by Bowser, who has taken over the castle. To free the Princess and defeat Bowser, Mario must collect a minimum of 70 stars out of 120 from different worlds where he can travel to through paintings that are scattered around the castle.

The Legend of Zelda – Wata 9.0 A

A sealed copy of Nintendo’s ‘The Legend of Zelda – Wata 9.0 A’ from 1987 comes in second, sold in 2021 for $870,000. The copy’s specifics include an early production certificate, making this one also one of the first ever copies of the adventure game available. The copy was sold two days prior to ‘Super Mario 64’, first on the list, holding the record for the most expensive vintage video game for 48 hours only.

Super Mario Bros. – Wata 9.6

In third comes a sealed 1985 copy of ‘Super Mario Bros. – Wata 9.6’ which sold in 2022 for $720,000. The game was first released in that same year by Nintendo for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) and since then it has sold 40 million copies on the platform. Thanks to ‘Super Mario Bros.’, the titular character gained huge popularity regardless of this not being the first time he appeared in a game.

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The Legend of Zelda

Further down on the list, a second sealed copy of ‘The Legend of Zelda’ comes in fourth. This copy of the game is a first production one from 1987 and it was sold in 2021 for $705,000.

Super Mario Bros.

Moreover, a second copy of ‘Super Mario Bros.’ from 1985 closes the top five after being sold in 2021, for $660,000.

Top 10 most profitable vintage video games and memorabilia
 Video game/memorabilia nameDate soldSold for ($)
1Super Mario 64 – Wata 9.8 A++ Sealed, N64 Nintendo 1996, USA.Jul 11, 20211,560,000
2The Legend of Zelda – Wata 9.0 A Sealed [No Rev-A, Round SOQ, Early Production], NES Nintendo 1987, USA.Jul 9, 2021870,000
3Super Mario Bros. – Wata 9.6 A Sealed [Hangtab, 3 Code, Mid-Production], NES Nintendo 1985, USA.Nov 4, 2022720,000
4The Legend of Zelda – Wata 8.0 A Sealed [NES TM, No Rev-A, First Production], NES Nintendo 1987, USA.Oct 29, 2021705,000
5Super Mario Bros. – Wata 9.6 A+ Sealed [Hangtab, 1 Code, Mid-Production], NES Nintendo 1985, USA.Apr 2, 2021660,000
6Super Mario Bros. – Wata 9.4 A Sealed [Hangtab, 2 Code, Mid-Production], NES Nintendo 1985, USA.Oct 29, 2021492,000
7John Madden Football – Wata 9.2 A+ Sealed [Cardboard Box], Genesis Electronic Arts 1990, USA.Jan 28, 2022480,000
8The Legend of Zelda – Wata 9.6 A+ Sealed [Rev-A, Round SOQ, Mid-Production], NES Nintendo 1987, USA.Aug 5, 2022384,000
=9Nintendo Play Station Super NES CD-ROM Prototype – Sony and Nintendo c. 1992.Mar 6, 2020360,000
=9Sonic the Hedgehog – Wata 9.8 A+ Sealed [Made in Japan, Early Production], Genesis Sega 1991, USA.Apr 22, 2022360,000
=9Super Mario World – Wata 9.4 A+ Sealed [Made in Japan], SNES Nintendo 1991 USA.Jul 9, 2021360,000
10Super Mario Bros. 2 – Wata 9.8 A+ Sealed [Rev-A, Round SOQ, First Production], NES Nintendo 1988 USA.Oct 29, 2021324,000

It is incredible to discover how much your old games might be worth, and even more surprising to know that there’s an entire world out there which values vintage memorabilia such as these as more than simple hobbies. It’s not just about pixels anymore; it’s a glimpse into the history and passion that gaming enthusiasts hold dear.

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