A Sealed Copy of Super Mario 64 Just Became the Most Expensive Video Game Ever Sold

It almost doubled the previous world record, which was held by The Legend of Zelda (sold only a few days prior for $870,000).

Nintendo logo on a blue and purple gradient

To some, the idea that a single trading card, figurine, or video game could be worth upwards of thousands of dollars is absolutely mindboggling. Such is, however, the nature of anything that has a community of collectors behind it.

That said, if you’re hoping to reach those higher sums, your “trash” (what you don’t want anymore) has got to be rare in some capacity, and/or in good condition.

Super Mario 64 Almost Doubles the World Record

A sealed copy of the best-selling video game for the Nintendo 64, Super Mario 64, has just been sold for $1,560,000 at auction house Heritage Auctions.

As reported by The Verge, it is now the first video game to be sold for more than a million dollars. The publication’s timeline of the world record for the most expensive video game ever sold is as follows (from least to most recent):

  • July 10, 2020 – copy of Super Mario Bros. ($114,000)
  • November 23, 2020 – copy of Super Mario Bros. 3 ($156,000)
  • April 2, 2021 – copy of Super Mario Bros. sells for ($660,000)
  • July 9, 2021 – copy of The Legend of Zelda sells for ($870,000)
  • July 11, 2021 – copy of Super Mario 64 sells for ($1,560,000)

If this recollection is correct, then Nintendo games have held the record for at least a year now. An interesting piece of trivia, though perhaps not a surprising one.

After all, Nintendo has been in the video game industry for a very long time (giving it a natural leg-up on other game developers when it comes to collector’s items).

Is Nintendo the Oldest Video Game Company in the World?

Some people even go as far as to claim Nintendo as the current oldest video game company in the world (that’s still producing products today). That does seem to be true if you go by founding date—Nintendo’s origins date all the way back in 1889, as written in its company history.

But, not everyone believes that’s the best way to look at it. One counterargument is that you should begin counting the years from 1975, which is when Nintendo officially started development on video games (claims the BBC).

If Nintendo isn’t the oldest video game company in the world… then what is? The answer to that question may depend on what your definition of “video game” is. Sega apparently has early arcade games from the 1970s, while Atari was getting its start with similar hardware around the same time.

Related: What Is Video Game Preservation and Why Is It Important?

Super Mario 64 Is a Timeless Classic for Good Reason

Super Mario 64 is widely considered to be the driving force behind the initial success of the Nintendo 64 console following its release. Not only that, but it set many a precedent for 3D platforming games that came after it.

In 2012, the Smithsonian American Art Museum displayed Super Mario 64 alongside 79 other games as part of its Art of Video Games exhibit.

Super Mario Bros. on a Game Boy console
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