Most Expensive Video Game Ever Sold: A Record-Breaking Sale in Gaming History

super mario bros video game

Video games have been a part of popular culture for decades. From the early days of Pong and Space Invaders to the modern era of immersive, open-world experiences, video games have captured the imaginations of millions of people around the world. Over the years, some games have become particularly valuable, fetching high prices at auction and becoming sought-after collector’s items. One such game is Super Mario Bros., which recently sold for a record-breaking $2 million.

The sale of Super Mario Bros. has made headlines around the world, and it is not hard to see why. The game, which was released in 1985, is one of the most iconic titles in video game history. It has sold millions of copies over the years and has been ported to numerous platforms. However, the copy that sold for $2 million was not just any copy. It was a sealed, unopened copy of the game, which is incredibly rare. This particular copy was also in excellent condition, which added to its value.

While Super Mario Bros. may be the most expensive video game ever sold, it is not the only game to fetch a high price at auction. In fact, there are several other games that have sold for six-figure sums. These games include titles like The Legend of Zelda, Stadium Events, and Air Raid. Collectors are willing to pay top dollar for these games because they are rare, in good condition, and have historical significance. As video games continue to grow in popularity, it is likely that we will see more games fetch high prices at auction in the future.

Background on Video Game Collecting

Video game collecting has become an increasingly popular hobby in recent years, with enthusiasts scouring garage sales, flea markets, and online marketplaces in search of rare and valuable games. The rise of video game collecting has been fueled by a number of factors, including nostalgia for classic games, the growing popularity of retro gaming, and the potential for financial gain.

Collectors often focus on games that are rare, in good condition, or have some historical significance. Some collectors also seek out games that were never released or were only released in limited quantities, as these are often the most valuable. The rarity and condition of a game are the two most important factors in determining its value, and collectors will often pay a premium for games that are in excellent condition or still sealed in their original packaging.

While video game collecting is still a relatively niche hobby, it has gained a significant following in recent years, with dedicated communities and online forums where collectors can share tips, buy and sell games, and discuss the latest trends in the hobby. The rise of video game collecting has also led to an increase in the number of specialized auction houses and dealers who specialize in rare and valuable games.

The Current Record Holder

The most expensive video game ever sold at auction is an unopened copy of Super Mario Bros. that was sold for a whopping $2 million USD in August 2021. This copy of the game was specifically manufactured for the US market in 1985 and was in pristine condition, earning it the prestigious title of the most expensive video game ever sold. The game was sold by Heritage Auctions, a leading auction house for collectibles.

The previous record holder was a sealed, rare version of the iconic Nintendo game “The Legend of Zelda” that sold for $870,000 at auction in July 2021, making it the most expensive video game ever sold at the time. This record was broken just a few weeks later by the Super Mario Bros. copy. The previous record holder before “The Legend of Zelda” was a copy of Super Mario Bros. that sold for $660,000 in April 2021.

It is important to note that these high prices are not necessarily reflective of the game’s inherent value, but rather the rarity and condition of the specific copy being sold. Collectors are willing to pay exorbitant amounts of money for items that are in pristine condition and have a unique history. In the case of video games, the rarity of the specific version and its condition are the most important factors that determine its value.

Factors That Affect Video Game Value

When it comes to video game value, there are several factors that come into play. Here are some of the most significant:

Number of Units Produced

The number of units produced for a game can significantly impact its value. Games that were produced in limited quantities are often more valuable than those that were mass-produced. For example, the game “Stadium Events” was only produced for a short time before it was recalled and rebranded as “World Class Track Meet.” As a result, the original version of the game is now worth thousands of dollars.

Region of Release

The region in which a game was released can also impact its value. Some games were only released in certain regions, making them more valuable to collectors in other parts of the world. For example, the game “Mother” was only released in Japan, but it has since gained a cult following in the United States, making it a highly sought-after game.


The condition of a game is also a crucial factor in determining its value. Games that are in excellent condition, with no scratches, dents, or other damage, are typically worth more than those that are damaged in any way. Additionally, games that are still in their original packaging are often worth more than those that have been opened.


The popularity of a game can also impact its value. Games that were particularly popular or groundbreaking when they were released are often more valuable than those that were not. For example, the game “Super Mario Bros.” is one of the most popular and iconic video games of all time, and as a result, it is often worth more than other games from the same era.

Overall, there are many factors that can impact the value of a video game. Collectors and enthusiasts should keep these factors in mind when looking to buy or sell games, as they can significantly impact the price they are willing to pay or receive.

Other Notable Expensive Video Games

While Super Mario Bros. may be the most expensive video game ever sold, there are other games that have fetched a high price at auction. Here are a few other notable expensive video games:

Game Price
Stadium Events $41,977
Gamma Attack $50,000
Red Sea Crossing $10,400

Stadium Events is a rare game that was released by Bandai in 1987 for the Nintendo Entertainment System. The game was later rebranded as World Class Track Meet and bundled with the Power Pad accessory. However, a small number of copies of the original Stadium Events version were sold before the rebranding, making it a highly sought-after collector’s item.

Gamma Attack is a game that was released by Gammation for the Atari 2600 in 1983. Only a few copies of the game were produced, making it one of the rarest Atari games ever made.

Red Sea Crossing is a game that was released by AtariAge in 1983 for the Atari 2600. The game was based on the story of Moses leading the Israelites across the Red Sea, and was only sold through mail order. Only a few copies of the game are known to exist today, making it a highly valuable collector’s item.


Video games have come a long way since their inception. From simple pixelated graphics to immersive 3D worlds, the industry has grown exponentially. However, with this growth has come an increase in the value of rare and collectible games.

As evidenced by the search results, some of the most expensive video games ever sold are classic Nintendo titles such as Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda. These games have become iconic and hold a special place in the hearts of many gamers. The fact that they have sold for such high prices only adds to their mystique and rarity.

It is interesting to note that many of the most expensive games are not necessarily the best or most critically acclaimed. Rather, they are often rare and highly sought-after by collectors. This highlights the unique nature of video game collecting and the passion that drives it.

While it is unlikely that the average gamer will ever own one of these rare and expensive games, it is still fascinating to see how much they are worth. It is a testament to the power of nostalgia and the enduring appeal of classic video games.

Written by Worthly