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Copy of ‘Super Mario 64’ game sells for record $1.56 million at auction

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    A sealed copy of “Super Mario 64” set an auction price record for a video game after fetching $1.56 million at Heritage Auctions on Sunday.

    Collector’s must-have: The auction house revealed that 16 collectors bidded during the last day of the three-day auction in Dallas, according to Barrons.

    • Vintage video game grading company Wata Games gave the 1996 copy a near-perfect grading of 9.8 A++.
    • The auction house declined to disclose who the consignor and the winning bidder were. 
    • The sale broke the record set two days prior by a copy of an “early limited production run” 1987 “The Legend of Zelda” for the NES, which sold for $870,000.
    • Heritage Auctions Video Games Specialist Valarie McLeckie admitted that the sale was a shock as they thought exceeding the $1 million mark for a single video game “would need to wait for another auction.”

    Speculation raised: The sudden price jump of the record-breaking sale, despite its marginal grading difference over previous Mario 64 sales on Heritage Auctions  ($38,400 for a 9.4 A+ graded sealed copy in January and just $7,500 for a 9.2 A graded copy last year), led to speculation “ranging from money laundering to collectors trying to inflate the market with targeted bids,” according to Kotaku.

    • A Heritage Auctions representative told Kotaku that the winning bidder was vetted before they were allowed to bid, noting that the person was a collector “who is not related to the auction house.”
    • “Although the winning bidder does not wish to be identified at this time, this may change in the coming days or weeks,” they further noted.

    About the game: As the first Super Mario game playable in full 3D, “Super Mario 64” was embraced by fans and became one of the best-selling games in the beloved global franchise.

    Featured Image via Heritage Auctions

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