|Go-Net for the Mega Drive. It's believed a man in France had one of two copies left in the world. (SUPPLIED PHOTO)
So you’ve spent 15 years amassing what might be the most impressive collection of rare video games on the entire planet. What do you do now?
Sell it to a Canadian. For $1.25 million dollars.
No, that’s not a typo. A 32-year-old video game enthusiast in France put his entire collection of roughly 7,000 old-school game cartridges and discs up for auction on eBay, asking a cool one million Euros for the lot (about $1,247,775 in Canuck-bucks, plus an extra $1,250 for shipping.) And it sold, at least provisionally, to a man in Quebec.
“I only wanted to shock people with a huge price, exactly the same way many did before me for their items,” game collector Andre, who didn’t want his last name used, said in an e-mail. “I didn’t do the math to finally obtain one million Euros.”
The collection includes every game ever made for pre-2006 Nintendo game consoles, every game ever made for Sega game consoles and every game ever made for the NEC TurboGrafx-16 family of consoles (known as PC Engine in Japan), among others.
In all, there are complete sets of games for 22 different game consoles, nearly all in mint or near-mint condition. The eBay auction can be viewed in its entirety at http://bit.ly/manygames.
For fans of video game history, it’s a collection of almost unimaginable scope. And value, too – some of the truly rare games in Andre’s collection are individually worth thousands of dollars, such as a copy of Go-Net for the Sega Mega Drive system (known as the Sega Genesis in North America), one of only two known copies in existence.
Andre, who works in law in southern France, said he’s selling the gargantuan game collection because he met his goal of assembling every game for these systems, in some cases buying and reselling 50 copies of a single game until he secured one that was in mint condition.
The winning bid is from someone in Quebec – Andre doesn’t want to reveal the bidder’s identity – but as is often the case with extreme eBay auctions, there’s no way to tell if the bid is genuine until the money changes hands. As of Wednesday evening, the buyer hadn’t yet paid up.
“Unfortunately, the more time passes without being paid, the more I think he’s not legit,” Andre said.
Still, the auction has generated international media attention, and Andre said if the buyer turns out to be bogus, he’ll just put the auction up again on his eBay page at www.stores.ebay.fr/Japan-Games-Heaven or sell it in smaller lots.
But won’t he miss all these amazing video games once they’re gone?
“Probably,” he said. “But I won’t be able to tell until it happens.”