An unopened copy of Super Mario Bros. has sold for $2 million, shattering the previous record set by a video game sale set just last month when a collector paid $1.56 million to obtain a mint version of Super Mario 64. Per an image shared by Rally, the company that sold the game, the copy had a 9.8 A+ rating on the Wata Scale, meaning it was in “exceptional” condition.
Punks, X-Men, Declarations, and some news...— Rally (@OnRallyRd) August 6, 2021
🏆A NEW WORLD RECORD on Rally🏆
...w/ the $2,000,000 sale of our 1985 Super Mario Bros., marking the HIGHEST PRICE EVER PAID for a video game of any title.
Read more in todays New York Times (cc: @nytimes): https://t.co/mJzEcVMXuQ pic.twitter.com/segsfw6Jw9
Once you get past the insane price, what makes this sale interesting is that it didn’t involve an auction. Instead, Rally positions itself as an “alternative asset investment” platform. Per The New York Times, the firm buys physical collectibles and holds “initial offerings” where people can buy shares in that item. When a collector wants to acquire something from Rally, the company takes their offer to everyone who has a stake, and they then vote on the matter.
In the case of this recent Super Mario Bros. sale, Rally bought the copy for approximately $140,000 in April 2020. That same year, investors rejected a $300,000 offer for the game. Even with $2 million on the line, some didn’t want to part with the game just yet, with a quarter of those with a stake in the collectible voting to reject the offer.
If you’ve been following the market, you probably have a good idea of why some wanted to hold onto the copy for a while longer. Days before the previous record was set, a boxed version of The Legend of Zelda sold for $870,000 at auction. With no signs of the market cooling down anytime soon and only so many mint video games in existence, it seems it’s only a matter of time before another record is set.