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  • SubZero Comics

The 10 Most Valuable WATA Graded Video Games

Updated: Sep 20

In recent years, collectible video game prices have skyrocketed. With the popularity of WATA grading increasing, prices have been reaching new records. While it can be hard to say if this trend will continue or if video game prices will come down, it's clear that there have been some very expensive video games sold in recent years.


Note that many of the games we list here were sold in 2021 and they were all sold by Heritage Auctions, which is a very reputable auction house that sells all kinds of collectibles. There have been some collectors among the video game community who have questioned the authenticity of these sales, which is understandable considering just how quickly prices went up. Prices have come down a bit in 2022 as you'll see with some games on this list (many have said the 2021 records had heavily inflated prices).


WATA grading is a relatively new video game grading company, which makes some question if the prices of these newly sold video games will hold (or if these prices are legit). VGA grading has been around for about 15 years and the prices of their graded video games never reached the prices that WATA graded games achieved. It's hard to say what will happen with collectible video games. The hobby is still relatively new when compared to more established hobbies such as comic books and cards.



If you own any of the video games listed here, then you haven't hit the lottery. A large majority of complete vintage video games will sell for only a few hundred dollars (this includes most games listed here). If you don't have the box or manual, then most will sell for under $100. There are some exceptions such as Nintendo World Championships (listed below). Most video games were originally sold by the millions and are extremely common today. If they are sealed, then the value goes up, but the grade is extremely important. If you have WATA 7.0, C+ graded game, then it will sell for a fraction of the price of a WATA 9.8, A++ game.


In regards to the grading, the number grade is a representation of the game itself. The scale goes from 1 to 10, with 9.8 being the highest grade for most games (similar to CGC comic grading). The number can be assigned to the box/case or the cartridge/disc if the game does not have packaging. The letter grade is given to sealed games and represents the condition of the seal itself. It ranges from C to A++. You will see some examples of WATA 9.8 A++ graded video games on this list and that is what separates those particular copies from a sealed copy that would normally sell for a few thousand (or hundred) dollars.


For this ranking/guide, we have listed the highest sold price, but also listed the average selling price for a complete in-box game as well as the price for the game itself (no box). The list we provide has the video games ranked from highest sale to lowest.


This guide is for entertainment purposes only. If you ever need an opinion (for entertainment purposes only) on selling your video game collection, then know that we provide any opinions or appraisals that you might need completely free of charge and obligation-free. Please note that you should always do as much research as possible before buying and selling video games (or any collectibles).


Also, note that OUR GUIDES SHOULD NOT BE USED AS INVESTMENT ADVICE. DO NOT USE OUR WEBSITE IN YOUR SELLING AND PURCHASING DECISIONS. ALSO, DO NOT ASK US FOR INVESTMENT ADVICE. Taking investing advice from a stranger is usually a bad idea anyway.


If you want to cut out the hassle that comes with selling your video game collection, then be sure to give us a call, text, or email. We buy video game collections of all sizes and ages. We travel to you and pay cash to cut down on the headache when selling your video games.



Super Mario 64 (Nintendo 64)

Highest Sold Price $1,560,000 WATA 9.8, A++

Complete in Box Value $120

Cartridge Only Value $35

This sale shocked the world as no one expected a video game that is so normally so common to sell for such an astronomical price. Super Mario 64 is recognized by many as one of the best games for the N64, and it has a huge fanbase, but seeing the highest-graded, sealed copy sell for over 1.5 million dollars was mind-boggling, to say the least. Note that this game normally sells for $120 if it is complete in the box, but the record sale was for a pristine WATA graded 9.8 copy with a perfect A++ seal (this game is very hard to find sealed). To put things into perspective, a WATA 9.6 copy with an A++ seal sold on 4/22 for $57.6k (down from $102k in 2021), and a WATA 9.4 copy with an A++ seal sold for $40.8k in 2021. The 1.5 million dollar sale goes to show that grade (along with timing) is everything when selling any collectibles.



The Legend of Zelda (NES)

Highest Sold Price $870,000 WATA 9.0, A

Complete in Box Value $150

Cartridge Only Value $30

There's no doubt that the Zelda video game series is popular as it is one of Nintendo's oldest franchises. There are a few variations of the original Legend of Zelda game for the NES and one of the more valuable versions is the "No Rev-A, Round SOQ" box. The logo on the lower right of the front box is the identifier for this. This variant was produced early on and was only on shelves for a few months before getting a revision (the later versions have a "Rev-A" or "NES TM"). Note that the other versions can also sell for some money if they're sealed and in high grade, but this copy in particular currently holds the record.



Super Mario Bros (NES)

Highest Sold Price $660,000 WATA 9.6, A+

Complete in Box Value $80

Cartridge Only Value $20

There's no doubt that Super Mario Bros for the NES sold extremely well and there are plenty of copies out there, but it can still be tough to find sealed copies as most were opened. This is the 4th version (1 Code) of the game that was produced, which had a hangtag and a short production period. That makes it one of the more difficult to find versions out there. The 9.6 grade and A+ seal makes it one of the best copies on the market today, which explains the inflated price tag. We should note that on 08/2021, the New York Times reported a private sale of 2 million dollars for Super Mario Bros. We don't usually like to include private sales on our lists as they can be unreliable and easier to fake, but it's safe to say that the New York Times is a reputable source. If the sale is legit, then Super Mario Bros for the NES holds the record for the most valuable video game in the world at 2 million dollars.



John Madden Football (SEGA Genesis)

Highest Sold Price $480,000 WATA 9.2, A+

Complete in Box Value $60

Cartridge Only Value $10

Almost everyone has heard of the Madden Football series of video games. The Sega Genesis version of the original 1990 game can be very tough to find sealed. The Madden game that sold for a record price was the cardboard box version. What makes this particular cardboard box copy so expensive is that it's in high grade. It's a little easier to find the clamshell version in higher grades since that box is more rigid. For comparison, a WATA 9.6, A+ seal copy of the clamshell (promotional) version sold for $81k in 2022. The record copy of this game also came from the offices of John Madden, which probably added to the final sale price.



Super Mario World (SNES)

Highest Sold Price $360,000 WATA 9.4, A+

Complete in Box Value $300

Cartridge Only Value $20

Super Mario World for the SNES is a very tough video game to find sealed in the original box. It's worth noting that the Player's Choice version of this game is easier to find that the regular box version. This is because the regular version normally came packed with SNES consoles, so no one needed to buy the boxed version. The 9.4, A+ grade makes this particular copy a true gem in the collecting community.



Super Mario Bros 2 (NES)

Highest Sold Price $324,000 WATA 9.8, A+

Complete in Box Value $90

Cartridge Only Value $20

It's not shocking to see that Super Mario appears on this list so often. The character is one of the most well-known video game characters in the world. The copy of Super Mario Bros 2 that holds the record sale is the "Rev-A, Round SOQ" logo variant, which is said to be one of the tougher versions. The WATA 9.8, A+ grade makes this a nearly pristine copy. A WATA 9.4 with an A seal sold for only $54k a few months later. This shows how the grade can affect the price and why this record-selling copy was able to sell exponentially higher than copies in lower grades.



Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! (NES)

Highest Sold Price $312,000 WATA 9.8, A++

Complete in Box Value $250

Cartridge Only Value $40

One of the most popular boxing games of all time, Mike Tyson's Punch-Out sold very well upon release. While it can be easy to find this video game cartridge by itself, finding sealed copies can prove difficult. This copy is a pristine WATA 9.8 copy with an A++ seal. Once again, having a game in such a high grade explains why this particular copy was able to get such a high price (A mid-production, WATA 9.4, A+ copy of this game sold for 216k in the same auction). This record copy is also the "Oval SOQ" logo variant that was towards the end of the run.



Sonic the Hedgehog (Sega Genesis)

Highest Sold Price $360,000 WATA 9.8, A+

Complete in Box Value $20

Cartridge Only Value $5

Everyone's favorite blue hedgehog in running sneakers makes his appearance on the most valuable video games list. The original Sonic the Hedgehog game sold a staggering 15 million copies. This particular record-setting copy was from an early production run of the game (which is harder to find). It's a nearly perfect WATA 9.8 copy with an A+ seal. The record copy sold in April of 2022, but a copy that was WATA graded 9.6 with an A seal sold for $312k in 2021 (also early production). While finding the original Sonic the Hedgehog game in the original box is relatively easy, it can be tough to find a sealed copy.



Resident Evil (Playstation 1)

Highest Sold Price $264,000 WATA 9.6, A+

Complete in Box Value $85

Game Only Value $20

The Resident Evil series defined the survival horror genre of video games. The long box version of the original Resident Evil 1 features art from Bill Sienkiewicz and is also the most difficult version of the game to play (trust us, we've been zombie chow more than a few times). Finding a sealed copy of this game can prove to be nearly impossible and this nearly pristine copy is graded at WATA 9.6 with an A+ seal. We're huge Resident Evil fans, so it's good to see passionate collectors among the community.



The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (Nintendo 64)

Highest Sold Price $228,000 WATA 9.8, A++

Complete in Box Value $150

Cartridge Only Value $40

One of the most well-known video games for the N64, the Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is still beloved by fans today. We still see a huge speed-running community for this, and it shocks us to see how many people still actively play this game. The copy that sold for a record $228k is the standard (non-gold) cartridge version of the game. It's hard to say which cartridge collectors like more, but that doesn't matter much here since the game itself is sealed and the grade is what collectors are after. This amazing copy is graded by WATA at 9.8 with a perfect A++ seal. Note that while this record-breaking copy sold for $228k in October of 2021, a copy in the same grade sold for only $160k in January of 2022, showing a big price drop.



Final Fantasy (NES)

Highest Sold Price $208,000 WATA 9.8, A++

Complete in Box Value $120

Cartridge Only Value $20

Final Fantasy for the NES started one of the most popular JRPG franchises in gaming. This is another example of a pristine WATA graded 9.8 copy with an A++ seal. This copy features the "Oval SOQ R" logo, which is also one of the most difficult-to-find versions of this game. There are not many high-grade copies of this game out there, which makes the highest grade copies fetch a major premium. This record-breaking copy sold in July of 2021, but a WATA graded 9.4 copy with an A+ seal sold for only $22.2k (same version as this), showing once again that grade is everything. As our title picture for this article shows, we own a copy of this game, but it's not in great shape and is only worth about $120.



Goldeneye 007 (Nintendo 64)

Highest Sold Price $192,000 WATA 9.8, A++

Complete in Box Value $80

Cartridge Only Value $20

The popular first-person shooter video game from the N64 era, Goldeneye 007 is considered by many to be one of the best shooting games for the system. This copy is an example of a pristine copy that is WATA graded 9.8 with a perfect A++ seal. Goldeneye 007 sold a whopping 8 million copies upon release, but there has rarely been a copy in this condition. A WATA graded 9.4 copy with an A++ seal sold for $33.6k in the same auction.



Nintendo World Championships Gray 1990 (NES)

Highest Sold Price $180,000 WATA 8.0

Nintendo World Championships is generally accepted as one of the most valuable and rarest video games. There are a couple of different versions of this game out there, but they were not available to the general public. It is said that only 100 copies of this game still exist today and it can be tough to find one in high grade as even things like the glue used on the label peeled off many cartridges over time. While this game is shown to have sold for the least money on this list, we consider it to be among the most valuable as it is rare. Most collectors also think of this as one of the most valuable games. This is because many of the other games on the list sold for a lot because of grade only, and this sold for $180k because it's nearly impossible to find in any grade.



Why are video game prices going up lately? There can be a few explanations for this. One is that video games are now one of the most common sources of entertainment among the general public. Since many gamers have now grown up, they now want to track down the games they enjoyed in their youth. Most fans are fine with just owning the cartridge or a complete in-box video game, but some want the very best and they're willing to pay.


If you've come into a collection of video games, then there are a few things you need to consider. First, you need to look and make sure the game itself works. Next, you need to see if the game has the original box and inserts. If the game is sealed, then you need to look at the condition of the seal and box. The condition of both can be the difference between a valuable game and a VERY valuable game.


We understand that it can be tough to figure out if you have anything valuable and sometimes it can feel overwhelming. If you have any video games that you feel are worth money or rare, then feel free to call us for any free opinion (for entertainment purposes only). We can provide our opinion on any video games you might have, valuable or not. If you prefer to just sell your video game collection, then know that we buy video game collections and pay cash. We pay competitive prices and provide fair appraisals before any kind of money exchanges hands.


NOTE THAT THIS ARTICLE IS FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY. DO NOT USE OUR WEBSITE WHEN MAKING ANY FINANCIAL DECISIONS.



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