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How Big Is Your Video Game Collection?

Video game collection

I like to think I’ve got a reasonable collection of retro video games. Not that I’ve counted them, but it easily runs into a couple of thousand. Yet even my sizeable collection pales in comparison to some of the world’s largest.

Gaming is not only a passion. It’s an investment. And over the last few years, collectors have been cashing in on a hobby that started out as a bit of fun when they were kids.

But as any gamer will tell you, video arcades gets in your blood. They compel you to crunch buttons on a control pad for hours with the determination to conquer the world’s most popular games. And even not-so-popular games.

That pure rush of stimulating adrenaline creates an appetite to buy more games to conquer and one day you realise you’ve got enough games to open a shop. Not everybody opens a shop of course, but retro game collections are going for 10’s,even hundreds of thousands on eBay.

The price of retro games

The largest collection of retro games in the world netted the owner, Michael Thomasson a whopping US$750,000 a couple of years ago. The avid gamer boasted over 11,000 games on practically every gaming console built in the last 30 years.

Thomasson is not the only games collector to have cashed in on their pried assets. Nostalgia sells for huge sums, and in 2014 Aaron Norton waved goodbye to his 5700 childhood memories for an undisclosed fee. But it was probably a pretty handsome figure.

As Thomassen demonstrated, retro video game collections sell for a fair whack. Another semi-famous collector, the Canadian, Syd Bolton appeared on a TV program called, Extreme Collectors a few years ago. Bolton claims to own around 10,000 titles which were valued by the TV experts at a whopping US$650,000.

Video game collection

However, you do have to find a willing buyer. In 2013, one collector tried to cash in on his lot by posting his entire collection on eBay for US$550,000. He didn’t receive a single bid. The collection included 7000 games, 300 consoles and over 200 controllers. Maybe if he’d reduced the fee by a couple of thousand he might have cashed in.

Retro games, consoles and memorabilia

Retro game collections are not only limited to games and consoles. They include all the marketing memorabilia such as toys, teddy’s, action figures, mugs, mats, board games and all the rest of it.

Video game collection

The largest collection of video-game inspired stuff, recorded in the Guinness book of records goes to Brett Martin from Colorado in the US. Martin’s collection dates back to a 1989 version of a Super Mario figurine. Over the next 35 years he amassed more than 8000 video game accessories. His collection has not been valued.

Retro games are not just fun to play, but people take their collections very seriously and given video arcade games will always be popular, these collections make a sound investment you won’t get from your local “friendly” bank.

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