Premium for higher grade games

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Premium for higher grade games

Post by yobo on Tue Nov 11, 2008 1:38 am

Now that grading of games and condition is a strong factor for sealed games, the price gap between the cream of the crop (anything that grades 85 or above), will be noticable when compared to the same game in a lessor condition say 7.5 or lower. For example Chrono Trigger:

9.5 - $2000+
9.0 - $1500+
8.5 - $1200+
8.0 - $1000
7.0 - $750
5.0 - $500 etc.

So the same game in sealed condition could be worth anywhere between $500-$2000+ in respectible condition.

What are your thoughts/preferences on paying for a higher quality for a sealed game?

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by rarebucky on Tue Nov 11, 2008 5:51 am

Depending on the game it could be bigger differences. I wouldn't buy anything less than a 80 unless it was dirt cheap if it was on something I really wanted. 75 means there are pretty significant tears and creases in the box. Hell, I have a 80 and I'm not thrilled with it.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by yobo on Tue Nov 11, 2008 7:55 am

Personally I pay more or even overpay to the extent if im getting a game in truely mint condition. But this has not happened to me since I have not seen truely perfect copies of any games I want to buy in a long time so I end up buying the games in lessor condition. Still any upgrades will allways be nice!

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bojay1997 on Fri Nov 21, 2008 7:59 am

yobo wrote:Now that grading of games and condition is a strong factor for sealed games, the price gap between the cream of the crop (anything that grades 85 or above), will be noticable when compared to the same game in a lessor condition say 75 or lower. For example Chrono Trigger:

95 - $2000+
90 - $1500+
85 - $1200+
80 - $1000
70 - $750
50 - $500 etc.

So the same game in sealed condition could be worth anywhere between $500-$2000+ in respectible condition.

What are your thoughts/preferences on paying for a higher quality for a sealed game?

Nobody is going to pay $500 to $1000 for this or any other in demand sealed game in those conditions. Based on what I have seen, I know I wouldn't buy anything rated less than an 85. I don't buy graded games because I think it's silly, but the sealed ungraded equivalent of an 85 or higher is what is considered valuable by sealed collectors. I also think the range is much narrower than your example. If someone is going to spend $1000 or more for a sealed game, they expect it to be perfect mint which again would range in the 85-100 VGA scale.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by Pascal on Fri Nov 21, 2008 1:14 pm

i think there is not a big difference between a graded game and a non graded game if you can describe the sealed condition correctly ...

I think its more an additional fact that can affirm a very good sealed condition (you can be sure that all SGH graded games are rated with great care ...)

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by yobo on Fri Nov 21, 2008 8:37 pm

These are factual examples based on the last 5 Chrono Trigger sales which have varied from $500-$2200. And for further reference, look at other hobbies such as cards, action figures, comics and you will see what Im talking about :top:

And I think you know that many people just dont have the money to compete for the best condition titles as well. They will have to settle for a less perfect example of this games if they even want to own one.


Last edited by yobo on Fri Nov 21, 2008 8:42 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by yobo on Fri Nov 21, 2008 8:39 pm

And im not talking about actual "graded" games but instead a condition report of either ungraded or graded.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bojay1997 on Fri Nov 21, 2008 9:06 pm

yobo wrote:These are factual examples based on the last 5 Chrono Trigger sales which have varied from $500-$2200. And for further reference, look at other hobbies such as cards, action figures, comics and you will see what Im talking about :top:

And I think you know that many people just dont have the money to compete for the best condition titles as well. They will have to settle for a less perfect example of this games if they even want to own one.

I understand your argument, but the reality is that the number of sealed collectors is pretty small. Just look at how often the same names pop up on Ebay auction after auction. Well, they used to anyway before Ebay went anonymous with bidder names. I don't know any sealed collector that would spend $500-$1000 on a Chronotrigger that isn't perfect mint. It's just a waste of money at that point and you're either a sealed collector or you're not. If you're willing to spend $1,000 on a single game, another $200 to get a perfect one is not a big deal. The only collectible I know of where people will knowingly accept a much lower condition item is comics, but there the argument could be made that the essential purpose of the product (i.e. reading it) can still be met even if the cover has some tears and the pages are yellowed. Looking at cards and toys/action figures, there always seems to be a stream of them available in less than perfect condition and very often they sell for way, way below what a mint version would go for. Again, it's because serious sealed/mint collectors only buy the best available, not some lesser version in the hope that they can upgrade someday.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by yobo on Fri Nov 21, 2008 9:31 pm

Overall, yes there are not that many sealed collectors of random games. However, when it comes to popular titles, this is when you have casual fans/collectors who pay top dollar for these sealed games.

Also, when noting the "everybody wants perfect games" arguement, just how many people have you seen with gem mint copies of these popular games? By looking at peoples collections and the ones that pop up on ebay then there are not many. When you have a game like Chrono Trigger pop up for sale, you cant expect a perfect copy for 2 reasons: the box is cheaper quality, all the perfect copies will sell for insane money. So this is where the condition factor comes in play for these games.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bassman8866 on Fri Nov 21, 2008 9:35 pm

bojay1997 wrote:
yobo wrote:These are factual examples based on the last 5 Chrono Trigger sales which have varied from $500-$2200. And for further reference, look at other hobbies such as cards, action figures, comics and you will see what Im talking about :top:

And I think you know that many people just dont have the money to compete for the best condition titles as well. They will have to settle for a less perfect example of this games if they even want to own one.

I understand your argument, but the reality is that the number of sealed collectors is pretty small. Just look at how often the same names pop up on Ebay auction after auction. Well, they used to anyway before Ebay went anonymous with bidder names. I don't know any sealed collector that would spend $500-$1000 on a Chronotrigger that isn't perfect mint. It's just a waste of money at that point and you're either a sealed collector or you're not. If you're willing to spend $1,000 on a single game, another $200 to get a perfect one is not a big deal. The only collectible I know of where people will knowingly accept a much lower condition item is comics, but there the argument could be made that the essential purpose of the product (i.e. reading it) can still be met even if the cover has some tears and the pages are yellowed. Looking at cards and toys/action figures, there always seems to be a stream of them available in less than perfect condition and very often they sell for way, way below what a mint version would go for. Again, it's because serious sealed/mint collectors only buy the best available, not some lesser version in the hope that they can upgrade someday.

Simply not true. "I don't know any sealed collector that would spend $500-$2200 on a Chronotrigger that isn't perfect mint" I would pay well over 500 as long as the seam is perfect and the plastic went all the way around so that I knew the game had never been played. You're missing the point of collecting sealed games. Perfect condition is nice, authentically never played is more important.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bojay1997 on Fri Nov 21, 2008 9:56 pm

So, you would pay $500 for a Chronotrigger that is in a smashed box with creases and folds all over the box, as long as it was still shrinkwrapped? Authentically never played may be the most important to you, but to me as a sealed collector for almost 20 years now, a mint box and perfect shrink wrap are just as critical. I can only speak for the many people I have met and bought and sold to over the years and without exception, they value packaging as much as the fact that the game is truly unplayed.

I have passed on literally thousands of games because of minor flaws to the packaging. In fact, even today when I buy a current console game, I check all aspects of the packaging for minor imperfections. You would be surprised at how many games sold in stores are less than mint. What's the point of buying a game you will never open if the one part of it you can actually see is less than perfect? That's just silly.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bassman8866 on Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:03 pm

bojay1997 wrote:So, you would pay $500 for a Chronotrigger that is in a smashed box with creases and folds all over the box, as long as it was still shrinkwrapped? Authentically never played may be the most important to you, but to me as a sealed collector for almost 20 years now, a mint box and perfect shrink wrap are just as critical. I can only speak for the many people I have met and bought and sold to over the years and without exception, they value packaging as much as the fact that the game is truly unplayed.

I have passed on literally thousands of games because of minor flaws to the packaging. In fact, even today when I buy a current console game, I check all aspects of the packaging for minor imperfections. You would be surprised at how many games sold in stores are less than mint. What's the point of buying a game you will never open if the one part of it you can actually see is less than perfect? That's just silly.

Im not talking about being run over, im talking about tiny creases and little tears. I understand the getting mint copies is better than non mint but sometimes (and in my case almost all the time) you dont have a choice. If a game, cartridge and manual go for $100-200 with no seal, then a sealed game in itself is rare. Why be picky when there is a very high chance you'll never see it again?

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by Dark Sol on Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:04 pm

bojay1997 wrote:So, you would pay $500 for a Chronotrigger that is in a smashed box with creases and folds all over the box, as long as it was still shrinkwrapped? Authentically never played may be the most important to you, but to me as a sealed collector for almost 20 years now, a mint box and perfect shrink wrap are just as critical. I can only speak for the many people I have met and bought and sold to over the years and without exception, they value packaging as much as the fact that the game is truly unplayed.

I have passed on literally thousands of games because of minor flaws to the packaging. In fact, even today when I buy a current console game, I check all aspects of the packaging for minor imperfections. You would be surprised at how many games sold in stores are less than mint. What's the point of buying a game you will never open if the one part of it you can actually see is less than perfect? That's just silly.
It's just you
I buy games with minor flaws. I understand that there are MANY random things that can effect game condition. And you can't do anything about it. And waiting for eternity for truly mint copy... well.. hehe.. it can be destroyed by a stupid post office worker, careless seller or dumb customs officer. And you're out of nerves and money.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by yobo on Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:07 pm

After all, a sealed game IS a sealed game, no matter the condition Wink

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bassman8866 on Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:11 pm

I probably own 10 games that are really 100% no flaw in sight. If I were that picky I wouldnt be able to collect at all.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bojay1997 on Sat Nov 22, 2008 12:30 am

Look, nobody is talking about every single game in a sealed collection being a 100 or a 95 on whatever scale it is that is popular right now. However, I don't have anything sealed in my collection that I would characterize as below an 85 on that scale. Admittedly, I started collecting a long time ago toward the end of the NES era and was able to buy much of what I own new in a retail store, but for those few games I never picked up and have to resort to other sources, I will wait if necessary to find one in that condition. Frankly, it doesn't really take long to find most games if you are prepared to buy at a premium when they pop up. Does anyone really think games like Chronotrigger are once in a lifetime opportunities when it has been available sealed on Ebay 8-10 times in the last six months alone?

Whether you want to believe it or not, this forum only represents a very, very small group of sealed collectors, and reading and occasionally posting on this forum, it's pretty clear to me that how many of you run your collections is different than how I and a lot of other collectors I know do things. For example, I rarely buy from Ebay, not only because prices get inflated, but mostly because it is very hard to tell what you are getting from pictures. I also don't take lesser quality stuff in the hope that I can find a better version to swap it out for down the road. I understand that these are all mass-market items and even for a low print run game, there will be literally hundreds or thousands of sealed copies out there that will eventually turn up. I get a lot of my stuff from fellow collectors, from classic game collector meetings and shows, from local stores when I travel on business, from wholesalers that have stuff in their warehouses, from on-line retailers I trust and from foreign auction sites as needed. I really can't say that I have ever had a game elude me for more than a year or two.

I guess I would just close by reflecting on the prices for comics and remind everyone that it is the highest end of the market (VF or better) comics that have appreciated in value the most percentage wise from the silver age and the lesser quality stuff has typically maintained its value, but has rarely grown much more than inflation year to year. I suspect it will be much the same if sealed game collecting ever takes off in that way.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by Startyde on Sat Nov 22, 2008 1:05 am

There are tiers of game condition, tiers of collectors...even among our ilk. Nothing more complex than that.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by yobo on Sat Nov 22, 2008 1:24 am

"I rarely buy from Ebay, not only because prices get inflated, but mostly because it is very hard to tell what you are getting from pictures"

Isnt this the reason SGH and VGA are grading games? Yet you think its silly..

I dont understand how you are able to buy games if you dont use ebay at all? Please share with us your secrets.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by Startyde on Sat Nov 22, 2008 1:32 am

yobo wrote:I dont understand how you are able to buy games if you dont use ebay at all? Please share with us your secrets.

Think he already said so:

"I get a lot of my stuff from fellow collectors, from classic game collector meetings and shows, from local stores when I travel on business, from wholesalers that have stuff in their warehouses, from on-line retailers I trust and from foreign auction sites as needed."

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by yobo on Sat Nov 22, 2008 1:46 am

From those sources it is quite impossible to pick up anything good. It is possible to pick up games that did not sell well, over-stock games, unpopular games etc., but forget about anything good for the most part.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bojay1997 on Sat Nov 22, 2008 2:45 am

yobo wrote:From those sources it is quite impossible to pick up anything good. It is possible to pick up games that did not sell well, over-stock games, unpopular games etc., but forget about anything good for the most part.

That's your opinion, but not the reality. Ebay is a good tool for one-of-a-kind items and prototypes or items that are super common. Buying mid-range collectible games on Ebay is a huge mistake in my opinion, simply because there are always many other sources for the games at lower prices and in better condition if you just do a little bit of work. I live in Los Angeles which has lots of independent game stores, is home to two of the largest video game distributors in the world, and has a thriving collector's community. I also travel to other large cities for business on a regular basis and make it a point to look for game shops in advance of a trip. Finally, I have a solid network of local collector friends and e-mail buddies who I have built trading relationships with over the past two decades. You have no idea how many times I have met retired video game company employees, retired distributors or shop owners through this network of friends who have cases of sealed games ranging from Atari 2600 to the Playstation. I would agree you're not gonna find the top ten most valuable sealed NES or SNES games that way, but frankly, I bought those when they came out or shortly thereafter and don't buy doubles unless I need it for a specific trade. You can however, get them through trading with other collectors assuming you have items of equal value to trade since a lot of us don't really exchange money for the hardest to find or nicest stuff.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bassman8866 on Sat Nov 22, 2008 3:04 am

bojay1997 wrote:
yobo wrote:From those sources it is quite impossible to pick up anything good. It is possible to pick up games that did not sell well, over-stock games, unpopular games etc., but forget about anything good for the most part.

That's your opinion, but not the reality. Ebay is a good tool for one-of-a-kind items and prototypes or items that are super common. Buying mid-range collectible games on Ebay is a huge mistake in my opinion, simply because there are always many other sources for the games at lower prices and in better condition if you just do a little bit of work. I live in Los Angeles which has lots of independent game stores, is home to two of the largest video game distributors in the world, and has a thriving collector's community. I also travel to other large cities for business on a regular basis and make it a point to look for game shops in advance of a trip. Finally, I have a solid network of local collector friends and e-mail buddies who I have built trading relationships with over the past two decades. You have no idea how many times I have met retired video game company employees, retired distributors or shop owners through this network of friends who have cases of sealed games ranging from Atari 2600 to the Playstation. I would agree you're not gonna find the top ten most valuable sealed NES or SNES games that way, but frankly, I bought those when they came out or shortly thereafter and don't buy doubles unless I need it for a specific trade. You can however, get them through trading with other collectors assuming you have items of equal value to trade since a lot of us don't really exchange money for the hardest to find or nicest stuff.

We are the collectors, there are 800 registered users on this website and its the one and only site dedicated to sealed games only (Thank you Pascal and others!!!!). If your "collectors that you deal with" sell you games alot cheaper in better condition, why wouldnt they just sell on ebay if they can make THAT much more? Your argument is ridiculous and false. Please prove me wrong by posting your collection with pictures in the above forums, I am under the impression you just started collecting.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by yobo on Sat Nov 22, 2008 4:36 am

I would love to see what titles bojay1997 has found in the wild as well bluecool!

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bassman8866 on Sat Nov 22, 2008 4:44 am

1997.... possibly a birth year?

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

Post by bassman8866 on Mon Dec 01, 2008 10:06 pm

I think we need to revisit this topic. Iv been talking to Jim Jupiter about this and Id like to get your opinions. At what point is getting a game graded worth it? If a game gets 75 or less then you probably wont be able to sell it at face value, and on top of that you just spent 30-50 bucks getting a game graded. I dont believe its worth it. I personally have 2 games, 1 an 85 and 1 an 80. The 80 looks better than the 85 and on top of that I cant even see flaws. Dont get it but I can be convinced if someone says something that makes sense.

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Re: Premium for higher grade games

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