Jump to content

Photo

1980s prices of Atari 2600 games


40 replies to this topic

#1 Random Terrain OFFLINE  

Random Terrain

    Visual batari Basic User

  • 27,848 posts
  • Controlled Randomness
    Replay Value
    Nonlinear
  • Location:North Carolina (USA)

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 4:10 AM

I was going through my Atari 2600 game boxes and some of them still have the price on them, so I thought someone might be interested. Most every game listed below was purchased between 1982 and 1985 and one or two might have been purchased some time in the very late 1980s.

Berzerk $24.97 Hills Department Store (I think we got this within weeks of its release)

Yars' Revenge $24.97 (got it new)

Breakout $4.97 Hills Department Store

Infiltrate $8.99 $22.99 Kay-Bee

Jungle Hunt $2.97 Hills Department Store

Sky Jinks $1.99 Revco

Carnival $1.99 Revco

Chopper Command 99˘ Revco

Asteroids $1.99 Revco

Swordquest FireWorld 50˘ Revco

Tutankham $9.97 $29.97 Children's Palace

Jr. Pac-Man $12.99 Toys R Us




I know I have the price we paid for Pac-man when it was released. It's around here somewhere. If I find it, I'll edit this post.

Edited by Random Terrain, Sat Sep 10, 2005 9:40 AM.


#2 D.Yancey OFFLINE  

D.Yancey

    Stargunner

  • 1,386 posts
  • Serious Player of Activision Games
  • Location:King George, VA USA

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 5:25 AM

Anything below about $9.99 is an extreme reduced price from the panic to unload the games during and after the crash. Most of those games originally sold for over $20. If you adjust that for inflation (averages about 4% per year) over the past 25 years, that would equal $40 in todays dollar.

#3 Foxsolo2000 OFFLINE  

Foxsolo2000

    River Patroller

  • 3,616 posts
  • Our future resides in the hands of fools!
  • Location:Doomsville, middle of nowhere, UK

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 7:16 AM

In the Uk games such as Pacman, Berzerk etc all cost £29.99 while games such as Slot Racers and Video Oylimpics cost £18.99. Funny enough Activision games came in at only £24.99 including titles such as Pitfall and Star Master. After 1984 prices plumeted to between £10 and £5 for titles and red release Atari games (which could only be found in certain shops) usually sold for £10 each although rare exceptions such as Dark Chambers and Radar Lock went for £12.99

#4 Zonie OFFLINE  

Zonie

    Stargunner

  • 1,514 posts
  • Location:Arid-Zone

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 7:25 AM

Most games were around $22-24. Later they were starting to aproach the $29-34 price. The activision games came out all priced at $19. It was one of their selling points.

#5 Room 34 OFFLINE  

Room 34

    Quadrunner

  • 8,280 posts
  • room34.com
  • Location:Tha 612

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 7:35 AM

I distinctly remember that when we bought our Atari in May 1982, we bought Pac-Man with it for $34.99. And when we bought Defender right at its release in June, we paid $39.99 for it.

Adjusted for inflation... :o Maybe today's games aren't so expensive after all!

#6 Random Terrain OFFLINE  

Random Terrain

    Visual batari Basic User

  • Topic Starter
  • 27,848 posts
  • Controlled Randomness
    Replay Value
    Nonlinear
  • Location:North Carolina (USA)

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 7:42 AM

And when we bought Defender right at its release in June, we paid $39.99 for it.

View Post

Our state must have gotten Defender in a little early because I was able to buy it right before my girlfriend's birthday (May 17th). The card I got in the mail said the release date was June, so I was surprised. I was glad I didn't order it from Atari Age. I don't think I had to pay that much for it either. I threw giant things of hay onto a truck for some of the money and I also sold some of my own stuff such as radio headphones to buy it.

#7 iguana OFFLINE  

iguana

    Stargunner

  • 1,879 posts
  • Location:Gotham

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 8:17 AM

I remember paying 249 for my atari system (actually My mom bought it) at Sears We paid less because my Grandmother worked there and got a discount. I remember games coming in at around 25 or so pre crash.

#8 Uber Troll OFFLINE  

Uber Troll

    Dragonstomper

  • 501 posts
  • Spring is My God...
  • Location:Somewhere...

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 8:29 AM

My brother somehow managed to get Pac Man sometime before it's release but had to pay a serious premium, I remember it being $85 but somehow doubt it could have been that high.

I still remember when he brought it home and I snuck out of my bed (I was supposed to be asleep at the time) and playing it. To say I was disappointed is a MAJOR understatement....

Is it possible for me to sue the current Atari for child abuse and "scarring disapointment" for this?

Edited by Uber Troll, Sat Sep 10, 2005 8:30 AM.


#9 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

Thomas Jentzsch

    Thrust, Jammed, SWOOPS!, Boulder Dash, THREE·S, Star Castle

  • 22,192 posts
  • Always left from right here!
  • Location:Düsseldorf, Germany

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 8:38 AM

Over here the prcies were higher. I remember paying 129 DM ($1 = ~2.5 DM) for Starmaster.

#10 Random Terrain OFFLINE  

Random Terrain

    Visual batari Basic User

  • Topic Starter
  • 27,848 posts
  • Controlled Randomness
    Replay Value
    Nonlinear
  • Location:North Carolina (USA)

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 8:44 AM

Speaking of Pac-Man, I hate it when I read an article that says Pac-Man was released during Christmas of 1981. The official release date was March of 1982 and we didn't get it until the first part of April from Woolco and that was with a pre-order.

#11 Room 34 OFFLINE  

Room 34

    Quadrunner

  • 8,280 posts
  • room34.com
  • Location:Tha 612

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 9:48 AM

Speaking of Pac-Man, I hate it when I read an article that says Pac-Man was released during Christmas of 1981. The official release date was March of 1982 and we didn't get it until the first part of April from Woolco and that was with a pre-order.

View Post

Agreed. That's a pretty glaring error, since Christmas sales are always such a big deal with video games... Pac-Man was NOT part of the mad rush for Christmas toys in 1981 (or EVER, since it had been out for 9 months by Christmas 1982).

#12 holygrailvideogames.com OFFLINE  

holygrailvideogames.com

    Quadrunner

  • 5,770 posts

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 9:54 AM

There was a store in St. Louis called A Video Consultants. They almost always had the new 2600 games several days before any other store. They sold the games for a premium. The price was $37.95. I remember buying Asteroids and Defender on the day that they were released.

#13 maibock OFFLINE  

maibock

    River Patroller

  • 3,922 posts
  • Location:Philadelphia, Pa

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 9:55 AM

This site is handy for adjusting inflation..

If you bought something for $24.97 in 1980, in 2004 it will be equivalent to $57.23, figuring 2.292 inflation, which is about right..

#14 Ferris OFFLINE  

Ferris

    Stargunner

  • 1,098 posts
  • ...Doin the Bull Dance ...Feein the Flow
  • Location:Walt Disney World, Florida

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 9:58 AM

To me some of the most inte[img]http://http://www.atari7800.com/html/html%20files/documents_7800_93pricelist.gif[/img]resting "Atari prices" came during the mail order days of the 1990s. Where I lived, you couldn't get 2600 and 7800 games in the stores after 1992, not even and Big Lots or Sears Liquidation centers, so I would call and deal with Atari directly like a vendor would. They used to send me out little price lists and flyers of what they had. Getting little letters in the mail directly from Atari are some of my greatest memories of middle school!

Here is one of the price lists from Fall 1993. It is posted in my Atari Documents Library at - www.atari7800.com/html/documents_7800pricelist.htm



[img]http://www.atari7800.com/html/html%20files/documents_7800_93pricelist.gif[/img]

#15 Random Terrain OFFLINE  

Random Terrain

    Visual batari Basic User

  • Topic Starter
  • 27,848 posts
  • Controlled Randomness
    Replay Value
    Nonlinear
  • Location:North Carolina (USA)

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 10:00 AM

If you bought something for $24.97 in 1980, in 2004 it will be equivalent to $57.23, figuring 2.292 inflation, which is about right..

Isn't that about how much Xbox 360 games are going to cost? I won't feel so ripped off then when I buy The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion.

#16 Random Terrain OFFLINE  

Random Terrain

    Visual batari Basic User

  • Topic Starter
  • 27,848 posts
  • Controlled Randomness
    Replay Value
    Nonlinear
  • Location:North Carolina (USA)

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 10:26 AM

To me some of the most interesting "Atari prices" came during the mail order days of the 1990s.  Where I lived, you couldn't get 2600 and 7800 games in the stores after 1992, not even and Big Lots or Sears Liquidation centers, so I would call and deal with Atari directly like a vendor would.

View Post

Funny how things can be so different. I got a nice pile of games one day in 1993 at Big Lots and they were all between $1 and $2. Here are the ones I remember:

Off the Wall (Atari 2600)
Solaris (Atari 2600)
Radar Lock (Atari 2600)
Secret Quest (Atari 2600)
Xenophobe (Atari 2600)
Crossbow (Atari 2600)
Crossbow (Atari 7800)
Ace of Aces (Atari 7800)
Touchdown Football (Atari 7800)
Ballblazer (Atari 7800)
Dark Chambers (Atari 7800)
Centipede (Atari 7800)

Seems like I got a few more, but that's all I can remember.

#17 Mindfield OFFLINE  

Mindfield

    Quadrunner

  • 7,726 posts
  • Giggity
  • Location:Ontario,Canada

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 10:43 AM

The only prices (in Canadian funds) that I distinctly remember are:

1982: A Coleco Gemini with Donkey Kong and Mouse Trap cost C$99.99 as of September at Consumer's Distributing in Toronto.

1983: Spike's Peak/Ghost Manor cost $19.99

October 1984 to around September 1985: During the crash I used to get all my 2600 games at Toys "R" Us. Of the probably 100 games TRU still had on display for the 2600, a good third of them were priced below $10 (which allowed my $10/week allowance to buy one of these each week). Most of the rest of the games were between $10 and $20. I think a Tomy Omnibot was $199. Cheap Atari 8-bit games (Thorn-EMI carts and cassettes) were something like $10-12.

#18 shining slade OFFLINE  

shining slade

    Maker of Origami & Mazes!

  • 1,696 posts
  • Location:Milford, PA

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 11:18 AM

Hey Ferris that's a pretty sweet 7800 list. I wish I had been more aware of the mail order option back then :sad: Out of all those games listed it does not even mention Tank Command or Water Ski. I guess it was strictly Atari releases on there. I have a flyer for Absolute games somewhere, I'll post a pic of it when I find it. :)

#19 jammajup OFFLINE  

jammajup

    Space Invader

  • 35 posts
  • Location:Birmingham UK

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 11:46 AM

In the Uk games such as Pacman, Berzerk etc all cost £29.99 while games such as Slot Racers and Video Oylimpics cost £18.99.  Funny enough Activision games came in at only £24.99 including titles such as Pitfall and Star Master.  After 1984 prices plumeted to between £10 and £5 for titles and red release Atari games (which could only be found in certain shops) usually sold for £10 each although rare exceptions such as Dark Chambers and Radar Lock went for £12.99

View Post



I do remember here in the UK during the final stages of the atari2600 the local Woolworths selling the silver boxed games as pairs for £30

#20 yuppicide OFFLINE  

yuppicide

    I am the Black Knight. Give me your money!

  • 6,933 posts
  • Location:New Jersey

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 11:46 AM

I wish I would have bought a lot more games back during the late 80's/early 90's. I remember K Bee Toys having a bin of like 5 or 8 titles all the same, but I probably should have bought every one.

I wish I had a picture of the Atari 2600 dealer. It was an amazing site. There was an indoor fleamarket and one booth was literally covered in 2600 games. Man, that guy probably had everything known to man and then some. Imagine staring at wall, but only there's no wall it's full of 2600 games.

#21 Pipster OFFLINE  

Pipster

    Moonsweeper

  • 419 posts

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 12:03 PM

I just got hold of a bunch of PAL Gameworld/Dataage games (boxes say Dataage, carts say Gameworld) with Woolworths reduced price stickers......

Warplock £3.99
Bugs £2.99
Airlock £3.99
Encounter at L-5 £2.99
Sssnake £2.99

all reduced from £7.95

only Journey Escape and Bermuda Triangle weren't reduced.

#22 Nathan Strum ONLINE  

Nathan Strum

    Quadrunner

  • 7,128 posts
  • Enjoying a sandwich
  • Location:Newhall, CA

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 2:18 PM

Here are the games I own with price tags still intact:

Asteroids $29.77
China Syndrome $23.99 $2.99 (KayBee Toys)
Cross Force $23.99 $7.99 (KayBee Toys)
Defender $27.99 $1.99 (KayBee Toys)
Fantastic Voyage $24.99 $7.99
Fast Eddie $6.99 (Pay 'n' Save)
Fast Food $6.99 (Payless)
Flash Gordon $5.99 (Pay 'n' Save)
Gangster Alley $23.99 $7.99 (KayBee Toys)
Grand Prix $26.95 (Video Hut)
Gyruss $39.99 (Sears)
Laser Blast $22.95 (Video Hut)
Mega Force $9.99 $6.99 (Pay 'n' Save)
Ms. Pac-Man $31.95 $9.99 (Pay 'n' Save)
Name This Game $26.95 (Ralph's Toys)
Q*Bert $17.99 (Sears)
Racquetball $4.99 (Payless)
Seaquest $5.99 (Sears)
Space Cavern $22.99 $1.99 (KayBee Toys)
Space Chase $29.95 (Video Hut)
Space Jockey $9.99 (Payless)
Star Fox $9.99 (However, there was another sticker over that which has fallen off. I think I paid $1.99 for it.)
Stargate $10.99 (Kay Bee Toys)
Starmaster $26.95 (Video Hut)
Star Raiders $2.99 (KayBee Toys)
Super Challenge Baseball $12.99
Tennis $6.99 (Payless)
Thunderground (several tags underneath) $3.97 (Fred Meyer)
Towering Inferno $12.99 (Payless)
Turmoil $9.99 $6.99 (Pay 'n' Save)
Venture $19.99 $7.99 (KayBee Toys)
Yars' Revenge $10.97 $4.97

Video Hut was a locally-owned store where I bought a bunch of games (at full price) early-on. After the crash, I remember buying tons of games at KayBee and other stores for dirt-cheap. I picked up some good ones, but most of them were garbage.

#23 oldgames OFFLINE  

oldgames

    Dragonstomper

  • 637 posts
  • Location:Illinois

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 2:41 PM

Can't remember what year, but I picked up Reactor at Zayre's for $1 with a $5 mail in rebate.

:)

#24 Zonie OFFLINE  

Zonie

    Stargunner

  • 1,514 posts
  • Location:Arid-Zone

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 3:27 PM

Can't remember what year, but I picked up Reactor at Zayre's for $1 with a $5 mail in rebate.

:)

View Post


But did they actually honor the rebate since the sales price was only $1?

#25 shadow460 OFFLINE  

shadow460

    Gunslinger

  • 16,599 posts
  • *bink* Good Shot
  • Location:The Blue Zone

Posted Sat Sep 10, 2005 4:39 PM

I picked up Asteroids last month with a sticker price of $1.95. That's exactly what I paid for it, and the sticker was placed on it by the store I bought it from.
It was, of course, sealed (til I got it home).




0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users