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another heritage auction

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It's the same slimeballs who ruined the trading card, comic books, etc market. Same rich people selling this stuff to each other and creating a phony market. I can't wait til the bubble pops hard. I predict by Xmas.

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Its long been speculated that due to the stupidly close nature of Wata and Heritage, which have been in bed with each other from the start, that a lot of the high profile auctions are fake.

 

Super Mario Bros 1

Legend of Zelda 1

Super Mario 64

 

All these are really common titles, and sealed copies are not particularly super rare either. The SMB1 was the closest to being legitimate because it was a particularly small run of games.

 

They tried too hard to raise their profile though, its well known that Super Mario 64 has a huge huge huge batch of sealed copies floating around, and this went apparently for nearly 3 times as much as the other two titles, which makes even less sense even forgetting that detail.

 

Genuinely 'rare' games, like Megaman titles go for significantly less (4 digits), while common games go for 6 digits.

 

How is the money made? By charging for "rating". A rating that is subjective and any of us could easily copy and make a number up ourselves. Its also well known that the more the "value" they decide an item is worth, the more money they charge to "value" it. This is not how valuing works, the price of doing a valuation doesn't go up because they said its worth more. They hide behind the idea that they do "more" levels of protection for high value goods, but it looks like the same piece of plastic crap to me whether its a 3 figure number or a 6 figure number valuation. I imagine insurers are also smart enough to realise that just because a random valuation company with no direct link to existing valuation services say its worth something, doesn't mean it does. Insurance companies aren't stupid, they will check ebay, international high street shops like CeX which literally have a right-now valuation for most consoles, and forums like this to work out a true value of items being claimed if an insurance claim was ever made.

 

We all say to avoid, yet some people still do it. The idea of value is a commodity in itself. 

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I've seen this hashed out over at VGS and other places, those who have old timer collectors with (formerly considered) high dollar goods before this clown car drove into the wall, or VGA even before that with their shady handling of goods.  It's a known, and a very questionable one.  WATA and Heritage share employees, not just grunts, but founders/board of directors.  Up until some pretty hard criticism handed down a lot of loud public verbal assaults were dished because it seemed bad that you'd 1) pay to get a grade, then have them 2) tell you to go with WATA because they can guarantee high returns by doing their auctions since they're established through actual credible stuff on old heritage goods very high rollers go for.  So they got people to pay up, then pay again to get it listed and then the auction close/etc fees as well.  Basically the two colluded to scrape profit from a person getting a very high grade, then puffing up the rich to what a great new item and rarity it was so then that seller would have the fat fees around that processing and cut for the auction too.  It paid for WATA to grade stuff stupid high with nothing to go by other than personal opinion.  I'm sure you're thinking, yeah...no, they must have guidelines and stuff.  Sure, they do, and they're public (good, VGAs shit never did this, was easily gamed by smart users) but what they refuse to do, PROVE what they're starting auctions at is a fair price, because they have NO POPULATION REPORTS at all, nothing they'll share, disclose, and perhaps even have other than random public record of the far fewer known sold copies of games online or elsewhere which is shady as shit.

 

Other major collectables have pop reports, histories going back over lots of items of various grades from various entities that were traded(at ? value) or sold for ? value to base it on.  As it stands WATA just says...well this one is clean, let's throw a 9.8 on this and start it at 100K just because we can...not that another Super Mario 64 of similar quality ever sold for anything damn near that at all...ever.  The fact is gamers love to bitch, the rich ones will back this shit up so they don't lose their money and look like morons.

 

The gamers who have the interest seem to be unwilling or unable to fight this, get some lawyers involved, and specifically get the FTC (federal trade commission) involved to investigate this as illegal activity it may be as it's some big collusion racket that likely could be used by the rich to dodge/avoid taxes and other penalties using it to basically launder money legally using it as a loophole vs actually committing the crime.  They really should be investigated by the FTC to put this argument to death, or have them shut down for breaking federal law and in turn having these crooked fined and put away.

 

 

As mike pulled it out there, SM64 has heaps of sealed copies about, yet it hit that, well over what any other has, yet games with massively smaller runs, pure true known rares that real game collectors clutch to and rarely let go of go for far less.  There's no sense in it, at least from a big spender side of things.  Feelings, sure, Mario is hotter than say Stadium Events, but SE is the one until this shit happened was the big fish in town for true legit provable reasons.

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Quote

“Video games were a significant part of people’s lives, so it makes sense that it has become a collectible category,” Turner told The Action Network. “Especially as those who played these games now have disposable income.”

Yes I have disposable income... to buy games to play them, not to pay x100,000 market price to get it in a plastic coffin and never open it.

 

Hope the idiots fall, but I get they are in control of a machine already dedicated to ripping off people.

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So, how much of  this is tricking down?

 

In other words, is it only the graded and sealed games that are rapidly rising in price, or are loose cartridges also increasing? 

 

I can imagine someone who is selling a loose cartridge figuring that if a sealed game is selling for $1.5 M then their loose cartridge must be worth $500 easily. 

 

Also, all of the news that I see is about Nintendo games. Where are the high-value auctions for other systems, e.g. the PlayStation and PS 2 or even the 2600?   

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43 minutes ago, jhd said:

So, how much of  this is tricking down?

 

In other words, is it only the graded and sealed games that are rapidly rising in price, or are loose cartridges also increasing? 

 

I can imagine someone who is selling a loose cartridge figuring that if a sealed game is selling for $1.5 M then their loose cartridge must be worth $500 easily. 

 

Also, all of the news that I see is about Nintendo games. Where are the high-value auctions for other systems, e.g. the PlayStation and PS 2 or even the 2600?   

I think it does have an impact on other systems in the general sense. For example, a channel F collection could go for less than $600 ten years ago. Then since pandemic the idea of it being "rare" made checkers alone go for up to $2,000. The ebay effect now means prices are listed at assumed value, and many items go unsold. Supply is factored but not demand. 

 

There is an obvious answer to your last question of course, and that is that it is all lies. All the big number items are nostalgia based games that aren't rare. If say, a sealed  copy of Shining Force CD went for $1m then people would go "sorry, what game?" where as "woahhhh super mario 64! I loved playing that game, it went for how much?? Wow!". 

 

The buyout might have been what they were hoping for, it'll be interesting to see if there is any big item purchases now. 

 

I don't buy in to the idea that it's money laundering, I think that was a net joke that comes up every time wata and heritage come up now. Not saying it doesn't happen for video games, but I think there can be plenty of immoral stuff going on without it being illegal. 

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On 7/15/2021 at 3:53 PM, jhd said:

In other words, is it only the graded and sealed games that are rapidly rising in price, or are loose cartridges also increasing?

Loose stuff is too, it's in the Earthbound thread elsewhere, but I went to have a look at what loose and CIB for that was doing recently, and they are both up about three times compared to a couple years ago when I first thought about the idea of selling my CIB copy of the game.

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On 7/15/2021 at 10:53 AM, jhd said:

So, how much of  this is tricking down?

 

In other words, is it only the graded and sealed games that are rapidly rising in price, or are loose cartridges also increasing? 

 

I can imagine someone who is selling a loose cartridge figuring that if a sealed game is selling for $1.5 M then their loose cartridge must be worth $500 easily. 

 

Also, all of the news that I see is about Nintendo games. Where are the high-value auctions for other systems, e.g. the PlayStation and PS 2 or even the 2600?   

I've noticed an uptick in the prices of games from the standard loose copies and up, yet there's this weird valley though where some of them really are impacted less, such as less nice sealed copies to bad sealed, and some of the complete ones too since some dumb entities grade that crap despite the fact they can be frankenstined together.  The issue is, mindless grubbers hear about that million dollar mario, then suddenly they think their loose copy of SMB3 is worth $40 instead of like $15-20.  Sure that's pennies to a 100k-1M plus game, but it doesn't help people who don't want to get into money schemes, potential laundering, etc...they just want a nice copy to actually you know...use it as intended by the creators-- TO PLAY.

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On 7/15/2021 at 10:53 AM, jhd said:

So, how much of  this is tricking down?

 

In other words, is it only the graded and sealed games that are rapidly rising in price, or are loose cartridges also increasing? 

 

I can imagine someone who is selling a loose cartridge figuring that if a sealed game is selling for $1.5 M then their loose cartridge must be worth $500 easily. 

 

Also, all of the news that I see is about Nintendo games. Where are the high-value auctions for other systems, e.g. the PlayStation and PS 2 or even the 2600?   

Loose stuff fluctuates. Some rise, some fall. It's the graded stuff and a very small number of those collectors that are driving the price of sealed (and probably faked) games. Can't see why anyone of us should care what fools do with their money, so long as we can play what we want.

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Well for one it puts a target on our back (and our collections) who live in sketchy housing. On the plus side it might make the reddit and YouTube braggarts squirm a little.

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Two people I know actually messaged me and were like hey don't you have that game in your collection? These are non gamers after they saw the news of that Mario 64 sale.  Thankfully neither are are opiate addicts.

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9 hours ago, NeonSpaceBeagle said:

Well for one it puts a target on our back (and our collections) who live in sketchy housing.

 

How many people know that you collect video games, much less the details of your collection?

 

In my case, only a handful of people know that I am a collector, and nobody knows the scope of my collection. Even I do not have a fully up-do-date inventory list. 

 

For security (and other) reasons, my video game collection is currently located in a storage unit in a different city in another province. It is rented in the name of a family member, and the only key is held by a trusted third-party.   

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If the only game that potential thiefs are looking for is a boxed copy of super mario 64, then they can go take it 😛

 

I have nothing sealed, people would be disappointed that I play my games. 

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Question: Why make the price of a certain game (let's say, SM64) higher? I mean, if you don't have any to sell, you're missing out.

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9 hours ago, atari2600land said:

Question: Why make the price of a certain game (let's say, SM64) higher? I mean, if you don't have any to sell, you're missing out.

'Pat the NES Punk' did a segment on his podcast about this. His idea centred around the idea that because there is so many sealed copies floating around of SM64, there'll always be another one to replace each sale. Not all of them will be of this high "quality" scoring of "9.4" (or whatever it was), but if it is each one will still make a hefty sale even if it never hits the 1.56 million mark again. In theory, supply and demand sets in, the next one likely goes for under a million, the next one even less. After a dozen, it might be back down to $100,000 each again - but the point is the price got artificially inflated and would have never got that high without insider involvement. Both Wata and Heritage makes money on fees both for the valuation (which is higher if their perceived value is 'higher' - now 'justifiable' now a game has gone for over $1 million), they then make money on fees to take it to auction, and then the auction house then takes their cut on the final sale.

 

From Wata's website:

 

Quote

 Liability is included in the base price for games valued below $1000. Games valued from $1000 to $2499 are gradually charged more on a sliding scale for liability. Games valued $2,500 and up are charged an additional 2% of their declared value. If we find games on an order are undervalued we may have to adjust pricing on the order for correct liability costs.

So in theory, they might charge $10,000-20,000 to value a Super Mario 64 that is sealed. 

 

I've then searched for a normal antique valuation for normal things, like art, sculptures etc, this is the first thing that comes up on Sotheby's

 

Quote

Wonder how much your art or object might be worth and how to sell it? Simply follow the steps below and our specialists will review your submission at no cost and provide preliminary estimates for items that can be included in one of our sales channels in 5 to 7 business days.

Free! You take a picture and send it to them and they value it for free! in a week! Over the internet! They'll take money off you to sell it through them of course.

 

The point is, it pays for them to have something common go up in price, because more people are likely to have those items so they can pay for it to be "valued".

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