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Where is Basic B!$%@* collecting going?


DarkKobold
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The discussion in the past at NA has always been "What's the next spike?" It made sense, because from 2010 to 2017, prices could only go up. Now, not so much.

It seems like the core systems everyone collects (NES, SNES, N64) have taken a real hit in the market lately. Titles like Kid Klown and Snow Brothers have dropped $100. Other titles have stagnated. Now,  I know that sealed, first print, CIB, and etc are on the rise. This is the question about Basic collectors, the ones that just want one of each loose cart. Are they leaving the market? Selling off their collections? Is NES soon to go the way of Atari 2600, where everything under $50 is worth pennies now? Or are we just in a lull? Will Little Samson ever become a $3000 cart? Or is it destined to crater down to $500? $300?

And lastly, where have all the cowboys gone?

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Would a $500 Little Samson even truly be cratering? In the grand scheme of things, 2012-2017 was an exception to the rule, a time when vintage gaming was extra trendy and exponentially growing. I realize this is a gross oversimplication, but that would put loose Little Samson relatively close to where it had been slowly, steadily tending for the years prior. That makes more sense to me than exponentially going to $3000 any time soon, at least because it doesn't feel like the hobby is growing exponentially in terms of people collecting loose carts and full sets.

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For the super common and available stuff, I don't see why they wouldn't stay where they're at more or less. I mean SMB3 according to GVN is already $7.31. I guess if it drops to $5 that's technically a significant drop but the point is they're cheap enough to where it doesn't even matter.

While $0.50 NES games would be cool, I think Nintendo is just too relevant to completely bottom out like the now-irrelevant Atari, as evidenced by the NES Classic. People still play Zelda, Mega Man, and Final Fantasy games and will have at least novelty interest in the originals. Only vintage gamers will ever care about what Keystone Kapers even is.

Edited by DefaultGen
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I don't know for sure about the question, but I definitely see a cooling on general cart prices. Whether this lasts and actually continues on a downward trajectory is hard to predict, but I would imagine in time it may well rise again. There is still a lot of desirability in NES, SNES etc. and there seems like it will never fade away quite as much as Atari did.

Also, please do something about the title of this thread! The "B" on basic should not be capitalised and I have no idea what you were going for with that other bit there... Did your cat jump on your keyboard or somethin, lol!

 

**Edit** Ha ha ha, looks like I'm slow on the uptake, lol! Basic Bitch never heard that one before! Okay, carry on, nothing to see here, lol.

Edited by OptOut
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The loose cart collecting was at a peak around the NES classic release. You can hack those and play anything you want. Why would you keep stacks of loose carts at that point? Theyll do okay, never going to zero, but its going to be high condition stuff that climbs. Ordinary titles or ordinary condition will be flat or decline most likely. 

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11 minutes ago, jonebone said:

The loose cart collecting was at a peak around the NES classic release. You can hack those and play anything you want. Why would you keep stacks of loose carts at that point? Theyll do okay, never going to zero, but its going to be high condition stuff that climbs. Ordinary titles or ordinary condition will be flat or decline most likely. 

When they announced the NES Mini is when I sold my 350ish carts and went to cib-only nes. I also sold all my SNES games when I bought an SNES Mini. 

All of the carts I owned that were titles on the SNES Mini dropped 30-50% in value almost immediately which I would consider evidence to validate your point.

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5 hours ago, DefaultGen said:

In the grand scheme of things, 2012-2017 was an exception to the rule, a time when vintage gaming was extra trendy and exponentially growing.

 

That corresponds directly with the Wii U's lifespan. I guess we just need another Nintendo failure for prices to rise again...

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It was bound to happen with how fast things grew in the early 2010s and how much hype there was with collecting. As more people flooded into the hobby it seemed like a race to collect as much as possible and reselling blew up as prices seemed to double overnight and speculation ran rampant. Now with the release of the mini systems, casual (and maybe not so casual) collectors coming to the realization they had way too much stuff/lose interest, and the main collecting demographic changing priorities as they grow older and have families there will be less demand and more supply. Also with full set collecting becoming more or less unobtainable a lot of collectors moved on or shifted priorities within the hobby. I honestly think a lot of it was simply that collecting was more of a fad than we realize or want to admit.

I also think collecting is somewhat self limiting. As there became less supply people just lost interest instead of paying out the ass for each and every uncommon cart. Things dried up locally, eBay got out of control, and it just wasn't that fun to look for stuff anymore. I think that was the appeal for a lot of people.

I wouldn't be surprised to see common carts that are $100 or less drop back to the $5-$10 range in the near future. There will be enough demand for the rarer stuff for years to come but even a lot of the shittier rare carts seems to be down or even losing value. I doubt we'll see much climb with even the desirable rare carts or it would have happened by now and things have been flat for years.

Even with the sealed collecting and 1st print stuff I believe a lot of that is propped up on hype. As I stated in another thread, there was definitely some corrections warranted for sealed games that were early releases and major gaming franchises, but I see this to be a relatively small group compared to the general collecting we saw in the last 5 to 8 years. Some of it is probably a lot of collectors simply changing priorities or moving on from their initial collecting goals. I have a hard time believing that some of those prices we saw (are seeing) with Heritage Auctions will be maintained. I still think premium CIB stuff from the NES-64 era will continue a slow climb, the sealed stuff will come to a hard cool down or plateau here within a few years and the bottom will start to fall out of the casual market which has already begun. 

 

 

 

 

 

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On 11/18/2019 at 10:47 PM, jonebone said:

The loose cart collecting was at a peak around the NES classic release. You can hack those and play anything you want. Why would you keep stacks of loose carts at that point? Theyll do okay, never going to zero, but its going to be high condition stuff that climbs. Ordinary titles or ordinary condition will be flat or decline most likely. 

I sold most of my carts about the time the NES Classic came out for that reason. It's a lot easier to have everything available on a flash cart or classic console than having closet shelves full of carts to dig through every time I want to play something.

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On 11/22/2019 at 10:06 AM, Bronty said:

Not to be all I told you so, but I was saying this 15 years ago.    A loose cart is only ever going to be so collectible and if people are playing only for play value, that's not going to last.

I'm hoping so.  Just need trash Samson to finish my NES licensed set (minus SE) and passed on it for $250 many years ago because I was waiting for a drop in price.

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57 minutes ago, Bronty said:

You cheap mofo 😉 just buy it already 😉

But the thrill is in the hunt, owning the collection isn't as fun unless you continue to interact with it on a regular basis.

That said, if I was one game away from a set I would also just buy it.  I get being patient while building the set but at the end just reward yourself!

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Do you guys only look at NES and SNES? In the mixed bag of collectors and gamers category, I'm seeing demand go up for DS and 3DS stuff. Especially with hot franchises like Dragon Quest and Pokemon, but also with people snapping up more obscure titles. It also seems like N64 and GameCube aren't cooling down at all. But I think we will finally see Wii pick up as well. I've been watching Dokapon Kingdom prices on Mercari, this is a game that was going for $90-$100 CIB up until 3 months ago, suddenly now there's a couple CIB copies that have sold for $160. Same as I mentioned in another thread about Go Go Hypergrind suddenly going up. 

Not that I think NES collecting is going out of style, but people will look at the prices for the most desirable stuff and make a decision about whether they think they can feasibly chase these sets or not. You will see people say things like "It's still cheap to collect for DS / PS Vita" or "I gave up on collecting for NES when I saw the price of [x]". Eventually there will come a day when collecting for DS isn't cheap any more. But the point is there's a herd mentality to this and if YouTubers are telling people about chasing DS games then that's where the basic crowd will go. 

Edited by MiamiSlice
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You know I think the spike won’t be a Nintendo one.  I was just shocked earlier ago in estimating a value of a friends dozens of games for sale. What happened in this year vs last that so many have just dropped and not by a piddly amount. And these are all those common gems and goodies people had in the day that got up there.

That being that though I’ve seen some obvious corrections of not intentional looking inclines on some formerly overlooked earlier sega stuff like the sms and then their optical stuff got crazy too. The (grr) pc engine hucard and cd stuff has been going up lately clearly being impacted by the greedy mediocre TG library values too. Neo Geo MVS also in the last two years have been notably inclining too in many cases. 

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  • 5 weeks later...
On 12/9/2019 at 11:55 AM, fcgamer said:

Imports (especially Famicom) are on the rise, the prices here are finally starting to get stupid!

I've noticed this as well. I went from collecting NES games to mostly importing Famicom titles over the last few years, and oddly as NES prices have dropped Famicom has only gone up. I could have picked up a CIB Rolling Thunder for $20 two years ago but now I'm seeing them go for $40 or higher.

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Member · Posted

Yeah, I wanted to look for a nice, CIB Final Fantasy from Japan since I had already started SFC collecting a while ago.  I was surprised to see where those prices were.

Honestly, I’d long wondered why Japanese CIB/NIB games were so cheap.  Sure, there isn’r any US nostalgia for those items but, let’s be honest, if it’s shelf candy, their art and packaging was usually 10x more awesome than ours. 

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1 hour ago, RH said:

Honestly, I’d long wondered why Japanese CIB/NIB games were so cheap.  Sure, there isn’r any US nostalgia for those items but, let’s be honest, if it’s shelf candy, their art and packaging was usually 10x more awesome than ours. 

This is why I started collecting them. I didn't even have an adapter to play the games on my NES, but I needed that clear blue Salamander cart, man.

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1 hour ago, dvertov said:

Yeah, I wanted to look for a nice, CIB Final Fantasy from Japan since I had already started SFC collecting a while ago.  I was surprised to see where those prices were.

Honestly, I’d long wondered why Japanese CIB/NIB games were so cheap.  Sure, there isn’r any US nostalgia for those items but, let’s be honest, if it’s shelf candy, their art and packaging was usually 10x more awesome than ours. 

The way I always understood the Japanese Retro Market is that 90% of the used Market fluctuates based on what the demand that is Exported as the Typical people in Japan do not Collect large quantities of Video Games. The Average Japanese Household is pretty small, And It just not considered  a "Progressive" way of thinking to embellish the old to not stay up to date with a career or modern technology in their culture.

Again, Thats just been my perspective.

Edited by OtraOtaku
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I think the problem is pretty evident.  If you notice the fact that the JP stuff stayed relatively flat on most games over the years, a few started to ratchet up first, and coincidentally (not) they were the US games that got the ugliest first.  Lickle shot up over $100 a few years back as Samson was going for like $500+ at that rate, too distasteful for many.  Others then followed suit like Bubble Bobble 2.  There are some odd ones out, not sure why, like the Duck Tales and Rescue Rangers sequels along with Bonk being $20 cheap stuff still which is weird.  But it did spread to where now a lot of it across the board, even the common stuff that doesn't have an annoying to impossible language barrier has gone up in recent times.

The NEC end of it just started to really sour too with both styles first the discs, but now the Hucards too are getting annoying as more want to enjoy the TG16 but find the prices to be intolerable, they started modding or buying Japanese hardware to get the 3-4x larger card library where most the quality stayed hidden.  As a result 2-3 years ago you could get a core grafx/pce system for like $50 shipped out of Japan, now they're over $100 and rising.  Part may have to do with the SSD3/UperGrafx2 optical simulators that deal with card games too, but I think a lot of it is just price evasion.  While I was away from NA 2 years ago I got back into NEC and saw the creep really hit as 2018 came closer to an end and more through 2019, and CDs started to tick up since then too.

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Taiwanese originals and bootlegs of Japanese carts have also been going up in the past five years. More people are starting to discover that these items are worth money (resellers), and more people are also starting to get nostalgic and collect. I've mentioned before, but collectors here also enjoy having band showing off multiples of what they have. I'd prefer trading for other items, but everyone is different.

A local guy OptOut and I met even asked me once if I could help him sell things abroad (gratis I reckon) so he could earn higher profits! 

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On 1/9/2020 at 12:50 PM, Tanooki said:

I think the problem is pretty evident.  If you notice the fact that the JP stuff stayed relatively flat on most games over the years, a few started to ratchet up first, and coincidentally (not) they were the US games that got the ugliest first.  Lickle shot up over $100 a few years back as Samson was going for like $500+ at that rate, too distasteful for many.  Others then followed suit like Bubble Bobble 2.  There are some odd ones out, not sure why, like the Duck Tales and Rescue Rangers sequels along with Bonk being $20 cheap stuff still which is weird.  But it did spread to where now a lot of it across the board, even the common stuff that doesn't have an annoying to impossible language barrier has gone up in recent times.

The NEC end of it just started to really sour too with both styles first the discs, but now the Hucards too are getting annoying as more want to enjoy the TG16 but find the prices to be intolerable, they started modding or buying Japanese hardware to get the 3-4x larger card library where most the quality stayed hidden.  As a result 2-3 years ago you could get a core grafx/pce system for like $50 shipped out of Japan, now they're over $100 and rising.  Part may have to do with the SSD3/UperGrafx2 optical simulators that deal with card games too, but I think a lot of it is just price evasion.  While I was away from NA 2 years ago I got back into NEC and saw the creep really hit as 2018 came closer to an end and more through 2019, and CDs started to tick up since then too.

I think the SSDS3 really affected the prices of the coregrafx and the supergrafx.  The cores were sub $100 before that came out.  The TG16 library is the only one that I have been actively collecting these days.  The US set is actually rare compared to other systems so I see that cooling a bit but still holding it's value.  It makes sense that with everyone suggesting to just get the japan version of a game those prices would eventually go up.  I'm really close to completing the US TG16 set so I'm just patiently chipping away at it.  I am curious what the TG16 mini will do to the prices.  We will know soon enough.....

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