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How to tell reproduction SNES label vs authentic


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I'd say the sheen/finish of the label and the level of color saturation would be the first things I'd check.

An extremely glossy label would likely be a repro giveaway (folks on ebay sell ones like these for a few bucks each).

If the label is a bit darker or oversaturated color-wise, that could be a sign too. I'd wager that most consumer-grade printers aren't going to be able to hit the quality of the originals. Text that isn't super sharp (especially the small type) would warrant further inspection.

One other (perhaps a bit more obvious) thing to keep in mind would be the condition of the label vs the cart. If the label is super clean and other facets of the cart show signs of age or wear, that could be a potential red flag as well.


Not all cart labels are created equal though - even 3rd party one can differ in quality by publisher and release date. 

Edited by Oobgarm
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Well these days given the quality of the label paper and printing you can do making a 1:1 sticker is quite possible with some home level office style printers.  The only real way to tell would be to access a really good image of a legit sticker on your mobile device that you can zoom hard core in on and them compare to what's in hand, but that may not be practical.

Beyond that you got to look to see how it feels, not just appears, maybe it has an odd rub or texture to it that doesn't seem right.  Maybe something with the ink dot pattern is incorrect.  I could go into the obvious like the usual artwork used across the carts or later stuff with ratings too but that's just too easy to see being wrong.  As the earlier post than mine said,  battered plastic, pretty sticker?  Finer points of the art look fuzzy or just not super sharp.  Likely not legit as they don't live in a bubble.

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  • 1 month later...

Majesco re-prints front labels have no sheen or glossy layer atop the paper sticker. The also don't have a back label at all, but instead have molded safety warnings like don't play SNES while taking a bubble bath.

Further, Majesco labels have lower quality prints. They can have poor color, weird colored spots, and can be slightly blurry.

If you are unsure of whether something is a repro, look up many pictures of authentic carts.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I got a reproduction SNES cart in a lot, and while all reproduction labels are different, there were some key tipoffs for me once I had the cart in my hands:


1. The lable way noticably thicker than others. Looking at the edge of the label on top of the cart it looked maybe double the thickness

2. Because of a sloppy label job, mine had a string of adhesive/plastic coating/something that came off when the label was cut. I've never seen anything like that on a real one

3. For an NES cart, corners not perfectly rounded was a giveaway (that one was cut with scissors i think)

4. Blurriness of the printing/text is another tipoff for me

5. While this doesn't help with all repos, I've seen a bunch of repo labels where the art is just slightly different. Lots of cases where the real cart label is sort of a cropped version of the box art, and the repro labels use that box art so when you look at it side-by-side with a real label, you'll see more cover art than you would on a real label. Ive seen this a lot with NES. Attached an example where the Snow Brothers on the right is fake. Granted this repo label is clearly fake for a lot of different re asons (lots of missing/misplaced text) but is meant to be illustrative of what I've seen as a pattern around the box art



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Don't forgot to check the back label too. Why the back would be fake and the front authentic, I dunno, but I've never seen a fake back label for SNES carts that have an impression mark from the factory which are a set of two numbers stamped on a label.

There are exceptions with other Nintendo stuff, specifically NES and GBA. Games published by Konami / Ultra for NES have the numbers printed on the back label and there are a lot of GBA games which have two sets of numbers or letters on separate lines, for example line one reads 12 and line two reads E3.

Definitely know what you're buying when you're looking at it. Compare pics of authentic carts, if you are unsure.

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