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  1. Yeah, I'd say include the games that were excluded. Let people make their own judgments about what specific sub-sectors are behaving in different ways for whatever reasons. It's hard to justify for e.g. including a Majesco print of Castlevania IV but leaving out the Majesco Mega Man X. Thanks again for the data, though! It's super interesting.
  2. Of course, the cynical take on that is that if a grading company will stick it in a case, someone will buy it, whether they were right or not...
  3. Not really, there are more experienced folks than me on the forum, I think - maybe ask @Shmup? I buy off YAJ and Mercari via buyee/zenmarket, I only buy things specifically listed as "unopened" from sellers with good feedback (I specifically look out for negative feedback saying an "unopened" item was opened), and with at least decent pictures. There are some sellers I specifically avoid, I don't trust starplatinum0119, I'm a bit dubious about carseat539, I'm kinda on the fence about tskdv09048 - they have some tempting stuff and a lot of good feedback, but some worrying feedback too. Other people might have their own lists of good/bad sellers, heh. With any unsealed game you're still always running a risk that it might have been opened, that is just a chance you kinda have to take, honestly. If I got one like that I'd probably just take the L rather than go through the hassle of trying to return it through a proxy, unless it was real expensive. I did get an "unopened" Pokemon Red back in January that's clearly been opened, but fortunately at that time it was only like $80 so not a big deal The hinges on all of these ones look pretty good to me, happily. I may send them in to VGA at some point, I never graded anything yet but for the specific case of getting some kind of 'authentication' that they're unopened it seems maybe worthwhile. If you're buying cart-only / CIB I'd just look out for high feedback and good prices, honestly. I haven't had any problems with those kinda purchases myself. It's definitely worth learning how to search sold listings on YAJ to get an idea of reasonable prices.
  4. Uh, I mean, this just seems unnecessarily combative. I think we just have different perspectives. The games I'm mainly interested in are generally not worth more than a handful of bucks cart-only, so I didn't immediately think of your scam angle. Obviously you're mainly interested in different games, so it seemed more obvious to you. In the end we didn't really disagree about anything except how to characterize the number of games where this would be a concern, which I think again is a question of perspective more than anything. As I said, if you're buying one of those, yeah, it'd be something to think about. But since we don't really know for sure whether anyone is trying that, or how good VGA or WATA are at knowing whether a box has been opened, it's all speculation in the end.
  5. I don't quite really see the angle there, to be honest. There aren't that many JP games for which the cart/manual are worth more than a few bucks. So if you have an actual unopened copy, why take the risk of opening it to take out the very cheap innards versus just grading it as-is? What does it get you? I guess maybe if I was looking at a game that's so rare the cart/manual are actually worth like a hundred bucks or more I might worry about it, but only then... Something I see as slightly more likely is that a very careful JP gamer/collector might have opened their copy carefully and kept it in pristine shape. The kinda person you get those super clean CIBs with just a slit in the shrinkwrap from. But there aren't gonna be too many of those around, really. Most "unopened" copies you can buy are genuinely just old store dead stock or something.
  6. Oh, VGA has already been doing it for ages. Three sold at certifiedlink today - a Super Mario USA went for over $1k. I don't really know what you mean by "messed up"? I mean, the number grade will just reflect the box condition. If it's in bad shape it'll get a bad grade. The biggest potential issue is that some copies which were actually carefully opened get graded as unopened. But hey, that's not really *so* different from the risk of reseals getting graded as legit. Either you trust the graders to be able to tell, or you don't, in the end... If you send VGA a box they think has been opened but they think the contents are unused, they will offer to grade it as Qualified, I believe. WATA would offer to grade such a copy as CIB I guess.
  7. VGA and WATA claim to be able to reliably tell if the box has ever been opened by carefully examining the hinges where the box opens. Usually when you open a cardboard box, it'll cause wear patterns to appear on those hinges. If VGA grades a cardboard box game that was sold unsealed without a Q, it means they think it is unopened. I'm not 100% sold that this is foolproof, honestly...I think if you open a box very carefully with a thin flat tool you can avoid or at least seriously minimize those wear patterns. But it's unlikely to be the case that someone would've done that with a 30 year old video game. Japanese sellers/collectors do draw the same distinction, if you pay attention. If they list as "unused" they're not necessarily claiming the box is unopened, just that the contents are unused. If they list as "unopened" that's really a claim that the box has not been opened.
  8. Big order of unopened stuff came in from Japan...FDS games are (sticker) sealed. Now I just wait for JP prices to catch up with US and I can call the private island brokerage!
  9. Well, I've seen similar patterns there with Pokemon too. It doesn't seem that unusual if you think about it... Before release day, for a game they think will be popular, they'll print a lot of copies. For instance with Pokemon FireRed and LeafGreen I'm pretty sure they printed a million copies of each in the first batch (this is based on serial numbers from the player's guide offers). Ideally, if you're Nintendo, you probably want to print enough to satisfy at least the first couple of months of demand, so you don't have to run back and rush print / ship more - but you don't want to print too many and have them lying around taking up inventory space. So, if you got it right, it kinda makes sense for later print runs to be much shorter. Most games sell most of their copies shortly after release. After that, you're usually dealing with a kinda 'long tail' scenario where you'll be selling a few thousand more copies, not a few hundred thousand more in a short period of time. To go back to the FireRed/LeafGreen example - based on my theory, the second and third print runs of each corrected errors on the box, happened before or right around release day, and consisted of 300,000 copies each. Then after that, the runs of the fourth print - the print with no wireless adapter in the box, but not yet player's choice - were smaller again; I see runs of 100,000, 40,000, 7,000 and even 3,000 copies. Similarly with the fifth print (the main Player's Choice print) - I see a ton of small runs of that print. I don't necessarily have records of all the 'splits' I use to calculate this, but there seem to be runs as small as 9,000 copies, 5,000 copies, 2,000 copies(!), 3,000 copies... Later prints of the Gen I games are similar. There are a ton of recorded date codes for the black-ESRB prints of Red, Blue and Yellow, even though they're the least common prints overall. This also fits the pattern of later prints being done in much smaller numbers, but quite frequently. I guess Nintendo just monitored reseller demand for the titles and fit in a little run of the games they needed more copies of whenever the schedule allowed for it, or something.
  10. I kinda disagree on that. For instance, there are three date codes for white-ESRB Pokemon Yellow boxes, but those boxes are identical in all other regards. Nothing at all differs between them but the date code. So I don't see that the date code can indicate anything other than the date the box was printed. I don't see any problem with the notion they could've printed hundreds of thousands or even millions of boxes on a single day. They're using commercial printing equipment, not an HP Inkjet! Remember, major newspapers used to routinely print millions of copies every morning...
  11. Unopened FF 1 does not come up much even on japanese sites. I'd expect it to go over $500 for a plausible copy from a seller with cred (sale prices of "unopened" copies vary a lot depending on how much of a good reputation the seller has, and how plausibly unopened the box looks...)
  12. All of this: "We have to remember that all VGA games graded under 95 and over 70 are in "near-mint" range (from EX+/NM to NM/M). In practice, this means that over 80% of VGA games on the market are in the near-mint range *officially*—as you never really see a 95 or 100 VGA at market (and if you do, it's irrelevant to anyone but a millionaire) and candidly VGA games 70 and below often aren't at market either (and of those that are, maybe 90% are 70 or 60, which are both still EX or EX+). Meanwhile, do the math: any WATA game under a 9.0 is *not* in the near-mint range definitionally—per WATA partner Heritage Auctions' official assessment—and even some of the 9.0 and 9.2 WATA boxes are *not* in the near-mint range because they have B+ seals" That whole blob seemed to be about the words "near mint"...
  13. @SethAI'm not sure a lot of people place as much weight on the words "near mint" as you do. I personally just look at the numbers. It doesn't mean anything much to me what range VGA or WATA choose to describe as "near mint", I'm much more interested in "what an 80 looks like", "what an 85+ looks like", "what a 9.2 looks like" etc. Now when two 9.6s don't look anything like each other and have significantly different amounts of dead flies trapped in the case, that starts to be a problem...:D
  14. Nobody is sending anything to P1 they seem sketch as hell, claiming an address in the U.S. but only one guy on eBay in Brazil has significant stock of P1 graded games (which seem to be graded extremely generously, and haphazardly). I haven't seen a single person in any of the usual places say they're sending games to P1.
  15. Finally got around to adding the contents for Ruby and Sapphire. Just need to get a minute to do Gold and Silver now and it'll be done...
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