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ExplodedHamster

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22 minutes ago, Bronty said:

One thing is for sure, if there’s money to be made  we are going to see big time grade creep on cibs as people start to marry parts and max out the potential grades with other means including pressing and cleaning and whatever other tricks they come up with.    

One thing you can’t take away from sealed is that no one has touched it.    With all the manipulation that goes on to maximize grade in other hobbies it’s to know that if you have a sealed game no one has trimmed or pressed or cleaned or given it a solvent bath or whatever.    It’s been left alone since the day it was made.  You don’t get those guarantees in things like comics, in fact you assume the opposite 

Marrying parts has been around forever and video game pressing has been publicly advertised on social media for at least 6-9 months now.  Not to say those tricks have been applying to all CIBs graded, but it's already been happening significantly.  

Sealed, people still clean them and remove stickers.  I don't want any sealed graded with a sticker and always remove them.  Wata seems to not dock for stickers unless its a huge security sticker that would cause damage (think R-Zone).  VGA docked for stickers (as they should IMO).  You can't clean scuffs off but you can definitely remove dust / debris / sticker goo / etc.  So yeah, sealed games can be modified a bit to appear nicer too. 

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11 minutes ago, Bearcat-Doug said:

I got out of comics right about the time CGC started, but I remember professionally cleaned/pressed comics being sold and it wasn't always disclosed. I didn't have a problem with buying a cleaned and pressed comic at a discount. I tried to avoid restored books although I bought my More Fun #52 from the original owner and I had it restored by Matt Nelson because the spine was completely split and the edges of the pages were becoming brittle. It was one of those cases where it was mostly intact otherwise other than a small piece out of the lower right corner of the cover. It ended up with a CGC 6.0 (R/Extensive) grade in the end, but it went from being tattered to a respectable mid grade looking copy.

Well, you missed all the shenanigans 🙂 Restoration when it makes sense is great. Micro trimming a 9.4 into a 9.8; not so much.     And it’s all still going on, all the time.   The blue labels have been messed with just as much as the purple labels.   Assumed they are all manipulated, I guess.  

More Fun 52 is a great book.   Still have it? 

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8 minutes ago, jonebone said:

Marrying parts has been around forever and video game pressing has been publicly advertised on social media for at least 6-9 months now.  Not to say those tricks have been applying to all CIBs graded, but it's already been happening significantly.  

Sealed, people still clean them and remove stickers.  I don't want any sealed graded with a sticker and always remove them.  Wata seems to not dock for stickers unless its a huge security sticker that would cause damage (think R-Zone).  VGA docked for stickers (as they should IMO).  You can't clean scuffs off but you can definitely remove dust / debris / sticker goo / etc.  So yeah, sealed games can be modified a bit to appear nicer too. 

Agree with all that.   But it’s early days yet. As for people removing stickers on sealed etc.  - you’re quite right that the appearance of the wrap can be manipulated somewhat and that’s been happening forever.   But that’s it.   The insides can’t be touched.

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I just think that first auction was excitement over the first offering to market of the title people want.   However, someone paid an 8.5 box price for 5.5 box as a result 

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17 minutes ago, Bronty said:

Well, you missed all the shenanigans 🙂 Restoration when it makes sense is great. Micro trimming a 9.4 into a 9.8; not so much.     And it’s all still going on, all the time.   The blue labels have been messed with just as much as the purple labels.   Assumed they are all manipulated, I guess.  

More Fun 52 is a great book.   Still have it? 

It was actually the last book that I owned before I fully got back into vintage baseball cards. I sold it back in 2003 but I think it's come up for sale in an auction at least once since then because at the time it was the only purple label CGC 6.0 (Extensive) copy in the pop report. I think there was another purple label 6.0 later on, but it was in the slight/moderate category.

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5 minutes ago, Bearcat-Doug said:

It was actually the last book that I owned before I fully got back into vintage baseball cards. I sold it back in 2003 but I think it's come up for sale in an auction at least once since then because at the time it was the only purple label CGC 6.0 (Extensive) copy in the pop report. I think there was another purple label 6.0 later on, but it was in the slight/moderate category.

That’s cool, I still buy golden age but only the wartime Canadian superhero titles weren’t sold in the US.

whats your best or favorite card these days then ?

Edited by Bronty

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36 minutes ago, jonebone said:

Sealed, people still clean them and remove stickers.  I don't want any sealed graded with a sticker and always remove them.  Wata seems to not dock for stickers unless its a huge security sticker that would cause damage (think R-Zone).  VGA docked for stickers (as they should IMO).  You can't clean scuffs off but you can definitely remove dust / debris / sticker goo / etc.  So yeah, sealed games can be modified a bit to appear nicer too. 

Like you, I have no issues with cleaning a sealed game because all of the defects you mentioned are removing things added after it left the factory, even dust / grime. If anything, you're restoring it to the way it was as best as possible. A far cry from physical manipulation on the contents to reflect a state hat was never achieved, ie comic and card cutting. 

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Just now, Bronty said:

That’s cool, I still buy golden age but only the wartime Canadian superhero titles weren’t sold in the US.

whats your best card these days then ?

I got out of the card hobby about 7 years ago, right before I bought the gray NWC and Stadium Events. I had about every important 1950s-60s Topps card. Including 7 different 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle cards (not at the same time). I had an 1888 Old Judge Bid McPhee throwing pose which I believe was one of 2 or 3 known. I had a few T206 Hall of Famers with red Hindu cigarettes backs that were the only known examples. I had a T206 Hall of Fame set minus the Plank and Wagner. If I had to pick my favorite it would have been the 1952 Topps Mantle since it may be the most iconic vintage baseball card.

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So did you basically roll the proceeds from one hobby to another?    I basically did the same thing around 02/03 selling comics to buy games.    And since 08 having sold games at times to buy art.    I haven’t spent any net money in forever. 

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21 hours ago, jonebone said:

That's what that * means?  Holy smokes.  Maybe someone fat fingered and extra 0.  

If someone is turning down an offer of $4900 to sell their Bubble Bobble in that grade, I really am at a loss for words. 

I bet someone bid it up to right before the reserve to try and get someone else to bid that last bid to sell it 

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1 minute ago, Bronty said:

Thoughts on mantle prices?   They’ve shot way up right?

Yeah. I saw my old PSA 4 sell on eBay for $37k a few months ago. I paid $8k for it back around 2011. I had several nice low grade ones that I paid around $3k each for and it seems like a PSA 1 is a $10k card now. I thought it was ironic that my NWC gray cart was #311 which is also the same number as the Mickey Mantle card in the 1952 Topps set.

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20 minutes ago, Rman said:

I bet someone bid it up to right before the reserve to try and get someone else to bid that last bid to sell it 

I think that happens automatically on the site when there is a reserve .    Same thing on heritage.    They show the star also.    The vast majority of lots have no reserve .      A couple days before auctions end if the reserve is not met it gets bid up to one increment under so that the reserve is revealed.    Basically if you see a star then discount the bid history.   

Im pretty sure this is all spelled out in the standard auction terms.   

Edited by Bronty

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1 hour ago, Bronty said:

I think that happens automatically on the site when there is a reserve .    Same thing on heritage.    They show the star also.    The vast majority of lots have no reserve .      A couple days before auctions end if the reserve is not met it gets bid up to one increment under so that the reserve is revealed.    Basically if you see a star then discount the bid history.   

Im pretty sure this is all spelled out in the standard auction terms.   

Yes, it happens automatically. It’s basically CL giving away the reserve with like a week left.

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3 hours ago, Bronty said:

That’s cool, I still buy golden age but only the wartime Canadian superhero titles weren’t sold in the US.

whats your best or favorite card these days then ?

Back in the mid/late '90s I also had the second largest known collection of sealed G1 Transformers along with a large collection of boxed/sealed GI Joe's from the original 1960s series to the early/mid 80s as well as a bunch of sealed Lego sets. That was in the early days of eBay when you could message people that maybe had one item listed and it would turn out they had a lot more that they would let go cheap. Bidders IDs weren't hidden back then so I would literally have people contacting me with stuff for sale. I had someone contact me in 1997 with a sealed Targetmaster Scourge (considered the rarest sealed US Transformer) asking $400 and I had it sold to another collector for $2500 as soon as I had it in hand. Selling off my Transformer/GI Joe/Lego collection game me a good amount of cash to move onto baseball cards which was something I really didn't have the funds to get seriously into until then.

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1 hour ago, Bearcat-Doug said:

Back in the mid/late '90s I also had the second largest known collection of sealed G1 Transformers along with a large collection of boxed/sealed GI Joe's from the original 1960s series to the early/mid 80s as well as a bunch of sealed Lego sets. That was in the early days of eBay when you could message people that maybe had one item listed and it would turn out they had a lot more that they would let go cheap. Bidders IDs weren't hidden back then so I would literally have people contacting me with stuff for sale. I had someone contact me in 1997 with a sealed Targetmaster Scourge (considered the rarest sealed US Transformer) asking $400 and I had it sold to another collector for $2500 as soon as I had it in hand. Selling off my Transformer/GI Joe/Lego collection game me a good amount of cash to move onto baseball cards which was something I really didn't have the funds to get seriously into until then.

Those wild west days were amazing. You didn't even have to be an eBay member to message a seller. I remember using my Juno email in the mid 90's to ask people to sell me the things they listed, outside of ebay. I got a near complete boxed G1 Jetfire for $60, and spent the next year looking for the damn gun clip!

When I eventually stop caring about games, I'll probably just retire and work on AFA G1 again. 

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Just now, Startyde said:

Those wild west days were amazing. You didn't even have to be an eBay member to message a seller. I remember using my Juno email in the mid 90's to ask people to sell me the things they listed, outside of ebay. I got a near complete boxed G1 Jetfire for $60, and spent the next year looking for the damn gun clip!

When I eventually stop caring about games, I'll probably just retire and work on AFA G1 again. 

I had the entire 1984-85 series sealed with some select 1986-87 and if AFA was around back then I'm sure everything I had would have graded a 90+. Me and the guy with the largest known G1 collection (who bought mine to upgrade some of his) kicked around the idea of starting a grading service in the late 90s, but we weren't sure it would be worth it given the investment and logistics since I live in Cincinnati and he was in Miami.

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1 minute ago, Bearcat-Doug said:

I had the entire 1984-85 series sealed with some select 1986-87 and if AFA was around back then I'm sure everything I had would have graded a 90+. Me and the guy with the largest known G1 collection (who bought mine to upgrade some of his) kicked around the idea of starting a grading service in the late 90s, but we weren't sure it would be worth it given the investment and logistics since I live in Cincinnati and he was in Miami.

Ooooph, all things are as they were always meant to be my friend. No regrets, and the memories live forever.

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Just now, Startyde said:

Ooooph, all things are as they were always meant to be my friend. No regrets, and the memories live forever.

Very true. I found everything I wanted to own and cashed out with enough to get into vintage baseball cards which I had a good run with too. I prefer playing old video games I had as a kid to collecting them, so I kind of found my home here.

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Biggest takeaway for me on that auction was the ZERO BID for black box sticker seals.  There was a huge rush of demand after the initial IG storm of stickers hit, but that's clearly done now.   If you really wanted to start collecting stickers, and had no inventory that was a great auction to seed your collection.  

Admittedly, i was guilty of some of the hype chasing sticker craze.  With the prices i saw last night, begs the question whether its even worth paying WATA to certify and grade them!!!  

I think we're seeing the normalization of the delta between sealed games and CIBs.  CIBs were "rich" for a while there and are coming back down now.  Once the newcomers seed themselves with the education of CIBs vs Sealed differences, i think this spread will stabilize.  

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7 hours ago, JinxtheCat said:

Biggest takeaway for me on that auction was the ZERO BID for black box sticker seals.  There was a huge rush of demand after the initial IG storm of stickers hit, but that's clearly done now.   If you really wanted to start collecting stickers, and had no inventory that was a great auction to seed your collection.  

Admittedly, i was guilty of some of the hype chasing sticker craze.  With the prices i saw last night, begs the question whether its even worth paying WATA to certify and grade them!!!  

I think we're seeing the normalization of the delta between sealed games and CIBs.  CIBs were "rich" for a while there and are coming back down now.  Once the newcomers seed themselves with the education of CIBs vs Sealed differences, i think this spread will stabilize.  

I think population reports over time will actually bump sticker prices back up, especially something like a matte SMB. After the big initial sale, a number of long-time collectors started dumping them at once, creating a false perception of how many are actually out there. For some perspective, despite the massive original SMB matte sale, WATA has only graded like ten of them. They’ve graded I believe 15-20 NWC. From a historical perspective, I think one could easily craft an argument placing the original run of SMB at equal or higher footing than the Nintendo World Championships. So I dunno, it’s definitely intriguing.

Additionally, after the initial surge following the 22k sale, stickers, the natural “flow” of stickers showing back up has re-commenced, and outside of DH and Gyro for obvious reasons, it’s quite slow again. We’ll see what happens, but this is where eventual population reports will have an impact imo.

Edited by ExplodedHamster
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2 hours ago, ExplodedHamster said:

From a historical perspective, I think one could easily craft an argument placing the original run of SMB at equal or higher footing than the Nintendo World Championships.

Definitely. Everyone should spend a few bucks on an Famicom copy of Super Mario Bros, the game that changed the world! NWC is just some contest.

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1 hour ago, ExplodedHamster said:

Nobody cares about outside the US stuff 🙄.

Nah, people love Nintendo. No one cares about Pitfall.

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6 hours ago, ExplodedHamster said:

I think population reports over time will actually bump sticker prices back up, especially something like a matte SMB. After the big initial sale, a number of long-time collectors started dumping them at once, creating a false perception of how many are actually out there. For some perspective, despite the massive original SMB matte sale, WATA has only graded like ten of them. They’ve graded I believe 15-20 NWC. From a historical perspective, I think one could easily craft an argument placing the original run of SMB at equal or higher footing than the Nintendo World Championships. So I dunno, it’s definitely intriguing.

Additionally, after the initial surge following the 22k sale, stickers, the natural “flow” of stickers showing back up has re-commenced, and outside of DH and Gyro for obvious reasons, it’s quite slow again. We’ll see what happens, but this is where eventual population reports will have an impact imo.

Not directed solely at you but let's lay out the perfect storm that created sticker mania.  The hype will never be as much as it was, ever.

You had massive amounts of uneducated new money piling in, an article hyping them through the moon, and populations that did not exist.  

Buyers will only get more educated as time goes on.  They will be more selective with their money.  That's already happening.

Article hype, you will never get the hype rivaled from a brand new article that documents the variants.  People get all giddy about the new undocumented territory, you cannot repeat that.

Populations... no where to go but up.  I mean that in a literal sense.  If you got 10 confirmed copies today, one more increases it to 11.  You are never going to decrease the population.  Sure some will try to hoard but that's a different topic entirely.  Also, as population increases, the lower grade copies will lose value.  Glad Wata finally raised prices so hopefully some of the 1.0 box junk will stop getting graded.  

Not to mention the natural churn we'll have as people collect the set and get bored and move on.  May not apply to Mario directly but stickers as a whole.  Everyone knows the thrill is in the hunt and owning the item gets boring.  That's why people cash out of hobbies (comics) into others, to experience the fun of collecting.  You'll see some cash out of stickers as people move on to other things.  If there's only 10 confirmed but there's always 1 for sale, it's not really that rare on the market. 

And last but not least, why is everyone putting Mario at the top of the hill?  It's Zelda for me.  This isn't Sega where it's Sonic and no one else or Xbox where it is Halo and no others, Nintendo Mario and Zelda are your 1A and 1B.  The gap between Mario and Zelda will close.  If Zelda had a sticker on it, would it also command absurd money?  Kinda of demonstrates the point here... 

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