Rare Zelda Game Could Sell For More Than $1 Million

By Jeffrey Rapaport | Published

Video game collectors—lovers of retro gaming worldwide—prepare to be astonished: a sealed, wholly mint copy of the iconic 1987 classic videogame, The Legend of Zelda, will likely shatter auction records and potentially earn an enormous sum. How enormous? At least seven hundred thousand dollars. Understandably, collectors and fans alike have been captivated by the unearthing of this rare, extremely valuable item. 

The Zelda Copy Is Ready To Become The Most Expensive Video Game Ever Sold

The importance of the discovery makes sense in light of how truly uncommon and sought-after this version of the game is. Crucially, the copy stems from the game’s very first production run; moreover—of critical importance—it remained sealed, meaning it’s a highly coveted “holy grail” for serious collectors with deep pockets.

How deep? Given the last time a first-run copy of The Legend of Zelda was auctioned, it earned $705,000 (setting records as one of the most expensive video games ever sold)—very deep indeed. 

Among other things, the development sheds outsized light on the similarly outsized value—and cultural cache—of vintage video games.

The Current Owner Is Younger Than The Game

To make matters even more exciting, the discoverer and seller of the title, by no means a gamer old enough to have initially bought and played the ’80s fossilized copy of Legend of Zelda, is only 22. The twenty-something Californian, so far only known as Kiro, happened upon the treasure in his family’s collection.

The game, now perhaps fetching $700 thousand, only sold for $29.97 once upon a time (i.e., 1987); adjusted for inflation, that price would translate to about $80 today. The initial purchaser would have picked it up at a since-defunct Fedcore store.

Worth A Lot Of Rupees

For most, finding a sealed, perfectly intact first edition of the game would provide a mere trip down memory lane. But for Kiro, the discovery constitutes a potential golden ticket to some serious scratch; the young man had previously sold items on eBay and placed the rare Zelda copy on the website, hoping to net a handsome profit—perhaps between $17,000 and $20,000. 

To Kiro’s delighted astonishment, after uploading the game to eBay and setting its Buy It Now price for $17,000, he sold it within minutes. A few minutes later, more bids flooded in, alongside messages with offers. Someone even offered to drive to Kiro in person and snag the came for $30,000 in hard currency.  

The Seller Was Unaware Of The Game’s Exceptional Value

zelda tears of the kingdom

Unsurprisingly, Kiro realized he had something precious on his hands. The same night he uploaded the eBay listing (which he soon took down, having ascertained the enormous worth of the Zelda copy in his possession), a seasoned, professional collector contacted Kiro, offering guidance.

Understanding the game’s true rarity and value, the collector—simply and fortunately a good Samaritan seeking to help—set Kiro up with a professional item grading service in Florida. He also facilitated a partnership between the young, soon-to-be rich man and Heritage Auctions, an auction house in Texas. 

The Holy Grail Of Games

In a matter of days, the game Kiro had accidentally stumbled upon had catapulted him to the forefront of the collectible gaming world.

Ultimately, on behalf of gamers everywhere, here’s to Kiro and his incredible Zelda find. 

Source: CNBC