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Nintendo games everyone owned that are worth serious money right now


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How many Nintendo games have you traded in without a second thought during a trip to GameStop? Unfortunately, there’s a decent chance you could have made a cool couple hundred bucks if you’d made a different decision that day.

Many of the most expensive games on the resale market come from lesser-known Nintendo properties. While that’s not exactly shocking, it’s surprising how many once-commonplace games are now worth tons of money used.

In some cases, this is due to Nintendo’s love for tiny discs and cartridges, which are harder to mass-produce than Blu-rays or DVDs. With fewer overall copies, games that haven’t been rereleased become especially enticing to collectors.

Nintendo games

To better understand what not to pass over (or let go of), we have rounded up a list of the most expensive Nintendo games available today. Don’t feel too bad; there’s no way you could have known that copy of NCAA 2K3 would be worth so much more than $3 in-store credit.

Rare, Expensive Games Everyone Used to Have

Note: Due to ever-shifting trends and price fluctuations in the resale market, we calculated each game’s current average price using recent sale data and current prices for new copies (sealed), complete (used and in good condition), and loose (disc-only). We have omitted suspiciously high or low listings, including collectibles such as empty boxes, art, and manuals.

1. Pikmin 2

  • Platform: Nintendo GameCube
  • List Price: $19.99
  • Current Average Price: $75

The saga of Pikmin 2 provides valuable insight into why Nintendo products become scarce and expensive as often as they do. Simply put, the company underestimated the game’s appeal and didn’t release nearly as many copies as North American players wanted, at a remarkably reasonable $20 launch price,. The game was bafflingly rare as early as 2008, even when it was easy to find plenty of other GameCube games in stores — often at a discount, given the recent release of the Nintendo Wii.

2. Pokémon Colosseum

  • Platform: Nintendo GameCube
  • List Price: $49.99
  • Current Average Price: $96

Making Pokémon Colosseum, a true RPG, was a risky gamble for Nintendo, as it broke the mold from the series’ previous strategy-game format. Today, it is an invaluable resource for acquiring high-powered legendary Pokémon like Ho-Oh, Suicune, and Entei in other titles. The game is still expensive today because of Nintendo’s fairly small-scale release, despite Colosseum’s value in the competitive world of Pokémon breeding.

3. Doom II

  • Platform: Game Boy Advance
  • List Price: $19.99
  • Current Average Price: $107

Programmers are always pushing the limits of which electronic devices can run Doom, an MS-DOS game released in 1993. Even though Doom II came out just one year later and offers a similarly robust number of available ports, game collectors and Doom aficionados are still chasing the rarest and most expensive official port, the Game Boy Advance edition from 2002.

4. Fire Emblem Radiant Dawn

Fire Emblem characters are some of the most beloved fighters in Super Smash Bros. today, but Nintendo’s original game series was a sleeper hit. When Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance saw mediocre sales in 2005, Nintendo scaled back its sequel, Radiant Dawn. Future releases caused a surge in Fire Emblem’s popularity, which pushed the already scarce resale selections to a massive new high.

5. Pokémon Platinum

It is common knowledge that the third game in each Pokémon generation acts as a “complete” edition that typically costs more than the previous two. Whether or not this is warranted remains a hot debate among fans. Still, this high price is best explained by the perceived “deluxe” value of the game mixed with Nintendo’s constant output of new games and consoles (which quickly pushes recent games to “out of print” status).

6. SNES Classic

At a certain point, Nintendo’s business model seems to rely on artificial scarcity. Following the poor rollout of the NES Classic in 2016, Nintendo proceeded to do the same thing with the release of the SNES Classic.

Plagued by shortages, scalpers went to town on everyone’s nostalgic desperation and desire to relive a simpler time. GameStop even got in on the fun by selling strangely expensive “bundles” with unrelated merchandise from games unrelated to the SNES Classic’s catalog.

7. Pokémon Gale of Darkness

  • Platform: Nintendo GameCube
  • List Price: $29.99
  • Current Average Price: $177

Despite its unique mechanics for training shadow Pokémon, this Pokémon Colosseum sequel didn’t sell well during its original release. The game’s rarity and ability to communicate with Game Boy Advance cartridges have elevated it to cult status today, making it the most expensive Pokémon game for GameCube.

8. Castlevania Aria of Sorrow

  • Platform: Game Boy Advance
  • List Price: $49.95
  • Current Average Price: $263

Once again, collectors are paying an arm and a leg due to Nintendo’s underestimation of how many people go crazy for their games. Castlevania Aria of Sorrow saw decent reception when it was released in 2003, and today, it is regarded as one of the best titles from the series. Its value as a game and a collector’s item has kept the price point well over MSRP for over ten years.

9. Dokapon Journey

Niche titles from smaller Japanese game studios typically receive smaller releases than huge Nintendo titles from the same era. Dokapon Journey proved to be an extreme example. While it has a single-player mode, this game is best known for its array of multiplayer RPG board games and party mechanics. All players must have their game cards, which is difficult and expensive, given the limited number of copies available.

10. NCAA 2k3

  • Platform: Nintendo GameCube
  • List Price: $24.99
  • Current Average Price: $296

Sports games with yearly releases are notorious for their poor resale value, so the extreme rarity of NCAA Basketball 2K3 may seem surprising. Ironically, it is so rare because it sold very poorly on GameCube. Sega decided to pull the 2K series from the platform entirely, cementing 2K3’s legacy as a coveted collectible.

11. Shepherd’s Crossing 2

On the face, Shepherd’s Crossing two looks like a dime-a-dozen Harvest Moon knockoff. Despite the growing genre of soothing daily life games on handheld consoles, poor marketing left this game in the shadows for years. The low sales volume almost caused it to fade entirely until a small but dedicated fanbase boosted Shepherd Crossing 2’s popularity, leading to a rush for the few copies in circulation.

12. Barbie Groom and Glam Pups

Barbie: Groom and Glam Pups is one of the most expensive 3DS games available today, but not because it flew off the shelves. On the contrary, its low-volume run in Canada went so poorly that the game was quickly pulled from the stands and never released in the United States. Logically, everyone will pay top dollar to groom these rare and glamorous pups.

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Our editors strive to ensure that the information in this article is accurate as of the date published, but please keep in mind that offers can change. We encourage you to verify any product’s terms and conditions before applying.


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