Stadium Events is one of the holy grails for video game collectors. Not because the old-school Nintendo cartridge is so much fun to play, but because the game's rarity makes it worth a small fortune.
One lucky woman found a copy in a North Carolina Goodwill store and purchased it for $7.99. The estimated value, according to gamer blog Kotaku, could be as high as $15,000. Score one for bargain hunters.
After buying the game, the woman went to Save Point Video Games and spoke with owner Wilder Hamm about the game's value. Hamm told Kotaku that he couldn't contain his excitement. Not to buy it or play it, mind you. But just to see it in person.
"Oh my God!" Hamm said he blurted, when she showed him the box. "She knew exactly what she had," Hamm told Kotaku. She showed it to him last, after presenting some common titles like 10-Yard Fight and The Karate Kid, before rolling out Stadium Events like a $15,000 punchline.
"Normally in this business, we try not to show our cards," Hamm said. "We're not in the business of ripping people off but, you show that kind of excitement, they start expecting a mountain of money."
So, what's the deal with Stadium Events? The cartridge, a kind of Track and Field exercise game, was published by Bandai in the late 1980s. Following the game's rebranding as World Class Track Meet (with peripheral exercise mat), all initial copies were to be destroyed. However, a few dozen managed to escape the Grim Reaper's scythe.
Today, those copies are highly sought after. Several years ago, a sealed copy sold for $41,300.
On that initial eBay auction page, the seller wrote, "This was bought over 20 years ago so my memories are fuzzy…What I remember is that we bought it thinking that we could play it by itself and then realized that we needed the pad (?). Somewhere in there it was recalled so the pads weren't available when we went to purchase it. We never got around to returning the game...lucky us!"source