Everyone has their favorite sports video game. The scuffed copy of NBA Jam Tournament Edition you jammed in your Super Nintendo more times than you can count, Madden NFL 2004 where Michael Vick was so broken you could rack up 300 yard rushing with ease, or NCAA Football 14, a final chance to remember how amazing college football games could be.
These memories are valuable. They’re worth everything to you — but the open market has other ideas. There are so old, bizarre sports games that could be sitting in a box in your parents’ attic right now worth enough to pay off your student loans, or at least a month or two rent. Similarly there are objectively some sports games so horrifically awful history deemed them to be worth absolutely nothing.
Kris Paine owns and runs “Well Played Games,” an arcade and vintage game store in Greenville, North Carolina. He uses a system shared by second-hand games stores across the country that tells him what stores charge on average for used games, and what absolutely nobody wants. It’s the best metric we have to truly determine how much we care about games as a society. I asked Paine for his list of the most (and least) valuable sporting games right now. This might result in you having the best day of the year, or just being grumpy about the $20,000 game you know got sold at a yard sale for a nickel.
The most expensive sports games right now.
No. 1: Family Fun Fitness Stadium Events (NES)
A video game Holy Grail, a loose copy of Stadium Events sells for over $9,000 on the open market. If you have it complete with box and manual you’re looking at a game which last sold for $29,251.
Released in September of 1987, Stadium Events is a game you have probably played — but never knew it by this name. Initially released in a very short run, Nintendo re-issued the game as World Class Track Meet to sell alongside the “Power Pad” peripheral. Players would run and jump on an often malfunctioning Power Pad, competing in Olympic-style races.
That version is probably the one you own. I’m sorry to tell you it’s worth nothing. However, if you somehow purchased the game before Nintendo re-branded it you’re sitting on one the rarest video games of all time. Nintendo typically did production runs of 10,000 units, though collectors believe far less copies of Stadium Events were created, due to the change in title.
No. 2: Exertainment Mountain Bike Rally/Speed Racer (SNES)
There have been some really, really weird video game peripherals over the years — but nothing quite compares to the ancient Peleton grandfather, the “Extertainment Life Cycle.” A crossover product between Nintendo and exercise bike manufacturer “Life Cycle,” this was really Nintendo’s first attempt at cornering the lifestyle/fitness market in video games. It flopped so spectacularly they didn’t try it again until the release of the Wii.
The big issue is that the bike cost $800 on its release in 1994. Accounting for inflation that makes it $1,384 today. There were also only two games that supported the Extertainment Life Cycle, the pack-in combo of Mountain Bike Rally and Speed Racer. Yes, that Speed Racer, from the anime — except you’d pedal to make the Mach 5 drive.
It’s unclear how many copies of the pack in game still exist, but a loose copy is worth $1,346, with a complete in box one selling for $2,683.
No. 3: Daytona USA Championship [Net Link Edition] (Sega Saturn)
A relic of a now hilarious time, this edition of the iconic arcade game was released in the internet’s infancy and represents one of the first games that could be played online. This used the incredible looking “Sega Net Link,” which was a partnership between Sega and early internet service provider Planetweb, Inc. Using all the power a 28.8 kbps modem could muster, it allowed players to compete online for the relatively low cost of $199. Keep in mind, this was at a time where PC gaming was prohibitively expensive for most people.
Still, the Sega Net Link didn’t attract too much attention and the Sega Saturn was later replaced with the Dreamcast. Still, if you have a copy of the Net Link version of Daytona USA it’ll fetch $581 for a loose copy, and over $1,000 if you have it in the box.
And now the cheapest sports games right now
They can’t all be gems waiting to make you extreme amounts of money, and these games prove that in incredible fashion. Any chances of these ever being worth anything is nothing, and keeping them around your house just hurts any items they’re stored next to.
No. 1: Enduro Racer (Commodore 64)
You might have fond memories of this on the Sega Master System or the arcade, but the Commodore 64 version was a steaming pile of trash. Even Commodore 64 collectors tend to pass on this one unless they absolutely need to complete their collection.
The game sells for $1.95, and Paine said he doesn’t even both buying them for less than $1 when they come in, because nobody ever buys it.
No. 2: Major League Baseball 2K7 (PSP)
I love everything about writing that title. It takes a very specific person not only to want a copy of Major League Baseball 2K7, but absolutely has to have it available on the go with their PSP.
This game sucks, and if you have a copy it’s worth $1.99. Paine has never sold a single copy of this game.
No. 3: Super Play Action Football (SNES)
Released in 1992, this was supposed to be the pre-eminent football experience until the release of the Madden series. It’s a good thing Madden came along, because this game was horrible in every conceivable way.
“It says the price is $3.19, but in three years I have never sold a copy. Any trades I get that includes it is automatically worth slightly less, as the stink of Super Play Action Football infects other games.”
No. 4: Sports Illustrated Golf Classic (GameBoy)
“It says $3.19 as well as the loose base price. Like Play Action Football this game is terrible. It somehow manages to be worse than Golf, and less charming too — because at least Golf had Mario in it … sort of.”
No. 5: Lee Trevino’s Fighting Golf (NES)
There is no fighting in Lee Trevino’s Fighting Golf. It’s just a bad golf game and worth $5.