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How Much Will Physical Games Be Worth 50 Years From Now?

Like many kids my age, I was a baseball card collector.

I had quite the collection, too, and I still have it. At one point, this collection was appraised at nearly $3,000, so of course I wanted to keep it. After all, in the early 90s, this industry had exploded; people were cashing in on cards from the 50s that were worth as much as $50k and $60k apiece.

But then something happened that was inevitable: People started sifting through their attics, garages, basements and crawl spaces to locate previously forgotten about cards. Many found such cards and as a consequence, the value of these collectibles took a steep dive. And it happened really fast; only five years after being appraised at around $3,000, I had it looked at again, and was told the entire thing wasn't worth more than $30. I wasn't the only one who faced such a discouraging diagnosis...but hey, that means a lot of people threw 'em out, right? And the cycle continues; at some point, they'll be worth something again.

But they keep making baseball cards, and they probably always will. They may not always make video games produced on physical formats. So how much do you think your game collection might be worth fifty years from now? Think about it...there's always a market for niche collectibles and when the entire industry has gone digital, such products could become highly sought after. Some rare cartridges from the olden days are already worth a pretty penny; can you imagine what they'd be worth several decades from now? Even the popular titles that sold millions might be worth a significant chunk of change.

People will start discarding these games because A. They're not worth anything right now, B. Most all consoles aren't backwards compatible, C. A ton of games take up space, and D. We are breeding a culture that has no interest in tangible products; they want everything to exist in the digital space. So when all production of games on physical formats disappears forever, I would strongly advise holding tight to what you've collected in the past., wait, scratch that. Throw it away! Throw it all away! Please I can benefit...... ;)

Tags: video games, gaming, game collections, video game collections

4/1/2013 9:49:45 PM Ben Dutka

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New Comment System

Legacy Comment System (16 posts)

Metal Head
Monday, April 01, 2013 @ 10:31:52 PM

50 years in the future I would probably don't care since I'll be almost 90. Hopefully, I can reach 115 like my great grandfather and be mentally sharp and be able to take of myself like he did.
By the way I have over 65 PS1 games, over 100 PS2 games, over 80 PS3 games, 30 PSP,6 Vita,and 10 Dreamcast games.
I'm not a collector, and I have finish about half of all the games I own.

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Monday, April 01, 2013 @ 10:43:24 PM

I plan to be full of nanobots and functioning well enough to keep on gaming at 90.

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Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 3:33:47 AM

Same, though I'd like an Aegis suit to go along with my nanobots, among other things...

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Monday, April 01, 2013 @ 10:33:56 PM

Older cartridge based formats are likely to be around for a while if they've been treated with any real care. There are a lot of 2600 cartridges in circulation from the 70s and the case there is less about the stability of the media than the hardware that they run on.
Disc based media are another story altogether. Some of the earliest CDs (the ones from K-Tel) in particular have already failed and DVDs are only estimated to have a life span of 30-100 years. A large number of discs from the PS1/PS2 eras might not be around in 2063. Blu-rays are better with an estimated lifespan of 100-150 years but no one really knows.
As far as the value of the ones that survive? The most valuable ones from the 2600 and NES eras are the ones that weren't produced in very large numbers. The common ones like Combat for the 2600 sell for very reasonable prices.

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Monday, April 01, 2013 @ 10:46:34 PM

It's gonna be the rare ones folks, I won't part with my original Final Fantasy discs for anything but for awhile they were worth a lot. And if you want to make a pretty penny you should invest in JRPGs, they don't make many and they hardly go down in price, then in a few years the prices go up especially if you have a collectors edition.

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Monday, April 01, 2013 @ 11:16:42 PM

Probably quite a bunch. I know that SNES titles are already worth hundreds of dollars a piece in some cases. I, personally, am more or less done with buying physical media, so that's one less person y'all have to compete with. = p

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Monday, April 01, 2013 @ 11:25:05 PM

I wish you luck out there on the new frontier brother. There's talk of strange folk abroad...

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Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 1:49:48 AM

I my safe have what are referred to as collectibles. I was a big Star Wars fan when the original came out. I have all the cards I collected then, even action figure from Empire Strikes back (Boba Fett). BUT I did not collect them nor still have them because they are or possibly will be worth something. They are nostalgic, reminding me of my childhood and the fun that it brought me at that time. :0

As for games, I use to keep old PC games that I loved playing as well as console. I keep them because they were fun and the gameplay still relevant today, minus top end present graphics today.

There worth 50 years from now is dubious/uncertain, but its not why I keep them. 50 years from... how the hell are you going to play those PC games, no system will computer will play unless you a system that still runs 50 years from now. Same with the console. For instance, if my Sony Playstation burns out even 10 years from now... I will probably have to go to eBay to replace it and someone will probably ask for a ridiculous price for it. But then, why am I playing a game 50 years from now that I probably couldn't even attach the console to the TV because it no longer supports the connections. Do I keep an old boob tube tv just to be able to plug it even at age 95 or more to... play it? lol

It all comes down to like everything else that is deemed collectible or even nostalgic. Its ONLY worth what one is willing to pay for it. Like comics, one could ask for $1000 for a #1 first print issue... but who out there is willing to pay it? Only someone who really wants it and thinks its worth that much.

As for me, I keep items if I continue to like it or I get nostalgic, like the old Star Wars bubble gum cards because it reminds me when I was, uh hum, young, naive and just a kid when all one worried about was having enough money to buy the next set. :)

Heck, I still have Sirtechs original box for Wizardry from the 80's with the chinee dragon embossed on the box. Why? It was the very first PC game I bought. Nostalgic? Yes! Can I still play it? No. Would I want to? Not really. Would I sell it? No... unless it was worth something and I was starving living out of a shoe box. Still... good memories playing it.

In the end those nostalgic memories... maybe they are just trophies. Hey, to each their own. Still, I remember playing Space Invaders in the arcade and having a blast... but I am not going to pay potentially thousands or hundreds to relive those memories.

Whatever makes you happy.

Keep Playing!

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Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 3:40:29 AM

In all honesty, I figured everyone had to collect something, but it became more than that. My collection is my legacy, I intend to pass down my legacy, ability, and my name to my children (when I have them...) as well. They will continue the legacy of darkswordsmansol! *Evil laugh*

Lol, imagine that... several generations of Sol. Each more different than the last yet all have the same focus when it comes to games.

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Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 4:14:06 AM

ebay, the best place to find out!
never ceases to amaze me how much morons will pay for things!
i remember the limited edition of MGS4 was so rare only 20 were released in the country!
paid 140 for it if i remember right and ended up selling it a year later for over a grand!
i imported 2 vitas from JP for instance on release day, one a bday pressy for myself but the other i ended up selling on ebay for 3 times what they were going for in shops!
doing that now with a headphone amplifier i recently bought.
spent 800 bucks on it, and now its on ebay bidding 6 days left and its already up to 1100!
go to the stores and buy something for 800 bucks brand new, or jump on the internet, spend 300+ more on a used item which is probably damaged and will take weeks to ship.
hmmmmmmmmmm, hard decision!
exactly why ive preordered 5 ps4s, 1 for me and the other 4 to sell at 3 times the retail price on ebay once they launch!

Last edited by ___________ on 4/2/2013 4:17:53 AM

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Solid Fantasy
Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 6:55:01 AM

Hopefully a lot! That's why I take good care of my physical copies now. I usually take the disk out and put it in another case and keep the box art safely stored away.
... I mean... they're worthless! Everyone should throw there limited editions out and forget I said anything about future value.

Yes, that should do it...

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PSN French
Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 7:31:32 AM

physical collections will become MORE valuable!!

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Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 12:30:06 PM

I dont think very much at all
maybe except Nintendo World Champions.

In 50 years all licensing on games will be expired
so expect to amass every game you ever wanted to play in a digital media
just as netflix and hulu is to television today.

Playstation xbox and all others have been mass produced to a point where their isn't too many many actual rare games.
Sure you could own the manshow game and pay a hundred dollars for it on ebay but thats an entire different animal.
Sellers on Ebay inflate prices so much its like a miniture variation of the stock market.
Look at all the people selling or buying FFVII
before released on PSN $100-$150
after $35-$50.
Once everything is available over time
there wont be too much thats valuable from the post 1990 generation.

I wonder if our original consoles would still even work?

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Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 1:47:49 PM

We want everything to be digital? LOL. Only sheep who believe and follow the propaganda, trends and hype THINK they want everything digital but the smart consumer who isn't sheep doesn't want ONLY digital, they want physical no matter what and digital as an option for backups.

I've noticed where people think they want digital most is the US, funny enough there is where all the sheep are, outside the US people know physical and no internet connection required is what's best.

I'm a smart consumer and I will always be physical and no internet connection required FIRST and then as an option for backups and such I use crap digital.

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Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 4:55:35 PM

The fact that I own an original hard case physical version of the first Suikoden game on ps1 should at least boost my collection into the triple digits in 50 years. And, yes its still in mint condition .

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Tuesday, April 02, 2013 @ 11:28:46 PM

I own legend of zelda unopened
as well as persona 1.
Maybe Zelda will still have some value in 50 years but I doubt it.
Only die hard collectors who pay large amounts of money determine an objects value, and chances are they will already own it.

besides unless you own a complete set unopened
its not going to be worth very much.. thats where video games and baseball ball cards have much in common with each other.

Thats also why I listed Nintendo World Champions [complete with a box and manual] goes for around $15,000 currently.

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