Cash in the attic: Retro games now worth thousands as market makes a comeback
PUBLISHED: 14:56 18 July 2019 | UPDATED: 09:02 19 July 2019
Thousands of pounds worth of games and consoles could be hiding in your loft - as demand for retro gaming products pushes prices ever higher.
Gamers are apparently turning back to classic video games as releases flood the market.
And collectors items are proving even more valuable - with one copy of Atari 2600's Extra Terrestrials currently being sold on eBay for $90,000.
"We're definitely seeing an increase in demand," said owner of Norwich's Last Level Games, Edward Jackman.
"Nostalgia is the main driver. People in their 30s want to be able to escape stuff like mortgage repayments and bills and go back to a simpler time, which is why 1990s games are doing so well."
Mr Jackman, who has run the shop in St Benedicts Street since April 2018, said the most he has paid for a game was £450 for a copy of Power Drive on the Game Gear.
"We're also seeing younger people getting into retro gaming because they're discerning about the fact that new editions of games are just the same but with better graphics. Plus, there are so many micro-costs hidden within the game you have to pay more to enjoy it to its full extent," Mr Jackman continued.
"People fall in love with the game and they want to pay their £40 and have all the characters they need."
The business sees most of its sales come from Nintendo which accounts for half of its profits.
The rest is made up of Sega, Sony and Microsoft.
"People will definitely have money in games that are just sitting in their loft. We get people coming in all the time to sell their games and they think they're going to get 50p. They're really pleased when we make them a cash offer of £10," Mr Jackman added.
Although eBay often makes the highest sales due to bidding wars, Mr Jackman said that for the majority of games selling through the retailer has the same outcome.
"You may get £10 more on eBay than with us, but by the time eBay have had their percent of the cut and you've paid for postage it's basically the same," he said.
What are the most valuable retro games and consoles?
1. Commodore Amiga CD32: These consoles are selling for between £150 to £200 at Last Level Games.
They sell quickly and can fetch more if they are in good condition.
2. Panasonic 3DO: These consoles were first retailed for around £700 and are fairly rare.
One in decent condition can be sold for around £100 - but can be sold for more if they are in an original box and not used. This is because they can be sold to game collectors.
3. Castlevania, Symphony of the Night: This game for PlayStation 1 has been sold for around £200 at Last Level Games.
Its value is high because of its rarity.
4. Conker's Bad Fur Day: This Nintendo title can go for as much £160 - providing it is in its original box and in good condition.
5. Megaman X 3: At the top end this SNES game can reach a price of £800 because it is so rare.
You may also want to watch:
Is it time to stop investing in art and start buying retro games?
Buying retro has always been a savvy investment option, but will buying retro games ever replace classic investment assets like art?
Stephen Girling, MD at SG Wealth Management said: There has always been some interest in specialised areas such as fine wines, vintage cars, dolls or Dinky toys and you do hear of a few folk who come across the 'holy grail' and make serious money.
"However for most people, this tends to be following a hobby or interest rather than a serious investment, as you do need to know your subject inside out to know what is truly valuable. We have a client who bought a substantial stamp collection from his father, only to get it valued years later to find it was now worth a good deal less than he had paid.
"Retro games consoles may be the latest thing to have replaced pop art or bit coins, but for the majority of us it really should only be where you invest for a bit of fun, rather than expecting serious returns."