Nintendo game libraries are always filled with all sorts of collectibles. Between the cult following of the corporate brand and the fact the platforms have played underdogs at times (especially the Gamecube), it’s not a surprise that there are some treasures to be found in the Nintendo library.
Update: Prices Current As of 05/22/2013
In stark contrast to the Cheapest Games series, this Rare & Valuable series will round up the rarest and most valuable games for a given console or handheld so you’ll know what to look for whether you are buying or selling. Below you will see two prices beside each title. The first is the average daily selling price, which is typically the going rate for the game by itself. The second price is the highest price in the past three months which is usually the price for the new/sealed game. The list is ordered by the balance of the two prices. Note that some of these games are not rare in the sense that there are not many available, but rare relative to demand, which makes the games expensive.
Over the last few years we’ve seen certain titles rise out from under the radar to become big collectors pieces. We have also seen the values of completed copies rise quite nicely. If you have had a nice library for some time, you should see some nice increases in overall value, but if you’re just getting started, things are starting to get pricey. Since we’re seen some fluctuations, I’ve kept in some of the past values from previous revisions so you can see the changes and we have some historical reference.
Treasured Standard USA Releases
|Fire Emblem Path of Radiance: $77 – $150
2011 Value: $34 – $77
This challenging strategy series finally made its way out of Japan on the GBA and Gamecube and built a small but loyal following in the States. The second Gamecube installment was released in rather small quantities as the Gamecube was on its final legs. Since this release, we have seen a growing popularity in the series in the States, causing the value of this release to skyrocket in recent years.
Check for Fire Emblem Path of Radiance on Amazon
Check for Fire Emblem Path of Radiance on eBay
|Phantasy Star Online 1 & 2 Plus: $75 – $154
2011 Value: $55 – $130
After an ambitious attept to make the Dreamcast the next-gen console for online gameplay, Sega brought its MMOPRG to the Gamecube. You will find the original release of PSO 1&2 a bit lower on this list, but Phantasy Star Online Plus is a re-release that fixed a few bugs in the intial release and added a few extra areas. The game primarily sold poorly since the Gamecube’s online community was so poor and most dedicated fans bought the original release.
Check for Phantasy Star Online Plus on Amazon
Check for Phantasy Star Online Plus on eBay
|Skies of Arcadia Legends: $66 – $137
2011 Value: $27 – $63
RPGs seem to be a common genre in recent years in the lists of valuable games. Skies of Arcadia was originally one of the few great RPGs on the Dreamcast, but this enhanced version eventually came to the Gamecube as well. Both consoles ended up being commercial disappointments, but that almost creates even more of a sense of collectibility for games like this. Skies or Arcadia ended up being one of the fastest risers on this list — more than doubling its value in less than two years.
Check for Skies of Arcadia Legends on Amazon
Check for Skies of Arcadia Legends on eBay
|Pokemon Box Ruby & Sapphire – $65 – $183
2011 Value: $40 – $65
Pokemon Box isn’t a game but allows players to store and sort Pokemon from the Gameboy Advance Pokemon games. In the US the game was only sold at the Nintendo World store and online, which limited the sales. The European version was never sold in stores but available through the Nintendo of Europe loyalty program.
Check for Pokemon Box on Amazon
Check for Pokemon Box on eBay
|Metroid Prime / Wind Waker Combo: $150 – $200
This Pack-In was exclusive to a special console bundle that was only available during the 2005 holiday season. Unlike some pack-in games, it did have a full game case and there are still sealed copies out there. I’ve heard many people pass by this release in used game store because it didn’t look especially attractive, but now it is quite the find.
Check for Metroid Prime / Wind Waker Combo on Amazon
Check for Metroid Prime / Wind Waker Combo on eBay
|NCAA College Basketball 2K3 – $65 – $110
2011 Value: $40 – $100
This is arguably the hardest retail Gamecube game to find in the wild. NCAA Basketball 2K3 is a college basketball game on the Gamecube so it wasn’t destined to sell very well. Sega helped seal the deal when they cancelled all 2K series games on the Gamecube and stopped this game in the middle of production. This is one of the few sports games to become rare and valuable on any system. The collectability of the game was hyped quite a bit, but prices have been gradually falling as that has cooled down.
Check for NCAA Basketball 2K3 on Amazon
Check for NCAA Basketball 2K3 on eBay
|Mega Man X Collection: $59 – $198
2011 Value: $20 – $40
In retrospect, this one looked like a no-brainer to buy in the bargain bin. It took a while to catch on with collectors, but the Mega Man X Collection has trippled in value over the last two years.
Check for Mega Man X Collection on Amazon
Check for Mega Man X Collection on eBay
|Phantasy Star Online Eps 1 & 2: $59 – $120
2011 Value: $50 – $85
Here’s the original version of the Gamecube port. Most opened copies sell for just under the price of the “Plus” version. I don’t think most people even note the difference on eBay.
Check for Phantasy Star Online 1 & 2 on Amazon
Check for Phantasy Star Online 1 & 2 on eBay
|Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes: $52 – $300
2011 Value: $39 – $61
Twin Snakes is a remake of the original Metal Gear Solid for PS1 and was co-developed by Silicon Knights and Konami. Development was overseen by Metal Gear creator Hideo Kojima and Shigeru Miyamoto. Critics loved the game, but the remake didn’t sell as well as the original, as the target market wasn’t really the Gamecube crowd. Values have jumped considerably for this titles — especially for a sealed copy.
Check for Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes on Amazon
Check for Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes on eBay
|The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess: $54 – $320
2011 Value: $29 – $40
I guess I shouldn’t find it too surprising that Zelda games are big collectors items, especially when it is a late release on a console. However, I was a bit surprised that the Gamecube version held its value so well considering that the Wii version is so plentiful (and backwards compatibile on the WiiU). However, with the increase in completist collectors, this relatively small release makes more sense in retrospect.
Check for The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess on Amazon
Check for The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess on eBay
|Legend of Zelda Collectors Edition (4 Game Collection): $55 – $200
2011 Value $31 – $40
The Legend of Zelda: Collector’s Edition is a compilation of several installments from the Zelda series: The Legend of Zelda, The Adventure of Link, Ocarina of Time, Majora’s Mask. In addition to this slick emulation-powered compliation the pack included a Wind Waker promotional video, The Legend of Zelda: A Retrospective, and a playable demo of The Wind Waker. There were a handful of ways to get this pack for a limited time — check out ZeldaWiki for more info. There is no denying this collection is pretty cool for a Zelda fan, even though there are many other ways to play these games. But between being a Zelda collectable and a piece that didn’t even surface in the retail space, this is a great gem.
Check for Legend of Zelda Collectors Edition on Amazon
Check for Legend of Zelda Collectors Edition on eBay
|Pikmin 2: $52 – $106
2011 Value: $42 – $100
This is one I easily kick myself over. I really wanted to get this one after playing the first installment in Shigeru Miyamoto’s wonderful take on the real-time strategy genre, but I figured I’d wait for the game to get cheaper. That day never came. Maybe someday?
Check for Pikmin 2 on Amazon
Check for Pikmin 2 on eBay
|Luigi’s Mansion (Black Label): $45 – $500
This gem of a game faded into the background after the Gamecube launch and didn’t resurface much until after the console’s passing. There is a renewed interest in the game after the announcement of the 3DS sequel. The original Black Label release of the game is becoming a big collectors item — esepecially as a sealed copy.
Check for Luigi’s Mansion on Amazon
Check for Luigi’s Mansion on eBay
|Tales of Symphonia – $46 – $129
2011 Value: $30 – $54
The Tales series of RPGs from Namco are a popular staple in the genre and the Gamecube is the only console that recieved a North American release of this installments.
Check for Tales of Symphonia on Amazon
Check for Tales of Symphonia on eBay
|The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker (Black Label) – $43 – $350
2011 Value: $20 – $90
The first major Zelda release on the Gamecube and also the biggest change in style to the franchise, Wind Waker was intially a quite affordable game as an aftermarket purchase. However, after the dust had settled the original Black Label release is seeing an increasing level of demand.
Check for The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker on Amazon
Check for The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker on eBay
|Pokemon XD: $45 – $120
This successor to Pokémon Colosseum came out in 2005, on the tail end of the Gamecube’s lifespan. Between that fact and it being a Pokemon game, it isn’t hard to see why this title is squeeking into the top 20 of the list.
Check for Pokemon XD on Amazon
Check for Pokemon XD on eBay
|Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem: $45 – $100
2011 Value: $23 – $43
As both a Gamecube exclusive and a cult favorite, Eternal Darkness is growing as a collectors item. This survival horror game from Silicon Knights is still commonly recommended to people who are building their Gamecube collections. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see this one climb a bit higher (especially a sealed copy) if this remains a Gamecube exclusive for a few more years.
Check for Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem on Amazon
Check for Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem on eBay
|Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time / Master Quest: $41 – $130
2011 Value: $30 – $55
In some ways this release is a bit similar to the Zelda Collector’s Edition mentioned above. This also contained an emulation-powered release of Ocarina of Time, but also “Master Quest”, which was which is a remix of sorts that is based on an Expansion to Ocarina of Time that was made for the Nintendo 64DD. This release was given to a limited number of gamers that pre-ordered Wind Waker on the Gamecube.
Check for Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time / Master Quest on Amazon
Check for Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time / Master Quest on eBay
|Dance Dance Revolution Mario Mix – $40 – $125
2011 Value: $56 – $140
DDR Mario Mix is a regular DDR game with Mario characters, music, and art. It is the only US released DDR game on the Gamecube. Nintendo released the game in limited quantities for the 2005 Christmas season and it quickly sold out. In early 2006 Nintendo restocked shelves but quietly discontinued the game soon after. This release was near the top of the Gamecube list a couple years ago, but interest has cooled while other games are just heating up as collectors items.
Check for Dance Dance Revolution Mario Mix on Amazon
Check for Dance Dance Revolution Mario Mix on eBay
|Super Smash Bros Melee (Black Label) – $39 – $200
2011 Value: $23 – $50
Of course, this game isn’t rare by any means, but popular games in a black label box (as opposed to the yellow Nintendo Choice (Greatest Hits) packaging is a bit of a collectors item.
Check for Super Smash Bros Melee on Amazon
Check for Super Smash Bros Melee on eBay
- Biohazard Collector’s Box: $200 – $300
- Pikimin 1 + 2 Set: $100 – $200
Additional Gamecube Games of Value
- Sonic Heroes / Super Monkey Ball Duo Pack: $49 – $180
- Resident Evil Code: Veronica X: $42 – $90 (2011 Value: $37 – $60)
- Cubivore: $39 – $91 (2011 Value: $30 – $47)
- Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventure: $38 – $350
- Resident Evil – Pure Evil 2-Pack: $37 – $370
- Pokemon Colosseum: $37 – $150
- Kirby Air Ride: $36 – $70
- Gotcha Force: $37 – $70 (2011 Value $10- $23)
- Ikaruga: $35 – $110
- Digimon Rumble Arena 2: $34 – $80
- Resident Evil 2: $35 – $71
- Killer 7: $25 – $70 (2011 Value $10 – $25)
- Baten Kaitos Origins $33 – $63 (2011 Value: $20 – $30)
- Resident Evil 3: $29 – $65
Rarest Games At Affordable Prices
Each of these games are quite hard to find, but routinely sell for $20 or less. If you are an collector and see a mint copy of any of these on eBay for a low price, you might want to snatch them up — you might not see them often and they could be a higher profile target down the line.
- Goblin Commander: $11 – $70
- Rave Master: $11 – $14
- Spirts & Spells: $12 – $14
- Worms 3D: $7 – $25
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