Even though many gems of the short-lived Wii U have been migrated over to the Nintendo Switch, many retro-minded collectors are starting to accumulate quality Wii U games when they can find them. Not that long ago, we covered some of the very affordable games that are on the Wii U, but here we will be digging into the early front-runners of the holy grail race for the console.
While there are indeed some short-print wonders in here, you may also notice that this list has a strong preference for games that haven’t made their way to the Nintendo Switch just yet. It will be interesting to see how this list evolves over the next few years.
In stark contrast to the Cheapest Games series, this Rare & Valuable series takes a look at the most in-demand and expensive games for a console. Below you will see two prices beside each title. The first is the average daily selling price, which is typically the going rate for either a loose disc or a game in a case but without a manual. The second price is the highest price in the past three months which is usually the price for a gem mint copy (sealed values are then listed separately). The list is ordered by the balance of the two primary prices.
Prices Current as of August 2022
Treasured Standard North American Releases
Devil’s Third: $280-$515 ($550-$750 Sealed)
This ambitious hack-and-slash shooter is the first project from Tomonobu Itagaki (of Ninja Gaiden and Dead or Alive fame) after leaving Temco. His new studio, Valhalla Game Studios, was formed alongside some of his former Team Ninja colleagues in 2009.
Devil’s Third was a departure from Itagaki’s past work and the title went through both a lengthy development process and quite of bit of corporate bureaucracy before its eventual 2015 release. The game was originally slated to be an Xbox 360 exclusive (and then later was discussed as being a PS3 release as well). However, with the publisher, THQ’s closure in 2013, Nintendo picked up the publishing rights.
With the game struggling in development and in early game reviews, Nintendo of America actually wavered in even releasing in North America. It was eventually released in the region nearly half a year after its release in other regions.
As part of an easing into the market, Gamestop only received 420 copies of the game for its entire online US sales. However, there was soon a restock of the game on Amazon to feed some of the demand. It has been reported that only 3,000 copies of the game sold in its first month. Nintendo paced supply as a result of both the game’s lackluster reviews (ranking as the worst game of 2015 on multiple sites) and the Wii U’s slow traction in the States. They eventually even shut down the online servers for the game just 16 months after the game’s release.
Even though the game had a small release, not very many people have obtained it to actually play, but are hoping to score a good return on resale. As a result, they are often many copies on eBay, at any given point — many of them still sealed.
Devil’s Third was selling for about $85 a copy back in early 2016, but settled into a $40-$60 range through 2019. Once the 2020s collecting boom kicked in, it started climbing gradually to its current level ($175 average range in 2020, $275 range in 2021).
The Book of Unwritten Tales 2: $180-$310 ($350-$510 Sealed)
The second in the series of comedic point-and-click adventure games by a German developer, King Art Games. The series received critical acclaim for honoring the classic point-and-click genre in this modern age and having great production values and a wonderful personality.
The original game was only published on personal computer platforms, but this indie developer successfully implemented a Kickstarter campaign to help in the development and bring this to a broader console audience.
It was released on two generations of Xbox, Playstation and Nintendo platforms — with a physical edition on the Xbox One, Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch and Wii U.
At the time of its 2015 release, the game sold for a “budget” price of $20 for most platforms (with the exception of $30 for the digital 360 version). To this day, you can score most of the physical versions for under $20 (and some for less than $10). Even the PAL Wii U version can be found for less than $50 complete. However, this North American version of The Book of Unwritten Tales 2 is harder to find in the wild, so it’s got quite the premium.
However, at this point, there are still quite a lot of copies on eBay — including in sealed condition. So at this point, it’s very much a bit of speculation with supply and demand for those that want to build complete Wii U collections. The copies didn’t really start spiking in value until late 2021. Prior to that, it had a gradual rise to the $70 range.
Turbo: Super Stunt Squad: $85-$400 ($600 Sealed)
This one is your typical movie license game of the era but has a bit of a Tony Hawk-style gameplay. It was also released on all the major platforms at the time — including two Nintendo consoles (Wii and Wii U) plus two Nintendo portable (DS and 3DS) that had more of a racing theme.
And, much like some others, the Wii U version is the hardest to track down. All the other versions are quite cheap — you could find most of them for $10 or less. The PAL Wii U version can be found for around $30, but this North American version is, again, quite at a premium.
In 2017, this game started to get noticed by collectors and rose to the $40 to $50 range before the 2020s collecting boom. It saw its largest increase in 2021, however before starting to climb to current levels.
Game & Wario: $85-$180 ($235-$405 Sealed)
Despite the different naming convention (inspired by Nintendo’s Game & Watch), Game & Mario is a party game in the WarioWare series. It also remains as one of the most interesting Wii U games that haven’t seen a port to the Nintendo Switch.
Despite being a multiplayer game, Game & Wario is played exclusively with the Wii U Gamepad with no additional Pro controllers used.
For a first-party Nintendo release, Game & Mario was rather under-the-radar for quite a while. It even stayed around the $30 range for resale up until 2020 when it began its gradual increase to current levels.
Cabela’s Big Game Hunter: Pro Hunts: $60-$135
The Cabela series of hunting simulation games has proven to be successful in reaching a niche audience. This particular installment was indeed multiplatform, but like many of the others mentioned here, the Wii U version is much hard to come by.
The Wii U version hovered in the $20 to $40 range until it really got a boost in early 2021.
There are a healthy amount of units showing up on eBay, but, at the time of this writing, not quite as many as some other titles mentioned above – especially in complete condition. It seems that this game gets held onto and/or actually played with more than the likes of Devil’s Third or Turbo: Super Stunt Squad. As a result, there are more loose discs or incomplete packaging in units for sale.
Wii Sports Club: $65-$106 ($120 Sealed)
For those that had the original Wii during its original retail run (or even afterward), the original Wii Sports was not only a defining game pack in the library, but it actually was a cultural phenomenon that literally helped sell a tremendous number of systems for Nintendo (may causal gamers only stuck with the Wii Sports pack-in and didn’t buy any or many additional games).
The Wii U hardware (especially the Gamepad) gave Nintendo’s team a lot more possibilities with which to adapt different sporting events, resulting in Wii Sports Club. Unfortunately, the additional purchase price of Wii Sports Club alongside the needed hardware was more than what most gamers were willing to pay for a new installment. Despite the great brand equity in the Wii Sports name, Wii Sports Club didn’t even crack the top 20 best-selling Wii U games.
Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD: $60-$100 ($100-$150 Sealed)
Twilight Princess was the Legend of Zelda installment that was released originally on both the Gamecube and the Wii, but this Wii U port brings the game into full HD resolution, some graphical upgrades and some gameplay changes. It also downplays the Wii remote functionality and uses the Wii U Gamepad for better map utilization.
This was the second of the Zelda HD remasters on the Wii U (after Wind Waker) and was released in 2016, a year before the Nintendo Switch was release, so it understandably didn’t get a big of a print run as Wind Waker — therefore leading to a higher resale value in the aftermarket.
The game held its value pretty solidly (in a $30 to $40 range) after its release and use started a gradual increase in value in the last few years, but nothing too crazy. It’s also worth noting, Twilight Princess is the best-selling game on this list at 1.15 million copies worldwide.
Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games: $55-$105
This Wii U installment just happens to be the least plentiful, and therefore, the most valuable game in the series so far.
There’s always been pretty solid demand for the game in fans collections and, on average, the values have been rather steady on average. It kinda dipped down to $30-$40 ranges in 2019 (a great time to pick up Wii games, in general) and has slowly increased back up to where it was in 2017.
Additional North American Games of Value
- The Croods: Prehistoric Party: $26-$125 (eBay)
- Xenoblade Chronicles X: $48-$95 (eBay)
- Shantae Half-Genie Hero: $45-$96 (eBay)
- SteamWorld Collection: $ 34-$105 (eBay)
- Tekken Tag Tournament 2: $31-$100 (eBay)
- Shakedown Hawaii: $55-$70 (eBay)
- Wii Party U: $48-$73 (eBay)
- Paper Mario Color Splash: $42-$75 (eBay)
- Jeopardy [Nordic Games]: $51-$65 (eBay)
- Kirby and the Rainbow Curse: $44-$70 (eBay)
- Just Dance 2019: $43-$70 (eBay)
- Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director’s Cut: $26-$85 (eBay)
- Planes: Fire & Rescue: $20-$89 (eBay)
- Funky Barn: $23-$80 (eBay)
- Rapala Pro Bass Fishing: $24-$79 (eBay)
- Tank! Tank! Tank!: $36-$65 (eBay)
- Amazing Spiderman : $29-$70 (eBay)
- Ben 10: Omniverse 2: $16-$82 (eBay)
- Hello Kitty Kruisers: $30-$65 (eBay)
Valuable Special Editions
- Hyrule Warriors [Limited Edition]: $1,100-$1,200 (eBay)
- Mario Kart 8 [Limited Edition]: $950-$1,200 (eBay)
- Zelda Wind Waker HD [Limited Edition]: $100-$200 (eBay)
- Xenoblade Chronicles X [Special Edition]: $140-$170 (eBay)
- Zelda Twilight Princess HD [amiibo Bundle]: $125-$150 (eBay)
- Mario & Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Games [Controller Bundle]: $115-$145 (eBay)
- Skylanders Imaginators [Dark Edition]: $110-$135 (eBay)
- Super Smash Bros. [Controller Bundle]: $55-$115 (eBay)
- Skylanders Swap Force [Dark Edition]: $85-$105 (eBay)
- Axiom Verge Multiverse Edition: $135- $180 (eBay)