How much would you be willing to pay for an unopened Atari 2600 game? If your answer is $5,250, chances are good you’re either a little bit crazy or you’re a collector with money to burn. In a sale that ended Nov. 10, 2009, an eBay bidder did just that for a copy of “The Music Machine.”
This game rates as “Unbelievably Rare” on the atariage.com Rarity Guide, as it was only sold in religious bookstores. It’s based on a line of The Music Machine products that also included LPs sold by Sparrow, according to atariage.com.
When the Atari 2600 market was saturated with games in 1984, many games had low production runs and a short-lived shelf life, and certain ones never even made it to store shelves, such as Atari Club’s Swordquest Waterworld, Crazy Climber, and Quadrun, the site said.
Chatter on the atariage.com forum had members debating who would drop five grand for The Music Machine cartridge.
The general consensus landed with either someone who placed the bid but won’t follow through on the purchase, or someone for whom money is no object. Others voiced gratitude that most of the fun, playable Atari titles are still affordable.
The Atari 2600 is the system most people collect games for, in part because of its widespread popularity when the system first was introduced, according to atariage.com. Certain games, including Combat, Asteroids and Chopper Command, are easier to find than others.
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