Published: March 10, 2020
DALLAS — The only remaining “Play Station” prototype, developed by Nintendo and Sony during the 1990s, sold for $360,000 on March 6, at a public auction of vintage video games, comic books and original comic art conducted by Heritage Auctions.
Collectors cast 57 bids in an effort to own the prototype, which is believed to be the only surviving example of 200 pre-production consoles that spawned from a once promising partnership between Sony and Nintendo. Also known as the Super NES CD-ROM System, the prototype has a slot for Super Famicom and Super Nintendo games as well as a disc drive to play a proprietary CD-ROM “Super Disc” based format.
The winning bidder does not wish to be identified at this time.
At one time, this reportedly single-surviving unit was owned by Olaf Olaffson, the founder, first president, and chief executive officer of Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc, and eventually found its way into the hands of a private owner by pure chance.
“The other 199 prototypes purported to exist were allegedly destroyed when the partnership between Nintendo and Sony was officially severed, and, though it isn’t certain, it is entirely possible this unit narrowly missed that fate,” said Valarie McLeckie, consignment director, video games, at Heritage Auctions. “While there are vast differences between this 1990-1992 prototype and the PlayStation console that was eventually released to consumers by Sony in 1994, it is technically the earliest existing prototype for Sony’s first home console video game console and an invaluable piece of video game history.”
Other rare pieces of vintage video game history sold in Friday’s auction include a graded and sealed cartridge of the rare Stadium Events: Family Fun Fitness, Wata 9.2 A+ (NES Bandai, 1987), which sold for $66,000 following 30 bids; a sealed copy of Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!! [Rev-A, Round SOQ, Mid-Production], Wata 8.5 A, (NES Nintendo 1987), which sold for $45,600, following 20 bids; and a sealed copy of Super Mario Bros. [Oval SOQ TM, Late Production], Wata 9.8 A+, (NES Nintendo 1985), which ended at $20,400 after 29 bids.
Stay tuned for a full review of this auction in an upcoming issue.
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