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Image: Heritage Auctions

A copy of revolutionary 1996 classic "Super Mario 64" sold for $1.56 million at auction on Sunday, a record for video games.

Why it matters: Prices for boxed copies of games have exploded in recent years.

  • The "Mario" game was part of a nearly 500-item auction sold by Heritage Auctions, which doesn't even have a bona fide gaming category yet.
  • Heritage graded that copy of "Mario" as A++, noting "the condition of this copy is just so breathtaking that we're really at a loss here." So even if you still have the game in its shrinkwrap, your copy probably has more dents in the box.
  • An A+ version of the game sold through Heritage in January for $38,400.

By the numbers: Other notable sales from Heritage's auction included...

More recent games sold well, though not quite as well:

Someone even bought an early-90s U.S. Army training device that amounts to a replica M16 that can plug into a Super Nintendo.

  • That sold on Friday for $18,600.

Flashback: Classic games expert Chris Kohler called it a "retro game gold rush" back in 2019, as collector money that used to go to comic books, coins and cards moved to video games.

Go deeper

Nintendo Switch Online's odd new plan

Image courtesy of Nintendo

Nintendo Switch Online is expanding with N64 and Sega Genesis games as part of an additional membership called Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack.

Why it matters: The new tier is likely to cost more than the existing membership, making access to older games even more expensive.

16 mins ago - Sports

Gonzaga University revokes NBA great John Stockton's tickets over mask stance

Former Utah Jazz player John Stockton during a 2017 press conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. Photo: Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images

Gonzaga University suspend the season tickets of notable alumni John Stockton after the NBA Hall of Famer failed to comply with the school's basketball games mask mandate, the Spokesman-Review first reported.

Driving the news: "Basically, it came down to, they were asking me to wear a mask to the games and being a public figure, someone a little bit more visible, I stuck out in the crowd a little bit," the former Utah Jazz point guard told the outlet in an interview Saturday.

Updated 2 hours ago - World

State Department orders evacuation of U.S. diplomats' families from Ukraine

From left, Under Secretary for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and U.S. Chargés d'Affaires in Ukraine Kristina Kvien during a meeting with Prime Minister of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal in Kyiv. Photo: Yevhen Liubimov/ Ukrinform/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

The State Department will begin evacuating families and non-essential staff from the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv this week, according to a travel advisory published Sunday evening.

Why it matters: The move underscores U.S. fears that a Russian invasion could destabilize Ukraine and threaten embassy's ability to assist Americans.