The price sent shock waves through gaming and collecting circles, even after a recent uptick in five- and six-figure sales of rare video games to investment-minded buyers. The sale was announced just two days after Heritage Auctions said that an early production copy of The Legend of Zelda from 1987 had sold for $870,000. Valarie McLeckie, the consignment director for video games at Heritage Auctions, said she was astounded by the outcome of the Mario 64 auction. She said, “Never in my wildest dreams did I expect the price that was realised would become a reality.” The game, which was part of a private collection, is sealed inside a clear plastic case resembling the anti-theft boxes used by retail stores. It includes a certification from Wata Games, an authentication company, attesting to its “like new” and factory-sealed condition, in its original shrink-wrapping. McLeckie said that video game characters often evoke a sense of nostalgia, particularly Mario, who, with his brother, Luigi, first appeared on the screens of Nintendo players in 1985 in Super Mario Bros. In the original game, Mario must save the peace-loving Mushroom People from the Koopa, a tribe of turtles known for their black magic.