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Tips for Buying EarthBound

February 2nd, 2012 | EarthBound, Images, Merchandise

New copies of EarthBound are now worth thousands of dollars apparently, but did you know the game used to be $5.99 new at Best Buy? It sounds like in the late 90s many stores were trying to unload the game for super-cheap prices. Little did anyone know…

Anyway, in some recent comments, EarthBound Central reader west_haven posted this:

I work at Best Buy and I’ve been meaning to look in our inventory program and see if I can find our listing for Pokemon Red, so I bet it’s in there somewhere.

Found it and printed out sale tags for it!! The price listed is $5.99, a price we all wish we could get it for now. It’s listed as SN-Earthbound, where SN must stand for SNES. The SKU number is 2375272, which sadly doesn’t mean much since if you search for that on Bestbuy.com, it doesn’t yield a result. The many little tags are peg label stickers; I printed out eight of ‘em just cuz I can 😛

I asked if there might be some secret stash tucked away in a warehouse somewhere, but it sounds like that’s not likely at all 🙁 Oh well, someday someone’s going to find a stash of new EarthBounds and then buy a solid gold car.


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25 Comments to EarthBound Was Once $5.99

Nathalie said on Feb. 2, 2012

…… I don’t know what to say. Thinking that they were once $5,99 and now sold on eBay for $1000. Outrageous. Hey, Dr. Andonuts! Build me a Phase Distorter so I can go back in time and buy EarthBound for 6 dollars!

FlyingManCourage said on Feb. 2, 2012

It is almost an equal mind-bending trip in time to consider Best Buy carrying Super Nintendo games….

I’m pretty sure in the late 90s I wasted $5.99 on soooooo many shitty products…..to think I could have scored an EarthBound complete set. Damn you Magic The Gathering!!!!!

Satsy said on Feb. 2, 2012

Ah the fall before the rise. I wonder if, 10 years down the line, Elite Beat Agents will do the same. Currently you can get it for like £3. I’m interested in seeing what prices jump up where~~

Charley said on Feb. 2, 2012

I bought my copy of Earthbound, in late 1995, for $20 from Toys-R-Us.

Schlupi said on Feb. 2, 2012


I remember seeing the game at Best Buy, no lie, back at around 1999. It was after the N64 came out, and was the big thing. At that point much of my (dad’s) SNES collection was dwindling, and he wasn’t willing to invest money in older games. I told him I wanted to get it, since it was on sale (maybe even thits price), BRAND NEW on clearance and he said “Why the hell even buy it when the new system came out? Besides, we had the game already.”


and besides, I only had a loose copy I wanted the full thing. ;O;
I remember the day. There were literally dozens of copies, new, sitting in one of those glass cases in the SNES section, where most of it was on sale prices because of the N64. There wasn’t much left, but hit titles like Donkey Kong etc. were all there, and Earthbounds were abundant. Only if I could go back in time to pick up every Earthbound in that store, I’d use the money to fund a trip to the moon, get moon rock, and found Aperture Science.

Alex said on Feb. 2, 2012

Not only bestbuy but I remember several other stores in my area had Earthbound in brand new condition in those clearance racks.

WallHack said on Feb. 2, 2012

I work at Walmart, and I typed in Earthbound’s UPC into our computerized inventory system. Sadly, it came back “not on file”

west_haven said on Feb. 2, 2012

(lol my typo of mentioning that I found Pokemon Red so finding Earthbound wouldn’t be a stretch, but not finishing the thought lives on…..)

Yeah I would have loved to have frequented Best Buys back in 1995 and all, but my dad only started working there in 2001, I think, so that is the latest I was even exposed to the place. I only started working there myself about three years ago.

I never actually SAW Earthbound in stores except for at a Blockbuster. I remember it was on an endcap and my eyes widened at it. I bet I was like a monkey before a tall black obelisk…….

Radiostorm said on Feb. 2, 2012

There was a brand spanking new copy of EarthBound sitting on the clearance rack of Zellers well into the late nineties, and it was priced at less than 20 dollars. It’s too bad I never had any money as a kid. ;__;

Brad.EXE said on Feb. 2, 2012



Angryrider said on Feb. 2, 2012

I’m screaming. And I blame myself for not being literate enough about video games, since I was just a kid. I read Nintendo Power, only for Pokemon, and a little EGM. If only I could tell myself then not to pick up that damned Taz game at Toysrus.

Now that I think about it, the only Best Buy in my area was built in 2004ish.

YellowYoshi398 said on Feb. 2, 2012

What surprises me the most is that Best Buy’s inventory program even still remembers Earthbound, and lets you print out sale tags for it and everything. It’s really really cool that they hold onto stuff like that after so long. Strange, funny, and heartwarming.

Dialga Thunderstar said on Feb. 2, 2012


Zinco said on Feb. 2, 2012

Haha, yes, this is how I got my copy back in the day

liarxagerate said on Feb. 2, 2012

ha! this is how I got my copy.

west_haven said on Feb. 3, 2012

@ YellowYoshi398: I’m surprised too. Like I tried to mention in my first post, I did find Pokemon Red (don’t remember the price) and I think I tried finding the Game Boy Color system, but I don’t think that was successful.

Any other games anyone wants me to check? I mean, it takes only a few minutes 🙂

Mato said on Feb. 3, 2012

Think they have any NES games still in the database? And I wonder if they have 7th Saga…

west_haven said on Feb. 3, 2012

I can check! Any particular NES games you want me to find so I can narrow down the search? The NES category is long gone (it’s probably the Wii category now) so I have to just type a name and hit search.

Minifig2401 said on Feb. 4, 2012

you want to know something even stupider? gamestop is selling old nes games for a hundred dollars in their gamestop rewards promotion. i wonder if they have earthbound? i usually go to used video game stores like bookmans in arizona and right after i got into earthbound i hoped for a copy. sadly my looking though racks was in vain. it must be so nice to see the actual cartridge in real life.

tintinophile691 said on Feb. 7, 2012

You can never get that lucky in Australia.

First of all, this is a PAL region. Second of all, the Genesis/Mega Drive was more popular here at the time, so you can’t even find SNES carts at street markets. And lastly, people here simply don’t like the game and would rather buy the latest Call of Duty for the same price 🙁

loricelf said on Jun. 12, 2012

I bought like 16 copies of this game at Best Buy over two trips there, and I think I still have the receipt for time I got like 12 at one visit. I remember getting asked about it by some couple, and I said they were really cheap and might be worth something some day. I didn’t even play it until years after, and it was a real cool game. I’ve since pissed them all away. Selling 4 or 5 for a good profit, and practically giving away the rest. I sold my last one a few years ago because of a good offer. I really should have hung on to ALL the copies for a while… But I’m not one to hoard games. After I get my copy, I’m good.

Mr. Best Buy, can you check on the year they were first $5.99? Because I was thinking this was in 96 or so when I bought mine.

west_haven said on Jul. 5, 2012

@loricelf: Our system won’t allow us to look at the price for an item over thirty days, so that’s impossible 🙁 I really wish I could check, though, ’cause that would be awesome to know!

Also, you can call me Ms. Best Buy 😉

loricelf said on Jul. 10, 2012

Wow that SKU helped me a ton. I came across some receipts and they were dated April of 1998. That was later than I thought I bought the Earthbounds… But the SKU matches. And I have it scanned now too! I think they ALL slipped through my fingers… I sent some to gamer IRC friends back in the late 90’s, traded some for games at some game stores back in the early 2000’s, and sold a few when I needed some money in mid 2000’s.

Would be nice to find one in some boxes I left back home before moving years ago! I want to play it again, I got pretty far but never beat the game. And I really liked having the box & strategy guide. As a game it really had a cool aura about it… The music was just way out there.

Mr Hargett said on Jan. 17, 2013

That’s how I bought my copy all those years ago. Then I sold it away in 2008 for $30.

Dave said on Jan. 19, 2013

I bought the player’s guide at Gamestop about 10 years ago for $1.


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