Sunday, June 26, 2022

You can buy a gold-plated Wii that was originally made for the Queen

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Shreya Christina
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You now have the chance to own a truly unique Nintendo Wii… provided you have a well-stocked bank account. Kotaku reports Dutch collector and Console Variations owner Don is auction a notorious 24k gold Wii bankrupt game developer THQ who wanted to deliver to Queen Elizabeth II in 2009. The system was intended as a promotional piece for the forgettable minigame collection big family games, but never made it to Buckingham Palace due to an “understandably strict” policy on royal gifts. It returned to THQ and surfaced in 2017 after a collector got it from a studio contact. The unnamed owner eventually sold to Don.

Don first attempted to sell the golden Wii on eBay in October 2021 with an asking price of $300,000. However, the marketplace shut it down as a policy change flagged accounts selling items at prices well outside their usual range. The new auction is with Goldin, which has no comparable reservations.

You’ll want to brace yourself if you’re considering a purchase. Bidding has already hit $2,000 at this point and we expect it to climb much higher (if not necessarily to $300,000) by the time the auction closes on the evening of May 21. This is also not an item in mint condition as there are signs of “scattered” gold chipping. And since Nintendo discontinued its online multiplayer and Wii Shop services years ago, you probably won’t be doing more with this machine than staring fondly at it through a glass case.

Nevertheless, it won’t be surprising if someone gets their hands on this Wii. Unlike many dedicated consoles, this is a truly unique device with a story behind it. And like Nintendo World Championship cartridges or similar rarities, it’s as much a snapshot of a moment in gaming history as anything else. The 24K Gold Wii was the product of an era when daring publicity stunts were still relatively common in the gaming industry, and the new owner will likely remember that period for a long time to come.

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