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A question on rarity


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Much like everyone else, I find the rarity guide on AA facinating. Perhaps I just enjoy statistics even on a basic level. However, it struck me that I have no reference to what it means. :|

 

So I was wondering, if an Atari cart was released with only 1000 carts produced, where on the scale would it be?

 

I would really like to hear the answers from both collectors and AA admin alike on this question. I also am aware that there is more than just production figures involved, but this still remains the main factor.

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Much like everyone else, I find the rarity guide on AA facinating. Perhaps I just enjoy statistics even on a basic level. However, it struck me that I have no reference to what it means.  :|

 

So I was wondering, if an Atari cart was released with only 1000 carts produced, where on the scale would it be?

 

I would really like to hear the answers from both collectors and AA admin alike on this question. I also am aware that there is more than just production figures involved, but this still remains the main factor.

899455[/snapback]

It's believed that most of the rarity 9 games had production runs in the 1,000's at minimum. Here's my estimation:

Rarity 1 >500,000

Rarity 2 >250,000

Rarity 3 >125,000

Rarity 4 >100,000

 

Rarity 5 <100,000

Rarity 6 <75,000

Rarity 7 <50,000

Rarity 8 <25,000

Rarity 9 <10,000 (usually)

Rarity 10 <5,000 (5000 would be a maximum for sure!)

Keep in mind, I pulled these numbers out of my ass! There will always be exception too.

 

It would likely be a 9 or 10. Open to argument though. It also depends if the game was readily avaialable in stores or not. Quadrun was, tooth protectors was not. But they still have the same rarity. As far as I'm concerned, there was never more than 1,000 or any rarity 10 game sold (or given away). They would show up way more often.

Edited by MattG/Snyper2099
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The drop off at the high end is even more steep than Matt's post indicates. All signs indicate there are probably a couple dozen Video Life carts out there. They go for thousands of dollars when sold for good reason - very few around, very high demand to own one for a "complete" collection. While it's believed Atari would never "batch" a run for games like Ikari Warriors and Motorodeo of less than a thousand units, if the majority of those were returned unsold and destroyed there may be less than a few hundred out there in circulation. 10,000 is not unrealistic for a 9 like Waterworld or Quadrun, but on a 10 you are always talking about finite #'s, and they are called "holy grails" when you find one in the wild for a reason.

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You could take a good guess at it statistically.

 

The sheet attached is UK ebay data over the last three years (ignore the fact that 'ski' has minus 143 occurences: I've screwed something up in the code), you can see the prevalence of carts follows an exponential curve.

 

It's pretty easy to integrate that curve over the number of carts to get a rarety (which is how I work out rarety), or, if you know how many of the high volume carts were produced, you can use the integrated ratio to infer how many of the low volume carts were produced.

 

I'm not good enough at statistics to do it, but I'm sure someone could.

 

In my opinion, 10's would have in the hundreds of carts produced, with 9's in the low thousands.

cart_data.zip

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So I was wondering, if an Atari cart was released with only 1000 carts produced, where on the scale would it be?

899455[/snapback]

 

I suspect that rarity is affected not by how many carts were produced, but rather by how many were sold. If a manufacturer produced 10,000 carts but 9,900 were returned unsold and later destroyed, the game is going to be rarer than one whose manufacturer made 5,000 carts which were all bought up.

 

Another factor that may affect things is who bought the carts and what would have happened to them after they were bought. I would expect a fair number of Ultravision Karate carts probably ended up being thrown out by purchasers, whereas people who bought Solaris may have been more likely to keep it.

 

This 'keep it' factor, however, may cut both ways. Someone who has a UV karate cart may be more willing to part with it than someone with a less-rare but more playable game. From my own personal standpoint, given a choice between getting an Ultravision Karate or a Seaquest, I'd take the Seaquest. If I were to get a Seaquest, I'd add it to my collection; if I got a UV Karate, I'd try to sell it. [bTW, a few years ago, given a choice between a Froggo Karate and a PC board into which I could put an EPROM socket, I chose the latter].

Edited by supercat
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