YouTube Video Sparks Debate About Relabeling Vintage Cartridges

This simultaneously surprises me and doesn’t surprise me at all.


Seems to me as long as you’re not trying to pass it off as mint/brand new it’s really no different than restoring a car with reproduction (vs NOS) parts. It’s also different doing this to common carts rather than extremely rare ones.

The whole argument about the “losing the story” is just silly to me. That’s basically collector policing. I guess I should just leave that dent in my car to preserve its story? Rubbish.


Agreed. I can’t imagine the story lasting past the original owner, regardless of the condition.

I could imagine that a group of like-minded people could come up with a standard way of identifying reproduction labels, boxes, etc. such that collectors would be able to identify them easily, so that fraud would be less common, at least accidentally.


No one can argue against the fact that these are his cartridges and he can do whatever he wants with them…

I hate it when people preface a statement with something so rhetorically dishonest! Not unlike “IF we are being honest…”. My thinking translates it into “my position is so obvious that there is no chance of me believing otherwise, but I feel compelled to make you recognize it anyway”. So if I argue against your assertion (sorry - “fact”) then I am no-one and can be safely ignored. How convenient - and rude.

It depends first upon making a case for ownership of property, which I will concede is a popular notion, but by no means any sort of universal fact. So he exchanged something for it. The places where the resources for that cartridge were gathered had countless other billions of organisms present there for countless epochs. Were they ever compensated? I seriously doubt it.

Secondly, “whatever X wants” is a poor paraphrasing of what essentially amounts to “behaving in an arbitrary manner”. It is trivially easy for humans to want things which are contradictory or otherwise not even possible. It is a commonly-accepted license for wishful thinking, and one of the reasons why I tend to refute many claims of property as being based upon false pretense.

That said - I like re-creating vintage graphics and styles. But I have only done it to make new things where the vintage originals were too rare and/or costly.

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That’s the point - it’s exactly what antique restorers and resellers have had to work out, it’s just that the history of video games is starting to be long and old enough that the artifacts have generally recognised value, both sentimental, and commercial, and what restoration boosts (or loses) the sentimental (personal) value doesn’t mesh with what currently boosts the commercial value.

If something makes it to market (much as I hate that term) then the replaced label that looks new can deceive, and to my mind shouldn’t be worth as much as a good condition, but naturally faded, original - but that’s only where the crossover happens, to my eye.

I don’t see this as different to antiques, or classic cars. It’s the honesty about what’s done that’s essential. (And in ten years, dealers will be looking for the established signs of restoration and reproduction on hardware, just like on period furniture, I’m sure :slight_smile:.)


I recognized this as “the 8 bit guy” even before reading the kotaku piece. It’s pretty much in line with what he does for old computers.
Disassemble case. remove sticky residue. Drill all needed holes for mods. Apply retrobrite or repaint…

He’s in a totally different market than the “OMG, I Just paid 70,000 Euro for a super rare cartridge. I hope it’s mint”.

Don’t the restorers mark their mods a bit more clearly than-- “uh, why does this Atari 2600 have a composite port”? Subtle enough for it to be used, obvious enough to prevent resale as original.