Games We Love (12/28/22) - Mid-Grade Madness

Games We Love (12/28/22) - Mid-Grade Madness

Games We Love - A Deep Dive Into Under-Appreciated Graded Video Games

Games We Love - Action Games

November 30th, 2022 - Staff writer Lauren Sisselman discusses a handful of graded games that tell a compelling story or conjure feelings of nostalgia. This week covers our favorite mid-grade titles:


Collecting low-grade video games is a wonderful way to collect. I personally prefer mid-grade collectibles overall – not only are mid-graded items typically more cost-effective, but they also have a lot of character. At Standard Gaming, we have a ton of collectible games in a variety of grades for all kinds of collectors. Here are a few of the games we love that have lower grades.

WATA Graded College Slam for SNES

College Slam

In 1996 Acclaim released College Slam, a cross-platform college basketball game featuring dozens of division one colleges. While this game may or may not have been a repackaged NBA Jam, it was still a game I enjoyed playing growing up. As an avid Maryland fan, College Slam gave me the opportunity to play with the team virtually – something I would never get to do in real life. The box art is especially a feast for the eyes, with a basketball chowing down on a basketball net with division one college logos behind it. The cover is fantastic and really conveys a feeling of excitement. 

This sealed 6.0 B+ WATA-graded copy is lovely for the assigned grade. There are not many WATA-graded copies of this game. As a result, there’s also no prior sales data, so the right collector could be starting from ground zero with this game. College Slam is great for sports collectors, basketball collectors, Nintendo completionists, and cross-platform fans!

WATA WWF Attitude for N64

WWF Attitude

World Wrestling Entertainment’s Attitude Era is possibly one of the most popular wrestling eras, and certainly the most effective marketing campaign to ever grace the squared circle. The era gave us some of the most definitive sports entertainers – including The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin, and it also gave us plenty of video games. WWF Attitude was released on the Nintendo 64, the Game Boy Color, the PlayStation, and Dreamcast. Attitude was well received by critics and fans, and provided an easy-to-follow game with some of the best superstars of the era. The in-ring gameplay was surprisingly smooth, and the graphics were pretty solid. This game also has tributes to wrestler Owen Hart, who tragically died before the game’s release. 

This sealed 6.5 B+ WATA-graded copy is downright awesome. With a red-hued cover, this game's box is as aggressive as the overall Attitude Era. This copy still presents exceptionally well and would be an excellent addition for cross-platform fans, wrestling fans, sports fans, and more.

WATA Graded Disney’s The Little Mermaid for NES

Disney’s The Little Mermaid

I was a huge fan of The Little Mermaid as a child. My grandmother took me to see it in theaters, and from there I craved and consumes as much Disney mermaid goodness as I could find. My parents were kind enough to buy me a copy of Nintendo Entertainment System’s The Little Mermaid, which provided hours upon frustrating hours of trying to beat the game. The importance of this game in bringing more diverse fans into gaming should not be overlooked. The Little Mermaid was unique in that it was one of the first video games marketed toward young girls. Games such as this one (as well as Barbie) helped bring in more diverse players. The Game Boy port also used the tag “Gamegirl” in the game’s marketing campaign. The game would go on to sell over 500,000 units by the end of 1991. 

This complete in-box 7.5 WATA-graded game has a further breakdown with a box grade of 7.0, a cartridge grade of 9.0, and a manual grade of 6.5. This game still presents well, as the box retained its bright, cartoonish colors. This game is a must for Disney collectors, The Little Mermaid fans, Nintendo completionists, or anyone who collects fairy tale items.

WATA Graded Mighty Morphin Power Rangers for SNES

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers

Saban’s Mighty Morphin Power Rangers took control of kids in the early 1990s thanks to the color-coded characters, family-friendly fight scenes, and of course, giant robots fighting giant monsters. What isn’t there to love about Power Rangers? Based on the Japanese Super Sentai series, this American take on a Japanese classic became an overnight sensation that is still around to this day. The original series is 100% a 1990’s staple, and chances are the theme song is now playing in your head. 

This sealed 5.5 B+ WATA-graded copy has plenty of character to go around. This has some obvious wear, but this is still a great copy for new collectors or someone who prefers mid-grade copies. There aren’t a ton of graded copies of this game out there, making this a cool piece. This game is perfect for Power Rangers fans, Sentai fans, Nintendo fans, and 1990s nostalgia collectors.

WATA Graded Tonic Trouble for N64

Tonic Trouble

Ubi Soft’s 1999 Tonic Trouble might be a game many of us may overlook. The game follows Ed, a spaceship janitor who spills some unknown liquid that makes its way to Earth, causing the planet to mutate. It’s up to Ed to reverse the damage he did and save the now-mutated planet. Tonic Trouble was largely panned by critics on its release, but the game was still a ton of fun. The controls were easy, the graphics were great, and it had a hint of 1980s horror camp to it. This was a game I genuinely enjoyed playing as a kid. 

This sealed 6.5 B+ WATA-graded copy is still bright and colorful. The flaws on this box are minimal, and don’t take away from the box art at all. By comparison, the one year average for an 8.5 WATA-graded copy is $576. This game is great for Nintendo collectors, fans of camp, and action-adventure fans.

Check Out Our Current Inventory Under $500


Looking For More General Information on Graded Games?

· If any of the terminology used in this guide was confusing or new to you, please refer to our convenient glossary of terms here.
· Need more information about graded games in general? Check out this intro to the different types of certified video games here.