Remember a while ago (three years to be exact) that movie called Nintendo Quest that was a documentary on a guy (Jay Bartlett) who challenged himself to getting all 678 North American released NES games in 30 days?! There are some spoilers here so stop reading if you intend on watching it. I thought that it was a pretty good film if you are into game collecting and I met Jay at a game swap in Waterloo ON,.
I do however have a few issues with the film:
- They never mentioned what Jay’s budget for all the games was, however I’ve done some calculations and figure that he spent around $15,000 – $18,000… give or take3 a few bucks. I’ll explain my calculations more on this at the end of this entry.
- They rarely mentioned how much Jay paid for each game which would have been nice to see how much of a deal he received as well as a better estimate on what we the common people should be paying for these games. This is especially bothersome as he went into some stores and claimed to have received some really good deals. One of the stores he went to in Toronto that he said gave him the best prices was A&C Games on Spadina Ave.. I know first hand that this store has ridiculous prices… five years ago, they wanted to charge me $15 for an Atari version of E.T. The guys said that was because E.T. is rated the worst game to ever be released on every console to date. The game was and still worth $1 or less. What really burns me is that even the Game Chasers who have a Youtube show went into this store and received good deals just because they featured the store on the show. So unless you are filming a movie/show and are willing to give free media recognition, stay away from A&C Games unless you want to get ripped off. A&C Games sucks!
- Jay had some friends who GAVE him some really rare and expensive games like Stadium Events, Panic Restaurant, Cowboy Kid, etc. While very generous of them, these options aren’t available to most of us collectors so and I felt a little cheated… and jealous!
- Jay never mentioned his girlfriend once in the entire film. It would have been more realistic to see him arguing with her about how much money he was spending/wasting on games when he could have been paying down the mortgage.
Onto how I calculated the amount Jay I think spent on the entire North American NES library.
Firstly, at the end of the 30 days, he was short 25 games and it said he had 9% of his budget left. I calculated the market value of how much each game cost in todays prices, and that came to roughly $3,140. Figuring that the price of games back in 2014 when the movie was filmed were considerably lower, I can estimate that the missing games would have cost him somewhere in the neighbourhood of $2,200. If this was represented 9% of Jays total budget, then he started with around $24, 444 . However, we must keep in mind that he bought in bulk and therefore received a discount, and the store owners saw an opportunity to advertise their store on Jay’s movie, and thus gave him a much lower price then any of us would ever get… like at A&C Games. With this in mind, and considering he received some of the most expensive games for free, I think it is safe to say that Jay spent somewhere between $15,000 – $18,000 on completing his NES collection.
I’m envious, jealous, and all that of Jay Bartlett for it really felt like he had a lot of fun on his quest. Congratulations on completing such an awesome collection… now go pay off that mortgage!
$15K – 18K!? I liked your method of uncovering that. I initially thought it was around 10K because of the stadium events phone call scene. Just eye-balling the chart you know.
I’ll tell you what I was frustrated with- Power Blade 2!? Never once saw that thing and it is one of the most expensive titles out there. Don’t get me started on the missing Flintstones either.
Anyway, thanks for the article. I’m going to check out more of your work for sure.
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You mention it would of been cooler to include Jay’s girlfriend to justify the thousands of dollars spent on NES games. There’s no mention because Jay is gay. How can you not come to this conclusion? His dad wanted nothing to do with him because he like star wars and video games. Pathetic, he told his dad he was gay and the response from his dad was exactly what a controlling bipolar father would respond with. If you really study the film you will see plenty of gay references all throughout the movie. One in particular they are interviewing a dude and he says, “Your playing these games and getting Pounded by this music.” This dude starts to laugh after he says this. There are plenty of homo references all throughout the movie. Jay complains about anxiety and people watching him. He is a total closet case and those tattoos running down his arms do not increased his masculinity. They look very out of place with his demeanor and I know he did that because he was trying to fit in with his so called band playing, I just graduated high school days.
I think Jay is a cutie with that hair, but his bloated belly which you can see through the tacky polyester tshirts from wal Mart are indications that he has to drink beer to to socialize and keep his mind from going crazy. I hope he comes out and finds love. He won’t have anxiety and won’t need Alcohol to be himself
Wow you seem to really be in the know with Jay! When I met him, the girl he was with was gorgeous! If he’s gay, more power to him. Personally it doesn’t really matter. Jay rules!