The Nintendo PlayStation Controller Prototype
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Drumil Modi, Pune

In 2020, a rare, never-released Nintendo PlayStation console was auctioned for $360,000. It was then speculated that it was of a kind unit. Recently, a second prototype controller from the failed collaboration between Nintendo and Sony has surfaced again, which will be auctioned in August.

Before Sony themselves developed their PlayStation they attempted to collaborate with Nintendo to break into the gaming market. The prototype they developed was a Super Nintendo console. It had a CD-ROM drive which would help Sony increase sales of their proprietary Super Disc format.

The Sony-Nintendo collaboration collapsed after Nintendo tied up with Philips in 1991. As the partnership terminated all 200 prototypes of Nintendo PlayStation were thought to be destroyed, until 2015.

Heritage Auctions have not yet disclosed the origin of the second Nintendo PlayStation prototype controller. They do say “the familiar casing of a Super Nintendo controller but branded with ‘Sony PlayStation’ in dark grey on the front.” They also stated, “Despite a few little dings on the back, the prototype is in very nice condition.” Due to the rarity of the console and the kind of hardware it is compatible with, it is unclear if the controller is in working condition. Once a bidder wins there will be no option to return the controller under any circumstances.

In the past retro gaming collectibles have been sold for unimaginable prices. In 2023, a sealed copy of Super Mario Bros was sold for $660,000, and in 2020 a sealed copy of the same game was sold for a whopping $114,000. But both of these might feel like a bargain when compared to the copy of the same game that was sold in 2021 for a staggering $2 million.

The controller will most probably not go for as much as Super Mario Bros. It is an incredibly rare piece of hardware that will only be appreciated in the years to come. Bidding on the prototype starts on August 2nd and will end on August 24. We will soon know what this probably unusable controller is worth to one lucky bidder.


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