To celebrate their 100th anniversary in 1990, Nintendo launched its first annual nationwide video game competition series: the Nintendo World Championships. Throughout the games, contestants played a special Nintendo World Championships cartridge for NES which contained 3 minigames: Super Mario Bros., Rad Racer and Tetris. 26 gold cartridges of the game were distributed to Nintendo Sweepstakes winners. At the same time, parents of contestants became irate that their children did not get one. Officials then decided to give the 90 finalists grey cartridges, though some cartridges were also given to Nintendo employees. People speculate that between 350 - 400 copies were ultimately produced, but the number that still exists and is in good condition is much smaller. Therefore, this cartridge is considered to be the one of the most valuable NES cartridges ever released.
Today, many view the Nintendo World Championships as the genesis of eSports, making the NWC cartridges the “holy grails” of video game collecting. This copy is one of the highest-graded versions of this game. There are only two known Wata 9.0s and our Wata 8.5 offering is the third highest grade known. The high-grade cartridge is all the rarer given that the game was released over 30 years ago without a box and has since traveled around the world.