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Posted on Sep 13th 2014 at 01:52:41 AM by (retrosportsgamer)
Posted under John Madden Football Championship Edition, John Madden Football Championship Edition, Genesis, Sega, Madden Football


Pre-owned Madden football games are everywhere.  When you have a series that has been churning out a title every year for twenty years, there are a lot of discarded games to be peddled at flea markets or garage sales.  With a massive supply built across almost every console for gaming generations now, the previous editions of Madden football have an almost nonexistent resell value.  Outside of this mass production, there is one title that is not common and is one of a number of sports titles that hold value for collectors.  John Madden Football Championship Edition was a rental store exclusive released in 1992 for the Sega Genesis and it is the Holy Grail of Madden Football games.




John Madden Football Championship Edition has the same game engine and cover design as John Madden Football '93.  The big difference here is the gold color on the cover art, as opposed to the standard blue of the '93 version. The gold really jumps out next to other games and I really like the choice given the exclusivity of only being a rental game and the subject matter itself.  Championship Edition boasted an increased difficulty from the CPU and was comprised of 38 classic teams from 1966 to 1991.  The game also introduced the first All-Madden teams, with one made up of all-time players and the other of honored 1992 players.  You can play your standard exhibition games and also set up an all-time tournament, which pits 16 teams in a playoff bracket, similar to NHL Hockey or earlier Madden titles.


The earlier John Madden titles had a number of memorable staples in design and game play.  Before each play on offense you made choices like Hands, Normal, Big or Fast to dictate the package of players you'd run the play with.  Pretty cool, but they did away with this extra pre-snap step soon thereafter.  With passing, it's hard to forget passing windows, where you could see your A, B, and C options, and they would raise their hands like they were open, only for you to dart a pass in and have the CPU intercept it.  Thankfully, by Madden '95, this was long gone and we had the blueprint for what we still work with today, just with many more buttons and therefore more receiving options.  The playbook is bare bones compared to later 16-bit Madden games but, given the time period, one can hardly complain.  You also have the old in-game scoreboard, where you get score updates and highlights for other games going on.  Sure, they are completely random (Come on, the '85 Pats blowing out the '85 Bears?), but this was one of the first TV-style presentation examples in a sports game.  Sadly the infamous Madden ambulance does not make its way over from the original Madden games.


The biggest challenges in collecting a John Madden Football Championship Edition game are the condition of the cart and finding a complete copy.  You know how you just hate finding old Blockbuster stickers on the back of your games?  Almost every John Madden Football Championship Edition had stickers on it by default.  Because of this, your mileage is really going to vary copy-to-copy when it comes to condition.  Not surprisingly, there was little anticipated demand around the future rarity of the title back in the '90s.  When video stores pushed out their Genesis and Super Nintendo games to make way for PlayStation and Saturn titles, the Championship Edition was lumped in with the rest of the lot.  My copy still has a small sticker and bar-code under the front plastic that indicates the game once sold for $2.95!  A recent check of completed sales has Championship Edition coming in around $25 for a loose cart and anywhere from $75-$100 for a completed copy that has the instructions.


I have only seen John Madden Football Championship Edition in the wild once, and my purchase resulted from flipping through a large pile of Genesis carts at a flea market.  There was no gold spine to lead the way on this hunt, but I quickly recognized the label and since the game was lumped in with a number of other old sports games, the transaction was quick and reasonable at $2.  The seller didn't know what he had, which can be typical given the one-off nature of the game.  I did strike gold when I stumbled across a seller online that noted John Madden Football Championship Edition - Cart okay, Case in good shape - $7.  The game itself saw a nasty break-up with whatever sticker once occupied it, but the case is an 8.5 out of 10.  Sometimes you have to piece together a set from different sales so my flea market find of the cart was a nice swap.  Despite not being perfect or complete, John Madden Football Championship Edition stands out around its peers on my Sega Genesis shelf.  Next time you're out digging through old Genesis games at the swap meet, make sure you do a double-take if you see the gold John Madden title.  You've found the rarest and most valuable Madden game.


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Comments
 
Wait a minute... I think I've seen that somewhere before!
Ffffffuuuuuuu...!!
 
Very nice and informative article regarding the rarity of this game. Nice that you talk a little bit about the gameplay as well. Well.....the search is on!
 
You'd probably be able to find this for cheap considering most places wouldn't think to check the price of a sports game.
 
Condition is critical on this one. Very nice complete conditions can fetch as high as $200.
 
@Crabmaster2000: I can believe this. Its not just that we're always running into Madden games but half of them are beat to hell.
 
Wow, I never knew this was a thing.  I mean, it does make sense, considering how nuts the rental market was back then.  Look at that Clay Fighters game, for example.  I will certainly keep an eye out now for it.  Thanks.
 
Rental only games are a great topic for collecting. Nice writeup on this gem!
 
I sold my loose copy last summer for $90, and it sold quickly.
 
Time for me to get a closer look at the Madden Genesis carts whenever I encounter them at the thrifts. Thanks for the heads-up...


'Late
 
Weren't there also some type of limited releases of some of the other sports games from EA too? Are those worth much more than their counterparts?
 
@badenoughdude I don't know what neck of the woods you're from but if you got that for a loose cart, you did extremely well.

@boshamp: I can't think of any others from EA off-hand. As Duke noted, there are a handful of blockbuster exclusive N64 sports titles that command some $$.
 
I found a few: Bulls versus Blazers and the NBA Playoffs, Madden NFL '94, NBA Showdown '94, and NHL '94. They were 1st round limited edition releases of the titles with numbered releases on the front of the boxes. I haven't been able to learn how many copies in the releases were under this title, but my copy of NHL '94 is a 1st rounder with a number 19956 on the front, so at least 20,000 it would seem. I wasn't able to find any evidence that they are any more sought after than the regular titles, so I doubt there is much additional value to them.
 
@retrosportsgamer: Minnesota, but I sold it on eBay. That was the regular going rate about a year ago. If they've fallen to the $25-30 range, I might look at replacing mine.
 
@Bad Enough Dude - yeah, I mean just going off completed eBay sales, you can snag a loose one for $25-$30 without much issue. Seems like a decent supply out there also. Nice score for you last year on that flip.

@Boshamp - I gotcha, I remember those now. Good call. I know those are not tracked here as variants. Unfortunately I don't think they have any additional value - however I'm going to need to check mine and track these down now!
 
@retrosportsgamer: Yep. I sold it around the same time I sold another overlooked, fairly rare sports title - International Superstar Soccer for SNES. Found both in "bargain" sports bins over the years, but I had no interest in keeping them.

That said, current prices for Madden CE are looking great! Even boxed/CIB copies are going for great prices if you can find any up for auctions instead of BIN. Will definitely be stalking those over the next couple of months. Smiley
 
I remember back in 2011 or 2012, I think I lost out on a CIB copy around $45-$50. Three years later and that's a steal of a price.

So some sports games are not immune to the rising markets of collecting!
 
I managed a video store back in the day when this game came out. I bought one for the store and one for me. I'm not sure what a copy in VERY good condition that was never a rental and does not have any stickers on it period is worth. It has the manual and everything that came inside the box, still in the box.
Any ideas?

 
I have this game in really good shape with the case and instructions.  Where do I look to see value and what to sell it for?  thanks for help
 
I would look for completed eBay sales to be honest. The market moves on this but if you have it with the instructions, it's a good find.
 
Great write up. Just want to point out than Madden 92 was the first to have an All Madden team.
 
I recall ordering this directly from EA for some crazy sum like $99.99.  It was well worth it!  Would love to have a list of the teams.

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