You may think you have a fairly impressive video game collection taking up shelf space at home, but there’s a new world record holder to compare yourself against: Michael Thomasson of Buffalo, NY has collected 10,607 games, smashing the previous high of 8,616 titles, according to the Guinness World Records 2014 Gamer’s Edition.
Thomasson’s first game was Cosmic Avenger for the Colecovision, which appeared under the Christmas tree one year, and from there the collection snowballed. He estimates that his haul — including both games and the consoles to play them on — is worth around $700,000 to $800,000. “I have games on cartridge, laser disc. I have VHS-based games, cassette-based games,” he told the Associated Press.
There are a couple of interesting footnotes to Thomasson’s record-breaking endeavours: he’s sold his entire collection twice, and he doesn’t actually spend that much time gaming. “I probably get three hours of playing in a week, if I’m lucky,” he says. There are some games he has never booted up at all.
His collection was sold in 1989 to raise money for a Sega Genesis, and again in 1998 to raise funds for his wedding. Since 1998 Thomasson has busied himself with rebuilding the collection, averaging two game purchases a day and sticking to a $3,000-per-year budget. This means he hardly ever pays full price for a game.
When he’s not ordering video game titles past and present, Thomasson designs games of his own. He also teaches 2D animation, game design and the history of video games at Buffalo’s Canisius College.
Previous record holder Richard Leece extended his congratulations to Thomasson through the Associated Press: “My congratulations to a fellow collector.It’s very impressive and I’m very happy for him.”
[Image courtesy AP Photo/Brianna Blank]