The Importance of Video Game Certification

Certification is a tool to document and protect the cultural importance of video games.

Grader Inspecting Game

CGC Video Games™ welcomes everyone into a new era of video game collecting — one that involves continuing to break down barriers, making video game collecting more inclusive and creating confidence for buyers and sellers. For CGC Video Games, the importance of certification lies not only in preserving treasured collectibles with encapsulation, but also in making the hobby more accessible by expanding public knowledge about video games.

Breaking down hobby barriers

Video game collecting is a global community made up of thousands of fellow hobbyists. These enthusiasts share a passion for collecting, and many of them have spent decades creating knowledge and building connections in a community that they love. The experience and trust these collectors built between one another over time allowed them to easily buy, sell and trade games with the understanding that they were authentic and high quality. Such interpersonal transactions made for a friendly community, but it also limited who had access to it.

When professional dealers entered the video game collecting market, they helped take down this barrier by bringing in new collectors. Many of these newer collectors shared the same passion for video games as older collectors, but they lacked connections and knowledge. Dealers were willing to share their experience with these collectors while also using their reputations to guarantee a quality product. This has allowed the video game collecting market to expand in recent years. While some older collectors have lamented this natural progression, others have responded positively to the influx of fresh members to the community.

Making the video game collecting hobby more inclusive

For decades, there has been public awareness of the value and cultural significance of coins, comic books, sports cards, stamps and various other collectibles. It is not only common, but socially acceptable for new collectors to frequently enter these hobbies.

Video game collecting should be no different. Making the gaming community more inclusive is important because video games have become an integral part of our culture. Their appeal is wide-ranging, crossing every social divide within human society. And as the hobby expands in popularity, it will need the right tools to document and protect their importance not only for individuals, but also the community at large.

Creating confidence for buyers and sellers

Certification is one of those tools. Commonly referred to as grading, certification is the process by which an independent expert authenticates the condition and originality of a collectible. Having an experienced, standardized and trusted third party attest to the authenticity and quality of a collectible creates confidence for both the buyer and the seller.

This is especially important for the novice collector, as certification can protect against fraud and inexperience. The coin, comic and sports card hobbies have utilized certification for decades, and it has allowed these communities to enlarge their memberships and increase the value of individual collections.

Video game certification works the same way. Although some video game collectors have spoken out against grading and the perceived harm it will do the gaming community, CGC Video Games believes it will be beneficial. For example, a common complaint is that certification will inflate video game values.

This is not necessarily a bad thing, and it is certainly not new to the hobby. If a collector already has a large library of games, then a general increase in game values will materially benefit them. Collectors understand this and have already taken advantage of rising prices for years, selling and trading excess games to facilitate the acquisition of games they still need. With certification, the only difference will be an enlarged audience that is certain of both the quality and the authenticity of a game.

Other benefits arising from certification

There are other benefits that will come from certifying video games. Collectors and dealers often disagree about the condition of their video games, which makes it difficult to affix a value to them. Certification will help stabilize prices by introducing consistent condition standards that both buyers and sellers can trust.

The same can be said about rarity. Collectors and dealers have long relied upon anecdotal evidence to establish the rareness of certain video games. However, certification offers the opportunity to create a population report that can accurately measure the number of available copies of any one game.

The video game community can achieve these advantages through certification with CGC Video Games. The Certified Collectibles Group® companies, including CGC®, CSG®, NGC®, PMG®, ASG® and CAG® have been at the forefront of collectibles certification for comics, trading cards, sports cards, coins, paper money, stamps and other collectibles for years. That industry experience, combined with the knowledge and passion of the CGC Video Games team, will ensure that the potential benefits of certification become a reality.