Lakers vs. Celtics Cartridge Attracting Bids Over £8000

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Lakers vs. Celtics Cartridge Attracting Bids Over £8000

Postby Andrew on Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:51 pm

For those who are unaware, Lakers vs. Celtics (officially Lakers versus Celtics and the NBA Playoffs) is the first game in the NBA Playoffs series, EA's forerunner to NBA Live. It was released for PC DOS and SEGA Genesis, though a PAL version was also intended for the SEGA Mega Drive (the PAL version of the Genesis). Issues with international licensing rights ultimately put a halt to it, but copies did make their way out of EA, and at least 13 have surfaced over the years. As a rare collectable, the most recent copy to surface is attracting some very high bids on eBay.

The story behind the 26-year-old Mega Drive basketball game getting £8000 bids on eBay

Amor's quickfire Google research, which led him to a thread on RetroCollect.com, revealed he had what looked like one of just 13 copies of the PAL version of Lakers versus Celtics and the NBA Playoffs ever to leave EA - and in mint condition.

This PAL version, it turns out, was never officially released (although it got close - close enough for it to be reviewed in UK video game magazines). Interestingly, the cart on its own is as common as any other EA Mega Drive release, because it's exactly the same as the common North American version. It is the PAL packaging that's extremely rare and coveted by collectors.

"I put it on separately, and pretty quickly the bids started going crazy," Amor says.

"There are magazine articles of the time mentioning that EA had European licensing issues around Celtics vs Lakers, which is not a huge surprise," Amor says.

"Getting worldwide rights for teams and player likenesses was always hard. For example, the first NHL Hockey was simply EA Hockey in Europe. It seems the game was due to become EA Basketball to avoid the legal issues, but eventually enough time had passed that they held out for Bulls vs Lakers, which was the following year's basketball game. Persuading a development team in another continent to stop what they're doing to go back and modify a game that they'd finished wouldn't have been easy."

"So yes, 192 copies of Lakers vs Celtics officially left EA and since then 13 are known to have surfaced. How and why they made it out when EA didn't have the rights I don't know. I quite like leaving that very last detail a mystery."
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Andrew
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