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As the most valuable game in the NES canon, Stadium Events is the subject of a lot of collectors' frantic ebay searches. However, many unscrupulous sellers will often try to pass off the PAL version of Stadium Events as the NTSC version (the PAL version is not rare, was not subject to recall and is worth a fraction of the NTSC version's value).

Bidders will look at a small picture of Stadium Events and be unsure if it is a NTSC or PAL copy, or may be misled to believe a PAL copy is NTSC. However, identifying a copy as PAL or NTSC is as easy as can be with a little knowledge of seal variants (see article below! :) ). PAL copies such as the one shown below have an oval, white-and-gold seal. By definition, an NTSC copy cannot have a white and gold seal because that seal did not begin to be used until March, 1989. Meanwhile, stadium events was released in September, 1987 and was not reprinted. Since no post-1989 copies exist, no white-and-gold seal copies exist.

This makes identifying a PAL copy, even in a small group picture, incredibly easy.    Plenty of other distinguishing characteristics can be noted in the pics below including:  the white bar at the bottom of the US label, the way that the words "Stadium Events" are on a single plane on the US copy, and the placement of the Bandai logo on the label (higher up on the US copy). 

(PAL copy left, NTSC copy right)

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Below:  Pac-man box variants (two of three existing), 1943 manual variants

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With the huge amount of interest in the NES in the collector community, many collectors have gone down the long and winding road of trying to purchase a copy of every NES game ever released in order to complete the set. Though daunting, its a task that a growing number of collectors have managed to accomplish through a combination of luck, local finds, and ebay.

But are those sets truly complete? Does the community even know what a complete set is comprised of?

An increasing number of collectors are becoming interested in and are hunting down US and foreign variant editions of released NES carts, boxes, manuals, and other inserts. For example, a long in print game such as The Legend of Zelda may have as many as five or ten different box iterations and a similar number of cart iterations.

New variants are being documented all the time, and apart from the interest in researching and documenting items previously not known to exist, many collectors appear to be enjoying the ability to hunt down rare and/or currently unappreciated variants for just a few dollars each.

At Nintendo Age, we are trying to document each variant on our site one step at a time. You'll find many variants on our database and we invite you to use the information, and to contribute if you discover a previously unknown variant.