Comic Book Factory Sealed Merchandise Press Kit

Birth of the “Collector’s Edition”


With all the  “Collector’s Edition” games coming out nowadays I decided to do a little track back to when they actually started. For the purpose of this post I will not include Japanese origins simply because back tracking will be tedious as well as impossible. I will stick to the North American versions which we are all familiar with.

Let’s define what “Collector’s Edition” is and what it isn’t. Collector’s edition is not an add on, or an accessory. It usually is the game with a piece of merchandise that comes in a box hence the term box set. Originally they were given out as “press kits” which are still given out depending on the game to journalists, media and so on. Today they are sold as an alternative to collector’s who prefer a little extra. For now I will refer to the “Collector’s Edition” as “Press Kits” to make a point.

I could not find any official pictures of Atari press kits. Although they were given out on a smaller scale(pictures, stickers) to the press. Early press kits were found on the SNES and Sega which were games like Maximum Carnage and Spawn. The one for Maximum Carnage included a sealed Maximum carnage, a red leather comic book with Spider Man issues that first introduced Carnage, as well as 3 metal pins. I know there was a collector’s box set for Ecco the Dolphin. Another title for Sega was Mario Lemieux Hockey which came with a collectible puck and that was sold to the public, not given to journalists.

This created a trend that would soon be “Collector’s Edition”. One of my current favorite collector’s edition is Epic Mickey for the wii and it comes with a charger and a brush. The charger is really cool looking. Other current collector’s editions are James Bond 007 Golden Eye for the Wii which comes with a Golden controller(Golden Gun), God of War 3 is another popular one as well as Call of Duty Black Ops which comes with a badge.

Is it worth it to buy the collector’s edition? I say it depends. When Halo 3 came out I bought the legendary edition because of the cool mastercheif helmet. Same with Golden eye, I wanted the Golden controller. So it depends on if you enjoy collecting and want an extra bonus with the game.

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