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#1
Virtual Bowling: Unofficial Owner's Registry and Info Thread
Posted on: 2/1 21:20
Nintendoid!
Joined 2015/9/18
Canada
152 Posts
Collection Top10 3rdLong Time User (4 Years)
Hey guys,

So I've done a fair bit of research online trying to get at least an approximate idea of how many (original, Japanese) copies of Virtual Bowling were released back in December of '95, and there doesn't seem to be any solid data anywhere.I'm not sure if it's been discussed here at length, all the old threads I dig through seem to be mostly just opinions and musings about which VB game may've been the rarest and how many copies of ______ game were released.

Over the past several years of near-daily online scouring for Virtual Boy items to add to my own collection, I've come to realize that Virtual Bowling really doesn't seem to appear all that often at all, and really the only official copy I've seen for public sale is that one that's been up on eBay forever (and still is as of this writing), in well-worn shape for $2,500-3,000.

I know a few other members here have original copies of Virtual Bowling, I'm asking that if you see this, could you please post in the thread to confirm your ownership of an original (OEM) Japanese copy of the game? I know this won't give me a great idea of actual numbers of the game produced, but like I said before, finding anything online or official from Athena has proven to be nearly impossible. Further, if you know of any information or resources online to shed light on the subject, I'd (and I'm sure many others would) appreciate it. Thanks!
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#2
Re: Virtual Bowling: Unofficial Owner
Posted on: 2/2 0:05
PVB Elite
Joined 2011/4/27
USA
2291 Posts
Highscore Top10 1stHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreCollection Top10Contributor#2 PosterLong Time User (8 Years) 30+ Game Ratings
I own an original, complete-in-box Virtual Bowling in very good condition.
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#3
Re: Virtual Bowling: Unofficial Owner
Posted on: 2/3 3:34
Nintendoid!
Joined 2006/10/2
112 Posts
ContributorLong Time User (13 Years)
I have a mint CIB VBowl. It is rare, but I would have to guess that VLab is much more rare. It came out just as the VB was being yanked from retailers in Japan, and most were returned to the distributor. Besides, it's one crappy game, so it's not like anyone said, "you really need to buy this."
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#4
Re: Virtual Bowling: Unofficial Owner
Posted on: 2/4 16:49
Nintendoid!
Joined 2015/9/18
Canada
152 Posts
Collection Top10 3rdLong Time User (4 Years)
Quote:

pinmagic wrote:
I have a mint CIB VBowl. It is rare, but I would have to guess that VLab is much more rare. It came out just as the VB was being yanked from retailers in Japan, and most were returned to the distributor. Besides, it's one crappy game, so it's not like anyone said, "you really need to buy this."


That's the thing, there is anecdotal evidence and guesses all over. If I had to guess I'd say Virtual Bowling was the rarer game (since I've seen it for sale more seldomly than I've seen VLab), but again it's just a guess. I want to try to accumulate some actual data, but I can see it's not going to be easy. At this point I don't know if either game had 20,000 copies produced or a single box of 20, and I'm trying to get a clearer picture of an approximation. Based on what I've seen in my several years of VB collecting and online research, it's still a total mystery to me.

So, so far we're at 3 confirmed owners! :p
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#5
Re: Virtual Bowling: Unofficial Owner
Posted on: 2/5 14:02
Nintendoid!
Joined 2006/10/2
112 Posts
ContributorLong Time User (13 Years)
So, I have a friend in Japan who owns a couple of vintage game stores, and also happens to be a huge VB fan. I asked him which game was more rare, VLab or VBowl. Here's his response: "I think Nintendo never announced production number of VB games. I guess minimum production number exists and both games were released not for making profit but both company need to fix [minimize] their loss. Therefore I think almost same numbers were made. J-Wing(VLab company) was free to sell VLab to individual customer like me [i.e., direct retail sales to customers]. On the other hand Athena (VBowling company) was much more strict [i.e., wholesale only - no direct retail sales to customers]. Taito (Space Invader company) and Bandai (Gundam Dimension War company) are big and much more strict than other 2 companies. So I guess they disposed their games like Atari E.T." So it looks like it was a toss-up between VLab and VBowl, in terms of sales. In terms of quality - well, that's a whole other issue!
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#6
Re: Virtual Bowling: Unofficial Owner
Posted on: 2/5 21:06
PVB Elite
Joined 2008/12/28
Slovenia
628 Posts
Highscore Top ScoreHighscore Top ScoreCoderContributor10+ Game RatingsLong Time User (10 Years) App CoderPVBCC 2010 EntryPVBCC 2013 Entry
I don't have either game, but the PVB Usercenter might be helpful here (sorted by collection size).

So far, 648 users have indicated they have a non-empty collection. It might be possible to extrapolate some numbers from that data if KR155E runs some queries on the database, or at least see how common each game is in the members' collections.
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#7
Re: Virtual Bowling: Unofficial Owner
Posted on: 2/5 22:00
Administrator
Joined 2000/1/8
Germany
2515 Posts
Highscore Top10Highscore Top ScoreCoder#1 PosterHOTY09 1stLong Time User (15 Years) App Coder90+ Game Ratings
Good idea, HorvatM! So, according to the usercenter, 50 users own V. Bowling, 52 own V. Lab. Lists attached.

Attach file:


csv owners-vbowling.csv Size: 0.60 KB; Hits: 51
csv owners-vlab.csv Size: 0.65 KB; Hits: 43
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#8
Re: Virtual Bowling: Unofficial Owner
Posted on: 2/6 16:10
Nintendoid!
Joined 2015/9/18
Canada
152 Posts
Collection Top10 3rdLong Time User (4 Years)
Quote:

KR155E wrote:
Good idea, HorvatM! So, according to the usercenter, 50 users own V. Bowling, 52 own V. Lab. Lists attached.


Excellent, thanks very much guys! These lists are very helpful, but it must also be taken into consideration that some of these collector's lists are not updated or current. (For example, I see the name of the collector who sold me their copies of the games is still registered on the site as owning them, so some may be double-registered etc etc). Still, a far better tool for approximation than a thread! Thanks again :)
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#9
Re: Virtual Bowling: Unofficial Owner
Posted on: 3/10 11:55
VB Gamer
Joined 2008/7/27
Netherlands
37 Posts
Long Time User (11 Years)
And I am still searching for a copy. :)
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