Goodwill sells insanely rare Atari game for thousands at auction

The Atari may not be as popular as Nintendo's classic consoles, but it still has an important place in retro game collecting. One of the rarest Atari 2600 games is distinguished by its T-shaped case and it was recently spotted in a box of donated items at Goodwill in Texas. As with other valuable donated items, the game was put up for auction on Goodwill's website where it raked in thousands of dollars.

The discovery was made by Goodwill processor Alex Juarez; it involved a unique 1982 game called Air Raid that features a T-shaped shell. According to Juarez, the rare collectible was found in a bin of toys and games that had been donated to Goodwill. The saga was detailed in a YouTube video.

Air Raid was released in 1982 for the Atari 2600 system; it revolves around UFOs attacking a city that players are tasked with saving. This was the only game released by Men-A-Vision and it had a very limited distribution, which has made the cartridge a key item for retro game collectors.

According to Juarez, he and his father would often watch videos about rare video games, and the T-shaped Air Raid cartridge was often among them. The Goodwill employee came across a collection of Atari games while sorting through items for the thrift store's e-commerce platform.

Upon discovering the Air Raid cartridge, he sent an image of it to his dad to confirm that it was, in fact, the rare item he'd previously seen in videos. His father confirmed the news, so Juarez took the item to his boss, kicking off the process that ultimately led to a fruitful auction: the game sold for $10,590.79.