What Does CIB Mean in Pricing & Games?

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CIB stands for “complete in box.” For example, a video game priced to sell as “CIB” means everything is included from the game itself, instruction manual, and anything else that was present from the manufacturer.

Where is the Term CIB Used?

When buying video games on eBay, for instance, you’ll notice sellers listing their video games as “complete in box” or “CIB.” This is opposed to selling a video game “loose” which means without the box, or perhaps with the box but incomplete and without instruction manual.

You’ll usually see the need for such a description when buying or selling retro games, or games that have been released for years, and thus making the likelihood of them including “everything” far less of a chance.

CIB Vs. Loose

If you’re wondering how much of a difference the box, instruction manual and other items make in the value of a game, just think about the comparisons.

For instance, what if there is someone thinking about different LEGO City ideas, go to make a purchase, and then realize they’re missing key pieces? Sure, they can still build the majority of the set and have a great time with it, but it’s not the full and complete experience. And when that set is sitting among other pieces of their collection, something just seems off.

Same for this fad—the value of Beanie Babies in the 90s could go up and down if tags were included, etc.

With a loose video game, can you still play it? Yep. But, for many who are in the market, playing may not even be what they’re after! Instead, they want to be able to add the game to their collection, and having the box and instruction manual makes that game all the more valuable out of rarity.

Let’s look at an example. For Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time CIB, the lowest eBay buy it now price is $98.19. If you had the cartridge only, the lowest option is around $30. Quite the difference!

Now, that brings up another point…

Should You Buy CIB or Loose Cartridge?

As a buyer, then, should you buy CIB or the loose cartridge? Let’s assume the end goal is to add a game to your collection, so the option really is to buy CIB or loose, and then also acquire at least the box and instruction manual.

Going back to the example above, the loose cartridge will cost around $30. The box? About $50. And with the instruction manual around $10, that’s $90 total.

So yes, a little cheaper to piece things together in this simple case, but there is also something to be said for convenience and not to mention condition, and maybe the worst conditioned items are the cheapest here when piecing together.

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