The curious tale of the 24-karat gold Wii console made for Queen Elizabeth II that ended up on sale on eBay
- In 2008, a UK tabloid reported that Queen Elizabeth had fallen in love with Prince William's Wii console
- She was a "natural" at bowling, the unnamed sources claimed.
In 2008, The Sunday People, a UK tabloid, claimed that Queen Elizabeth II, then in her eighties, had become a keen Wii player.
"When she saw William playing a game after lunch at Sandringham, she thought the Nintendo looked tremendous fun and begged to join in," the source told the paper, adding, "She played a simple ten-pin bowling game and by all accounts was a natural."
"It was hilarious. William was in fits of laughter. He was enormously impressed at having such a cool gran," they said.
The Queen reportedly enjoyed playing on Big Family Games, a game created by now-defunct company THQ.
In response to the Queen's high-tech hobby, then-product manager at THQ Danielle Robinson told CBS News: "Big Family Games is the ultimate Wii game to get all family members, from grandparents to young children, playing together.
"But we thought that Her Majesty the Queen wouldn't want to play on any old console, so an extra-special gold one was commissioned," he added. "We hope she and the rest of the Royal Family enjoy the game!"
As a publicity stunt, the company sent the 24-karat gold-plated console, but Buckingham Palace rejected the gift.
The Palace website states, "for security reasons, the Correspondence Team are unable to accept any unsolicited gifts which are sent to The Queen."
THQ went bust in 2013, and the flashy gold console was forgotten until it reappeared on eBay in 2021.
A 32-year-old seller Donny Fillerup said he bought the console from THQ. He claimed he had all of the documentation certifying the Wii was the one made for the Queen and went on to list it on eBay for $300,000.
The condition listed: "The item may have some signs of cosmetic wear, but is fully operational and functions as intended."
Fillerup, who collected consoles, bought the special edition and said that the console was valued at $1 million by experts but that he was happy with a lower price.
"I hope the system goes to a good home. Hopefully a museum, or someone who will take care of it as much as I did," Fillerup said in the interview with CNN.
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