EDIT - Thanks to the intrepid DP forum regulars, I've found my collection to be a BIT less than complete, but that's how it was sold to me ... and at the time of purchase ... it was a tough and tight call to make considering how many duplicates and prototypes were in the mix. Still, a mighty good haul for a one-off buy!
Haha, I had shared this story a few times via PM before I even realized there was a "lore" forum!
So, here it is for all the DP world to see :
Back when I was managing Funcoland (I was there from 1996 to 2001 that's Sega Saturn all the way through PS2 launch) ... I think it was around 1998, the ex head of marketing for Sega for the US East Coast (he said he worked for them for a short time back when they were affiliated/owned by TONKA corp.) came into my store and asked if we took trade-ins on Sega Master System games.
I told him no, but that I was a classic game collector, so if he wanted to bring in whatever he had, I'd make him an offer.
He then explained to me who he was, and said "I've got a complete collection of Master System games, systems, and some accessories & prototypes."
I half didn't believe him, so I tried to call his bluff just by telling him to bring it in and I'd do my best to make him an offer. He was just interested in picking up a used NES and a bunch of games for his family ... as they had grown tired of the SMS stuff he had lying around.
About an hour later, he drove up to the store and I saw him and his son carrying what looked to be a box the size of a small dishwasher. He plopped it down in the center of the sales floor, and I went out to take a look. There were a few hundred games inside (all boxed execpt for the protos, and many still sealed), about 3 SMS 1 units, a SMS 2, an just about every accessory that you could imagine (control sticks, 3D glasses, sports pads, etc.). I went through just about all the games while I was there, and being familliar with the SMS library - I was pretty sure that he was correct in his claim of it being "complete" (though for those in the know "complete" in the US is far less games than "complete" in Europe or other regions) I offered him $200 for the lot, and he took it without hesitation!!
I wound up with a few games that were only in prototype form in the US (even though they saw commercial release in Europe and Japan) like Out-Run 3-D (for the 3D glasses)...and I sold off most of the many duplicate retail games (there were 3 copies of Phantasy Star, so I practically made back my whole purchase price and then some on that!)
It was quite the day at ol' Funcoland...and while the prototypes are long gone (nothing that was never released SOMEWHERE in the world, so no worries) I still have the complete US retail collection, the systems, and accessories safely boxed up in my art studio.
(To date, my favorite SMS games are My Hero, Alex Kidd in Shinobi World, Psycho Fox, and Action Fighter.)