Do you follow any game collecting blogs, Reddits, or YouTubers? If you do, chances are you have noticed many discussions about picking up games for X amount of dollars, greatly under (or sometimes above, depending on the situation) the general average for the item. And you find yourself thinking, “Well damn, everywhere I look I only see the game for way more money! What am I doing wrong?” Well, my game collecting brethren, you’re just thinking of the here and now, and instead need to start thinking of the future. As a game collector, having patience and persistence will net you all kinds of awesome gains! Just stick with it!
The first feeling I get when seeing someone’s post about an awesome pick-up from Craigslist or the like, is to be really jealous. I find myself thinking about how I never find anything for that kind of deal, or that going to Goodwill has been less than stellar in the game’s market the last couple of months. As a collector, it can be easy to see these sorts of things, then just jump on an item that’s far above what you’d normally pay. If someone else bought Castlevania: Symphony of the Night black label for $5 off of someone on Craigslist, then you might just buy it from someone for $30 because you see it, and it’s fresh in your mind, and (most of all) you just want it! Remember to hold out for your turn!
You might not find it at first, but there’s always going to be someone selling the games you want for the prices you want to pay. A title is only as valuable as the person selling it and the person buying it makes it, so if you’re not feeling a certain price range fora game that you see, just pass on it. Reading through my collection of Sunday Roundup posts, there have been countless times where I passed on games because of the price and picked them up literal years later because the price had dropped. Believe me, no matter the game, if you just wait out the madness to get your hands on them here and now, they’ll eventually drop in price and you can swoop in to add it to your collection. This is much easier to do at a game store than it is through places like eBay or Goodwill. GameStop, for example, will have sales here and there, and if a game isn’t selling at a certain price point for a specific amount of time, they tend to lower that price to move it off the shelf. Be persistent in your observation, take notes on what you see, and do some research on what is a good deal and what isn’t. If your goal is just to own the game and not to actually play it right now, then wait it out!
I generally go into game stores or places like Target’s electronics section with some ideas in mind for what I’m looking for. Maybe just a random game for a couple bucks in the clearance section will warrant a purchase, or maybe something I’ve been watching at GameStop for awhile now will pop up even cheaper somewhere else and I’ll jump on it. Either way, try to stick to your prerequisites for buying and remember it’s okay to let them go even if the deal is good. If it’s not good enough then come back some other time. There really isn’t anything worse than biting on a game for a bit more than you usually would, only to find it a few months later significantly cheaper and you haven’t even played it during that time frame. First world problems, for sure, but something you can avoid with some persistence.
You might have found all of this incredibly straightforward and unnecessary, but I’ve come across so many people online touting their finds and kind of bragging about their luck. Some of these posts aren’t even that good: you can probably find them cheaper on your own time if you just dug hard enough! So don’t forget there’s always someone out there able to meet you at the desired amount of quality you want, and to never settle for less. In the end it’s your collection, and you have to live with it, so make sure you’re building the library you can be proud of!