Sunday, August 11, 2013

Videogames are only expensive if you're impatient...just like most things.

Everything has a premium, right? That's what full retail price is, to me. With the exception of titles with awesome preorder bonuses, or Final Fantasy games that I just HAVE to HAVE, I haven't paid full price for a video game in a long time. My friends call me cheap, but last time I checked, spending more money for the same product isn't a good idea. It's like buying winter clothes in the spring! Well, except usually it's more like 6 weeks before the game hits that first $20 drizzop, even if temporarily.

The thing that gets me is when non-gamers, and even, disappointingly, gamers say is that it's an expensive hobby. Yes, it's true that new games retail at $65, after tax, in the US. $80 in Japan! Economics in your face: I hope most players would agree that the average spinning disc has an ~8 hour single-player campaign. That works out to a little over $8/hour of entertainment, frustration and euphoria for you! Don't worry, you'll get yelled at by your significant other anyway! Forget about games with sick replay value like the FPS games where you can spend a couple hours a week blowing holes in people! I got Modern Warfare at $40, and put 200 hours into it, and didn't buy any DLC. That's 20cents an hour. Last summer, I went paintballing with some students for $40/hour and walked away bleeding and...so did they!

How much does a 2-hour movie cost, again? What about a night of drinking? Casino? Even a restaurant? What about fitness (Everdeen) clubs? Most hobbies and entertainment cost money, and gaming isn't that high on the list. I complained about the subscription fees to MMORPGs, but then realized I was spending 20hrs/week in one world that was addictive, and that fee helped keep it dynamic and running fast enough. See what I did with the 'Fitness Everdeen'?

Let's revisit that entertainment budget, because you've also got to buy the system and controllers and stuff. It's true that you need $250-300 to get started, but this is where some Mr Miyagi (played by Pat Morita!) patience comes in.

Last year, I bought a Playstation 3 off of Craigslist, with 21 games, for $180. I turned around and sold most of the games for $50. I bought a Wii in perfect condition, with 2 controllers, 5 games (that weren't sports games!) and a few other peripherals for $80. A little legwork, and I saved bucco bucks! You might have to tell your mom that you're buying something cool like samurai sword, but you'll be laughing your way to the bank to invest those greenbacks.

Through Craigslist, eBay (decreasingly, these days), and Gamestop (not that great of a tradeoff, actually, 10% on a bad day), you can save anywhere from 50-80%. I know there is a tendancy not to trust used products or internet transactions, but it's also 2013, last time I checked my XMB notice board. eBay bought Paypal a few years back, and even before that, there are LAYERS of protection for the buyer. Now it's even better. Sure, it takes 30 days to get your cash back if you get ripped off, but you do get it back in the extremely rare chance it happens.

Yeah, there's the Craigslist killer, but with all the random shootings these days, I don't really see how you're any safer in a Best Buy, wasting your money on those lame buyer points. Those work out to about 2% cash back, which is generally a lot lower than the amount of interest you're paying for that credit card. You do get to see an occasional attractive customer service clerk, but is that really blowing your wad? *straight face didn't last*

Newegg.com often has $48 preorders (no tax in WA, usually free 3-day shipping), but the only drawback is that you have to wait 2-3 days for the item. If you can do that, you save 27% (compared to Gamestop's 16%). Every 4 games you buy like this, you get another one! If that shit works for Victoria's Secret, then it damn sure works for me. I don't know how the two are related, but now I'm thinking about titties.

...But my point is that if you can wait, you can save. Besides, how many crappy launches have we had where the first day was waiting for the devs to release patches?

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