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My Life As A Cheap Gamer

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  • One day I was going through my achievements on my XBL gamerscore, peering over my accomplishments when I saw that there were a few titles with one or two unlocked achievements for games I never completed. I thought to myself, I should go back and finish this game someday. When I decided to go my local game store and purchase something new, I was considering purchashing Halo: ODST since I was coming off a replay of Halo 3 over the summer and was eager for a similar experience. However, I decided to check the XBox360 bargain bin out of curiosity when I discovered some real gems that had been traded-in to the store that I never completed. Now I was faced with a decision: Do I purchase Halo ODST for 60 dollars or do I buy Fear for 10 dollars, The Darkness for 8, and Ghost Recon for a whopping 4 dollars! I decided to go with the latter. I felt that a game simply cannot be worth an automatic 60 dollars and expect me to pay that much; not when there are so many other choices out there to begin with.

    This may sound blasphemous but I dont plan on buying any of the games that are coming out this holiday season the day they come out (This means you Modern Warfare 2 and Assasins' Creed II). I think that by teaching myself some patience and fiscal sensibility, I will be able to play some great games once they come down in value and have the same experience that someone who bought it the first day has. For example, only a month ago did I finish playing GTA IV which I purchased used for 26 dollars and now have time to buy Episodes from Liberty City (when it comes down in value). In essence, I am the game companies worst nightmare. Video game companies and advertisers spend million of dollars creating hype around games so that I will be there the day a game comes out and pay $60.00 plus tax and, let's face it, sometimes game magazine articles are nothing but hype-builders. They are counting on you to do this so that they can make their money back as quickly as possible and boost their bottom line.

    Let me make things clear: I dont want to hurt video game companies. I appreciate the entertainment they have provided me since I was playing Castlevania on the NES. But, at the same time I have to question why  Bioshock on XBL On Demand is $30.00 when I can go to the store and pay $15.00 for the same thing? I thought that the absence of a disc, booklet, and packaging materials would drive the cost down but it doesn't. However I will applaud the strategy of certain games, chief among them Gears of War II and Fallout III who have re-released these games with a lot of DLC already included for a reduced price. That is a true value for someone who hasn't played these games yet.

    Now I understand that there are some gamers out there that can't wait to play the next best thing but I feel that a case should be made on behalf of playing games that you may have missed. I understand that this happens all the time but I think we as gamers need to go back further in time and play games we may have missed irregardless of their age and system. Need proof? I would ask that you let others know the games that you never played or completed. I think that you would horrify some people with your answers. Given: I know that you may not play some types of games (my friends have always hated JRPGs) but if you like a certain type of game then you owe it to yourself to play the best out of that genre. I love RPGs but I never completed the following: Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy III and X, or any of the Personas. I love scary games but I never finished a single Silent Hill game. I have never completed Super Mario World, TLofZ: A Link To The Past, or any Metroid on any game system. Shocking, I know.

    I feel that the the time has come for a cookie-cutter term from the movie industry to be implemented into gaming culture. That word? Classics. There are people out there who watch classic movies and refuse to watch anything but. You may say that they miss out on all that is new but are they really? I like to think that balance is the key here. You have to play newer games now but dont be afraid to check out that bargain bin. I know that people wont play old games because of the graphics are out-dated but video games have never been solely about the graphics...right? If our industry is trying to establish its importance then we have respect the fact the older games need to be played not just for financial reasons but cultural ones as well Right now, today, should I play Halo: ODST or Chrono Trigger? You tell me.

  • Chrono Trigger :) Nice Post, Very good points.


  • Hey great post. That's exactly how I feel. Over the summer when very few good games came out I bought games that I missed out on such as Mirror's Edge and Crackdown. I also did a lot of game trading with my friends. I even got Morrowind for my 360 because I love Oblivion. Then I bought THUG 1 for 3 dollars becuase I played it on PS2 and felt an urge tto play it again.

    If you post it, they will troll.

  • I also tend to buy games later for cheaper. There is the occasional title that I just feel like I must have as soon as possible(Arkham Asylum was the latest), but otherwise I can just wait.

    You're not alone on the unfinished games page either. I'm not sure how many games I have started but not finished, but I know its too many. I've been trying desperately to catch up, without much success. I estimate that if I played during all my free time for a week, using online guides to help me, I might be able to get half of it done. Its not even funny how behind I am.

  • That is a very good point you make there. However, it kills me to think that I am missing some of the great games that just came out. Not only that but I'm the kind of gamer who has their favorite series and I couldn't imagine knowing that one of your favorite series new games is out and waiting for it until it drops. I would get too impatient and end up buying it anyway. Patience is truly a virtue though. But I don't think my personality would allow me to wait a year for FFXIII or a game like that but for games that look decent enough I wouldn't have a problem at all in waiting.

    Life is all about finding out what life is all about.

    Good luck friend.

  • I'm with you.  It hurts me to have to pass on the big games, but my whole life in reality I've overpaid.  Now that I'm an adult... err, college student, I have to cut back - and on the plus side there are so many games I need to get caught up on that I don't mind passing up on some newer titles to get some bargain-bin gold.  I'll only leave expensive games to xmas gifters and such, mwahaha!

    Plus, the sense of accomplishment in picking up Gears of War, Dead Space, and 2 Fallout DLC episodes for the cost of 1 new title is grand.  And I know that I'll pick up the newer games eventually, but forcing myself to bargain shop forces me to look at games I would have passed up the first time around as well as get the most out of the titles I already have.  I'm a cheapskate, but prices are out of hand given my position in life.

  • I agree.  That is usually a lot of what I do.  I buy good games later for less money, try to get the best deals, and sometimes I buy used games.

  • Amen preacher.  You speak wisdom.

    I never played Shadows of the Colossus, or much of any Halo, chrono trigger, Personas, nor finished any FF or silent hills.

  • i agree with the OP. I certainly envy those who can drop the full 60+tax every time a new desirable hits the shelves but I simply cannot. I look through the startlingly good deals in the bargain bin, and play some older gems while the newer games drop in price. another good idea is gamefly with the 2 rentals at one time for as long as you decide to keep them. monthly fees arent too much of a hassle if its in exchange for purchasing games. depends if you are a collector or not. cool post, I share your same feelings

  • Chrono Trigger! ODST you'll get easy but Chrono Trigger is harder to find.

  • Excellent post! I pretty much do the same thing. Heck, I got a Nintendo 64 when they were well into making game cube games.  Although...that was mostly because that was all the money I had. However, with Pc games, I've found myself playing such old 'classics' as The Curse of Monkey Island to the original Fable.

    I'm not really jealous if someone has the money to buy a game as soon as it comes out to be honest. When my cousins first got MW2, I decided to spend my money on Prey for $10 at Gamestop and I've found that to be a pretty fun game. I had no regrets.

    I'm probably in the minority, but I really don't see what the big difference is with getting games THE VERY FIRST MOMENT it becomes available..unless there's some sweet deal thrown in or something. I know with friends and family, usually the only reason why they do that is basically to brag that they got it first xD...

  • MJ Castro, this is a very beautiful post, I'm sad I didn't read it earlier. I'm certain you would be interested in my post entitled 'Our Wallets Thin, Our Loyalties Grow, and Games Suffer', in which the solution is basically the tactics you have described here.

  • @TheDarkestReign

    I agree. I never read it until just now either. And I totally agree with it. The only game I have bought for full retail price, the day it comes out, is Red Dead Redemption. Oh, and Splinter Cell: Conviction.

  • I do a little of both.  I like to save money and wait for the used games; but stuff like Halo and Fable, I get immediately.

     check out my blog!


    Rainheart, I'll never forget you.

  • fear is so worth it!!!!


    GT: iKILLER69

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