Poor Investments: Video Games

30 May
May 30, 2011

Over the years my gaming hobby has gotten the best of me. At $59.99 a pop for regular versions of video games get expensive really fast. Lately my interest for video games has begun to dwindle, maybe I’m getting older and less interested in games, or maybe I’m getting tired of paying $60 for half completed games, filled with glitches and other unplayable elements. It seems publishers are pushing devs so hard to hit release date, they seem to have the “ship it filled with bugs and patch it later” attitude. Brink, for example, is one of the most frustrating games I’ve played this year, I paid $59 + tax for this game and ended up hating it, worthless AI, ridiculous gameplay, and overall a terrible experience. Craigslist going price for it is around $30, eBay about the same, Gamestop trade-in is $20 and Amazon gives $31. Looks like Amazon is the best way to go.

Since I’m trying to get rid of a large amount of games, I started looking into the best way to get rid of them and get a decent amount in return. The truth is, there is no decent return. Day after purchase of your game, it is worth less than 50% the retail price almost anywhere you check for trade-in or sale. So if you buy a game on release date, expect to lose at least $30 instantly. Usually I’ll take to Craigslist to sell my newer games, which I for whatever reason don’t feel like playing, but lately even Craigslist has become stale for selling anything. Alternatively I could head to Gamestop and attempt to trade-in, but you will only end up with $20 – $30 on a game you purchased that day. They’ll then turn around and stick the game up for sale for $5 less than you paid for it brand new. There’s also Best Buy to consider or Amazon’s trade in program. I personally favor Amazon, because I’ve found that they seem to give the most for your used games, which still isn’t very much I might add. I recently traded 19 games ($1140 if purchased new) and received a whopping $200; I previously attempted to sell the lot of games on Craigslist, as well as eBay, and never even came close to $200.

I know what you’re probably thinking by now, why not rent? I actually used to rent a lot of games using Blockbusters game pass, but pretty much every blockbuster in my area has shut down. Gamefly I have actually used in the past, but with 3 different disappointing experiences. Two times I sat for weeks without being able to receive any games on my Q and the third I lived in a small town in Washington and half the time my games weren’t making it back to Gamefly, so they cancelled my account.

So there you have it, as much as I love video games, I’m tired of losing my ass buying games that are either unplayable or not worth playing. I think it’s time for me to move on to a different hobby, maybe something that’s not as frustrating as video games are today.

Note: I’m open to try any alternative suggestions to get the most value out of my games, so feel free to leave some suggestions.

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