There can be plenty of reasons to start collecting video games, and they are all equally valid. Do you want to have all the titles that marked your childhood? Are you younger but you love the retro and the vintage scent of the classic releases? Do you want to complete your collection of this or that console because you would like to have it whole? We do not care about the cause, what we love is to share a passion for video games … whatever the form.
So either to get old video games from a machine as popular as Super NES or to start collecting a complex and demanding as NEO-GEO AES … Or to complete your collection of PS4, Xbox One or Nintendo Switch without leaving an eye of the face or end up turning it into an obsession; this ten tips can give you a hand at the time of beginning your journey in this kneading a collection that makes you feel proud either in the short term or in a few years. Here we do not deal with speculation, so if you try to buy old titles to resell at crazy prices, this is not your specialty. Here we deal only with leisure, and collecting video games can be a wonderful experience or a real nightmare, so it depends on you turning it into one or another thing.
Here are 10 tips to start collecting video games, whether classic or modern.
Rome was not made in a day
Take it easy from the start
If you have problems controlling your buyer impulse, it is always interesting to be clear that the largest collections of video games, generally, are not made quickly but rather slowly … Usually, of course. We all remember the case of the largest classic collection of Nintendo that is in the hands of a Dubai that invested more than $ 325,000 to get it, also with the peculiarity of buying two copies of all its titles: one to save and one to be able to play it. But, even he himself admitted that he had done it little by little, amassing games and games of his trips to Japan, Singapore or Europe.
If you have such a large amount of money to spend on a hobby like this: congratulations! You can skip this advice and the next and go directly to the third, but if you do not have much liquid in the bank it is good to be patient and remember that most of the largest collections have not been built in a day … Not even of them!
Control the investment…
Setting aside a monthly amount can be useful
As we said if you have plenty of money you do not need to look at this point or the previous one. We all remember some collection sold by a large amount, from a user who had dedicated a lifetime to collectors to someone who had a lot of money. So … Hop! The second swelled with more than 11,000 titles his library to a single (and millionaire) checkbook hit. But, let’s be honest, unless you’re reading this article from your iPhone with gold and brilliant crimps, I do not think it’s your case or ours.
If you want to keep your expenses controlled, you can convert the acquisition of new releases into a game, setting aside a certain amount of money each month and allocating it to your small-large collection. 20 euros a month? 40? fifty? Those who are. The thing is to turn it into a divertimento in which you have to manage that amount in the best way possible to bring you home more and better games.
… But you have to be flexible
Attentive to the bargains
Already … already … I know that the name of this section goes a little against the previous one, but we will try to explain it. We have talked about that, if you go a little fair, putting aside a modest amount of money each month you can increase your collection of retro or modern video games without leaving a kidney, and always looking for the bargain. But part of collecting is to be attentive to these irrevocable offers, and … what happens if you have exhausted your quota of euros in the middle of the month and the next day a bargain comes up? Flexibility first of all, gentlemen!
Play a little with the money, but be responsible. If you have spent your February fee on the 15th, but on the 16th there is an original Grim Fandango with the immaculate box and instruction manual at a ridiculous price, it’s okay if you advance the next month’s money and spend less (or nothing) in March. If you see yourself capable of being organized it can be a good tactic to not be too rigid and take advantage of the offers.
Let your acquaintances know
Make your hobby known and avoid crimes!
Yes, avoid crimes. As you read it, and as if it was a vigilante of the night. Because in a move a friend throws a SNES and his six or seven childhood games because he did not know what to do with them is a crime, and more if there is an incunabulum of incalculable value between them. And do you know why he has thrown it? Because he does not know what you collect, and for him, the same thing is to throw everything to the container that gives it to you. If he is a good friend, surely he will not charge you for it!
So yes. Do not be a burden, because everyone is bothered by the heavy and may end up being counterproductive, but let your friends know that you collect video games: whether classic or modern.
Use all the tools at your disposal
We are not going to promote web pages, but looking a bit online will not cost you find many serious and reliable alternatives to the classic eBay for retro, for example, or Amazon for the modern. There are even Twitter accounts that are dedicated to promoting certain offers that are good to follow, and that can save you a lot of money with punctual offers or permanent discounts.
Information is power, right? Well, being aware of absolutely everything can turn you into a first-class collector. And websites such as those that control the historical prices of old or current video games can also help you control price changes in terms of first-hand games, and make sure that no one spoils you with second-hand games.
Fairs and conventions are your second home
Buy online is fine, but at fairs better
It is possible to create the bulk of your videogame collection by buying online, logically. But, if what you are interested in is the retro, it is essential that you move also in fairs and conventions to expand your catalog at great prices or with products that you can only find there. Not only because you will meet many interesting people, but also because you will save on shipping costs and you will be able to do very valuable things like checking the status of what you buy with your own hands.
So yes, whether to sell or to buy, big events are very useful. And I’m sure that close to where you live there is an annual that can come well for your interests or, simply, to have a good time surrounded by people who share your hobby.
Control your inventory
Keep an ordered index of what you have
This recommendation may seem silly considering that we talk about tips to start collecting video games, and that “start” means not having large numbers of titles under your belt. However, the start of your selection of titles is also the best time to start also to index them and keep good control of what you are having, either with an Excel or with the tool you prefer.
It may seem stupid, but if you intend to have a large library of titles and you will register and organize them in some kind of document it is better to start doing it when you are 40 than when you have 400.
Selling is not speculating
Buy what you want and sell what you do not
With this type of hobbies, it is easy to fall into the mistake that buying something and then selling it is speculating, when it is not. You can simply start collecting Mega Drive games and, halfway and for any reason, realize that you are not interested in that anymore and you prefer to have Atari 2600 titles. Collecting is not acquiring a commitment from those of “until the death, you separate “is, simply, a way to entertain.
If you sell video games for more money than they cost you, what are we going to tell you? Well, congratulations. Because that’s not the same as buying 10 SNES Classic Mini and then trying to resell them at crazy prices, that’s speculating. Is the difference clear?
Set your goals
Be clear about what you want and do not want
There are so many video games to buy that it is easy to end up losing the goal of what we are doing. It is more difficult for you to have a very respectable Steam collection and you may end up buying Xbox One games if you do not have the console, but in the retro world, it is easier for you to start collecting Master System titles and finish by also doing some of them. Spectrum only because it was at a ridiculous price. That’s what you have to direct and narrow before your collection becomes an uncontrollable monster.
Set limits. Are you going to collect complete games or do you care that they do not include the manual? Do not you care if they are in other languages or have to be in perfect Spanish? How many platforms do you want your library to be composed of? How broken do you admit a box is? Do you tolerate chorizo stains in the instructions? Put your limits and never go through the hoop just because “it was a good offer”.
Pamper what you already have
Preserving what you already have is more important than buying well
It is obvious that if you start to collect videogames you have to guide the article mainly to shopping tips, right? However, it is essential that what you already have you take care of it greatly. It’s your little treasure, so it’s convenient that you have it clean and well taken care of. Especially delicate is the issue of cartridges and dust since they are very sensitive, and also the scratches of more modern formats such as CD, DVD or Blu-ray. Treat them with love!
If you buy something secondhand and have an unwanted stain or label, there are also many specific cleaning products that you can use to erase any trace and leave it as good as new. A small brush (soft) and be careful when choosing what to clean depending on the type of surface we want to clean can do wonders.