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Do You Consider Gaming To Be An Expensive Hobby?

There are numerous ways to look at this question, and it also depends on what kind of gamer you are.

For instance, if you're mostly a casual gamer who can spend most of the year playing one or two games online, you probably don't view this as an expensive hobby. But if you're hardcore, and you don't really limit yourself to a particular genre, and special Limited and Collector's Editions of your favorite games often end up on your shelf, you might see it differently.

I've often adopted the following stance: a new game costs $60. You can buy it pre-owned and save a few bucks but for the sake of this argument, let's just go with $60. Well, you could compare that to a movie, for instance; the cost of a new DVD or a Blu-Ray movie is between $15 and $30, right? If it was $20, for instance, and the movie was two hours long, you paid $10 per entertainment hour. If a game is ten hours long and you paid $60, you got a better deal; it comes in at $6/hour. Plus, one is passive entertainment while the other is active.

Similar equations could be made for books and music and playing golf, but in the long run, I really don't think video games are an overly expensive hobby, nor do I see gaming as more expensive than most of the popular hobbies out there. Sports fans will dump thousands a year on going to games, paraphernalia, etc., and gearheads will spend big chunks on new parts and stuff. Gadget freaks are paying constantly; you can't go a month without something better coming out. And don't get me started on those golf bozos...I honestly think it would almost be cheaper to build your own course in the long run.

So anyway, that's my two cents.

Tags: video games, gaming, gaming industry, game cost, game price

12/18/2011 9:55:59 PM Ben Dutka

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Comments (81 posts)

frostface
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:22:42 PM
Reply

For me gaming is expensive. I somehow still manage to keep up, whether it's trading in games or saving for a game I really want.

When I was working I never gave the price of games a second thought but after losing my job to this recession, 50euro for a game is a lot to ask.

So I'll buy used whenever I can. Unless it's a game I really, really want to support e.g. Dark Souls, Uncharted 3, Resistance 3 or an online heavy game like BF3 that requires an online pass.

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Jawknee
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:23:29 PM
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Yup. I spent way too much money on games this year. Can either be a good thing or a bad thing I suppose. :P Next year will be expensive too. Wii U and Vita plus all the new games. But as you said other hobbies can be just as if not more expensive. I spent over 2k on new music equipment this year as well. But that is more of a necessity than a hobby in my case.

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johnld
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 12:18:34 AM

i dont see much that i want to get next year. not interested in wiiU and vita is not a must have for me especially since it's the same price as a ps3. only games i'm interested in are ni no kuni and tales of vesperia(i think), and both of those i'm not completely sold yet. i wanna try mass effect 3 but i'm in no hurry. i kinda have this thing where i have to finish stories. the only reason i want to play mw3.

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Qubex
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 6:08:19 PM

Yip, it can be expensive Jawknee... but like a few of the folks here have said, after a while you get savvy to the system and if you are patient enough you can cut your gaming bills by half.

I don't mind getting 3 to 5 AAA titles per year on day one, but the rest of the backlog I do wait for games to come down in price, even if I purchase some of them a year later. PSN can yield some very good deals 6 months after release, so it is worth the wait.

I guess for top games like Zelda, Battlefield 3, Uncharted 3, Killzone 3 - they are worth d1p's; the rest can wait I guess...

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

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friction
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:28:11 PM
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I feel a lot of games are overpriced at $60...
However some games definitely are worth it, and those are the games I'll buy.

I only buy about 3-5 games on their first day release a year, and another 10-20 used/reduced priced games. After a controller, I usually cant last a year with out breaking it, i spend about 500-600 a year on games, definitely worth it to me, fu**ing love gaming.

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MartyRules
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:28:59 PM
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Yes, but if the games are good Ill happily pay

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Dancemachine55
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:31:38 PM
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I've been spending less on preowned and Collector's editions, more on brand new titles like Batman, Uncharted 3, Portal 2, Battlefield 3, you know, the big hitters.

It is defintely expensive, but then again, so are drugs... or golf clubs, course memberships, etc.

Alcohol is rediculously expensive, which is why I don't drink. I know friends who spend at least 100 bucks a week on drinks, whether it's a quiet night with friends or a party out on the town. I'd rather save the money towards a good game.

Quite frankly, I feel like my money is going somewhere good and fun when buying games. If people frown upon it, I just ask them, "Well, what would you rather me spend it on? Drugs? Alcohol? Expensive sports or gym club memberships? (I do have a $15 a week gym membership BTW)

I'm a gamer, and proud of it!!!

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Highlander
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 10:38:11 AM

LOL! I do the same. Though my favorite retort has become;

"What? Would you rather I collected guns?"

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main_event05
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:32:31 PM
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anything worth doing requires sacrifice on some level.

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PasteNuggs
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:35:04 PM
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Yes I believe it is but what is nice about gaming is that once you pay for the games they are yours forever if you choose. Take gearheads, especially ones who race. You have to constantly pay for gas, oil, new parts when they break. Their stuff doesn't last forever. I also paintball and that is an expensive hobby also. One tournament I can easily spend about $300 dollars on balls for one or two days of entertainment. Gaming by far is one of the cheapest hobbies.

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fatelementality
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:35:59 PM
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I've noticed that I've became very picky about my game buying over time. I wanted the next hot thing when I was young, but now I see a game that I'm not 100% sure about and wait till the price drops to 30 bucks or less b4 I snag it. I never give myself more than 5 games to finish at any given time. Right now I'm doin Skyrim, Batman, U3, GT5, Metal Gear HD, & Portal 2. One.....two...........s***.

Last edited by fatelementality on 12/18/2011 10:39:09 PM

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FM23
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:40:41 PM
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It sure is...but affordable

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Snaaaake
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:50:09 PM
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It's an expensive hobby for sure, but it's something I love for a long time now.
I'm willing to spend for it.

In short........I'M A GAMER AND I'M PROUD OF BEING ONE!!!!!!

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CaptRon
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 10:58:15 PM
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It's no where near as expensive as playing paintball... I had to give that up :/

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bigrailer19
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 11:00:54 PM
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Gaming is a very inexpensive hobby. For me it's very expensive though. Ha. I tend to purchase a lot of games.

When the PS3 first released as well as the 360 they both were pretty expensive, in that sense yeah sure you can say it costs a lot to get into it. But once youre in, it's inexpensive for what you pay for.

Games like Skyrim, oblivion, fallout, and others all proved literally hundreds of hours of play time. Then you have all the online games. I look at leaderboards and ever since modern warfare see people with days and days of playtime. When you can spend $60 on a new game and get 15 days out of it, or in some peoples cases more, or even more staggering 360 hours, that's a lot of bang for the buck.

So no I don't think it's an expensive hobby at all. It just depends on how you perceive it. It's weird saying it's not an expensive hobby when I've spent what I have between my PS3 and games, but considering what I noted above it doesn't really have to be expensive. If I was an FPS only guy it would be very, very cheap.

Edit: I just want to add, everything can be expensive... When i was racing Motocross that was and still is expensive. Every race or practice session something had to be replaced, airfilters were replaced constanty, race fuel is just stupid expensive, tires were done after about 50 laps, but I got a lot out of it and still continue to ride. I mean everything costs money. It's all about how you perceive it.

Last edited by bigrailer19 on 12/18/2011 11:09:51 PM

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tes37
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 11:05:44 PM
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Only when I'm broke does gaming seem expensive.

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Twistedfloyd
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 11:12:01 PM
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It's expensive but worth it (always buy games new). As Snaaaakkee said, it's expensive but it's easily my favorite hobby and is the field I am trying to break into. So along with playing a bunch of games, I study them as in terms of the game design, story and cinematic qualities as well. And as Ben was saying, gaming is more expensive because it's a smaller audience than film (which I don't think will last much longer) and you get more out of the hours you spend within it in terms of money with each hour.

So yeah it's more expensive than some hobbies, but at the end of the day you gotta do what you love.

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sha4dowknight05
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 11:16:19 PM
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Yes very expensive hobby. Probably one of the highest considering that the many games that you will have to go buy are $60 plus tax for many console games. More for collectors and less then $10 for most downloadable games.

Gaming prices are definatly inflated very high.

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Highlander
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 10:41:02 AM

Game prices are not inflated, I find that entire idea to be false. Look at how much it costs per hour of entertainment for gaming and compare it to going to the movies, going to a bar or even simply eating out with friends. People have a 1 or 2 a day coffee habit and buy coffee at starbucks. You want to talk about an expensive hobby? Look at the justification for (and annual cost of) 2 $4 coffees a day...

Last edited by Highlander on 12/19/2011 10:42:25 AM

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Kai200X
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 11:17:04 PM
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It can be expensive, but only if I bought too many limited editions such as Batman: AA and Uncharted 3

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telly
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 11:35:41 PM
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Might this editorial be in some way prompted by the slate gaming club entries discussing this very topic last week? Because reference to the source would be appropriate if that's the case. Or maybe it's a coincidence.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 12:25:26 AM

The what now?

I come up with all pieces on my own. If they are ever inspired by anything at another source, I'll put a link in.

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ZenChichiri
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 12:52:49 AM

Telly, I don't know why, but when I read your post I pictured you wearing a top hot and monocle while smoking a wooden pipe. Anyone else get this same image?

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Highlander
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 10:32:24 AM

Might this reply be in some way a reference to the reply someone gave to that story on Slate where they wondered whether the story on Slate was in fact related to the story on Kotaku, and in turn related to the story at N4G, which was in turn a re-report of a fart made at Destructoid?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Many other minds read an editorial, realize it's an original piece and don't go manufacturing conspiracy theories that just barely skirt an allegation of plagiarism. A pity that you are in the group with the conspiracy theories...

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telly
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 11:24:15 AM

Jeez, sorry I brought it up Highlander. Ben's piece kind of reads like a counterpoint to what some in the Slate gaming club were saying last week, Ben says that's not the case, thats fine by me.

And I ALWAYS post wearing a top hat and monacle ;)

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playSTATION
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 11:40:28 PM
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it sure is hence me being very selective.

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THEVERDIN
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 11:48:21 PM
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Well now that I'm retired gaming does seem expensive.

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Killa Tequilla
Sunday, December 18, 2011 @ 11:50:09 PM
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I have purchased 4 ps3s. Two hdtvs, Bluetooths, turtle beaches, over 50games, sixaxis controllers, dualshock 3s, cables, and other accessories, dlc, and other stuff. Heck yes it is expensive. Its okay though, I hav e enough money to manage all this. So, in short yes. I have no idea how much I've spent on all this stuff, it has to be somewhere between 5grand and 11grand. Ooh, this is just from 2006 onward. Its expensive but its affordable. Otherwise I wouldn't have all that. Keep in mind I've spent x much in 6 years. Say I've spent 6,000 on gaming to this day, that's 1,000 per year, not too much.

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johnld
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 12:12:26 AM
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at first i thought it was but its years since then. i used to buy every game i wanted day 1 at full price at gamestop. but now its much different. i still get a lot of the games i want day 1 but most of the time they come with bonuses that practically lowers the price to $40 like gaming coupons. i havent paid full price for a game for a couple of years now. even got modnation racers for free because of those best buy rewards certificate before, you know before the gamers reward zone started began sucking. it used to be spend 150 on games get 10 back in certificates.

btw, you know what i see as a waste of money, buying dvds. all they do now is sit on my shelf because i already watched them a few times and dont feel like watching them anymore. on the upside, having 56 different jackie chan movies are always a good thing. i never get tired of those, especially the older ones where he teams up with his comedy gang like sammo hung and yuen biao.

Last edited by johnld on 12/19/2011 12:15:06 AM

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Russell Burrows
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 12:52:19 AM
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Home Theater as a hobby is expensive where thousands of dollars are spent versus gameing where sixty dollars or was it sixty pennies were the topic??....pffft no comparison.

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ZenChichiri
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 12:54:06 AM
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I spend a lot of money games but at least I'm smarter about it now. I used to have a "gotta catch 'em all" mentality when it came to the genres I loved, but now I only buy games I know I can find time to play. OK, well maybe there are some sitting on my shelf that heven't seen the light of day, but I swear I'll get to those someday!

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unnavigated
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 1:09:14 AM
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I almost never get games when they are absolutely new - heck, I still don't have AC Brotherhood (which I can get for dirt cheap, now) but I happened to get Unchrarted 3 because I got a great deal on it.

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___________
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 1:47:59 AM
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nah, of course not!
the requirement of a TV, games device, and games why would it be considered expensive?
i dont even want to think about how much ive blown on games this year, let alone hardware to run them!

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Sol
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 2:09:20 AM
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Gaming may be an expensive hobby, but what hobby isn't? I remember in my youth spending dollar after dollar on packs of Yu-Gi-Oh cards. My decks didn't just get built overnight. My Alien and Cyberdark decks took years to get to were they are, until I stopped getting the cards. The same appplies to my gaming. I've spent years going through the generation cycles of consoles.

You know what though? Just like with the Yu-Gi-Oh cards, I learned how to make better game purchasing decisions and have develeoped a system of doing things that I have mentioned throughout the years I've been a PSXE member.

Following this system I've managed to get a PS3, and now have more than a few games for it (It took toward the end of the PS2 era to perfect this system). All hobbies are expensive over time, but if you pace yourself and spend wisely, it won't ever be a problem, though if you intend to shell out a lot to get stuff, then you had best budget, and cut back on spending on unnecessary stuff (had I never once gone to the convenience store nearby, or bought those cards, I'd've had a PS3 and perhaps three times as many games, years before I did get one...).

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Rogueagent01
Tuesday, December 20, 2011 @ 3:46:04 AM

I feel the same as you Sol almost all hobbies are expensive. So long as the people enjoy their hobbies they'll be willing to shell out the money though.

Being that I was an early adopter to the this gen I dropped around $1500(2 PS3s) just for the systems, another $3000 for an HD TV, then multiple controllers, and tons of games. However I was lucky enough to have a good paying job at the time making me not even notice the cost. My other hobbies astronomy and the drums are also very expensive, but again I don't mind as I have usually had either the equipment I needed or had a good enough paying job to cover the costs. Right now I am out of work and boy does it feel expensive as I can't even afford to buy a single game right now. I am just hoping my systems or controllers don't break as I would not be able to replace them for awhile.

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Beamboom
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 2:16:52 AM
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I don't think it is expensive from a hobby point of view, and I fully support the "entertainment-per-hour" calculation.

My other big hobby is RC cars. And the price of a couple of minor *parts* that needs replacing after a racing session can easily match the price of a new game, at least if you buy that game online (as opposed to the overpriced physical stores). Add to that general maintenance cost (oils, cleaning equipment etc), fuel and battery cost, and gaming ends up being the cheap alternative.


Last edited by Beamboom on 12/19/2011 2:18:26 AM

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Gordo
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 2:41:06 AM
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Pretty expensive in Australia. $100au for a new game on average but they do come down to around $70 after a month and $50 after a while longer. You just need to shop around and use trade ins to lower the price and go to JB HiFi instead of EB Games.

Still bought Uncharted 3, Dead Island, Dark Souls, Killzone 3, Mass Effect 2, Move and Sports Champions and numerous other oldies in the 2011 period so can't be too bad! (Though my wife may beg to differ).

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YashaZz
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 2:55:09 AM
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In Australia it is, and it stresses me out. :(

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Bjorn77
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 3:03:29 AM
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In my opinion it is easy, if you really like something, you can justify the cost and financially afford it then you should buy it.

But that is the way I think. What's the point in earning money if you are not willing to spend it for your own enjoyment?

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Ludicrous_Liam
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 3:21:26 AM
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Games I've bought this year: Uncharted 3 & LittleBIGPlanet 2. Those two alone amassed to £90. I'm super-selective when it comes to buying stuff in general, but when it comes to games...I only buy the BEST of the BEST! :)

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Vivi_Gamer
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 4:51:21 AM

Same, I love the Resistance games but I missed out on R3 simply because I couldnt afford it. luckily my flatmate had Uncharted 3 so I sponged off him for that.

But as for next year, Feburary is going to be huge, but I already have put some money aside just so I can buy Final Fantasy XIII-2 on day 1.

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Vivi_Gamer
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 4:49:38 AM
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Well I have about 40+ PS3 games, I wont lie many I have bought pre-owned, I just can't afford to buy many games on the launch at the retail price. You can buy 4 new Blu-ray films for the price of 1 game. Sure a game may last longer But I still feel the prices are too much.

& Thats without DLC, you'd think you would be paying enough as it is already for a game on its launch, but when you consider you don't get the full package... I'm not going to lie it doesn't seem worth it. The only DLC I have ever got excited over was the concept of Heavy Rains Chronicle episodes... but they canceled it. I bought the special edition just so I could get the 1st one free, I felt cheated once they announced it was cancled. Worst of all, they now have the ordasity to penalise people who don't buy games new, surely they're already making enough money as it is, was there really any need for Uncharted 3 to have an online code? It's not like it would flop.

I definatly used to buy more new releases than I do now, not becasue I am worse of finacially (Which i'm not, im still a student lol), but because I simply dont feel I am getting my moneys worth, thinking about it, the only game I got on release would have been Catherine, which I imported. Oh and Ico & SotC in HD. Other than that I waited for games like Dead Space 2, AC brotherhood to go down in price, by that time, I kind of lost interest in them.

Though of course, I don't see games beoming any cheaper, the industry has grown so much this gen as it has reached out to a much broader audience, for better or worse.

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NoSmokingBandit
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 6:12:03 AM
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Gaming wasnt expensive until 6-hour games and day-one DLC became the norm. Sure, SNES games would cost more compared to games now, but you got more game for your money and the dev actually completed the game before they started cart production. This is the least efficient generation as far as entertainment per dollar.

That said, I've bought 3 games this year: KZ3, 3D Dot Game Heroes, and Dark Souls. DkS is the only game i paid full price for.

Last edited by NoSmokingBandit on 12/19/2011 6:12:57 AM

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Kall555
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 6:34:48 AM
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Don't any of you Aussie gamers ever purchase online from overseas? You would save yourself a shitload of money. I live in AUS too but i will be damned if i'm paying my hard earned dosh for our inflated priced games. We're constantly getting ripped a fresh new arsehole everytime when it comes to the price of our entertainment so i've decided myself to purchase all games from overseas from now on until our prices start diminishing a little bit. Call it selfish to our retailers, but if i can save my money on as many purchases as i can, i will. To quote an old Australian saying, i guess what i am trying to say is "they can get stuffed!" ;)

To those that don't live here, PS3 at launch cost $1000AU & sometimes brand new games can cost up to $119AU to $109AU, but if you wait a few weeks they will go down to about $80AU like the lad somewhere above mentioned. Furthermore, i purchase U.S PSN cards & buy from the U.S store if i want DLC for my U.S games. So there is never a worry of missing out on DLC. I don't know why others complaining about prices over here don't do the same.

But whatever, it's your money, i am just baffled why you guys still buy games from here when you can benefit far better off purchasing them elsewhere & saving your wallets the stress in the process.





Last edited by Kall555 on 12/19/2011 6:38:47 AM

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Beamboom
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 6:58:32 AM

This post should be elevated to "Sticky". :)

This is an excellent idea for an article, Ben. At least for your overseas readers the amount you can save on online shopping is staggering, no less. Not sure how the situation is in the states but if I were to purchase my games at my local Gamestop here in Norway I would suffer personal bankruptcy in an instant.

Compared to local prices I would say I save at *least* 50% by doing my shopping online. And that's a very modest estimate, probably the real number is above 60%.

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Kall555
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 7:33:39 AM

What are the game prices like in Norway Beamboom?

Do you guys get shafted too?

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___________
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 8:04:24 AM

nope because A 90% of the time they rip you off with shipping so it ends up being not that much cheaper.
B at least half the crap i have tried to import never arrives, mostly off ebay, i create dispute with both ebay and paypal and both do jack sh*t!
or C allot of games these days have some sort of code which means you need that specific store for it which is a nascences.
plus DLC being a big thing for games these days, so if you want DLC for the game you imported you need to buy the DLC from the same region, that means getting hold of PSN cards and again above problems keep cropping up.
in short its not worth the headache!
50% of the time i have imported something i have saved 10 bucks if that then buying it here, i would of saved more than that trading a game in at a shop here!
40% of the time i did not get the item, so that was a massive waste of cash!
the 10% ive saved a decent amount of cash, and got the item so it was worth it.
just not worth the risks and headaches to get into that 10% instead of 90% not making it worth it.


Last edited by ___________ on 12/19/2011 8:07:15 AM

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Beamboom
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 9:19:18 AM

Here in Norway the shop price on a console game (almost regardless of release date) is 600 NOK = 65 GBP = 101 USD.

I usually wait until an online price drop to 17.99 GBP (27 USD) before I order my games, and unless it's a Sony controlled game (ergo a 1st party dev) that usually happens quite fast. I've recently ordered Arkham City at that price, for example. Arkham City is still full price in the stores here and will probably remain so until spring.

So, by shopping online bargains instead of full price in local stores I save around 40 GBP (62 USD) on each purchase.
Yeah, thats more than 60 dollar *saved* every single time.

Last edited by Beamboom on 12/19/2011 10:35:42 AM

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Beamboom
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 10:22:51 AM

@noname: Play has shipping included worldwide so no added costs there. I got 161 transactions on my account there (just checked), and *once* I've experienced to not receive what I've ordered. And that time I contacted customer service and got a new item sent, no questions asked.

My experience is clear: Online shopping is safe as long as you stick to the large, trusted vendors like Play, Amazon & co.

Last edited by Beamboom on 12/19/2011 10:42:47 AM

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Kall555
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 11:47:55 AM

@Nameless,

They don't rip you off with shipping if you know where to look, & most games that are Buy-Now's on eBay are free shipping. Some shipping can cost alot if you do it express & so on but you don't have to pay that much if you just do regular shipping. Also, if you use eBay, do not buy your things from someone with shit feedback percentage. Go with someone with ATLEAST 98%, no lower. If you have been buying from sellers with positive feedback & haven't recieved your items then it sounds to me like you've just got plain shit luck.

As Beamboom said though, if you do import, better off buying online from the bigger name places like Play-Asia, Estarland etc. I've bought ALL of my games from Play-Asia & there was only one time they sent me the wrong item, but i emailed them with a scan of the item & they jumped onto it asap & in 3 days time i got my game with free express post shipping paid for in advance by them because of their mess up. They're damn good, atleast in my experience with them & i've been buying games from them for 4 years.

Also, about obtaining PSN cards, you don't have to import the cards to buy them, you can do it all online & have the code emailed to you without importing. Then type the code in & bang, the funds are automatically into your PSN store wallet & any DLC you so desire is yours.

But hey, it's up to you. Not trying to school you on how to do things, just trying to throw up some money saving advice to a fellow brother.


Last edited by Kall555 on 12/19/2011 11:55:21 AM

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Gordo
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 2:56:00 PM

Yip, I've bought a few games from overseas sites. You get free shipping as you say and the prices are good. The games are never region 4 however, so you have a few issues such as dlc, multiplayer and zero trade in price.

So its good for single player games that you want to keep but sometimes it doesn't compare with buying used games from JB HiFi where you can get most games for around $30-50.

Horses for courses as they say!

I agree that I would never pay $110au for a new game.

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Beamboom
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 3:03:55 PM

@Gordo: Quote "The games are never region 4 however, so you have a few issues such as dlc, multiplayer and zero trade in price" - oh shit that sucks. Are there no good online retailers in region 4 then?

Man this region stuff stinks.

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ulsterscot
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 6:49:15 AM
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yeah gaming is expensive - a new game costs about the same as a nice bottle of scotch - but lasts more than twice as long ....

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Aerifale
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 7:23:41 AM
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It's a bittersweet situation. Soooo many great games released this year yet I have little time and even less money to enjoy them. :/

off-topic: anybody else psyched by the possibilities of onlive? My broadband speed is too slow but it still looks like the future of gaming to me. :)

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CheddarClyde
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 7:36:28 AM
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I do digital media work (3D animation, motion graphics, web design, etc.) both as a career and a hobby so with the loot that I spend on software and hardware don't get me started on expensive hobbies.

As for gaming, the amount of high-quality games released over the last 12 months has made this year the most expensive for me in all of my 36 years... and I wouldn't have it any other way. I almost always buy these games new and I never resell them out of fear that I may want to replay them 2 weeks or 2 years from now. Not being tied to a particular genre doesn't help either.

The way I see it is if it's a hobby that you genuinely enjoy and can partake in while keeping food on the table and not causing harm to yourself or others, then spend away. To me, the experiences are well worth it.

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Gabriel013
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 7:48:41 AM
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It's very expensive. I read most of my books more than once and movies I've seen a dozen times or more.

Most games I only play once, especially if they only have a short single player campaign.

You've also got the initial outlay of the console/PC to consider.

Other hobbies could be expensive but many of those are also more niche.

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slugga_status
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 9:18:15 AM
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It really just depends and will definitely be different from person to person. Gaming is only as expensive as you make it. For example if you have no job it's very expensive. If you have responsibilities such as kids, rent/mortgage, etc. it can be selectively expensive.

To me, almost every hobby can be expensive in some way, shape, or form. Yet it is entirely dependent on the person

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D1g1tal5torm
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 9:33:18 AM
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Lovefilm is your friend.

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VampDeLeon
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 9:47:45 AM
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Nothing like investing in a never-ending hobby

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Highlander
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 10:32:36 AM
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Gaming expensive? I'm not so sure. If examine my expense on gaming over the last 5 years... Let's see; 3 PS3s, total cost $1400, Internet service $0 (I'd have it anyway), 3 PSPs $500, 6 DS3 controllers (so far) $300, 1 Move set $100, 1 PSEye $50, 50+ games (including double and triple copies of some) $3000 (Holy Sh!!), 30 PSP games $800, and finally PSN game, Home 'stuff' and paid game add-on content (including PSPlus) $1200.

$1400 + $500 + 300 + $100 + $50 + $3000 + $800 + $1200 = $7350 over 5 years, which is about $1500 a year. I probably spend about 30 hours a week (sometimes more, sometimes less) playing, so that's 1500 hours a year, which translates out to $1 an hour.

I don't smoke or drink, I rarely go to the cinema ($15-$20 for 2 hours of entertainment is not a good deal), and I don't have premium cable.

As far as other hobbies go, there are plenty of hobbies that are at least as expensive as this, if not more. Think of the cost of owning even a small boat or motorhome, of an ATV like a quad-bike. I could be a hardcore Otaku that buys resin character figures or vinyl character dolls as part of my hobby, since they can set you back anything from $50 to $1000, it'd be easy to sink $1000s a year into that kind of hobby.

The other thing is that the best games offer great replay value, extending the value of this hobby even further. Of course it evens out. For every 6 games that get 20 hours or so, there may be one that I can sink several hundred into.

Good grief, WKC1 and WKC2 have absorbed over 1000 hours of my time, and I've enjoyed every minute of it. Not bad for $120 worth of game.

I would have to say that on the basis of the amount spent totaled up, it looks expensive, but when you break it down to a per hour cost it's really quite inexpensive for what it offers.

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Highlander
Tuesday, December 20, 2011 @ 10:53:50 AM

Oh, one thing I should point out, those 3 PS3s belong to three separate gamers, and so that cost is spread across all three of us, which brings the cost per hour down to about 35 cents an hour. I don't know anything that even comes close to that in terms of the inexpensiveness of a hobby.

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jimmyhandsome
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 10:53:11 AM
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Whats expensive to some, can be pocket change to others.

Compared to other hobbies its probably not that expensive. I'm talking about hobbies like playing a sport like golf (golf clubs can cost a pretty penny, as does golf course passes), outdoor hobbies (hunting, fishing, etc) or playing a musical instrument.

But if you compare it to hobbies like being an avid reader or movie-buff, it probably does seem a bit more expensive. But that's because e-readers and Netflix have made access to those mediums very afforable and in great quantity. You could very well stream hours and hours of movies and TV shows each month for only $8-10. Compared to the time you put into gaming (for most) it could be MUCH cheaper.

This year alone I bought (all new) Portal 2, Killzone 3, Resistance 3, Socom 4, InFAMOUS 2, Uncharted 3, Rage, The ICO Collection, Gears of War 3, a new PS3 controller, renewed my XBL subsciption, 3-months of PS Plus, 5-6 DL PSN games, as well as a few other older used titles for 360 and PS3. Of course alot of these games have a ton of replay value (compared to watching a movie) but when you add up all the costs in can be pretty pricey.

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Kealan94
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 10:55:16 AM
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Yea it can be expensive. Over the last 3 months i have bought resistance 3, Dead Island, Demons Souls, BF 3, MW3, UC3 and skyrim lol. although after i platinumed resistance and dead island i traded them in and got good prices. I will have to start saving next year for MGS HD collection, Bioshock Infinite, and GTA5.

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hadouken
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 11:13:18 AM
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For me it depends on your income. If you can barely afford a game than it's expensive but if you got it to blow than it's far from expensive.

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Temjin001
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 12:08:40 PM
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I'm always looking for ways to get the most game content for my dollar. I rarely buy day one new, and that doesn't mean I just buy used. Many times, it's just a matter of a price drop. The great thing about this peroid in time of this gaming generation is just how fast games go from $60 to below $30, seemingly within 2-4 months. I've had shots at Rage $21, Arkham City: $24, Deus Ex $20. All of which have released within about 2 months time. That doesn't even include games like Dead Space 2 and Crysis 2, earlier games of this year, for less than $10.. new. The market has expanded that much where publishers are targeting a broader scope of gamer budgets to get the most profitability mileage they can before the game stops being alotted premiering shelf space for the newer game titles.

Last edited by Temjin001 on 12/19/2011 12:09:47 PM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 12:29:54 PM
Reply

By the way, the headline isn't really a rhetorical question; it's a legitimate question from someone in a position to not pay for much when it comes to games.

I can't remember a time when I actually had to pay for a game I wanted; most all of them come to me and if they don't, I have plenty of other games to trade in and get what I want, virtually free.

Same goes for DLC and stuff like that. So I'm out of the loop concerning how much people will or would spend. I probably wouldn't pay for any DLC, for instance, but I might spring for the occasional Collector's Edition of something. On the other hand, it takes me a while to finish games, and I'm selective about the ones I add to my collection.

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 12/19/2011 12:31:18 PM

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Bigtuna1
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 1:35:11 PM
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I have seen it as a fairly inexpensive hobby comparably speaking. I find it interesting you brought up golf even though from your statements you know very little about it. You really don't know how much it cost to build and maintain a course, even only a 9 hols course. As an avid golfer I have looked into it and trust me it ain't cheap.

So for me it is fairly cheap, but only when comparing it to my other hobbies. For someone who likes to play frisbee golf then gaming is a very expensive hobby. I think it all depends on what your other hobbies are. It's all relative.

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Bigtuna1
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 1:38:52 PM

And so you know I buy about 10 or so new games every year and rent others that I know I will beat in a week.

And your dvd comparison is valid imo as I've used it before to whiney people that say it's too expensive.

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MDeezy
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 3:43:45 PM
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WKCII has cost me approximately $0.24 per hour. I can't wait to bring this average closer to a dime!

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kevinater321
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 5:43:15 PM
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Well gaming is more of a monthly cost other hobbies have higher costs but not as frequent. Take biking for example, you may spend $2000 on a new bike but won't spend anymore for 5 years. So for me biking is about the same as gaming but gaming is more spread out.

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JDC80
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 6:45:54 PM
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It's expensive but there are ways to lessen the burden on your wallet when it comes to games. I always rave about Gamefly for 3 reasons 1. It's not that expensive 2.I can play the biggest AAA releases and 3. their store and keep em prices are dirt cheap. I bought Dead Rising 2 for 4 bucks, brought MLB 11 the Show for 16 bucks and InFamous 2 for 23 bucks.

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Excelsior1
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 6:52:23 PM
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In terms of what I get out of gaming I do not really think it is that expensive. There are some great games out there that give you a lot o value for your entertainment dollars spent. For example, I picked up Fallout 3 GOTY for around $20 and I have easily put over 100 hrs into that game. One of the best games I have ever played but also one of the most UNSTABLE of games to grace the PS3.

BROKEN Steel has to be mentioned. It raises your level cap to 30 and continues the main story. It also adds great set pieces for action when going after the Enclave..the TESLA cannon, and LIBERTY PRIME(giant robot programmed to eliminate the enemies of freedom!!) Great stuff. Right?

It can be great stuff but the damn framerate issues in this section of the game are simply atrocious even after al the patches. Oh yeah, the game can just spontaneously lock up on you at any second forcing you to reset your console.

Oh well. What can I say? Bethesda's PS3 coding abilities are supect to say the least. It's frustrating when you have to reset your system a half dozen times when playing Fallout 3. There is a great game somewhere in there if you can get past the technical issues. I know a couple people who won't even touch a Bethesda game on the PS3 becuase of these issues. That's a shame becuase Bethesda's games are just jammed packed wih a lot of great content. I have spent over a hundred hours with a couple of their games.

By the way, I am now the official arch mage of my college in Skyrim after completing the Eye of Magnus side quest. I'm pretty impressed with how well the side quests are fleshed out in Skyrim. Way better side quests than what was found in OBLIVION. Now I think I will attempt to get married in the game. I think I saw something in the loading screens about a temple in Riften regarding courtship and love. Skyrim plays a lot better than Fallout 3 up to a point.

Oops, sorry for the long post. Gaming is not that expenive of a hobby if you watch what you are doing. If one can be a little patient when buying games then it's really not so bad. You can pick up Mass Effect 2 for under $20 right now. The PS3 version is actually a very good port of Mass Effect 2 plus it comes with all the add on content if you buy it new. One can probably get 30 hrs of gameplay out of ME2 which is great.

There are a couple of other games that actually have some length to them...CRYSIS 2 comes to mind and so does Castlevannia: Lords of Shadow. I had a lot of fun with CLOS...I think it is a better game in some ways than GOW3. The combat system(no it's not broken MR Expert...you just don't know how to play it correctly) is way deeper and CLOS takes you through many beautiful, and expansive levels vs GOW3's dark, tiny little levels with constant backtracking around that stupid hub.

Another thing I have noticed when doing some Christmas shopping is that the bargain bins here in NA are just loaded with all kinds of dirt cheap 360 games. I don't know what that means exactly...these are the same bargain bins that were packed with PS2 games last gen.

Last edited by Excelsior1 on 12/19/2011 8:16:59 PM

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bentl78
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 7:58:41 PM
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Gaming isnt an expensive hobby.. like you mentioned, a movie is only 2 hours, and how much money do y ou spend on that. Just going out for dinner with friends, or going out to the bar for a drink will put you back anther 20-30 dollars for a very casual dinner... for 60 bucks, some games can last you for 30-100 hours. It is a cheap hobby actually...

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BikerSaint
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 8:54:37 PM
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Well for myself, I think my case is extremely different than most regular gamers.

Being also a hardcore gaming collector as well as being just a gamer, gaming has been super, super, expensive for me.

Whereas a regular gamer might just buy a PS3, and maybe a PSP too, plus some select games to go with them, as a collector I always need to try getting every single console, hand-held, along with every single game that goes with them.
Plus I also have the added burden of needing the same game up to 4 different times if there happens to a different version for each console and/or hand-held too.

Hell, just up until I was canned during my ex-company's "Mother's Day Employee Massacre Weekend", I was spent an average of at least $3000 yearly on consoles, handhelds, games & and their additional accessories.

And just during this year alone, I've added 6 more PSP's to my other 4(different models &/or colors), 2 PSP Go's(colors), re-bought another 60GB to replace the one our postal service smashed & murdered, bought a new slim 320GB Move bundled PS3, plus about 102 more PS3 games, 23 more PSP games, and a huge countless number of PS2, 360, original Xbox, and even older retro games. And add to that, my WiFi Vita has already been paid off for a while now too.

But now that I've been out of work, , my gaming buys QUITE SADLY have had to drop down to a much lower, measly, few hundred dollars a year now.

Now realistically, with 2,309 games already in all of my gaming collections(178 PS3 games), there's just no way in hell I could ever had amassed all those games I've bought by buying them all new.......

The games I really do want, I'm always on a hunt for deals on them. I try to pick most of my games on a 'Buy2-Get1 Free" sale, or during a huge sale, or a deal of the day.
I also use all of Ebay, Amazon, Newegg, or 1/2 price/ Overstock/Fry's/Buy(d o t c o m s) for deals on new game, BUT... I'll never ever buy any used games online, just too much chance on getting burned on them still being in mint condition without without scratches, and everything still fully intact(case, manual, cover art, any bonus disc's, etc, etc).

I also do lengthy(and mostly time-consuming) surveys, but they wind up getting me four $25 Gamestop gift cards per year, so at least I'm still wasting my time for the good of gaming, LOL

I also set up my twitter account just for the chance winning gaming swag, by putting all the developers, publishers, & gaming sites into it, & I HAVE managed to win numerous contests & DLC codes, free games, free swag, some T-shirts, & even a $100 Amazon gift card just from those twitter tweets.

Last off, whenever I've been out on one of my patented "Wild Game Safari's", whenever inside the gaming store, I've always put the games I saw there into my 3-part mental list system for buying those games....
1. "MUST HAVE" list(all top priority games I want to play, either D1P's or will wait till price drops, & never used games)
2. "WANT" list(games that I want but can wait for bigger price drops or deals, or even a used game)
3. "NEED" list (games I'll never play, but need to fill my collections, 100% always bought used, & only at "bargain-binned" prices.

So....long story short....
"I'll continue my passion of collecting & gaming, whatever it's price".

Works for me.......

Last edited by BikerSaint on 12/19/2011 9:00:24 PM

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Rogueagent01
Tuesday, December 20, 2011 @ 4:30:26 AM

With the job I've got lined up right now I will be joining you as a collecter. Though my collection is only at around 500 games and I only have 9 systems, I can see myself spending a few thousand dollars a year on this hobby. It is also helpful that I don't have kids yet and I don't drink often saving me a lot of money right there.

My love for astronomy costs me a few thousand every few years, but it is nice that almost all the accessories can be moved to the next piece of equipment unless you change from a "1.25 to a "2 optics system. Everything for "2 systems is ridiculously overpriced and becomes one extremely expensive hobby(only for the rich). I also plan on buying around $1500 dollars worth of telescopes and donating them to the local astronomy association every couple of years for kids and schools to use, which will be one of my other hobbies. Though I will never complain about this one.

My drumming hobby is quite expensive as well since I can spend anywhere from a few hundred in just maintenance to say $10,000 grand for a complete refit. This is another hobby I have so much love for that I could justify any cost as it is probably my biggest passion in life.

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Warrior Poet
Monday, December 19, 2011 @ 10:15:35 PM
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The average price I pay for a game is $8 - $5 for NES and Game Boy games, maybe $20 for PS3 games, and the rest are in between. New purchases are limited to the more unreliable consoles (carts are invincible lol) and Zelda. If you're willing to wait two or three years, everything but the console and the rarest games can be had really cheap.

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Danny007
Tuesday, December 20, 2011 @ 7:53:24 AM
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Yup it's expensive, but that's what December is for. No new games I want so I can save all the money I make this month for next year. February is packed, Inversion, Twisted Metal, SSX...

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hald
Tuesday, December 20, 2011 @ 11:38:02 AM
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Personally, I don't consider gaming as an expensive hobby, as I primarily buy 1 party (Sony) titles and blockbuster titles - think Uncharted, LittleBigPlanet, Battlefield 3.

Also, when I want to buy a game, I always think like this:
It will cost me 25$* to go to the cinema. I'll get 2,5 hours of fun.
On the other side it will cost me 100$* to buy a game and have hours - even DAYS of fun playing it, and I can pick it up in a year and play through it again.

So I dont go to the cinema that often, but then I buy a couple of games every year instead.

*Converted from Danish Kroner.


Last edited by hald on 12/20/2011 11:39:57 AM

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Underdog15
Tuesday, December 20, 2011 @ 3:56:54 PM
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Compared to something like reading, no. You can get unlimited books from a library for free, if you don't miss return dates. Even sports only have annual 1 time costs for things like equipment and registration. Although, gym memberships are usually criminal for what they offer.

But compared to the entertainment industry, no. Think about it as a dollar per hour equation.

How much do movies cost per hour? A rental at $3 is pretty awesome at about $1.50 per hour. But most rentals cost even more. Netflix has a good deal usually too.

But even compared to gym memberships and sports, what is the cost per hour committed? If I play in a competitive soccer league, I'm expected to practice up to 4-5 times per week with 1 or 2 games. Overall time is about 12-15 hours per week IF it's ultra competitive. Registration costs are usually around $200+, cleats are at least $100, if they are good, shin pads another 40 and add in whatever else you need for clothing or accessories. Now throw in travel costs.

How about something like golf? You're looking at 7-10$ per hour MINIMUM.

Gaming? Well, I can spend $60 on a brand new game. If I get 20 hours out of it, it's a cost of 3$ per hour. If I'm thrifty, I can widdle that down to under a dollar per hour.


So no... I don't find gaming expensive. If I bought brand new releases, yes, of course it would be. But so would reading and watching movies if I bought or rented everything brand new. Something like Battlefield or Call of Duty, if you like multiplayer, you can literally get 10 cents or lower per hour out of that investment.

If you are smart about your purchases, gaming is inexpensive from the cost per hour perspective. It sits in a broad range of costs, but it is not unlike most other hobbies out there that have a cost associated with them.

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dork02840
Wednesday, December 21, 2011 @ 12:43:04 AM
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gaming to me use to be my life. i used to have 32 titles in my ps3 collection. 32 in my genesis collection as well, plus 32x and sega cd. plus i had probably 30 titles for ps1. ps2 did not catch on with me as much, i never quite bought it as what sony sold it as. my first ps2 was a lemon it kept freezing. i honestly got more fun out of a hokey game like Robot Alchemist Drive then i did out of Zone of Enders. i definitely see myself being a gaming lifer, but i am at a point now where i am geting my stubborn with my purchases. unless its something i truly follow, like wwe, sports, or a fighting franchise, then i find it hard to dive in. there are exceptions, such as LA Noire and Catherine. but for the most part, there has to either be a feeling of gotta have it, nostalgia, or purist gaming for me to spend the full 60. like right now my dilemma is i want to play uncharted 3 but i was so close to beating uncharted 2 until i fell into a gaming glitch in the snow level with the guards and the buildings. i fell into a hole that was basically off the path and there was no way to get back to the spot u needed to be at. i want to beat uncharted 2 before i try uncharted 3. at this moment i would rather buy KOF 13 then uncharted 3...i know that i will get more enjoyment out of a hardcore japanese fightig game then a game that lasts maybe 10 hours. so as i get older, my gaming is becoming more selective. its not that i do not like whats coming out, on the contrary i still love gaming and i get a rise out of the graphics and the detail but there are just certain fads that are pushing me to be more choosey. plus i am at that stage where i pay as much if not more atention to my blu ray collection. so while i cant call gaming a hobby like in the pokemon sense, or the baseball card sense of the word, for me its like the older you get the more familiar with the genres you get. its like becoming knowledeable in music. you either love certain type of metal or you hate the vocals and the riffs and you stick to more indie or hardcore or retro sounding music.

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Robochic
Wednesday, December 21, 2011 @ 8:11:24 AM
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It depends.
I either wait for a great sale and go nuts or if i can't wait i save up my bestbuy rewards coupons and use them like that. But I don't drink and go out just a home body with the kids and a good game is all i really need :)

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