Now I always talk about what I buy retro game wise and sometimes I can grab a lot of stuff, sometimes to the extent that people believe I simply buy every single old thing I see, and this is not the case at all. I am very focused on price for me to buy something I have to see it as being sold for a good price, now obviosly price depends on the object but it also depends upon its condition, where it is being sold and all manner of other factors. Just recently I saw a Commodore64 for sale it was in a charity shop for £195, it was the machine, its wires, its tape deck and about 30 boxed games some of them being the cassette sized ones some being the larger premium box ones. Now I love and support many charities , I buy from them, donate to them (both cash and items to sell) I even used to be a volunteer but I have to admit some of them at times can take the piss with over pricing and selling stuff in poor condition (stained clothes, very badly scratched DVD's). Now I am not saying that no one will buy the Commadore64 for that kind of cash but it is more than I would pay for the machine for a great many reasons, 1 its not a machine I have much history with other than playing it at friends houses when I was young, 2 no one has unlimited house space and thats something I will take into account when buying machines and such sure if the price is a teasingly cheap one I will throw caution to the wind, 3 Mainly I just dont think the machine and these games are worth that kind of money to me. I already have a sizable collection of home computers including a Boxed Sinclair Spectrum +2 , a boxed Dragon32, a boxed Vic20 and then some loose machines. In honesty I knew that if I had grabbed it then I would have taken photos of it, looked at it a little bit and then just put it away in a cupboard, buying it would have proberbly given me a huge rush for a day or two but there are just so many other things I could and should spend the money on, after all Christmas is fast approaching. I do hope that someone does get the machine, someone who it has far more emotional ties to, someone who will appreciate it, who will use it, and who will gain a lot more from it for a lot longer time than I would have done.
So some of the time there are issues which prevent me from purhasing certain items, one would be cost but in all honesty one of the simple issues is that so much of the stuff out there really is not suitable for anyones collection, you dont have to go far to find several badly batterd super scratched copies of various old Fifa games with cases coverd with a mix of cracks and stains and discs that dont look even playable. At the very least these games would need a resurface in order to play and resurfacing games is a risky busines, if you dont know when they resurface discs basically they skim layers off them in the hop of loosing the scratches along with the layer, take to many layers though and they are no longer playable. A lot of these games with extensive scrathes are not worth the cost of a resurface as it basically amounts to a gamble where at best you have a working copy of a worthless game and at best you have paid a small sum of money and still have a useless disc out the end of it, so its hardly a gamble worth taking. Sure if you saw a rare game with a high value going for a pound or two and it was badly scratched then it might very well be worth buying and taking the risk as yes you could resurface it and it still not work but at least there is a gamble there with a very positive outcome as one of the possibilities. I recently got a very badly scrathed disc only copy of Crash Team Racing for the original Playstation for 30p, and copies of this even disc only ones sit on Amazon with asking prices in the range of £30.
I would like to say I have exact hard and fast rules on what I do and dont buy but I suffer from a lot of stress and anxiety and what I buy fluctuates, obviously I never buy absolutly batterd in crap for loads of money, but sometimes I will grab a cheap game I dont even need, sometimes I will grab a second copy of a game I own just because its cheap I am feeling low and I need the little pick me up purchasing it will provide. I never pay over the odds for anything and I always figure that I can always sell a little bit of stuff if money is ever tight. Recently I have started trying to be harsher with myself trying to hold the purchasing desires in check and I think I have been doing a decent job of it, sure you will still see that I buy quiet a bit every month but its the things I dont buy that have increased, I try as much as I can to fight the urges to spend so that I control the hobby and the hobby doesnt control me.
I do have a lot of hard and fast rules that I am not trying to complete any set of games largly because I dont want to feel forced into a corner where I have to pay a crazy amount for something that is basically regarded as being a great big turd. I grudgingly admit I already have enough stuff sat in cupboards seldom even looked at without adding to the pile by adding stuff I dont even really want to look at.
A lot of people will note that I seldom sell or even trade games and this is still true, mostly because a lot of the businesses which operate in game trading operate by really ripping people off but I have at times been very generous. I gave a coworker a megadrive, a master system 2 and a playstation and a few games for free because I could see someone who had a simmilar sort of drive and intrest in the hobby as I did but had not really started collecting. I lost heart in this though as I had given him a fair few N64 carts, nothing that great or valuable but just a few things to get him going and then he ended up spending a lot of money on drinking and found himself short of his rent and food money and he sold the N64 with the games I had given him as well because of this. This is after I had lent him little bits of cash here and there in order to make it to his next rent day without having to miss meals or face too much hardship. This had a pretty bad effect on me and has made me less likly to give people stuff in the future. Although I did recently get given a great game for free by someone from a new forum I am on and that does make me want to see if I have any bits and pieces I can offer up to others on there to sort of keep the spirit going