To understand this I need to take you back to my youth. I am an only child which doesn’t mean I was spoilt growing up but it did mean my stuff was not handed down to younger siblings or cousins. Therefore I kept every system I was given and would regularly play the older systems. There were only 2 exceptions to this, my Commodore 16 which died after about a year and my NES which I sold to a family friend.
I regretted selling the NES for years and in the early 2000′s started searching the Internet for one. It was around this time I stumbled across eBay, no one I knew and heard of this site and I was a bit cautious about it all. I decided I would make a smaller purchase first as a test to see how it worked. I can’t remember at first whether Pay-pal existed or not but I remember making a lot of payments by posting out cheques.
This was it I was hooked, it was 2003 I was living at home, at university so getting student loan cheques and also had a job so virtually all my money was going on eBay. I was focused on getting all the systems that I wanted as a child. Over the next four or five years I had built a massive collection of systems but I was not really interested in the games. I’m not going to list all the systems I owned but it was around the 30 mark.
Then in 2008 I bought a house with my girlfriend and was told “that crap ain’t coming in my house” So I did what most of us have done and sold virtually all my collection. However I did get a 360, PS3 and a Wii has replacements. At this point I also started a new rule, that I would only play one game at a time, sell it, then buy a new one.
This worked well for a while until I discovered Retro Gaming Podcasts and heard everyone talking about their collections. I was eager to start collecting but could not justify the cost until I gave up smoking in March this year. So I decided I would reward myself for not smoking by putting aside £20 each week to do with as I wish.
This time around I decided to stay away from collecting systems. I decided to focus on PS1 games being as they are generally cheap and I could play them on my PS3. However after collecting for a while I started to miss my old PS2, so I picked up a PS2 with about 30 games for £30 from eBay , local pick up. Since then I have added a modded region free PS1 and an American PS2 to my collection and am looking for a Japanese PS2.
My collection now stands at about 80 PS1 games and 100 PS2 games plus some current gen games. I am even delaying buying PS3 games as I expect their price to start to fall in a year or two, similar to PS2 Games. I tend to get my games from car boots and eBay, the charity shops near to me never seem to have anything good in them but I do still check. I find car boots are great for bulk buys, my best as been 14 PS1 games including Crash and Spyro for 70 pence, whereas eBay is better if you are after a particular game.
I would recommend collecting to anyone just make sure you set limits, some games are crazy money! Just remember there are no rules, some people like to collect everything, others like me focus on particular systems, while others collect a franchise e.g. Street Fighter games, some have rules on where they find the games e.g. no eBay or no Internet.
I hope you have enjoyed this and will leave you with some of my tips for eBay
- Look for local pick ups
- Always check sellers other items and ask for postage discount
- Be patient and stick to your limit, chances are another one will be listed
- Don’t let high postage costs put you off, most people will not bid therefore the item will be cheaper, £20 + £20 p&p is the same to you as £30 + £10 p&p
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions, most sellers want to sell and will be willing to help.
- Take calculated risks, this is how much of a gambler you are but sometimes it is worth taking a chance on untested items, low feedback eBayers or poor descriptions. If you do this bid in the knowledge you may lose your money. Also look out for untested consoles that have all the leads – if you have the leads why wouldn’t you check it works and get more money!