Games: 25 years, $25,000

So I’ve been saving game receipts pretty faithfully for most of the last 10 years. I finally put them all into a spreadsheet and found that I have records of spending $6000 in the last ten years.

And that doesn’t include at least another $6,000 in PC hardware and at least $500 in console hardware that I don’t have receipts for. And I’ve blown several hundred dollars on MMO subscriptions over the years.

The first game I ever got was Infocom’s Deadline sometime in 1983 I believe. Probably the next game I got was King’s Quest II in 1985. Based on some written records and just looking at my collection and partly from memory, I also was able to list another 100 games that I played between 1985 and 1998.

Between 1998 and 2008 the average price I payed for games was about $35 although I’d guess that between 1985 and 1998 I payed more like $40 or $45 per game. All totaled I’d have to estimate spending like $20,000 to $25,000 on this hobby in the last 25 years.

Worth every penny!

Here’s a sample of my list.

Rise of Nations 5/30/2003 $49.99 PC
Golden Sun 6/4/2003 $19.99 GBA
Port Royale 6/25/2003 $29.99 PC
Railroad Tycoon III 10/24/2003 $49.99 PC
Swingerz Golf 10/30/2003 $9.99 GC
Half Life 11/3/2003 $9.99 PC
Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance 11/15/2003 $17.99 PS2
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 11/20/2003 $49.99 PC

There are about 275 games on the list. :P

I once did a quick estimation of how much money I’ve spent at Tim Horton’s since I started drinking coffee at the age of 14. Then I got really, really depressed.

I’ve often wondered whether it’s worth saving a paltry $3-$5 by bargain hunting when I buy new games, but when I hear numbers like that, I realize that 10% can be significant.

  • Alan

Why do you save all those receipts anyway? Is it a hobby?

Did you hear about the guy who just recently sold off his (tabletop) game collection for $150k?

Sad that it sounds like the buyer plans on breaking it up. I’m suprised he didn’t ebay it himself piece by piece, could have probably made more, sounds like he had some good rarities in there.

Probably some trash there too like 100 special edition monopolies.

This thread makes me think of this guy.

Why on Earth would anyone need that many headsets? I assume that’s what is sitting on the floor in the middle. This guy has issues!

On this topic, I have the Sierra budget release of Arcanum. For some odd reason I’ve gotten the urge to replay it but my second disk is buggered. How would I go about getting a replacement disk these days?

It’s more of a meta-hobby. Gaming is the hobby, collecting the receipts was just something I did as a sideline. I figured I would write them all down in a spreadsheet someday and do some Koontzian analysis on the numbers.

So today I did!

More boring tidbits:

Of the > 250 games I’ve bought, about 200 of them are PC games, 20 are GameCube games, and 10 are DS titles. I’ve also had a Dreamcast, a PS2, an N64, and a GBA in the past. I only own three Wii titles and one XBox360 title (Lego Star Wars: Complete Saga)

It’s like when smokers start buying cigarettes by the carton, then when they start buying cases when they drive through indian reservations and military bases. If you’re going to keep the habit you may as well make it affordable.

Say, can you give us the distribution of number of games purchased by year?

Threads like this make me remember that my games collection is nowhere near normal. At last count, it’s around 700 games across PC, Mac, four handhelds and five consoles, purchased almost entirely within the last 8 years or so - the amount of time I’ve had a paying job. An entry-level, part-time, $10-13 an hour job (started at about $10, was $13 as of yesterday, my last day.). Granted, some of the games in that count are freeware. But not that many.

Obviously I didn’t pay $40-60 for the majority of those games. I can name only a handful of games that I can recall ever paying full price for - Warcraft III (CE), WoW (CE), MOO III (yeah, bleh), TOEE, Bioshock, Persona 3 (and FES, later), Digital Devil Saga 2, and just now, GTA IV.

A little late to the Half-Life party were we?

Aha! That was an anomaly. I had lost my copy of Half Life 1 and I wanted to play it again. I bought it as a jewel case only and when I got it home, there was no disc in the case! (Probably an employee theft.)

The good news was that the jewel case had the license key inside it so I was able to register it via Steam and download it.

Also, I looked at the games per year thing and the average turns out to be about 20 games per year. My records are definitely a bit spotty though. One year I bought 35 games although a lot of them were bargain titles.

Lightweight. I was buying 7-8 per month at one point. I’m afraid to start into the next gen because my kids will need to go to college someday.

Neat little experiment you did here. Kinda makes me wish I had all the receipts from all the games I’ve bought over the years. Now just think of all the other cool stuff you could’ve bought with 25 grand! :P

Act fast, and I’ll even throw in the box of Verbatims. (They’re full of shareware games.)

At first I was like, “only 250? HA!” then I came to my senses.

There was a thread on NeoGAF recently and it was like, “how many games have you bought this generation” and people were like, “150” or “80” - numbers like that, absolutely enormous crazy numbers of games in 2-3 years. I have owned maybe 17 or 18 360 games, 8 PS3 games, and I think that’s way too many.

So yea, there’s buying games, and BUYING games. And I think the people that BUY games don’t actually play them.