Street Fighter II
Video Game Collecting
My name is Adam Blank, and I'm a recovering retro game collector.
I love looking at video game collections. I used to love collecting them myself, too. But it can be an expensive hobby. It takes up a lot of space (particularly if you do it like I did and try to collect everything at once). After a couple of years, I had amassed a decent little collection. I was having fun, but I was also spending more money than I should have been. And eventually I realized that I didn't even want to play most of the games I was buying. I love retro video games, but let's be honest; there's a lot of crappy games from back in the day.
After some deep soul searching, I decided to sell off most of my collection and move on to a new hobby. I was buying crappy video games I'd never heard of with money I could be spending on new games I wanted to play (or y'know, stuff like bills and food). I kept only my SNES and about a dozen of my favourite games. And once the virtual consoles and retro collection compilations started launching and becoming more readily available, I even got rid of my Super Nintendo. I was out, and I was ok with it.
I miss my game collection once and a while. Sometimes I even get the urge to jump back into the hobby, but I take one look at the prices people are asking for their NES games and their Sega Genesises (what's the plural of Genesis? Geneseye?), and it quickly goes away. Prices have exploded on retro gaming gear since I collected, and it's a rich man's game in 2019.
Prices are a lot higher than they were fifteen years ago, because the demand is there. I'm not sure why people are so hungry for these old games today, though. Is it because people just want to play the games from their childhood? Maybe they see pictures of collections posted online, think to themselves "that looks awesome" and try to do it themselves? Maybe it's just people thinking if they sock away old games they'll get rich off them in thirty years (you probably won't). For whatever reason, retro game collecting is a big-time hobby these days, and while I think prices are too high, I love it.
I don't have the money, space, or patience to collect video games anymore, but I still love the hobby. I could read and talk about it for hours. I have great memories of my collecting days, but if I was to start collecting again today, I'd take a different approach than I did right out of High School. My buddy Patrick is another former collector who feels the same way, and on this week's episode of the show we had a great time looking back on our days of blowing all of our money on video game cartridges, as opposed to the video game downloads we blow it on now.
We're going to try and do a few more of these conversation style episodes moving forward. If you like it, please let me know. If you hate it, REALLY let me know. I just want to make you happy.