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Current Vintage Gaming Market Analysis Discussion


RH

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I'm pretty sure most of us don't buy games as investments, excluding the potential deal on trade fodder, super-low priced items at thrift shops and garage sales or maybe an item or two you have a really good gut-feel will increase in value a lot in the next 5-10 years.  That behavior's not below me but as a whole, I don't see this as an "investment".  It's a hobby that involves searching, hunting, haggling and collecting items for what amounts to a personal game "museum".

But regardless of the reasons why you or I may collect games, generally speaking, if we keep this up year over year, we need to pay attention to the markets because prudent market watch can allow you to find and acquire more of what you want, due to timing.  I've noticed in the past 4-6 months a pretty noticeable trend, and I'd like to hear you guys thoughts and inputs.

First, in general, game collecting seems to be cooling off a bit.  At least, if you look at the trend lines of common games or system averages.  We've reached our spike, at least for now, and prices are going down.  As a collector, I like this.  This is a good thing because my backlog of items I want never seems to shrink.

HOWEVER, I've also noticed that items the heavies for any given system seem to be trending up, but only slightly.  You can go to just about any system and see this. The average prices are dropping, but the prices for the top 5-10 games is still climbing.  There's also a trend of those items that I'd call "high-end uncommons".  These are the ones that are in the top 5-10% range of the more expensive carts and these seem to have the most accelerated prices while everything below a general threshold is getting cheaper.  The lower end stuff is getting so much cheaper that it's suppressing the trend lines for the entire, given system you're looking at.

What this means is that the market for more expensive items has not cooled.  Lower end items are basically being dumped and the mid-tier stuff seeing the biggest price spikes, well, I guess that's the speculators trying to gobble-up the "next big thing", completely based off of placement on pricing charts.

But what does this mean, or what you are your thoughts?  Do you agree with me?  Are people still trying to collect as an investment across the entire spectrum of collectible options?  We all agree the economy is horrible, inflation is insane and I think many, many people are struggling to have excessive expendable income. I often wonder who's buying games and why.

Anyway, what do you guys think?  Generally speaking, what's the mood of the market and what's motivating them to buy and sell?

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Well as seasoned (and salty) as I can get about this, I still keep track as to not fall out of the loop, but largely I focus on the fewer systems I have to buy local domestically 95% of the time, largely it's the imports I still use the internet for so I really keep track on that, research, and not just prices and trends but just quality.  Quality because the money is second to something I just want to actually use.  I've seen as I was winding down over the tax changes, then my habit changes, what you're seeing, a cooling, and not falling off the raining money stimulus stupidity, that's done, but I think we're seeing a split.  You'll have the die hardsw ho have to have, and it's fewer, and those fed up with this toxic environment and looking to FPGA cores, pi solutions, android this n that, even now iOS emulation too(Delta etc), and traditional computer emulation and roms.  Even now mobile browsers are solidly good enough to run enough games on a webpage over a mobile network.

The idea is so much choices exist now, and all but one are the abusive step parent who pulls the step mother cinderella routine with the games where you take a beating fighting for the scraps.  I've seen what you're saying it's slowly melting back towards an earlier time when the well known common good to common dumpster fires are falling off, and the true heavies due to low production whether licensed or not are staying up, if not slightly ticking higher.  It all seemed scammy to me when the best well known rares on the NES side of things were falling at a fraction of some entombed copy of SMB or SM64 which screamed unsustainable ponzi scheme or something of the sort to me.  Reel in the suckers, have them on the hook to get more suckers, to get them on the hook to justify your asinine price you paid making them eat it too and that can't last.

All the terrible behaviors changed my habits as I said.  I've gone deep import, and even on those, due to some moderate western greed and infiltration has ticked up some prices, largely the heavies.  What was once $100 for Lickle vs $1000 for Samson is now a few hundred bucks on that game because of western manipulation.  Most of it though isn't up, or at least not up in an outrageous level beyond the value of the original price or dollar/yen.  I've grown a very solid good set of Famicom and a few famiclone carts too because of it all.  All the while offloading all my SNK (but MVS), Sony(all), Gamecube, and a number of other things too fed up with it all.  And in peddling those away I looked to sell at the beater side of pricing on most of it to cut people a break, and they went fairly quick with appreciation.  The appreciation isn't all assumed, I'd get messages on ebay, elsewhere, in person and the sentiement was the same -- fed up with the bs.  If it's an honest tiny snippet of reality, in that case, the push back is finally happening and you'll see a slowly burning correction.

 

I think some are trying to buy as investments, idiot resellers who are in denial of reality of the slippage, to the foolish types like 'the dentist' buying up those sealed if not entombed/graded things like they can slow burn that into some gains like fine art collecting.  But the average joe probably just wants to experience a fun game, and will take a pasting to a point, but that point is falling back then going up except on the highly uncommon to rare to ultra rare stuff -- that'll stay up and just suck, price of entry.  With the self inflicted inflation antics of the last couple of years now in full force, that's another one... do you stupidly blow $25 on Zelda NES now as easily as 4 years ago when the price of food is up 33%?  Only if you're stupid, rich, or both.

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Posted (edited)

I glossed over your book.

Heavies are trending up.

Mid/low tier games are staying level/slightly declining.

That's what I notice. Pretty sure that's basically what you said....🤔

I'm hoping/thinking this trend will continue. Likely until our generation "stops caring". It gets much deeper than that... but, kinda depends on what our generation does.

Seemingly we are taking this into our 40's-60's.... 🤷‍♂️ So that's another ~20 years of incline....

There's some BS that went on with the sealed/graded games that hurt the "sanctity" of the market I feel. But I don't pay attention to the sealed/graded "market" as much so I'm not sure how it affected prices long term. ....

Edited by AirVillain
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22 minutes ago, AirVillain said:

I glossed over your book.

Heavies are trending up.

Mid/low tier games are staying level/slightly declining.

That's what I notice. Pretty sure that's basically what you said....🤔

I'm hoping/thinking this trend will continue. Likely until our generation "stops caring". It gets much deeper than that... but, kinda depends on what our generation does.

Seemingly we are taking this into our 40's-60's.... 🤷‍♂️ So that's another ~20 years of incline....

There's some BS that went on with the sealed/graded games that hurt the "sanctity" of the market I feel. But I don't pay attention to the sealed/graded "market" as much so I'm not sure how it affected prices long term. ....

The kids these days get really upset about sealed games and the effect that all has on the overall game collecting market.  But collectors have been shitting on sealed games and bitching about prices since these guys were in grade school.  Them damn “speed collectors” driving up prices. I try my best to use my collection to fund my collecting so I feel like rising prices have not really bothered my collecting that much, it’s just changed how I’m going about it and probably for the better actually.  Sell that thing I got a sweet deal on years ago to buy this new deal I’ve found?  Sounds like I just doubled my deal.   The thing killing me out there is the price of everything else.  eBay fees and increased postage are a nightmare.  About to refuse to ship anything west of Illinois.

I really take issue with PS5 “collectors” and Switch too.  These guys out there speculating on current gen shit. Lol wtf.  Modern collecting is a hellscape of collectors editions and bundles anyways. Those things were a scam even before people were trying to guess which ones will 10x.  I would really like to see them all get burned and stuck with their shitty post-media attention beanie babies.

I’m fairly certain I did not actually answer the question.

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Yeah, special editions and such are things I never touch.  The only ones I was ever remotely interested in were the Octopath Traveler set because I was super-intrigued with that game before it launched, and I hunted down some of the feelies for the initial release of Axiom Verge. I found out about that game probably 1-2 years after it's release and it's definitely my personal favorite indie title I've played so far.

But that mass release of "special editions" is almost a scourge on the whole collecting scene. I mean, if you truly, really like all of these little figures or maybe those mega, special editions like a copy of Halo with a Master Chief helmet, then that's cool.  But a bigger box with just an OST and some trading cards, just to get an extra $40-60 out of the buyer, well, I guess studios are free to make those options but I don't understand why anyone would buy them if it's a speculative thing.  That stuff was made after the concept of "game collecting" entered the general zeitgeist of the culture so even though you might have a 1 in 1,000 release of something, since there's 5 "special editions" coming out practically every week, it's not really that unique.

TL;DR Yeah, I agree.  Special editions are not worth collecting for future value.  Only buy them if you want and like them.  This stuff won't be worth more in the future and 99% of it, no one will care about in 20 years.

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I've noticed the same.  Lower prices on the midrange & low end is due to a combination of waning interest on the part of casuals with passing interest and present economical problems.  We're past the point of peak popularity/peak interest now and those who do not make up the hard core of gamers / collectors who's interest was more superficial have moved on.  Lately there seem to be more and more people online talking about how they just can't make it anymore economically.  The trend lines spoken of have taken a major dip and realistically would be even lower if it were not for artificial inflation; 10k 5-Screw Mega Man to name just one example.  

I'm sure there are those of us here who would like to be happily playing/collecting 8-bit Nintendo games when we reach our 80s but the real question is: "How long will the world last?"  And by world I mean the one we all grew up in where in spite of many imperfections, some of which are very great; things tend to work out relatively well for the vast brunt of the so called 1st world population like never before in history.  Think: Everybody eating.  Everybody with clothes on their back.  Few to none freezing to death.  Plenty of money and supplies available for those who are sufficiently driven to and capable of going after them.  And plenty of help available to those experiencing difficulty with the aforementioned things.  Above all, plenty of freedom (relatively speaking, within a relatively civil society which protects the weak) to do or not do as one sees fit.

But we are way WAY beyond the point of being able to make all of those things last, unperturbed.  It's my educated guess that the "trend line dip" we've seen just recently will slow from this point forward, perhaps plateau for a bit, but only until one of two things progressively begin to occur.  In the near future, depending where you are (hopefully), you will either see an increase in control over the population or, a substantial decrease.... most likely followed up with an increase.  You are not likely to see things remain as they are.  

If we see a change that for lack of a better way of putting it, amounts to a technological quantum leap in the near future (I think we will) that equals greater control in the form of yet-more-willing plebeians (if such a thing is possible.)  It goes with the territory.  And the flip side is that we may see pockets of external catastrophe arise in which case we get less control, followed by more enforced forms of control which will be against the wishes of many of the so called plebeians.  The former situation would include those who do not wish to take part as well however, (and maybe I should not hypothesize what happens to those people in that situation) strictly speaking, there would likely be nothing necessary to be done with those who dissent in that situation.  In the latter situation though, those who dissent to such enforced control would absolutely be seen as a problem and dealt with in some manor or other.  But I think I've digressed...

What were we talking about?  Oh yeah, Video Games.  Let's say, that in the near future something akin to the "Holodeck" (or perhaps something even more exotic) is invented.  First it's only available to the wealthy for a real pretty penny.  Then it gets set up so that the plebs can take part for 15 minute increments for the cost of a plebs small fortune.  Pretty soon it is common place and affordable and very, very few are still interested in screwing around with a silly 8-bit game.  Who wants that when you can be screwing your favorite hottie forwards, backwards and inside out on the Holodeck?  Silly game prices plummet.

The other scenario that finally deflates the bubble for good is the external catastrophe scenario.  A particular region or regions of people are hit with extraordinarily difficult times and little to no one can afford to maintain something as impractical as a video game collection.  Right next door is a region or regions of people still doing relatively well who can buy up what the less fortunate can no longer afford.  (For the moment I am overlooking the possibility of large numbers of games being physically destroyed.)

In either case the creme-de-la-creme of, let's say the NES library will continue to go up.  while everything else will trend down.  The cdlc continues to get nabbed up by the die-hards and the profiteers and the rest of the library has little to no where to go because the remaining die-hards already have it, the remaining profiteers can't profit substantially off of it and the casuals aren't or can't buy it anymore.

Since I'm focussing on NES here: I think we'll eventually see quite a few of the current top value games continue upward exponentially again (eventually), ultimately becoming untouchable (some already are) to the average Joe or Jane who's doing reasonably well, much like what happened with 2600 games a long time ago already.  There'll just be a lot more of them than there are on the 2600.

Anyone speculating on Switch or PS5 games better have a well stocked bunker that no one can touch and no one knows about (that would be the real trick) to hide their stash in for the next couple of decades.  But if someone can afford all that they likely don't need to profit off of a bunch of silly games.

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Short answer, it's pretty stagnant.  New collectors aren't coming in much but the core group of collectors is still mostly around, though some are selling off too.  I wouldn't expect a surge either way, things pretty much are what they are.  

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22 hours ago, RH said:

Yeah, special editions and such are things I never touch.  The only ones I was ever remotely interested in were the Octopath Traveler set because I was super-intrigued with that game before it launched, and I hunted down some of the feelies for the initial release of Axiom Verge. I found out about that game probably 1-2 years after it's release and it's definitely my personal favorite indie title I've played so far.

But that mass release of "special editions" is almost a scourge on the whole collecting scene. I mean, if you truly, really like all of these little figures or maybe those mega, special editions like a copy of Halo with a Master Chief helmet, then that's cool.  But a bigger box with just an OST and some trading cards, just to get an extra $40-60 out of the buyer, well, I guess studios are free to make those options but I don't understand why anyone would buy them if it's a speculative thing.  That stuff was made after the concept of "game collecting" entered the general zeitgeist of the culture so even though you might have a 1 in 1,000 release of something, since there's 5 "special editions" coming out practically every week, it's not really that unique.

TL;DR Yeah, I agree.  Special editions are not worth collecting for future value.  Only buy them if you want and like them.  This stuff won't be worth more in the future and 99% of it, no one will care about in 20 years.

But what about THESE:

https://limitedrungames.com/collections/tomb-raider-i-iii-remastered/products/tomb-raider-i-iii-remastered-collectors-edition-switch

I'm going to buy two for each system. One to open, and one to stay sealed, of course.

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On 5/30/2024 at 7:40 AM, RH said:

But what does this mean, or what you are your thoughts?  Do you agree with me?  Are people still trying to collect as an investment across the entire spectrum of collectible options?  We all agree the economy is horrible, inflation is insane and I think many, many people are struggling to have excessive expendable income. I often wonder who's buying games and why.

We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behavior.” -Stephen Covey 


I've always disagreed with this sentiment of "investors" and collectables being "investments."  The reality was, collecting was exploding in popularity in 2010s, as those that grew up with the NES were hitting their 30s, getting nostalgic, and had decent jobs. The pricing explosion was simply due to demand far outstripping supply, and the reality that we faced was that a game we might have wanted was $60, but if we didn't act, it'd be $120 next month. Collector FOMO played a far bigger role than some mythical "investor class," which outside the WATA folks just doesn't exist. People would talk a TON about values, and it made them look like investors, but the truth was everyone was just desperate to stay ahead of the curve so they didn't get priced out of the market. Hence, the "investor class" boogey man was born, and persists to this day. 


Collecting in itself is a "wasteful" expenditure. A $60 game could have bought 12 subway footlongs back in the day. The cope that a lot of collectors go through when spending lots of money on what amounts to toys is "I can always sell for more later!" Which, of course, also makes them look like investors. That's not because they want to make money off the collectable, it's because they want to internally justify spending hard-earned money. The idea you can recoup your costs is a powerful panacea, and makes it far easier to spend absurd money on a video game that could be easily emulated. 

So, now, the economy sucks because corporations are gaining record profits, while putting 3 Doritos in a normal sized bag and selling it for $5.99. People don't have as much money to spend on games, so they might be doing the "investor" thing to make sure their money is able to be recouped if they need 3 Doritos. But, the game hasn't changed. People are still just trying to make whatever expendable income they have go as far as possible to get the treasures they want. 
 

To wrap this up, internally we tell ourselves "We are buying the games we want to own and trying to get them for a good price, and we can sell them later for possibly even more!" but externally, when we see others behave the same way, they're dirty investors trying to make a buck off the hobby. 

 

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Posted (edited)

I wouldn’t know. I mostly just need mid to heavy titles now and stopped buying used games last year because of stupid prices. I am happy getting Limited Run and retro-bit rereleases instead of original  games that got too expensive.
 

Now I just collect 80s/90s prism stickers since they are relatively cheap and you can still find deals on lots although even with the prisms I can see the speculators are starting to encroach into the hobby and people are starting to get stuff graded.

If games are on a downward trend, that’s good news to me, maybe us collector types will be able to start buying again 

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9 hours ago, DarkKobold said:

We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behavior.” -Stephen Covey 


I've always disagreed with this sentiment of "investors" and collectables being "investments."  The reality was, collecting was exploding in popularity in 2010s, as those that grew up with the NES were hitting their 30s, getting nostalgic, and had decent jobs. The pricing explosion was simply due to demand far outstripping supply, and the reality that we faced was that a game we might have wanted was $60, but if we didn't act, it'd be $120 next month. Collector FOMO played a far bigger role than some mythical "investor class," which outside the WATA folks just doesn't exist. People would talk a TON about values, and it made them look like investors, but the truth was everyone was just desperate to stay ahead of the curve so they didn't get priced out of the market. Hence, the "investor class" boogey man was born, and persists to this day. 


Collecting in itself is a "wasteful" expenditure. A $60 game could have bought 12 subway footlongs back in the day. The cope that a lot of collectors go through when spending lots of money on what amounts to toys is "I can always sell for more later!" Which, of course, also makes them look like investors. That's not because they want to make money off the collectable, it's because they want to internally justify spending hard-earned money. The idea you can recoup your costs is a powerful panacea, and makes it far easier to spend absurd money on a video game that could be easily emulated. 

So, now, the economy sucks because corporations are gaining record profits, while putting 3 Doritos in a normal sized bag and selling it for $5.99. People don't have as much money to spend on games, so they might be doing the "investor" thing to make sure their money is able to be recouped if they need 3 Doritos. But, the game hasn't changed. People are still just trying to make whatever expendable income they have go as far as possible to get the treasures they want. 
 

To wrap this up, internally we tell ourselves "We are buying the games we want to own and trying to get them for a good price, and we can sell them later for possibly even more!" but externally, when we see others behave the same way, they're dirty investors trying to make a buck off the hobby. 

 

I can't completely agree with this. You can't tell me, for instance, that 99% of the people that got into beanie babies  weren't investors.  Game collecting has been going up for decades.  That's true, but with WATA-hype, paired with COVID bucks, and people dumping money into a burgeoning "market" in the mind of non-gamer collector types, there was a definitely an investment boom.

Now, there is a line to this--yes, I think people collected the stuff they enjoyed. Pokemon, Mario, Halo, etc. However, I think a large percentage of the people that jumped into the market did so because record, million-dollar sales started to make news stories on common news sites and people probably felt like getting into collecting games now is "ground level".  This lie feels especially true when you compare game collecting to more mature markets like ball cards and comics. The gaming market had a lot of room for growth so, why wouldn't you invest in it? (Or, so goes the arm-chair investment logic of Average Joe who's now old enough to have extra cash, but is starting to recall his childhood and "owning Mario 64".)

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31 minutes ago, RH said:

I can't completely agree with this. You can't tell me, for instance, that 99% of the people that got into beanie babies  weren't investors.  Game collecting has been going up for decades.  That's true, but with WATA-hype, paired with COVID bucks, and people dumping money into a burgeoning "market" in the mind of non-gamer collector types, there was a definitely an investment boom.

Now, there is a line to this--yes, I think people collected the stuff they enjoyed. Pokemon, Mario, Halo, etc. However, I think a large percentage of the people that jumped into the market did so because record, million-dollar sales started to make news stories on common news sites and people probably felt like getting into collecting games now is "ground level".  This lie feels especially true when you compare game collecting to more mature markets like ball cards and comics. The gaming market had a lot of room for growth so, why wouldn't you invest in it? (Or, so goes the arm-chair investment logic of Average Joe who's now old enough to have extra cash, but is starting to recall his childhood and "owning Mario 64".)

I agree that the collecting market was going up but it was definitely growing steadily to the point that games were really just keeping pace with the dollar. The huge boom we saw was part Covid and part investment FOMO. It really did seem like most of the new faces were only interested in having games graded though and as as Karl Jobst pointed out when the people who are getting involved that have no interest in the actual item and only have interest in making money, that’s the bubble. 

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Posted (edited)

I picked up tmnt 2 with manual for $21 shipped off of eBay recently. I started looking at NG 1 and 2 noticed they are getting as cheap as they can bee for eBay sellers and still turn a profit. You can’t really sell anything for less than $15 (and that’s if you got it for free) on eBay or you will lose money.

Edited by docile tapeworm
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2 hours ago, RH said:

I can't completely agree with this. You can't tell me, for instance, that 99% of the people that got into beanie babies  weren't investors.  Game collecting has been going up for decades.  That's true, but with WATA-hype, paired with COVID bucks, and people dumping money into a burgeoning "market" in the mind of non-gamer collector types, there was a definitely an investment boom.

Now, there is a line to this--yes, I think people collected the stuff they enjoyed. Pokemon, Mario, Halo, etc. However, I think a large percentage of the people that jumped into the market did so because record, million-dollar sales started to make news stories on common news sites and people probably felt like getting into collecting games now is "ground level".  This lie feels especially true when you compare game collecting to more mature markets like ball cards and comics. The gaming market had a lot of room for growth so, why wouldn't you invest in it? (Or, so goes the arm-chair investment logic of Average Joe who's now old enough to have extra cash, but is starting to recall his childhood and "owning Mario 64".)

 

Absolutely, 100% not on the Beanie Babies, unless you think dopamine has a good ROI. The reality is, collectors love to obtain things that we deem "special." People saw Peanut the Royal Blue Elephant was discontinued and selling for a lot of money. So, the thought process was "I can go down to Target when they open, buy a Beanie Baby for $5, and then it will be discontinued, and my Beanie Baby collection will be full of special, unique, and valuable Beanie Babies" and that feels good. It's why we brag when we score a $100 video game for $5 at a garage sale, even though we have no intention of selling, and instead let it collect dust for years. It's not worth $100, it's worth $-5 until we realize those gains. If we hold it until we die, our estate may just discard it, or sell it at a garage sale again for $1, making it a $-4 "investment." Beanie Babies died because they stopped feeling "special." Ty overproduced them, and it no longer felt like a score when you punched that grandma to get your Canyon the Cougar. People joked all the time about paying for their kids college with the Beanie Baby collection, but that was 110% cope. They wanted to buy things that made them feel good, and they internally and externally defended it by quoting values. The investment angle is a defense mechanism, not the actual reasoning. 

I want to note in my original post, I excluded the "WATA folk" i.e. the newcomers to the hobby just interested in sealed gaming. Buying 3 sealed games at $30k each is definitely an investment. Buying a CIB Super Mario 64 is not an investment, and if you are doing it for that reason, it's laughable. Here's why: 

Collectables are one of the absolute WORST investments. They are not liquid in any way, shape or form. If you try and sell your collection in bulk, you're typically offered 50% to 70% at most by resellers. That absolutely decimates years of growth. If you wanted to list your collection game-by-game on eBay, you're now committing a ton of time and personal sweat equity to realize any growth. Further, eBay takes 13% of your "investment" right off the top. No other forms of investment take such a huge cut into any growth. You could try selling on local classifieds or travel to conventions, but in my opinion, that triples the sweat equity. What is your time worth? 


You can (in theory) liquidate 3 WATA games pretty easily. Liquidating a collection of even 300 games is a massive undertaking. You hilariously see it on Facebook all the time. Someone with a sizeable collection trying to flip it for 80+% of the value, and getting no takers. A few people ask for individual items, but no one is buying that entire collection for 80% or more. 

In short: All the talk of games being investments (outside WATA) is just a way for us to all cope with stupid purchases. 

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Moderator · Posted

I’m a few months into selling my CIB collection. I’ve sold over 1000 games, most well over Pricecharting prices using BIN’s with no offers enabled. I average around 7 games sold per day, with around 1000 listed at any time.


Condition seems to be key, as demand for the great shape/near mint stuff is excellent, even at 2-3 times Pricecharting, even common games. Stuff in lesser shape has been stagnant. NES has the most demand, followed by SNES & GameCube with N64 having the least demand that I’ve seen. I’ve started to list my paper/guide collection stuff and those are moving better than I thought as of now as well. 

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On 6/2/2024 at 5:14 AM, jonebone said:

Short answer, it's pretty stagnant.  New collectors aren't coming in much but the core group of collectors is still mostly around, though some are selling off too.  I wouldn't expect a surge either way, things pretty much are what they are.  

This exactly.

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6 hours ago, docile tapeworm said:

I picked up tmnt 2 with manual for $21 shipped off of eBay recently. I started looking at NG 1 and 2 noticed they are getting as cheap as they can bee for eBay sellers and still turn a profit. You can’t really sell anything for less than $15 (and that’s if you got it for free) on eBay or you will lose money.

I’ve been finding a ton of deals like this lately, it’s been pretty encouraging as I keep trucking away to a NES set 

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Posted (edited)

Lots of back and forth discussion on price in here but you can really sum it up quite briefly.

When prices are going up, it's easy to be a collector.  Not easy to get everything you want (prices going up and getting priced out), but pretty easy to buy anything then sell it at a profit in a few months if you're bored of it.  It's easy to be part of the fad.

When prices are going down, people in it for the money shake out quick.  Speculators / investors drop off very quickly when they start losing money or get stuck holding games and watching values fall.  Demand drops rapidly which causes prices to drop even more and it's a cycle that keeps running itself.

We're now at a safe stagnant point.  Prices aren't really moving a ton either direction and demand is pretty flat.  The people who wanted out are gone and a lot of the core people will still buy a deal if they see one.  I suspect we'll be in this type of environment for awhile.

Edited by jonebone
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27 minutes ago, jonebone said:

Lots of back and forth discussion on price in here but you can really sum it up quite briefly.

When prices are going up, it's easy to be a collector.  Not easy to get everything you want (prices going up and getting priced out), but pretty easy to buy anything then sell it at a profit in a few months if you're bored of it.  It's easy to be part of the fad.

When prices are going down, people in it for the money shake out quick.  Speculators / investors drop off very quickly when they start losing money or get stuck holding games and watching values fall.  Demand drops rapidly which causes prices to drop even more and it's a cycle that keeps running itself.

We're now at a safe stagnant point.  Prices aren't really moving a ton either direction and demand is pretty flat.  The people who wanted out are gone and a lot of the core people will still buy a deal if they see one.  I suspect we'll be in this type of environment for awhile.

I think I agree. You guys are free to discuss however you want but specifically, I was wanting to see your opinions on the macro-side of the market. @jonebone's analysis is basically what I've expected.

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  • 2 weeks later...

There will always be interest with our generation in buying which is why we saw a huge spike in the early 2010s. The generation that grew up with this stuff was beginning to become more established and enough time had past to crave that nostalgia. There was still a healthy supply of games back then and I think that boosted the hobby and even created a fad once people realized that games were starting to increase quickly in price. Rare games and stuff that's in better than average condition will continue to rise as there is little to no supply. I see a lot of common carts and even uncommon but crap games go for a little bit cheaper these days from what I can tell with the little I look around.

The economy also plays a roll. The cost of living is through the roof right now so I could definitely see collecting cool overall from what it became over Covid. I still think covid and the whole grading scene was an anomaly and we're starting to see the results with the more recent auctions with a lot of the heavy hitters absolutely tanking compared to even a year or two ago. The graded/sealed market was probably a little undersold before covid, but the Mario 64 and a lot of the other high priced auctions will never be realized ever again in my opinion.

I personally started to sell because my interests have changed and I realize that I don't get the enjoyment out of my collection as a I once did. I still really enjoy it, but seeing games that I want to play sit for 10 years because there's just too many made me realize that I need to get rid of some of this stuff. Selling is an absolute pain in the ass these days though with fees and particularly the cost of shipping (it's absolutely ridiculous in Canada... $25-30 to ship a single game). I regret not selling at a faster pace over covid. I think the time is coming close for me to take a few weeks off and list everything I want to sell on eBay and let it ride.

 

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