How do you prioritize your retro purchases?

With the rise of retro compilations, I’ve decided to focus a lot of my cash on games not available legitimately or ones that are but have horrible emulation.

For example, I was looking for the NES Capcom games, but Digital Eclipse came out a really great collection of a good portion of them, including two very expensive sequels–Ducktales 2 and Chip and Dale’s Rescue Ranger 2. I would’ve loved them on the Switch, but alas. I also heard the collection didn’t sell well, so I doubt it will be ported.

Capcom also did a two other arcade perfect collections, the Beat Up Em Bundle and the 30th Anniversary Street Fighter Collection. Both collections saved me hundreds of dollars.

Speaking of the Switch, there are also many great retro games coming out there as well. Another of my grails, Ninja Warriors Again, is getting a remake of sorts, similar to Wild Guns. NWA (lol) is very expensive, but now I can cross it off my list, especially since the Wild Guns treatment was also rather great.

I do have exceptions, some games are more sentimental so I want them physically in their original release, but those are a rare.

How do you prioritize your retro purchases?

I add things to my watch list or shopping cart (eBay or Amazon) and occasionally pare it down by removing items I’ve changed my mind about, or buying the item that’s been there longest. At that point, I know for sure I want it. Survival of the fittest!

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I’ve been trying to pick 1-2 systems and explore those in more depth. Lately, I’ve realized that my collecting is spread out across way too many platforms and it’s leading to a negative outlook and poor purchase decisions.

This is exactly me. It’s tough…even worse when it’s split between different consoles and different handhelds.

I prioritise hardware these days, anything that can enhance what I already have: wireless controllers, packapunch cables, modding parts, SD card solutions and so on. I upgraded my ageing Everdrive MD with a Mega Everdrive X7 already this year but the biggest purchases by far will be a Satiator and a DCHDMI.

Another big priority is books, more specifically anything Sega related as well as 8/16bit Nintendo. I backed 3 Sega book Kickstarters last year and I am really looking forward to finally getting them!

My browser is a mess of tabs, amongst them are a bunch of eBay searches. When I try to minimise the clutter I have to consider what to do with those searches, and I often end up buying the most affordable item currently available, so I can close the tab. I’m weak.

This sounds like me!

Alternatively, sometimes when my tabs reach critical mass, I’ll open up a new window, close the old one, and whatever I remember having in my old window is what I’ll pull back up in the new one. If I don’t remember looking at/wanting something, I must not have wanted it that much!

But right now most of my retro buying is on hold. We are trying to save as much money as we can here so emulation has been a life-saver.

Has the price been announced for the Satiator? Or a ballpark?

I almost never buy retro games these days unless it’s something I absolutely have to get that I never knew about previously. Or it’s some holy grail type item I’ve always coveted. Or it’s something so cheap (under 15 bucks) that I’m willing to risk that looks cool.

I always try to grab the North American version on original hardware where possible. If not, I’ll opt for a Japanese version or a modern day release/port.

At this point, I find I have enough video games to last me and am not really looking to expand my collection with very significant purchases though.

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Last year was all about hardware. Now that I have almost of all the retro hardware I want it’s simple. If the game is a SHMUP it gets prioritized. I pick up the newer releases at or close to launch as they almost never go down in price and save up for the older more expensive ones. The rest of the games I borrow from two local libraries. I’ve already been able to afford some nice retro SHMUPS using these guidelines.

I’ve taken a bit of a step back in 2019 myself. I bought a ton of stuff in 2018 so I really want to explore all that before I buy more. That said, when I run across something unique or cool, I will still pick it up.

If/when eBay starts offering some discounts again, that will also bring me back in for some things. I’m actually looking at Neo Geo CD mostly right now.

I am trying to slow down really, i own hundreds of more or less unplayed games, and im getting less and less time to play them unfortunately. Still somehow ended up with a recapped Game Gear with vga out just two weeks ago - and Rockman 2 for Famicom. But those are my only two purchases this year.

Oh, forgot about Truxton. Three purchased this year then!

This is an interesting question!

I have lists upon lists of retro games i want, but for the most part it’s just so I can keep them in mind. I live around shops that don’t have enormous amounts of stock I want, but they get new stuff in occasionally. So I like to visit fairly often and see if anything I want has come in. If the price is right, i’ll pick it up. I’m happy to buy loose carts (but not loose CDs!) although i prefer a nice box and manual if it’s not much more. For my favourites i like to have the box and manual, but i’m pretty selective about what is a favourite i think.

Every now and then I find something that isn’t really on my list but it’s so cheap I may as well get it. Or something that I thought i’d never find. Those kind of purchases become memorable I think.

Although I enjoy visiting the bigger stores that have lots of (usually more expensive) items, it tends to overwhelm me. I’ll find a stack of things I really want, but the price being what it is, i’m not likely to get 4 or 5 of them at a time (as I would if they were really cheap finds). It’s the same with online auctions. What do you buy when you could basically buy anything you want, instantly? I don’t want to fall into the trap of buying things i want just one after another. So I usually only buy from big shops or auctions when i’ve become fed up at not finding something locally, and when I’ve decided I really want to play that game right now. When I buy a bunch of cheap games, often they’ll sit on my shelf for months before i even try them out, but i’m ok with that. When i buy an expensive retro game, i want to play it right away, as if it had just come out.

I should point out, it’s only due to the existence of so many cheap retro games that i’d classify some retro games as expensive. For me, expensive means at or around the original price, and that’s something i’m happy to pay if I really want it. I don’t really consider buying stuff that has gone significantly higher than when it released. Particularly if i know it’s not even a good game!

When it comes to retro compilations, I will usually opt for the original if it’s reasonably priced. Sometimes I get swayed by a nicer box art on a re-release though! It can depend on system/controller or display preference/availability too. ie, recently I picked up Gradius Gaiden on PS1, instead of the much better value collection on PSP. I also find with collections, that I tend not to play everything as much as if i got them individually at separate times. They’re certainly nice to have, and convenient to play. But they can feel a little cheap in my mind for some reason.

Sometimes I even prefer to get the original over full remakes. Most recently i picked up Crash Bandicoot 2 & 3… still need 1! I’m not so attached to those games that I really need the enhanced presentation of the remake, when they still play fine as is. And i’d kind of prefer to remember them as they were; Impressive PS1 showcases, iconic character… it’s just not the same these days, when everything has amazing graphics, and Crash isn’t as big of a deal.

For my favourite games, i’ll often end up with both old and new versions. Original and compilation releases… In a few questionable cases, different region versions lol. Most of the time i prefer to play on the version that’s most memorable to me. Like SNES SF2 just seems right even though I have much better versions of it now.

I think the stuff like Wild Guns, Sega 3D Classics and M2 Shot Triggers are my favourite of the retro releases atm. Those original games are mostly unobtainable or undesirable in their original form, for one reason or another, and to have them come back and the same but upgraded is wonderful. Those are pretty high priority for me. When it’s stuff I never played originally, i’m happy to play these on newer systems at greatly reduced cost!

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