I am a 36 year old gamer and I have now been playing video games for over 30 years! Yes, I am fully aware that I am old!
Anyway, I have a couple of local game stores that sell retro games and I was in one yesterday and noticed how much prices have dropped. The owner went on to tell me that it is a trend that he has noticed for a while. Certain games will always keep their value and even increase, but the days of getting 10 bucks for a random NES game appear to be coming to an end.
I for one am very glad. I started hardcore collecting well over a decade ago and back then you could pick up common NES, SNES, Sega and everything pretty cheap. However, I noticed that in the last 3 or so years, pricing has crept up and when a person finds their old NES in the attic, they think that their copies of Mario 3, Spy Hunter and WrestleMania are worth 20 bucks each!
While the prices may not have dropped to what I was paying back in 2003, they have certainly come down. I think that a huge reason for this is the way it is so easy for people to experience retro games now. You can play them on your phone, some kind of PI device and of course on things like the NES, SNES and Mega Drive mini. There are a million ways to play these old games and for this current generation of gamer, who has no nostalgia towards these games, they are content with not having the actual game.
On the flip side of this, people my age who have been collecting for a while most likely have the games that they really want. I know in my case I do! Sure there are a few holy grail games, but all us collectors have them. I am talking general games, the days of me just buying any random Mega Drive or SNES game are long gone (unless they are dirt cheap, like a buck!) instead I am much more picky with what I buy.
I think this is something many other older collectors are experiencing now. Not just that, but there is also the issue of storing all your games too! We all have only so much space and right now, space is the most valuable commodity in my game room as I am near maxed out for what I can have out on display. Also, I think that retro collecting is not as “cool” as it was a few years ago. Younger gamers have moved onto other things.
The retro gaming bubble was always going to burst, but I think burst may be the wrong word and instead, it is like it is deflating slowly. I can tell you that for me personally, it seems like it is much easier to find a deal now than it was a year or two ago.
I would love to know what you guys think. Do you think the retro gaming bubble has burst? Are you a collector and now content with what you have? Or in your area are prices still insanely high?