Gaming on a budget.

Bartuc08

Mostly known as Zomby Jezuz
We all love games, that's why most of us are here, but how often do we find ourselves debating which game to buy on release? Until recently I've always been big on buying new and on the release date, but this began to get rather costly after a while, especially with the increase of new games coming out. To rectify this I began to make rules to my purchasing, and the results are amazing. With some strict budget placements and a bit of discipline you can enjoy gaming and still have enough money to feed yourself.

Rule 1. Never buy new.
A game is a lot like a new car, once it's been taken out for a spin it's value drops drastically, this does not mean the game is broken however. Used games might have scuffed cases or torn pages, but when it comes down to it how many of you really hold onto the cases and booklets in the long run?

Rule 2. Read Reviews.
Nothing is worse then reading about this amazing new title only to buy it and find out that most the reviews were paid off. Don't trust the box, everything on the box is there to sell the product. Find reviews online by both critics and players, read the best and the worst. Wait a couple weeks and check for new reviews, as hype wears off the reviews could change.

Rule 3. Compare Prices.
This applies to buying new (if you choose to do so) and used. When you decide that you absolutely need a specific title check various retailers. Local dealers may have deals on buying used games, online stores might have a cut price with the added cost of S+H. Steam might be having a sale on specific titles or perhaps some one is selling their used game on Craigslist. It doesn't hurt to take 30 minutes out of your schedule to save yourself some money.

Rule 4. Have Patience
This is a big one. As stated, a lot can change in a week or two, this gives you time to see what others think of the game and if it's worth picking up or not.

Rule 5. Never pre-order.
When you Pre-order you break all the above rules in one go. You've more then likely paid an inflated price for a product you have no idea of. Most pre-orders come with a special deal, usually a weapon or a free DLC, is this worth it to you?

If this is too much for you to read then just remember this, patience and research. The average person will probably never complete more then half of the games he purchases, is a third of a game worth $60 to you?
 

Monsterous

In the Shadows, Lurking.
The problem with buying used games, is that the developers dont get any of the money from it.
 

Bartuc08

Mostly known as Zomby Jezuz
The problem with buying used games, is that the developers dont get any of the money from it.
True, but this is about how to save yourself money. I'm sure that the developers have ways to ensure that they still make money.
 

Wiseman_2

Missy wants blood!
Comparing prices is probably the most important point there for me, especially when buying new (sometimes I'm unhelpfully impatient). Recently, I picked up Resistance 3 new (this was necessary as Sony started doing the online pass thingamajig, so you either buy new or buy the multiplayer code at a later date), but the price at my usual store was £43.99, so I checked around and next door had it for £39.99. Not a great saving, but when you bring into account the fact that it came with a *free* Battle: LA Blu-Ray worth £20, it seriously sweetened the deal. The movie's crap, sure, but I sold it on eBay for £15 so for the roundabout sum of £25 I got a shiny new game.

To the point: check for bonus deals and extras when buying new, especially if said extras can be sold on.
 

Syndrome

You can change this now in User CP.
Sad part is that most games on the PC nowadays are sold along with a CD-Key, which means there's no likelihood of being able to buy a game 'used'.
 

Bartuc08

Mostly known as Zomby Jezuz
Sad part is that most games on the PC nowadays are sold along with a CD-Key, which means there's no likelihood of being able to buy a game 'used'.
True, but generally PC games are cheaper than console to begin with. But CD keys are not required for console games. Correct me if I'm wrong, but most PC games can play single player and require a CD key for online play.
 

Jedimindtrixxx

┻━┻ ︵ ¯\(ツ)/¯ ︵ ┻━┻
But CD keys are not required for console games.
After EA's VIP code shenanigans for Bad Company 2, i feel like this is going to change... :(
 

ElderKingpin

Post in the anime section, or die.
but generally PC games are cheaper than console to begin with

I dont think thats true, i think PC games are priced maybe 5-10$ cheaper, all things considering, you can probably be a PC gamer for life and not have paid a penny
 

Varine

And as the moon rises, we shall prepare for war
True, but this is about how to save yourself money. I'm sure that the developers have ways to ensure that they still make money.
Making a new game and hoping you buy that one.

Typically a key is required to install regardless of whether or not it's online or offline. It's just verified online. Games now have a lot more security though, as a CD key alone isn't very hard to break. You find games that require a key and subsequent activation, protected sectors so that if it's not activated you'll get stuck somewhere in the game anyway (like a door won't open or something), limited installations from one disk, a CD key that's used to get an activation code, required Internet connections at time of installation, etc.

And it's somewhat unlikely console games with have CD keys required. You can do whatever you want with PC games, but consoles are proprietary and a lot harder to pirate games for.
 

sqrage

Mega Super Ultra Cool Member
Sad part is that most games on the PC nowadays are sold along with a CD-Key, which means there's no likelihood of being able to buy a game 'used'.
They can pass along the cd key. If it's tied to an account, then you should make separate accounts that you're willing to give away with the game if you plan on selling used.
 

Bloodcount

Starcraft II Moderator
It was an interesting read, I preorder only Blizzard RTS games, they are always the best in the genre so there is no chance that they will suck to begin with. ^__^
 

Varine

And as the moon rises, we shall prepare for war
They can pass along the cd key. If it's tied to an account, then you should make separate accounts that you're willing to give away with the game if you plan on selling used.
PC games are rarely resold except by private party, and even then it's iffy just because if they have decent security systems on it, the CD key won't work. In some cases it's actually against the EULA, as the game itself is tied to your name via registration, which most games prompt you to do. I don't know many stores that buy them, only ever seen a few small businesses that will, and mostly that's only single player games they'll buy if the game doesn't have a required registration. But with new DRM's, there are limits on how many times you can install it (I believe Mass Effect and the second Chronicles of Riddick are most notable that use install limits). Typically it's like three, then you have to inform the company that you're uninstalling it, and they might even have a system to inform them if the game was actually uninstalled. Then there are disk protection services, I forget the name of the one I wanted to mention, but they require you to call, the disk is copy protected and has several layers of sector protection that are ciphered or something, which is undone at runtime. The disk protection industry is certainly getting pretty big pretty fast.

Consoles, of course, have their own systems in place. Like the Xbox requires modified firmware to play back up copies of games (or, more likely, pirated, as I don't know anyone who makes backups of console games, considering you can't use them anyway), which is detectable on XBL and will ban your console if changes are made to it.
 

PureOwnage

Minecraft Server OP, Inactive.
Personally, I just wait until the Steam Summer Sale, or look at the daily/weekend deals on Steam.
 
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