Acquisitions – Waterloo Video Game Swap, Fall 2015

A few months back I shared my experiences at past iterations of the Waterloo Video Game Swap, North America’s largest game swap event. That wonderful time of year has come round again and my collection got just a little bit bigger again.

I’ve stated my approach to collecting retro video games before – I like to go to an event or store with a particular focus and go from there. My library is pretty general compared to others; I don’t (yet) hunt for 100% complete packages, or for obscure consoles, so an event such as WVGS is open season for me. Loose cartridges abound, all kinds of rarities and oddities are available, and prices are negotiable, if not already exceptional. I could, funds provided, walk out with a stack of titles as tall as me and still have left things behind, so having a goal keeps me in line. 

I didn’t have much of a goal this time around, however. You could say moderation was my goal. After scouring the room a couple times (which could be compared to salmon swimming upstream), I set my eyes on Mario Kart: Double Dash (GCN), as I found it at three vendors for the best price I’ve seen for it, $40.

  
I missed this one when it first came out, for no real reason, and have been told repeatedly since that it’s the best in the franchise. Since I started filling out my once-embarrassing GameCube library, I’ve had my eye out for it. So, holes in the collection and in my gaming experience filled, two birds with one disc.

I have to admit, however, that there were fewer temptations for me this time. This is my fourth Swap and the first time I made my purchase decision so quickly. Afterwards I continued sweeping the tables for other gems (a couple of which I acted too slowly on), but I could have left after forty minutes.

Another goal I had was to trade a Bowser Jr Amiibo for something I’d prefer. Rosalina was the top of that list, but that was perhaps the only rare Amiibo I didn’t see there. Ultimately no one took me up on it, though I did nearly swap it for Shulk. My only other purchase was a couple stickers to swag out my rather plain-looking New 3DS.

  
It’s important for collectors to be able to show restraint. I could have splurged on some other titles, sure, but opted not to push the budget. If those extras weren’t high-priority gaps in my library or things I want to play in the short future, it’s just gratuitous.

Above and beyond the purchases, the event itself is so fun to attend. The chatter is entertaining, there are so many cool items to look at.

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Acquisitions – Waterloo Video Game Swap, Spring 2015

Twice a year, the Video Game Collectors Community (VGCC) hosts the biggest game swap meet in North America in Waterloo, succinctly calling it the Waterloo Video Game Swap. I found out about it last winter and have attended all three shows since then. Each has been a gold mine of great rare gems from some pretty awesome vendors and I’ve had to make my selections very carefully to avoid digging a very big hole.

Last weekend was the first meet of the year. Before I share my acquisitions, I thought I’d show off what I got from the first two I attended.

Spring 2014

This was a tough decision – I missed an opportunity to get Einhänder (PSX), but added this gem instead. I was a bit of a kid in a candy store, finding every game on my wishlist at the time.

Autumn 2014

I went in with the goal of filling in some gaps in my GameCube library, but when one finds an FFIV cartridge for $40, plans change.

Spring 2015

Last week’s show was the biggest yet, with way more vendors and other collectors than ever before. (Unfortunately it was crammed into the same hall and exploring the wares was really difficult in the sea of humanity.) For once I didn’t have a clear set of priorities. I like to approach these things with some sort of ranking to help me narrow my search and limit my spending. Seeing Crystal Chronicles at a couple tables made my mind up – especially for $20, when the only place I’ve found it in my town recently jacked its price to $100. Metroid II, however, has been on my radar for some time, as the last main Metroid game I’m missing (excluding the DS games).