How To Game On A Budget


I’m an avid gamer and I love playing video games. I just never have enough money. Console games releasing nowadays start upwards of  $60! That’s like an entire trip to the grocery store for me. Then, you buy these brand new games and they last you about 10-12 hours and that’s it. You just wasted over $60 on a game you probably won’t play again. So how do you get out of this vicious cycle of consumerism and finally get to enjoy your favorite games on the cheap? Follow these steps and you’ll be on your way to a bigger wallet and a much happier gaming experience.

Rule #1: (Almost) Never Buy A Game on Release Day

Never buy a game on its Day 1 release day. Ever. There are very few exceptions to this rule. Things like Pokemon never really go down in price due to their collection value. Almost every other game will drop in price, I promise you. If you wait a few months, you can buy the game on eBay or second hand for a percentage of the price. If you have a machine powerful enough, and the game was multiplatform, you can probably buy it on Steam for upwards of 25% off. I waited about 10-12 months and bought “Borderlands 2” and all of its DLC on Steam for about $15. I know people who shelled out $90 for all that crap and never even touch the game anymore. Games nowadays don’t last long enough to buy at a Day 1 price anyway. Another tip? Don’t buy from GameStop. Ever. They will almost always try and rip you off. Check eBay and Amazon and I’m sure that you’ll find the games at a much cheaper price.

Rule #2: Play Older Games on Older Consoles

You’ve got a PS2, a Wii, and an original Xbox. Did you know that games came out for those too? You did? So why aren’t you still buying them?! I’m sure that there are a myriad of games for the older consoles that you’ve seen, but never really got a chance to play. Well, now’s your chance! There are so many hidden gems on these consoles that cost next to nothing! I bought 5 games for my PS2 for $10 on Amazon. 5 full games for $10! If you bought 5 games that were released today, it’d be well over $300.

Rule #3: Get Rid of Your Backlog

That’s right. I called you out. We’re all gamers here and I know there are an entire handful of games, probably more, that you haven’t finished or haven’t even touched yet. Well, play them. What’s the harm? You’ve already purchased them, might as well play them. If you don’t like it after an hour, move on to the next game. That should keep you occupied until you feel you can afford one of the newer games.

Rule #4: Stop Buying Yearly Released Titles

I’m just gonna say it; you have to stop buying this yearly release crap. Madden, Call of Duty, Assassin’s Creed, all of them. Just stop buying them. At the very least, just wait until the next installment comes out, and then buy the previous one. You will get it for much, much cheaper. I’ve seen “Call of Duty: Black Ops 2”  brand new and sealed for $10 a year after its released. Most of these games barely improve on anything after one installment. The reason they can keep shelling out these games so quickly is because they use the same everything over and over until they get called out on it. Besides, we need to stop funding these games for a whole other reason. But that’s a different article for a different day.

Rule #5: Game on your PC

If you have a powerful enough PC, you can play most of the great games you used to play. With an emulator and a few ROMs, you can play basically any game ever. However, I’m not advocating piracy here. You’re legally only allowed to download games you have previously owned. No one’s stopping you from downloading others, though. Except for the cops, Hollywood, and the government. Watch out for them. If you do decide to start gaming on your PC, I strongly recommend downloading Steam. They always have games on sale, even newly released titles. I haven’t bought a game at full price in 4-5 years, and it feels freaking great. I have a library of over 200 games and they’ve all been around $5-20 each. All of these games are very affordable and have given me years of enjoyment. “Team Fortress 2” is a great alternative to “CoD” and “Halo“, and it’s free. If you’re a more serious MLG pro gamer, try “Counter Strike: Source“. The regular multiplayer is fantastic, and there are so many servers with fun minigames that you can play on. Plus, the game is almost always on sale for about $5. I’ve been playing the game for two years and haven’t really gotten tired of it.

I urge you guys to shop smart when on the lookout for video games. Not only will you be helping your wallet, you’ll be broadening your horizons of even better titles that you might not have heard of before. Use the $60 you were gonna use on that new “Call of Duty” game that’ll last you about a month on 12 Ps2 games that could last you well over a year. I hope this helped you! If you have any questions or other suggestions, leave them in the comments below!