5-Step Plan for the Frugal Gamer

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How to Save Money on Video Games

How to Save Money on Video Games

In many ways, gaming is a cost-effective form of entertainment. After all, a $20 game can provide you with hours worth of entertainment. When compared to a two-hour movie at the same price, that sounds like a bargain! But becoming a real gamer means investing in many games (some of which cost as much as $60 to $80) and many systems (ranging from $200 to $350). Suddenly the hobby doesn’t seem like such a bargain anymore. But have no fear! There are plenty of ways to keep costs down while still enjoying hours of fun:

Don’t be an early adopter. The price of systems and games go down significantly after the buzz generated from their initial release goes away, usually about six months or so later. So wait it out. It can be tough, but remember that you’ll get the same experience for a much lower cost.

Buy used games. Another benefit of waiting a bit is that there are more likely to be reasonably priced used games on sale. Be sure to check for scratches on the disc, and check to see what the stores return policy is.

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Rent games. Want to play games as they come out? Rent them instead of buying them. This is particularly useful if it’s the kind of game that you won’t revisit once you’ve completed it. Services like Gamefly work like Netflix. The games will keep coming, and you can easily ask for a replacement disc if you get one that doesn’t work right.

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Buy your video games online. Sometimes you just don’t have the willpower to wait for the next iteration of Final Fantasy or the newest Mario game. Be picky about the games you choose to buy as they are released, and then check Amazon.com or other online vendors to see what deals they have going on. It’s usually cheaper than your local video game store, and you can often get an even greater discount if you pre-order.

Sell your games back. Done with your game? You can sell it back as long as it is still in good condition. If you bought it new, try to finish the game within the first two months of its release in order to get the best price. Instead of going to your local video game store, try eBay, Half.com, or Amazon.com’s used marketplace. You can usually get a higher price.

With these five steps, you’ll still get to play all the titles that interest you, but you’ll be saving money. It may take some willpower at first, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll find it’s easy to keep your video game budget under control.

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For more money saving tips and tricks, including how to leverage your credit score to get great deals on life’s biggest purchases, visit Quizzle.com. And check out these other frugalicious articles: