A Second Hand Christmas Avoids the Frenzy


Having recently written about Ghost Trick and Solatorobo in glowing terms this week, I was happy to see them discounted in Amazon today (Ghost Trick is $12.59 and Solatorobo is $17.11). If Okamiden gets a similar discount I’ll be suspicious that they have been reading GeekDad — and why not?

This got me hunting around for other bargains I could pick up as Christmas presents. We are doing a “second hand” Christmas this year so used video-games fit right in (the idea is that we avoid some of the seasonal consumer frenzy by opting for used presents rather than new). In five minutes I’d picked up the microphone-controlled pinball game Odama for $13.57, the crazy rhythm action Elite Beat Agents DS for $7.77 and another great adventure The World Ends With You DS for $12.60.

All my snooping made me realize something else. Although some games get cheaper with age, more popular titles (or those with shorter print runs) do the reverse. Of course, it’s no surprise that scarcity drives up the value of games. Wario Ware Touched is now $42.00 second hand on Amazon, for instance. What I hadn’t realized is that these prizes were very different depending on the country you live in.

Although the DS isn’t region coded, you can pay almost twice as much for a DS game locally as it cost in other territories. Chrono Trigger is just $12.07 in the US, while in the UK it is £22.99. With such a price discrepancy it is worth hunting around a bit more and paying the extra shipping charge.

With the 3DS being locked to the region it was purchased in, we need to take advantage of the global gaming foibles while we can.

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