Guest Post by Lindy at Minting Nickels
I guess you could say I was a gamer as a child.
As a ten-year-old I played Super Mario Brothers for days at a time, breaking only for the bathroom, honing my skills until that fateful day when I defeated Bowser in the final castle level.
But that’s about where my childhood video game history ends, so I guess I wasn’t much of a gamer after all. I’m a girl, that’s kind of how it goes for most of us. Eventually Mario and Luigi were replaced with experimenting with make-up and scribbling hearts into journals, and my Nintendo system was donated to the neighbor next door.
But then I grew up from a girl to a woman, and married a man, who brought an entire box of video games back into my life, most with unintelligible names like Baldur’s Gate and Xenosaga that had no meaning to me except for the fact they were taking up space in our small apartment.
So it’s funny that a girl like me, who doesn’t know anything about video games would turn around and make over $200 from them.
Here’s how it went down.
A year ago my husband and I realized we had a lot of debt, and that debt was going nowhere. In order to have more money to pay off our debt, we decided to start selling our stuff.
My husband’s no-longer-played PlayStation 1 and PlayStation 2 video games were likely first targets.
In preparation for our first yard sale, we gathered a whole shoebox full of these old games, pricing them at $0.50 each with the logic that no one would want such antiquated technology.
Luckily, nobody bought them at our yard sale that day. I say luckily, because afterwards on a hunch I looked up our unsold game titles on Half.com and saw that several of them were selling for more than 50 cents, more like $20 a piece.
As it turns out, there are several PlayStation 1 and PlayStation 2 titles that hit the sweet spot amongst gaming collectors. These are games that were never issued in later formats, therefore the originals are still highly coveted.
When all was said and done, we made over $200 selling these old games. If we’d sold them all for $0.50 each, we would have made about 7 bucks.
I’m assuming after reading this you might be interested in running out to the nearest yard sale to search for dirt cheap collector games. If so, here are some tips to help you along.
1. Having knowledge of video game news and trends (or a knowledgable husband) is helpful. My husband subscribes to Game Informer magazine, and because of this he often knows which games might be fodder for collectors. Games that are in the role-playing and fantasy realms tend to be good sellers, so being aware of those is beneficial.
2. If you don’t have knowledge of video games, the smart phone is your best tool. Both Half.com and Amazon have iPhone apps enabled with bar code scanners. They offer a quick and easy way to see what a game is selling for, given you can scan discreetly so as not to tip off the yard sale hosts.
3. All hail the black label. In PlayStation collector lingo, the term “black label” is important. It means a game is the original release, as opposed to a re-release or a greatest hits version. You can tell if your game is a black label edition if the spine of the case is black, not yellow, or green, or purple or fuchsia. If it is black label, be sure to use those words in your title or description when you list it for sale.
So with that, I bid you good luck, and happy hunting. And remember, just because technology is old, doesn’t mean it’s worthless.
Lindy has pretty much become an expert at selling clutter from her closets and has made over $6000 doing so. You can read about her money-making adventures (and misadventures) at Minting Nickels.