Shop finds for 7/1/11.
In my spare time, when not playing video games and arguing with people over the internet, I occasionally peruse thrift stores, pawn shops and various game stores (yes, even GameStop) for random game finds. I do this because it’s something of an old habit I’ve done for years back when I used to collect game show board games about ten years ago. Now I have over 80 of those board games sitting in my garage going unused, so I shifted my hunt from board games to video games and occasional miscellanea. Thrift stores are great for that.
Why am I telling you all this? Well, Chris Kohler of Wired’s GameLife blog occasionally chronicled his thrift store finds on the blog, such as finding Frogger for the Intellivision complete in box, with the original receipt from 1983. It was always intriguing to hear what people found in a random shop for a couple of bucks. Since I love being inspired by other people’s concepts and ideas, I’m going to chronicle my own thrift store and pawn shop finds. Because I find this stuff interesting.
Yesterday, while on my way to hang at a friend’s place, I went to a local pawn shop, Meese’s Pieces. The place I went to had almost all games for $5. That meant NES games were $5, SNES games were $5, even PS1/PS2 games were $5 each. The only ones that weren’t $5 flat were 360 and PS3 games. Unfortunately I didn’t have much cash on me, but I did walk away with these 3 games for $13:
The one on top is Shaq Fu for the Super NES. Developed by Delphine Software (Flashback, Another World), it is considered to be one of the worst games ever made. It’s so bad that there’s a site for wanting to destroy every copy in existence to saving every copy. I really only bought it for the kitsch factor, and actual proof of how putting a sports star in a game that’s not sports-related isn’t always the best idea.
The second game is No One Can Stop Mr. Domino! for the PS1. I had heard of this game from Giant Bomb‘s Ryan Davis, who is apparently a big fan of this crazy-ass game. It’s basically the most absurd game I’ve seen to come out of Japan, where you play a domino and try to lay a pattern down to cause really strange things happen. It’s a Japanese game alright. Apparently there was a spiritual successor for this on the Wii, but it’s probably impossible to find these days.
The last game is Syphon Filter for the PS1. I’m a slight fan of the Syphon Filter games, and they’re the only games I thoroughly enjoyed on the PSP. I had never played the original trilogy on the PS1 or the PS2 title The Omega Strain, but I had heard they were enjoyable games. With those factors in mind, I decided to snag a copy of it. Well, that and if the other two games I bought were absolutely abysmal, I wanted to at least have a good game to play to wash away the shitty taste of the former two.
My apologies if these aren’t interesting enough finds, but I just wanted to own these more from a collector’s standpoint. The original PlayStation was a system I never had many games for, and I wanted to grab some of the classics as well as some of the obscure favorites and anything else that caught my eye. Problem is that 90% of the time I peruse thrift stores for PS1 games, I end up finding 25 old copies of Madden NFL or FIFA more than anything really interesting. I don’t see a need to buy old sports games unless they’re really valuable, like the first sports game released on a console, or well-known editions of the game or whatever. I have nothing against sports games, I just don’t want to pay $4 for Madden NFL 98 on the PS1.
(And not only have I found old games, I’ve even found old gaming magazines from about 8-9 years ago at thrift stores. Like two unopened Official Xbox Magazine issues from 2003, and a Game Informer issue that revealed the then-new Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. These are infinitely more interesting to me, as I look at gaming magazines from a nostalgic standpoint, so I can see a snapshot of what gaming was back then.)