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Subject: Buying used games rss

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Elliott Harding
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Hello all,

What are people's thoughts and opinions in regards to the buying of used games and the percentage of how much you should pay?

I know a lot has to do with game condition and other factors, but is there a guideline for those that have purchased a number of used games.

Thanks!
Elliott

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Trace
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I have bought many used games, a lot of them via auction here on BGG.

I have found the descriptions given to be very accurate and extra info or photos forthcoming if asked for. This has been true for both international and domestic auctions.

I have also bought games from ebay and not been disappointed.

I treat my games well but they are for playing so if something is described as 'scuffed'or has shelf wear I dont mind, others may differ.
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Liam
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However much you're willing to pay.

There isn't really a solid rule of thumb. It comes down to supply and demand, meaning that there are plenty of games that sell used for way over their original retail price. The market is also very volatile with prices significantly increasing while a game is out of print and then crashing down as soon as the game is available again. The value of a second hand game can also be almost completely wiped overnight if a new version viewed to be superior is releases.

Examples:
StarCraft: The Board Game is well respected and as the licence is now defunct it will probably always cost more than original retail.

Space Hulk (third edition) due to a limited number produced, GW sticking to their guns on not reprinting and it being well respected, it will always command big bucks. This may, however, change if a successful 4th edition is launched.

BattleLore for years this was commanding big bucks (somewhat dependent on version) but with the release of BattleLore (Second Edition) the value significantly fell.

Acquire has been in print for years. Newer versions are seen as inferior to some older version. These older versions cost more than retail for the new versions.

Carcassonne has been in print for years with millions of copies sold. If selling the base set you'd be lucky to hit double figures or 40% retail.

Giants was at one point a fairly reasonable item. My copy's value was almost completely wiped when a discount chain dumped a few hundred or so copies on the UK market at a 1/5 of retail price.

Myth due to a very successful KS and a huge amount of Buzz. Packages were being sold secondhand for 3x+ what they originally cost in the months proceeding the items being sent out. Then a number of poor reviews burst the buzz bubble and while still intrinsically valuable given the miniatures, prices have significantly dropped. In the wider market, I suspect that selling just the base sets at new at retail might be hard to do - I certainly reevaluated my desire to pick it up.

How to find out the going rate:

The BGG market place, amazon and others is open to individuals listing an item for more than it's going rate. I wouldn't use these to judge an items market value, particularly if there are only a couple of listings. This said if you see an item you want listed at a reasonable price, I'd just go ahead and pick it up.

Instead if you navigate to the game's record on BGG you can scroll down to statistics and select 'view price history'. Alternatively, you can also use http://www.spielboy.com/

The only issue is these system just give you numbers, what they don't provide is a narrative explaining why prices are going up or down… or warning you that in 6 months a new edition is planned to be released which may result in significant price changes.

Don't buy, Trade:

Often the best way to get access to higher end items is to trade for them rather than attempt to buy them. Lots of gamers are game rich but cash poor (it's like the housing market). I've often, to my shame, picked up the odd game cheap not so much to play but because I believe it will go OOP and be a valuable trade item.

What's the value of my collection?

http://bggtools.com
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Bryan Thunkd
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What Liam said. There is no general guideline. If you want to trade/sell then you need to get a feel for the gaming zeitgeist and keep up on rumors of reprints and "out of print"-ness. To me, it's almost like playing a stock market game. Except, in addition to profiting on games, I also get to play them in the interim.
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Trace
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Its also relative to where you are.

I just bought a ticket to ride with 2 expansions for $AU65, TTR retails about $80 here. I am happy I got a game I wanted that cost me less than retail + add ons.

Here Carcassonne regularly gets $30+ on ebay.
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Bryan Thunkd
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Probably the best advice I can give you is don't move to Australia or Scotland. Those poor guys are just screwed.
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Aaron Edwards
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Good topic. I buy lots of used games on here and through eBay. It's a good way to save a little change if you have the patience to wait for games on your wish-list to come around at a good price. I'm pretty stingy when it comes to buying used games, though. Assuming that the used game is question is still commercially available from Amazon, CoolStuff, etc. my personal rule of thumb is that the price I pay for the used copy + shipping needs to come in at least 15% cheaper than what I can get it for new (and I usually get free Amazon Prime 2-day shipping, so it's pretty tough to meet that mark). Of course, I will forego this rule for charity auctions, out-of-print games, sleeved cards, or fellow gamers who are down on their luck and need the money. But in general, it needs to be a really good deal; too often have I won an auction, waited 3 weeks to receive a poorly packaged game that was damaged in shipping, and then realized I could have had a brand new copy within 3 days for only $2-3 more.

All that said, if I am getting a good deal on the game, I don't personally care what the condition is (within reason of course). As long as it's not missing any vital components, I couldn't care less about split corners or dishing on the box.
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Elliott Harding
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Thanks for all the replies! This is very helpful.
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Kirk Bauer
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monkeyhandz wrote:
Don't buy, Trade:

Often the best way to get access to higher end items is to trade for them rather than attempt to buy them. Lots of gamers are game rich but cash poor (it's like the housing market).


I really don't understand the value in trading over buying/selling. You have to find somebody with exactly the game you want, they want to trade it, and they have to want a game you want to trade. Otherwise somebody has to settle for something they don't want as much. This is why money was invented, so you can sell a game to one person for cash, use the cash to buy another game from another person. It is much easier to find matches.
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Bryan Thunkd
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kirkbauer wrote:
monkeyhandz wrote:
Don't buy, Trade:

Often the best way to get access to higher end items is to trade for them rather than attempt to buy them. Lots of gamers are game rich but cash poor (it's like the housing market).


I really don't understand the value in trading over buying/selling. You have to find somebody with exactly the game you want, they want to trade it, and they have to want a game you want to trade. Otherwise somebody has to settle for something they don't want as much. This is why money was invented, so you can sell a game to one person for cash, use the cash to buy a how're game from another person. It is much easier to find matches.
True, but if you have a substantial list of games to trade it cuts down on that issue. (I just checked and I have 70 games marked for trade lol!) The advantage to trading is that a) it doesn't require as much money and b) you have games that either you don't really care for anymore or don't get played. If you don't have games you'd rather part with then maybe trading doesn't make as much sense. If you can, do multi-game trades to save shipping costs.
 
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