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Subject: Second hand games and bargains rss

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Hannah Mike
Australia
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This will be my first visit to Essen, I am beyond excited. I have been religiously reading everything I can and following game releases and reviews on BGG for the last Eight months in anticipation. I have a special place in my heart for W. Eric Martin.

I have seen in a couple of threads people mentioning that they tend to buy one or two new releases but largely focus their buying on second hand games or bargains. My question is whether this mainly refers to buying from places like the Essen no-ship auction/ math trades or is there booths dedicated to second hand/old stock?
Now that the hall plans are out is there a particular area I should be looking in? Most of the games on my wishlist are older and I will probably just try to get them at game stores in Germany if they are cheaper than our home price.

I am currently selling a couple of items on the no-ship auction to test the waters, but this being my first fair/convention I am a bit daunted by buying much from it and wasting too much time trying to find the people I am meant to be trading with.

Thanks, Hannah
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Michael Debije
Netherlands
Eindhoven
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There is a second hand game seller's area, maybe 12 stands or so. Used to be great, now pretty good as the prices have all risen. Mostly have second tier games, although the new decent stuff might be there early but not at steep discount. Be aware mostly there will be German versions. Happy hunting!
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Wolfgang Kunz
Germany
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There are some Second Hand booth that also sell stock - leftovers for a good price.

I have attended Essen for many years but in the last years 2 things became obvious:

1) The prices regarding the same game become "the same" in a very short amount of time - regardless where you buy.

2) The dealers know their market well. There was a booth with old wargames and in the beginnning you could really make a deal (I'm looking at you EFS GMT Series). But given ebay and BGG the chnace to find this Oup-Of-Print / Valuable Game for just a few Euros are long gone.

Also some dealers really have "special" fair prices.

My suggestion: Look for the games you are interest at here at the Geek or the Internet. Write down the price you see / are willing to pay and then compare it to the price you see at the Fair.

Essen is great (even if it became crowded more and more since they put it in the same time-frame the schools have autumn - holidays). Enjoy it.
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Bart R.
Belgium
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The second-hand booths are good if you're really looking for that one game that's (nearly) OOP, but don't expect knock-off prices. The games are usually in very good condition though and you can check the contents before you buy.

If you want to buy new games, it can still be worth to scout around a bit or at least not jump on the first good offer. As Wolfgang said, prices generally are the same throughout the fair, but sometimes, you can find that one booth where you can still save a couple of euros.

Also, do yourself a favour and put off buying stuff until late afternoon - even small games can turn into a heavy brick if you have to lug them around all day . I guess you'll be at Essen for more than one day, so you'll have plenty of time to re-visit booths.

Oh, and don't forget to have fun - my first visit kind of turned into a race because it's just so awesome you want to see everything at once and I really had to remind myself to step on the brakes once in a while meeple
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Louise McCully
New Zealand
Auckland
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Went to Essen in 2014 and blogged my trip here at BGG. Including preparations.

I bought from the no-ship auction. Got a few things that are impossible to get here. Was very easy.

For secondhand stalls I recommend creating a print out of the old games you are looking for with the name and picture of the game cover (include multiple versions if you don't mind what). All I needed to do was hand over my list and they would show me what they had or shake their heads. Made it sooooo easy.
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Eddy Sterckx
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Alphawolf wrote:


2) The dealers know their market well. There was a booth with old wargames and in the beginnning you could really make a deal (I'm looking at you EFS GMT Series). But given ebay and BGG the chnace to find this Oup-Of-Print / Valuable Game for just a few Euros are long gone.


This. In the early 2000's I picked up a number of old AH/SPI classics for next to nothing. These days you pay the normal market price, which if you think about it, isn't all that bad because you pay no shipping and you can inspect the game before you buy it.

What's also at Spiel is publishers clearing their stock of 3-4 year old titles. Just watch out for them - often they're very good games you can pick up for 10 euro or less. They're usually the German version of a game, but as many games are language independent you only need to download the rules in your language and you're good to go. Games we picked up that way for 10 euro or less : Glen More, Reef Encounter, Hamburgum, ...

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Vincent
Netherlands
Arnhem
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blueeyesmik wrote:
I am a bit daunted by buying much from it and wasting too much time trying to find the people I am meant to be trading with.

If you do your trading during the mathtrade meetup, it should never take more than an hour. Depending on the number of games you're trading probably much less. The no-shipping auction is your best bet to get any good deals and it's just interesting to be part of. Check out the picture below so see what it's like (it will be in a different location though):

 
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Eddy Sterckx
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Lorthania wrote:
As Wolfgang said, prices generally are the same throughout the fair, but sometimes, you can find that one booth where you can still save a couple of euros.


It definitely pays to look around - last year we wanted to pickup the German Railroads expansion for Russian Railroads. Prices fluctuated between 14 and 28 euro, also depending on the language (English or German) which is bonkers because this game is completely language independent.

It's also not uncommon to see prices at a booth fluctuate from day to day - if they start selling out of a game on Thursday, prices will go up for Friday. Or down if it's a slow seller. It's up to you go gauge how well a game is doing
 
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Ron
Austria
Vienna
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eddy_sterckx wrote:
In the early 2000's I picked up a number of old AH/SPI classics for next to nothing. These days you pay the normal market price ... [SNIP]

Yes, before 2000, before eBay, I bought a nearly complete AH collection there! Back then, the second hand market occupied it's own hall! But nowadays, it's a shadow of its former self ... soblue

Expect no bargains and mostly German games. Although you can still pick up some rare titles (if you are willing to pay for them).

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Trond Åge Låstad
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Heidelberger and spiel offensive have new copies of older games for amazing prices, but not many in english.
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Christian Gienger
Germany
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Older titles can be found cheaply at Spiele-Offensive most of the time and the Heidelberger booth has the "Resterampe" where they sell off older games that no one wants (sometimes games that were just printed too much like La Isla for 10€ last year) cheaply, but you will stand in line there.
As already mentioned, the 2nd booths know what games are worth usually, so you won't make great bargains there, but they might help you with long sought after titles.
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Bart R.
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You have to pick your time with Heidelberger. Just wander past a couple of times and if there's less than twenty people in the queue, pop in. The queue moves fast anyway, at those prices, there's no time for consideration .
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Eddy Sterckx
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Another source of cheap games : if you're into wargames, there's an auction every day at the UGG booth of older titles he wants to get rid off. It's a bit of a hit or miss, but the titles going up for auction are displayed on a table before the auction, so you can swing by and check if there's anything there that might interest you and then stick around for the auction or not. Picked up a couple of cheap wargames that way over the years.
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Hannah Mike
Australia
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Thanks for response and all the tips. I have been carefully putting together my excel spreadsheet of games for months. I have noted language dependence, price I can get the games for back home, price if I just went to somewhere like Toys R Us in Germany.

Some smaller games can be a similar price to what we have here in Australia and I certainly want to support our local industry, but most games are a lot more expensive (double or more) or shipping kills us when we try order from overseas.
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Eddy Sterckx
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You can also use Spiel to trade games outside the math trade circuit. I've got a trade like that this year that would not have happened if we had to pay shipping. What I do is check the "for trade" list of people who post in the various Essen threads, then when I spot something try to work out a deal.
 
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Daniel
Germany
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the_vinman wrote:
blueeyesmik wrote:
I am a bit daunted by buying much from it and wasting too much time trying to find the people I am meant to be trading with.

If you do your trading during the mathtrade meetup, it should never take more than an hour. Depending on the number of games you're trading probably much less. The no-shipping auction is your best bet to get any good deals and it's just interesting to be part of. Check out the picture below so see what it's like (it will be in a different location though):


I never understood how to find the people in this chaos. This year I am selling and buying quite a few games myself in the no-shipping auction. Any hints how to survive?
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Vincent
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Just make sure you have a piece of paper with your name on it. Depending on if you're mostly buying or mostly selling, people pick a spot and hold their paper up high or walk around in circles. It will be different for this year though, the mathtrade meetup is getting too big for that space.
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Bart R.
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There will be some people with a lot to trade, they'll stay put and are easy to find. Some others will have something to obvious to recognize them by. Last year, somebody sent me their picture - that was very effective. All the others walk around playing a game of put the tail on the donkey laugh . After the initial chaos, the crowd will thin out so the stragglers can find each other. It'll work out .

Something I did last year: I put exact change for the games I was buying in little plastic bags with the name of the seller and the game on them. This made the transaction very quick to handle.
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Simon Neale
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the_vinman wrote:
Just make sure you have a piece of paper with your name on it.

It's worth writing your name on both sides of the paper so people can read it from behind you aswell.
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Eddy Sterckx
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Neale2006 wrote:
the_vinman wrote:
Just make sure you have a piece of paper with your name on it.

It's worth writing your name on both sides of the paper so people can read it from behind you aswell.


I employ a minion (my wife) to walk around and locate people while I stay put in one place with the games and a big sign with my name and BGG avatar. Last year security opened up the entrance behind us so the mass of people was less dense and it became easier to locate someone. Somehow it always seems to work out nicely.
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Louisa Berry
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eddy_sterckx wrote:
Neale2006 wrote:
the_vinman wrote:
Just make sure you have a piece of paper with your name on it.

It's worth writing your name on both sides of the paper so people can read it from behind you aswell.


I employ a minion (my wife) to walk around and locate people while I stay put in one place with the games and a big sign with my name and BGG avatar. Last year security opened up the entrance behind us so the mass of people was less dense and it became easier to locate someone. Somehow it always seems to work out nicely.


I second this strategy. My husband walks around whilst I stay put or vice versa. One thing I will do this year i tell the people I am meeting to look for him or me. Although I'm currently not buying anything this year, so I will probably just stay put and let people find me.
 
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Nicholas
Germany
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rhianna_ wrote:


I bought from the no-ship auction. Got a few things that are impossible to get here. Was very easy.



Is this a regular thing for Essen created by someone? Can't find anything right now, but sounds interesting.
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mawa
Netherlands
Steenwijk
Overijssel
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Nicholas M wrote:
rhianna_ wrote:


I bought from the no-ship auction. Got a few things that are impossible to get here. Was very easy.



Is this a regular thing for Essen created by someone? Can't find anything right now, but sounds interesting.


Look here, https://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/211885
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Hannah Mike
Australia
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Great tip, sign is all ready to go.
 
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