I can honestly say that this has been one of the slowest winters for game collecting I’ve ever experienced. With the exception of a few things wiggling into my possession by chance, I’ve mostly been shopping online or at game stores. In my downtime, I’ve had some time to work on other projects like Let’s Plays and other videos I’ve been wanting to put together over on my YouTube channel, but for the most part, things out my way have been pretty quiet.
The first thing I picked up was Sonic the Hedgehog for Game Gear. Before buying this Sonic game, my boyfriend only owned the second one. This was at the thrift store for $3, so it was not a tough sell.
I also recently discovered some RPGs for the Game Gear, and according to some ancient forums I stumbled across, some are better than others to try out. I picked up Defenders of Oasis and Crystal Warriors for a total of $50. There are some other Game Gear games I’d like to pick up too, but the one I’d like most is Shining Force: The Sword of Hajya. I’d also absolutely love to play Sylvan Tale, but it was a Japan exclusive. After watching some gameplay I’ve been pining after that one pretty hard, I’m going to have to find a way to play a translated version. It looks too cute and awesome to pass up.
Another game I bought was Athena for NES. I heard about the game in a video somewhere and was pleased with how much the game visually reminded me of Alex Kidd. I haven’t made it too far yet, mostly because I have been having a difficult time getting the cartridge to work! It is one of the finickiest games I own and will only start up once out of 30 tries or so. I’ve cleaned it and opened it up to inspect it and everything looks fine, so I’m not too sure what the issue is.
Staying on the NES track, I picked up a long-sought-after game. Ghost Lion was available at a game store with its box, manual and poster. I had first tried this game out years ago on the DS using an R4 card, and I played it for quite some time. At some point I had stupidly overwritten my save state and gave up, but the game was stuck in my head. I decided to bite the bullet at my friend’s store and I paid about $140 for the game in its pristine condition. It might seem like a lot, but because I’ve barely bought anything all winter, I wasn’t too upset about paying it and supporting a friend. This game is in the best condition of any boxed game I own for the NES. I almost hate putting the cartridge into the console because the game’s sticker is literally perfect. It’s a good thing I collect to play. Games were meant to be played!
Although I don’t run across Famicom games in the wild very often, I did find two in a thrift store recently and bought both for $20 total. The games were Duck Tales and Rockman 3 (aka Mega Man 3). I didn’t have a North American version of Duck Tales, so I was pretty happy to find that one. Thankfully there’s not a lot of story and reading required to play, and some of the main assets on the game screen are in English! I think I would’ve normally passed on Rockman 3 since I already own it for NES, but for $20 combined, who could really complain?
This also encouraged my boyfriend to fix our game converter that allows us to play Famicom games on the NES. We bought it a long while ago and it has never worked. He took it apart and diagnosed it using a continuity test. It turned out that there were 8 broken traces. With his ever-improving soldering skills, he rigged up some jumpers and got it working without much trouble. Needless to say, I can now enjoy these games!
Here’s a photo of some of the broken traces pre-fix. My boyfriend removed the silk screening to repair them. Though the breaks were not always explicitly visible (most obvious is the leftmost one), the continuity test revealed the issues.
Moving into 16-bit territory now, I also picked up a copy of Equinox for the SNES. This is the sequel to Solstice, a puzzle game for NES that I’ve played a bit with a friend. To be quite honest, I had mistaken this game for an RPG based on its label sticker, but I am happy with the purchase regardless. This game is highly praised for fun gameplay and great music. It’ll be a nice break from RPGs when I get around to it. This game also came from the game store for $25.
Just a few days ago, I finally decided to answer a classifieds ad that had been up for about a month. There was a person selling a bunch of random games and gaming-related items like the Intellivoice module, which we already have. I did see a Pokemon Gold Game Boy in the mix along with a few Game Boy games, so I messaged the seller and we agreed on a time to meet. With my boyfriend along for the ride as usual, we ended up getting the Game Boy, a GB game called Kwirk that I hadn’t heard of before and a Colecovision game called Miner 2049er. At a quick glance, I couldn’t tell if Miner 2049er was for Atari or not, so I gambled and lost: turns out it’s for Colecovision, and we don’t have a Coleco console at the moment. The Game Boy was also missing its battery back, but it’s in great working condition minus a few scratches on the screen. We got everything in the photo below for $10.
Kwirk has also turned out to be a pleasant little puzzle game. The music in it is pretty great and I’m constantly impressed by music I’m discovering for Game Boy games. I uploaded some music from Faceball 2000 recently and I can’t quite get enough of that song. I might have to add some Kwirk music to that playlist since there are currently only two songs in there. There needs to be more!
The other thing I was hoping to get my hands on was a copy of Mega Man V for Game Boy. I saw that pop up at the thrift store last week, but I was shocked and mostly appalled at the staggering price tag of $114.99 for the cartridge alone. Where I live in Canada, there’s a 13% sales tax, so all in, the game would be close to $130 Canadian all said and done. That’s ludicrous for a game being sold at a thrift store, especially since the store pays for their donations by weight. I think we all know that a Game Boy game doesn’t come anywhere near that price because of its enormity. People there have been getting greedier and greedier.
After whining to a few store employees about the skyrocketing prices on games, someone handed me a Friends and Family discount flyer which allows for discounts on store items. Video games have a 50% discount so I’m going to try my luck and see how things pan out when the sale rolls around. I’m still not sure I even want to buy it at half off if the greed is running so rampant in that store, but I’ll see how I feel at that point if it’s even still there. I’d mostly be buying it to play it for myself and then maybe sell it or trade it for something else. We’ll see!
Here’s hoping that more games will start finding their way into my hands soon! There are a few swaps lined up for April and May, so I plan to get out to those. Yard sale-ing should also start up as soon as the rest of this snow melts, but the defrosting has been slow-going this Spring. Anyway, I hope you’ve all been having a pleasant weekend!
Thanks for reading!