Retro, the new next-gen?

This day and age, there are many viable options when you wish to game. You have your mobile phone in reach to play some casual games, as well as some heavier games, the latter often something you’ll have to pay for. We also have a great generation of consoles with the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, but also with the handheld hybrid console from Nintendo’s side of the fence, the Switch. Not only are indie games getting more and more attention, we are also seeing an increase in pixilated titles that are being released. It seems that many older gamers are craving for something from when they started gaming, which in turn boosts the secondhand sales of retro games. The younger generation also seems to share a passion for retro consoles, as they often were handed down a certain console or handheld to start their gaming adventure.

Even with the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox Series X on the way, retro collecting has never been as popular as it is now. True, we see a small decrease in sales when it comes to the early Atari consoles, and NES and SNES titles, as this audience that has been actively collecting pretty much has their libraries all set. We do see another increase when it comes to the middle generation of PlayStation 2, Gamecube, Xbox and Dreamcast. While older consoles still do pretty well, many are looking for hidden gems on the 3D generation of consoles, even with a high market for pixilated games. CAPCOM pretty much reigned supreme on the Dreamcast, during its very short lifespan, and these titles are also well sought after. The Dreamcast library is also a library that’s very attractive as it has a limited number of English titles available. The console also occasionally spawns new titles by backyard-developers, who come out with a new SHMUP or fighting title from time to time.

The cardboard generation is a bit harder to find pristine copies of, as their cardboard packages have had to withstand the test of time. Plastic boxes are easy to replace, without resorting to unofficial prints, the cardboard boxes of Nintendo games are always harder to find in mint condition. These boxes would show wear and tear simply by opening them to grab your favorite game(s). Other than that, accidental damage occurred more frequently, thus resulting in creases or tears on the box. This makes these games harder to track, but there are many shops that specialize in presenting you with items in great shape, such as Retrogameland.

Those looking for rare versions of their favorite consoles will also notice that prices can ramp up to several hundreds of Euros/Dollars to simply own that special colored version of their favorite device. This also has to do with the fact that these often were produced in limited quantities or weren’t released in several parts of the world. Nearly a decade ago, many of these consoles were sold at regular prices, but with the increase of sellers and of course, sources to look up values, things have been going well for the retro industry. Of course, there are many different collectors, as some are simply looking to experience their long lost games on an original console, thus caring less about the condition of the device and/or games’ packaging.

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Aspiring ninja.

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