The World Of Nintendo, Remixed
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When Rare Isn't So Rare

The rarest Virtual Boy games of all: Virtual Lab, Space Invaders, Virtual Bowling, and Gundam Dimension WarLike a lot of game fans, I collect video games.  Unlike a lot of collectors though, I collect games so that I can play them.  I do not keep games sealed for eternity, nor do I scour the Internet for expensive rare games to add to my collection.  My collection is whatever I buy or otherwise acquire.  While it's fun to think my Virtual Boy library may be worth "something" someday, I'm not planning my retirement based on how much a used copy of Jack Bros. is worth to someone on eBay.

Now here comes Game Quest Direct.  This company is reprinting rare games legally and for profit, but is charging less for a new copy than one would end up paying for a used copy.  Sounds good, right?  Turns out the hardcore/serious collectors don't like the idea of their rare collectibles becoming worth less because more copies of a game suddenly appear in the marketplace.

[H]ardcore video game collectors were irked. Reprints could not be distinguished from the originals, which brought the value down of their collection. That $85 copy of Persona 2 purchased used, dropped nearly 50% in price. Speculators who snagged up copies of Disgaea couldn’t profit from eBay sales. Especially proud collectors weren’t perturbed by the economics, but more that they lost exclusivity of being the only one on the block with these a rare game. In a way Game Quest Direct angered the audience they were searching for.

To be honest, I don't care about a game's resale value on the used market.  What I want is to be able to play that game, and if Game Quest Direct can offer me a legit new copy of that game for a fair price, then I'm all for it.  Games are not supposed to be locked away in a vault to accrue value.  They're supposed to be played and loved and discovered and enjoyed.  The hardcore collector who is planning to send his or her children to college thanks to a shrink-wrapped copy of Gundam Dimension War for the Virtual Boy ($1,045 on eBay right now) will just have to learn to live with those of us who want reprints and those of us who actually want to open and play those reprints, resale value be damned.

(Thanks to Nick at Retrogaming with Racketboy)