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Tough Times and Tough Choices

I was born in 1982. I've been playing video games for as long as I can remember being first introduced to the hobby by my dad who let me play the Atari 2600 when I was a toddler. Eventually my folks got my siblings and I a NES which really instilled the love and passion for the hobby. Eventually we got a SNES, later a Genesis, even a Sega CD that we got second hand from a friend I knew. Hell I even asked my parents to buy a Sega Saturn. My only reason being I favored Sega over Nintendo at the time... don't judge me I was young and stupid then. Last thing my parents had gotten for us was a Nintendo 64. Each console brought a lot of joy and great memories that I cherish to this day. Even during the 16-bit era my dad got a home computer and I was then introduced to Wolfenstien 3D which was the first PC game I had ever played.

By time I was 16 I started buying video games and hardware for myself. First console I bought with my own money was a PS1. As years would go buy and my jobs would change video games would eventually become my greatest money sink. If it was a major console I had to have it. Dreamcast, Gameboy, Gameboy Advance, DS, PSP, Game Cube, PS2, Xbox, 360, PS3, Wii, and a capable PC if it played games that people were talking about, I felt I had to have it. At the time during all this cash wasn't really an issue. I had no problem still living with my folks, I worked a decent factory job with benefits where I had been fully trained and even trained people myself. Life was good.

However in 2009 things would change drastically. I'll spare you the depressing and boring details but let's just say the job situation changed. Money wasn't as plentiful as it was. I had sold off my NES and SNES collections. The Genesis well... no one wanted it along with the Dreamcast so they went into storage. Sold my Gamecube but kept the games since they could be played on my Wii. Same for my PS2. My original Xbox just eventually died out since the disc drive on it went to hell so I had gotten rid of what games I could. Even sold off my Gameboy collection which was rather small. My GBA and games I still posses as I couldn't part with them as well as my PS1 library of games that I still have. PC games... let's just say one shelf isn't enough to hold all of them.

Things got stable in 2011 when I got a new job. Things were good and I went back to my game buying ways building up a pretty well sized library of 360, Wii, PS3, PSP, and DS games. All while still holding onto my PS1, PS2, GC, and GBA games. However now, as I look at all the stuff I have, coupled with how things are going with the video game industry itself. Things like On Disc DLC, Day one DLC, Draconian DRM, publishers rallying against used games. I look on all this, all the things I have and how little time I have for it all and I wonder... does it really make me happy? Do owning all these games and holding onto them really make my life better? Is it even fulfilling anymore? I thought a good long while about this... and I honestly couldn't give myself a straight answer.

A lot of the games I own I haven't had the time to finish. I bought them well ,cause they had good reveiws. Don't get me wrong I had a lot of fun with some of these games like Silent Hill 3, Red Dead Redemption, Metroid Prime, Crash Bandicoot, Golden Sun, among many others. But I've only finished about less than half of them and maybe revisited a few here and there. Being a man of 31 I'm feeling like I need to focus on things that are more important. I love gaming and I feel I always will especially with all the indie stuff that's come out which is fantastic! But as times become a bit harder and I get older I feel that I have to some changes. Hell if I ever decide to move I don't know how I'd take all this stuff with me and if it doesn't make me happy any more why lug all this stuff around?

With a lot of thought I finally came to the conclusion that I need to cut back on my game spending. I shouldn't buy something just because it gets high praise. I should buy it because I really like it. I don't have to own every console or handheld. Hell since I got a smart phone my DS has only collected dust and I used to play that thing on a daily basis. So I decided that while I can, I'm going to sell off some portions of my gaming collection starting with my PS1 and PS2 games. There's a lot of great memories here but I think going forward it's time to simply let them go. Maybe to someone who can maintain such a large collection or just wants these old games. I'll admit, I'll probably try to hold onto my Wii for as long as I can with as many VC games as I bought for it. And I'll always need a PC so I can pay my bills, get all my news, entertainment, etc. Not to mention a vast Steam library of Triple A and indie titles.

Also I feel maybe it's time I take a month off from gaming. Honestly I feel like I'm playing less for fun and more so just to satisfy whatever OCD fueled needs of unlocking things or keeping up with friends. There are times I feel like I lost my reason to keep playing games. Like I didn't know what was fun about it anymore. However there are some titles I was able to pop in and remind myself why I fell in love with this hobby. Still doesn't change the fact that since I'm not some game critic or writer, I can't hold onto everything. If I ever want things to get better in life, if I ever want to be happier, I've gotta part with some things. Especially since I hope to move someday, somewhere there's more possibility to have a better career. Seriously if you look up the job market stats for Henry or Defiance county Ohio you'll see some pretty sad results. It's where I've lived all my life and it just seems like nothing is getting better around here.

I hope I can make some decent cash on Ebay selling off my old games, and what I can afford to keep I hope I can enjoy for a good long time to come. I hope doing this will mean making my life better. Might even get into better shape which is something I've been struggling with for a long time. I hope that no matter what happens, that I'm making the right choices and that I can find what makes me truly happy. If giving up this large extensive library of games meant having a better life, how can I say no to that?
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About Atary77one of us since 9:04 PM on 05.13.2012

I'm a guy from small town USA around Northwest Ohio. Played games ever since my Atari 2600 and I enjoy them most for recreation and having fun, not so much for competition.
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