Friday, October 21, 2011

Funny how that works out, huh?

When I bought my Nintendo Gamecube I only had 3 games; Mario Kart Double Dash, Donkey Konga and the Gameboy Player boot disc (sans the actually Gameboy Player), which isn't even a game. The first of which was too scratched to play and the other, well its Donkey Konga! I really had nothing to play so my Gamecube sat dormant in it's box for quite a while.

There was a copy of Madden 05 sitting in a Salvation Army for what had to be 4 months, untouched, but only recently did I decide to check it out. The game was complete and everything looked great, until I turned the disc over. The disc had a noticeable scratch on it, so I was afraid it wouldn't work. Even though it was $1, I passed it up.

After a week of sitting and wishing I had a game to get my Gamecube up and working, I decided I would just pull the trigger on the Madden and get things rolling. What happened next may amaze you but its a simple fact of life for myself, the game was GONE. I've seen this happen with numerous items I've picked up, pondered over, placed back down and walk away from. It seems no matter how long the item(s) in question sits on the shelf, after I pick them up and later decide I want them, they're gone.

Now there are a few different outcomes of this that I have personally experienced. First, I will probably find the item at a better price somewhere not long down the road. Second, I will never find the item ever again. Or the third and final outcome is that will free up money for me to make another purchase.

Funny how that works out, huh?

So after missing out on Madden, which didn't break my heart in the least to be honest, I decided that I wasn't going home empty handed and headed to Disc Replay. The first one had barely any Gamecube games, so I went to another one. This one had just what I was looking for... Animal Crossing! I popped the case open and there was the manual! I figured for $3.99 I would just go for it and cut my losses, just to give my Gamecube something to do!

So in this case outcome number three came into play, so all wasn't lost and I've been playing the hell out of this game. I will be writing another article soon about Animal Crossing, with a little backstory to why I wanted it. Keep your eyes peeled!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Here we go again...

I have a love hate relationship with thrift stores. This may be due in large part to the fact that thrift stores never cease to amaze me with their seemingly endless supply of either don't give a fuck, or don't know their ass from a hole in the ground. You may already be able to sense the anger, and trust me it probably won't get any better!

My Tuesday, as many of my Tuesdays are, was filled with thrift store hopping. What did my eyes happen to see inside one Salvation Army but a Sony Playstation 3. The box was pretty damaged, but it otherwise looked to be closed. After I saw the price tag I didn't care to continue looking at it to see whether or not it had been opened.

There are a lot of factors that go into this, and to be honest I don't care! Was it new or used? Was it a fat or slim? What size hard drive was it? Was it a refurb? Was it factory sealed? How did Salvation Army acquire it? I have no answers for any of those questions, but they wanted $200 for it.

Ok, I understand that Salvation Army is entitled to ask whatever they want for their products and they deserve to make a fair profit, keying in on fair. There is a reason Salvation Army is a thrift store, you never go into the place and expect to walk out ready for a magazine photo shoot wearing Salvation Army clothes, although I'm not saying that is impossible. You go into a thrift store and expect to get a good deal because they have no overhead on products, all profits are 100%.

Lately I've noticed that quite a few local Salvation Army stores have a plethora of laptops and cellphones in the glass cases, I'm assuming these are probably overstocks. But what warrants Salvation Army to ask retail prices on all these items? Even if these items are brand new and never used, Salvation Army really shouldn't be asking these prices for these items.

Salvation Army should learn to cut someone a deal. It isn't like little Timmy saved up his lawn mowing money all summer and went to Salvation Army to buy himself a PS3 and 10 games, he would go to an electronics store for that. In this economy some thrift stores have decided to up their prices (on everything!) to make more profit off the demand for lower priced goods, that just seems like a greedy business practice to me, but I digress.

Keep in mind that with that price tag at other places you get a guarantee that if the product is bunk in any way, you can return it for an exchange or refund, not so with Salvation Army. The Salvation Army policy is, in short, once it leaves the store, you can't bring it back anymore. (Clever rhyme there huh?) So while you're paying $200 for a PS3 at Best Buy or where ever, if it craps out you're not out of luck. With Salvation Army you just have to fork over that much cash and take it on the chin of it breaks down.

I've made quite a few good deals at Salvation Army stores, more so than any other thrift store, so I can't be too harsh on them. But from time to time I notice a shift in pricing, sometimes they just tag it for small change and put it out, while other times they'll mark everything for way more than it's truly worth. Oddly enough most everything sells, I've went back looking for overpriced items just to own it and it's gone!

I guess this is a supreme case of taking the bad with the good. While I can pickup video games for anywhere from $2 and under, the PS3 that I don't want to own, but still feel offended by their asking price, has to sell for $200 with no promise of it working and no return if it doesn't.

Monday, October 10, 2011


Since the release of GTA IV everyone has been looking forward for GTA V. As events such as E3 come and go without so much a sneeze, cough, burp or even fart from Rockstar or Take Two about a new GTA, the rumor mills still spin wildly out of control. With rumors abound ranging from cast lists to release dates, only the developers and distributors know the truth behind any of them.

I'm a massive GTA fan, as I'm sure many of the people who play GTA are, because the game draws you in and holds you tight. With each installment we're treated to a bigger and better world, which only stands to reason as they've taken their time to get things right. With the absence of a Grand Theft Auto for anything other than the handheld consoles in over 3 years, the fans are getting restless. I don't count the DLC, even though released on disc as well, as a GTA release because they were simply adding on to the base of GTA IV.

Fans are in a hurry to see GTA V and rumors say they may be holding GTA V for the next generation consoles, whatever those may be. At first I was pretty upset thinking we may have to wait for the Xbox 1080 to come out, break down within 2 weeks after people shucked out $700+ for it and go through this whole fiasco again before we see another GTA. But I was simply reading what was written and not between the lines.

To say they're holding GTA V for the next generation consoles makes perfect sense! We're due a modern Vice City and San Andreas, which hopefully we'll be allotted before we're forced to suffer through another money grubbing system scheme from Microsoft and Sony.

I'm hoping we see something soon from Rockstar, if nothing more than to cool the embers of rumors still burning up the internet. Their silence speaks loud and clear, they're working on the next biggest thing. Whether it be GTA San Andreas 2, Vice City Returns or whatever they're cooking up, we know for sure they can't afford to let the GTA series die.