Doing your bit OR An shameful win

I love charity shops. I love a bargain. My quest for collecting all the games I can (not every recent gen FIFA obviously, I’m never going back and playing those old ones), charity shops can be an absolute gold mine. Sometimes I find some wonderful games in poor condition, sometimes some poor games in wonderful condition, or anything inbetween.

Yesterday I was visiting Portsmouth for the first time in ages, so I wandered around Commercial Road and North End, checking out the charity shops along the way. The below was found in I think 4 shops, but all the games from one of them were almost perfect condition. The Xbox 360 games had booklets wrapped in tissue, with any other collectables (postcards etc).

Latest haul
Carefully protected booklets

These are low cost items, and this level of care by the precious owners was lovely to see. However, you’ll notice in the first image the red case. This was a really crappy Commandos 2, with the cover cut out and put in this case, the disc needing a damn good clean. But then it cost just 50p…..it’s another for the collection. The whole lot was less than £20.

While I have no interest in resale, I buy games to play, I’m not put off if the condition isn’t A1, it just has to look like it’ll work even if it needs a bit of a scrub. I keep a list of all the physical games I pickup, regardless of format, with a rough note of the value, just because it interests me. I’ve nothing worth a real ton of cash, but seeing my beloved Vib Ribbon’s value makes me smile, as well as some of the unboxed Mega Drive games I was gifted.

Some if the items I pick up, I have no clue about. For example…..

Now of course I knew of The Warlock of Firetop Mountain as a book, I used to loved the Fighting Fantasy books and have recently purchased some of the licenced t-shirts from the fantastic SevenSquared, but as to what this was, how it would look or if it would even run, I had no clue. I gifted it to a friend to try on stream and well, let’s just say that at least it wasn’t expensive……at least it ran!

Another of my recent hauls was this:

Again, about £20 all in from a charity shop in Peterborough I’d never visited before. I really should go again, just in case they’ve restocked although I think this almost cleared out their video games section…..from experience I know that most don’t keep a lot in, and anything really old is rarely donated.

Now bargains are great to get, and I guess it’s more an issue (if there’s one at all) if I was reselling, but just occasionally I get that twinge of guilt about paying so little for some items that I know are worth more. But then would a charity shop ever shift something at full retail that’s truly retro, or do they need to keep things turning over at pace? I’ve never stopped and advised the store that anything is way under priced, but maybe I should…..but then maybe I shouldn’t and it doesn’t matter. Maybe I just overthink this stuff!

So! Interested in your thoughts. What have you picked up from a charity / thrift shop or car boot sale? Anything of genuine rarity or value? Is it you who managed to find that perfect condition Panzer Dragoon Saga on Sega Saturn for £1? Maybe you’ve taken a punt on something only to get it home and found you’ve been had….

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