The OppLoans Strategy Guide for More Affordable Gaming

opploans-strategy-guide-for-more-affordable-gamingFollow these pieces of expert advice and you’ll gain enough cheap and thrifty experience points to level up your saving abilities!

Gaming is more popular than ever! From Red Dead Redemption to the newest Super Smash Brothers to Fortnite to Candy Crush, video games have reached the level of movies, TV, and books as a thing that most people enjoy in, you know, some capacity or another.

(Maybe more so than books, if we’re being honest.)

But greater enjoyment of video games means more money spent on video games. And more money spent on video games means less money for food, shelter, and games that you haven’t already purchased.

So how can you save money on games? Well, we spoke to the experts to get all the tips and tricks you need to take your game shopping to the next level. Now let’s a-go!


Rental Gear Solid.

If you were shopping for a combat mech to save the world from an alien invasion, you wouldn’t just buy the first one you see on the lot, would you? You’d take it for a test run first to make sure the weapons systems handle to your liking. The same concept applies to video games.

“Instead of buying a brand new video game, rent it out first from a service like RedBox or GameFly,” suggested personal finance writer Dustyn Ferguson (@dustyndream).

“If you end up disliking the game, you aren’t stuck with it and you only incur a small fee. In addition, if you do like it but only see yourself playing it once, renting it out is still a great option to pay a fraction of the cost but still be able to play the entire thing.”

Gotta trade ‘em all.

Imagine if you could trade your games as easily as you could trade Pokemon. Well, you can—and it’s arguably even easier!

“If you have games you no longer play and would gladly trade for new ones to play, consider using a trading website,” advised Ferguson. “Trading websites like Game Trading Zone have been around for a while, but are still active with people looking to trade videos games with others.

“Simply post your game with what you are looking for, and swap your game when you find a match. The best part is you can keep doing this over and over, allowing you to have access to virtually endless amounts of games all for the price of one.”

Even if you know that you can trade in your games, you may feel reluctant to do so if you have some sentimental value or think you might play them again. But let’s be honest: even if you might go back to a couple of your all-time favorites, you’re not going to go back to all of the games you have.

And if you aren’t, there’s no reason not to use those games to save on your future games.

Wait/stay night.

When a new game is released, you might be tempted to get it right away. The “hype” around every big release seems to only get bigger and bigger each time; and if it’s a game you’re excited for, being patient can be tough. But it can also be a major money saver.

“The biggest tip I can give is to be patient and wait for sales,” recommended Jeff Kovacich, creator of the video game blog Joystick Journey  (@joystickjourney).

“Getting hyped for Red Dead Redemption 2 or any other major game release is understandable. Gamers want to be a part of the crowd. They want to play and discuss this month’s latest and greatest video game without the fear of running into spoilers.

“If you can remove yourself from this mindset and wait one to three months, you’ll see these games get heavily discounted to half or more shortly after their release. A strategy I use is to pay attention to the reviews and other games that are released near big blockbuster releases like Red Dead Redemption.

“If reviews of the game are mediocre or are being released near these big blockbuster games, they’re more likely to be discounted sooner due to the competitive video game marketplace. I’ve seen numerous games that either don’t live up to the hype or are just not marketed well get discounted by $20 or more in as little as two weeks.”

F-Zero-Cost.

As most people would agree, free is the best price of all. When it comes to games, however, free can often come with an asterisk. Many free-to-play games might not actually be free to enjoy.

Here’s some advice from Whitney Meers (@whitneymeers), writer, gaming enthusiast, and founder of Platformer Marketing: “Stick with free-to-play games and avoid spending money on items that offer no competitive advantage!

“While it’s easy to get in the mindset that having an amazing and rare Fortnite skin will make you feel somehow cooler, it’s not going to affect your gameplay at all. After Twitch streamer Tfue had his Epic account banned for supposedly trying to sell it, he actually made it cool to be a no-skin, a.k.a. someone who doesn’t shell out for cosmetics.

“He’s also arguably the best Fortnite player out there right now!”

Gameboy Microtransactions.

While the most fiscally responsible approach to gaming might be only playing free games and never paying for anything in them, that’s not always a fun way to play. And if you’re not having fun, aren’t you just wasting your time?

That’s why it’s worth remembering that microtransactions aren’t always terrible, and in some instances can even lead to a fun experience that’s cheaper than a regularly priced game.

“With regard to Fortnite, if you like the idea of cosmetics but don’t want to spend up to $20 on a single skin, then Battle Passes are a great deal,” Meers told us. “You get lots of loot to choose from for a fraction of the price that it would cost to purchase individual items separately, plus you get the fun of leveling them up with challenges.

“However, one thing to note is that you shouldn’t buy a Battle Pass near the end of the season (unless it’s on sale) as you’ll have a very difficult time leveling it up quickly enough to reap the rewards.

“I believe there are other games that use the Fortnite Battle Pass model but implement it differently. You may want to cross-reference this approach against other games’ models.”

But once you start paying for microtransactions, it’s all the more important to educate yourself about the exploitative stuff that’s out there.

“One of the worst microtransaction strategies is the random chance strategy,” warned Meers. “I’d suggest that if you have to pay real money or even if you don’t want to waste any in-game currency that you’ve earned, you avoid this.

“YouTuber “The Russian Badger” covered why this is an awful strategy in his most recent video, which I’ve linked to and started at the right point. I suggest that players not get roped into this strategy and actively discourage their favorite game makers from implementing these approaches to microtransactions.”

Metroid Amazon Prime.

By keeping an eye on the internet you can find all sorts of game deals. Beyond that, there are certain memberships that will allow you to consistently save on games. One of which you may already have.

“If you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber, one the best ways you can save money on games is by purchasing them through Amazon,” explained Doug Brennan, Digital Marketing Associate and manager of the Digital Addicts (@digitaladdicts_) blog.

“Even the latest video game releases are typically between 10-15% off. And with Prime, you’ll always receive free shipping as well. In my opinion, there’s no better way to save money on new releases.”

It’s almost time for the final boss! Use all of these saving techniques, and you will surely prevail! And if you want to learn more about saving money, check out these related posts from OppLoans:

What are your best tips for affordable gaming? We want to hear from you! You can find us on Facebook and Twitter.

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Contributors

Doug Brennan is a Digital Marketing Associate and manager of the Digital Addicts (@digitaladdicts_) blog. He’s always up-to-date on the latest in tech news, from video games and apps, to PCs and Macs, and everything in-between.
Dustyn Ferguson (@dustyndream) is the personal finance aficionado behind Dime Will Tell. He often blogs about his experiences and shares his secrets when it comes to making and saving more money to achieve financial success.
Jeff Kovacich is an avid video game player and collector for over 25 years. Apart from his day job as a digital marketer he can be found writing on his video game website, Joystick Journey  (@joystickjourney).
With more than a decade of content development experience, Whitney Meers (@whitneymeers)works hard to leverage her extensive knowledge of the digital sphere to build strategic plans for small businesses and major corporations alike. A longtime gaming enthusiast with a specialized interest in eSports, Whitney recently launched Platformer Marketing in an effort to provide gaming industry novices the insights they need to grow their audiences and build their brands. As a writer, she’s also contributed to projects for Frederator Digital’s The Leaderboard, Comedy Central’s AtomTV, truTV’s Dumb as a Blog, HuffPost, and many more. When she’s not pwning n00bs, she’s usually drinking coffee, petting dogs or checking her TRN rankings.

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