Yesterday, I bought another XBox game (not Morrowind Game of the Year), and I decided to browse the actual value at Video Game Price Charts. We paid $3 for it, and it came with a manual and the packaging was in half-decent shape. But...it was only worth $1.88 (Yesterday). I was expecting this as XBox games are generally worthless, even the rare ones that are actually in demand. The game, by the way, was Return of the King. I wanted to get something Kristin might actually play with me and she likes the Lord of the Rings movies. And Two Towers and Return of the King are competent games (Return moreso). We're still looking for Towers at a reasonable price (below $10).
What shocked the hell out of me was that a lot of games that were rare but NOT in demand were worth over $30 (Morrowind is not one of these). However, it was forgivable that some were niche titles - like bass fishing. What shocked me even more is that Morrowind Game of the Year Edition is worth $30. I realise that gamers are fickle. I also know that Morrowind Game of the Year Ed. was discontinued shortly after release. But I also know that it was re-released as a Platinum Hit. The point is, on every gameselling auction, it's BASE value is what it went for new. And it's not all that rare. You could buy it for PC for less, complete; you only need a PIII 1GHz with 512 MB RAM and a 64 MB video card to run it (that's a little bit above base requirements, but I wouldn't suggest anything less). Of course, you can buy a used XBox for $25, so why not? Anyone with only a 360 and half a brain won't play it after the first attempt, the load times are twice as long (it takes two minutes to load a save game on the original XBox...think about that). Buuuuuuut...that was the reason why I finally caved on buying a 360, was that Bethesda made an emulator for Morrowind. So maybe the value has merit after all?
Coming back to this point, though...I'm starting to notice a lot of titles that are rare but out of demand have increasingly higher values. Syndicate for SNES (extremely rare, next to no demand even among collectors unless they've played it) is one such example. It's worth more than Final Fantasy 3 and only slightly less than Chrono Trigger. Syndicate for the Genesis, also rare, is worth $5.18. Now, as a gamer who has played every version of Syndicate except the Jaguar and 3DO, I can say that the SNES version is superior. both console versions pale in comparison to the PC version (well, on a gameplay level; the SNES version had better graphics and much improved music), but between the SNES and Genesis, I can say the SNES version was better.
Nostalgia's kind of scary like that (especially the XBox were almost every title was mass-produced), how it affects values in ways that are...well, just plain rediculous. I'm not even going to touch art, but I will mention one thing. The most worthless clutter on the planet. We call articles of this type "Antiques". They're a reminder of a simpler time when we were supposedly happier and even more cultured. Many of these things are items that will allegedly never be reproduced (at least by the original manufacturer, hint-hint). Many collect them based on a pretentious attitude that old is good (or better). And then they show them off to prove how cultured they are becoming and how it makes them a better person.
Starting to sound familiar, eh? Maybe we should all reassess our collections and determine what they're really worth to us. Would I ever sell Morrowind? Heh, no. After 5 game stores and 4 months of waiting for it to actually come to one? Not a chance. You couldn't take it from my cold dead hands.
Does having Morrowind make a me a better person? No. But beating it 5 times...probably didn't either. It was fun, though.