Gaming, like any hobby, can have a tendency to get away on you when it comes to finances. One day you are browsing a games store and pick up an entry level game, the next you are waiting to snipe your 15th copy of Munchkin on ebay, your house now filled with boardgames and the memories of a simpler time.
So how do you keep this hobby in check and not break the bank? Here are our top tips:
- Join a gaming group – Meetup is a great place to meet people who share your interests and who come ready made with a bunch of games. These groups are usually free, or a small donation, therefore you can expose yourself to a bunch on different games without having to put your hand in your pocket too deeply;
- Start your own gathering – from your meetup you can find the people that you want to play with, add in some friends or a partner and there’s another playing group. Work out the group’s interests and a budget and either everyone can chip in, or everyone buys a single copy of a different game to bring along. It’s really not worth having a group that has 4 copies of Rising Sun in it, so the money can he spread around to different things.
- Shop the sales – Mighty Ape and Ozgameshop often have sales with high percentage discounts, where you can save up to 30-40% off regular prices. My suggestion is to keep a wishlist of the games that you want and keep an eye on the sales to jump on them when they come around.
- Play Online – There are a couple of places that you can play boardgames online. Sure they may scratch that tactile itch of picking up meeples and placing them, but playing online can get you trialling some games that you may otherwise not have bought. Tabletopia and Boardgame Arena both offer browser gaming, in addition to Tabletop Simulator which you can play via the Steam platform.
- PnP – Print and Play is the other option to keeping costs down, you can find plenty of resources for the best PnP games around to print out at home and trial (or even sleeve them and keep them permanently). A lot of small solo games will also offer this as a free/low cost alternative to backing their Kickstarter as well.
So those are our tips, what are your tips to keep the cost of gaming down, while still being able to play the best games out?