Do you enjoying collecting Retro Video Games from the 80’s and 90’s?
Then allow me to bend time and space and give you a glimpse into the Golden Era of Retro Video Game Collecting!
Recently I found a very old receipt tucked inside my Japaneses Sega Mega Drive game Assault Suit Leynos. Clearly 1998 was the time to be buying games for your Sega Genesis or Mega Drive.
Have a look at this Video Games Connection receipt from July 30, 1998 (in Canadian dollars).
Oh yes, you read that right (and just in case you can’t see the image):
Rolling Thunder $10
Dino Land $10
SD Valis $10
Magical Hat $10
Heavy Unit $10
Assault Suit Leynos $10
Even after tax that is just $11.50 per (complete and like new) game. Ah, good times…
I bought my Sega Genesis sometime in the launch year of the system and I was buying games from Video Games Connection all through the consoles life span and beyond. I even paid Video Games Connection $30 to modify my Genesis so that I could play Japanese Mega Drive games. The larger Japanese Mega Drive plastic cartridges physically did not fit into the Sega Genesis and that was the only form of region protection for a long time (much later Sega added software region locks to some games). At the time Video Games Connection told me they would have to cut the plastic of the Genesis case to widen the slot for the larger Japanese cartridges and they also told me that they had to do ‘a little technical work here and there’. That last part was a lie to help sell the $30 service. I didn’t know any better and to be honest I bet I would have been content to pay the $30 (Mom actually paid) even if they stated that cutting the plastic was the only work required. There was no need to lie.
But Look! Complete Mega Drive games for $10 each! All is forgiven.
I still have my original Sega Genesis and I’ve since widened the cartridge slot even more on my own because Video Games Connection original work was not wide enough to fit the extra large Japanese cartridges made by a company called Sunsoft.
What I find surprising is that I have re-bought every one of these games more recently except for Assault Suit Leynos. Which means that I likely traded or sold those titles in the receipt for other games. I did a lot of trading back then. And it looks like I no longer have Rolling Thunder 2 for the Mega Drive. Hopefully I traded it for something worth while because Rolling Thunder 2 is a pretty good game.
Here’s what re-buying the games cost me (CAD).
Batman (couldn’t find my cost)
ESWAT $23 (Purchased June 2014)
Dino Land $15 (Purchased February 2012)
Valis SD $35 (purchased July 2014)
Magical Hat $60 (Purchase July 2016)
Heavy Unit $20 (purchased June 2014)
What I enjoy most about finding this receipt is that it validates my memory of what I remember paying for these games (and many others from back then). Over time memories can get skewed and it’s great to see that what I thought I remembered actually was.
Video Games Connection turned it’s back on Video Games and the store changed into a Travel Agency (same owners) a very long time ago… but the Sega Dude is still going strong!
I recently found a copy of Rolling Thunder 2 locally.
How hilarious! I paid ten bucks or less a pop for my first batch of Japanese MD games as well. I believe they were: Shining and the Darkness, Darwin 4081, Tetris (bootleg), Burning Force, Space Harrier II and one other game I forget. I still have them, but not the receipts, sadly…
I was surprised that I had that receipt all this time. It was a fun look back.
Where you able to play your Japanese Shining and the Darkness? I remember playing the Genesis version with a friend and we were a bit disappointed that it was all a dungeon crawl. I’d like to revisit it and see if I like it more now. I remember thinking the graphics were amazing at the time. Even now a lot of it still looks great.
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I’m wondering if the prices will keep rising with Genesis or kind of level out or what. Seems like they keep going up and up with some titles (on eBay, I mean). I regret selling a few that are already climbing like Cadash and Batman. Some others that I got in the 90s (maybe from Funcoland? Memory fails) like MUSHA and Flink go for much more now.
Shining in the Darkness is a bit of a slow one. I never got too far into it, but became interested in 1st person dungeon RPGs after enjoying Etrian Odyssey and then going back to play the original Wizardry. I think they actually are better if you get out real pen and graph paper — yes, even in year 2017! Try it.
Sorry, not pen but pencil… it’s good to erase 🙂
The Saturn game Shining the Holy Ark returned the series to the dungeon crawl and seemed to have a faster pace.
It’s a really good question. I don’t know if Genesis game prices will keep rising like they have been. Personally I think the Retro scene has been cooling off a bit. I’ve noticed that there are good prices to be had if on game forums but you have to be patient and wait. I’m tired of ebay prices and I’ve stopped using ebay.
Both Cadash and Batman are really good games for the Sega Genesis. I recommend both. I found that those two games are still really fun to play. They’ve aged very well!
If you want to get them again try real hard to resist really high prices. Go to a few retro gaming forums and post a ‘want to buy’ list.
I agree that Shining in the Darkness is a bit slow. Back in the day when it was new the graphics were soooo amazing that it’s looks made up (a bit) for the pace of the game. I also played Etrian Odyssey and I liked it for a good long while but I also got bored with it. Now Wizardy is a very cool old school game. Good pick! Yeah, a lot of old retro games benefit from having a pencil and grid paper handy 🙂
Hopefully you kept your MUSHA. The price on that game is insane. I’ll never pay $300-$500 USD for a single complete Genesis game. That’s just too much. Although recently I have paid about $200-$260 CAD each for a few games. But that wont happen often.