Buyer’s Remorse and What’s Coming Up On The Blog…

A long, long time ago in this blog I slagged myself off for being a big money spending dumb-dumb, having almost finished writing an entry all about the massive amount of books I’d bought recently. Before starting the blog, however, it was video games that were my weakness.

Indeed, between Steam and GOG.com, I have hundreds of PC games, many of which I had to buy as part of a bundle and will probably never be played in my lifetime; but I’m not so naive to think that I’ll have enough time on my hands to play every single one I bought on purpose either. Looking through my list of those on Steam and my shelf on GOG, there are certainly a number of games there that I regret having bought. At the time I think I fairly justified the purchases, as I was a lot more interested in game design at the time, so even much older games from GOG seemed like a good purchase when they were cheap, if only to see how far games have evolved as a medium. But looking back, it terrifies me to think of the amount of money I must have spent.

Stupid stupid stupid.

That’s in the past thankfully. These days I buy video games a lot more carefully and on much rarer occasions. Apart from when I first got back into PC gaming and fell for Steam’s ridiculous sales like every other poor sap, I’ve always been quite careful, perhaps because I’ve always been “stingy” with my money; but I’m even more careful now, either deciding to pick a game up much later, seeing as I’ve a big enough backlog as is (did you know there’s whole websites to help you deal with that?), or going to great lengths to make sure that, if I am going to pick one up, I get it at the cheapest price possible, which I do anyway.

Besides, though I’ve most definitely been a dumb-dumb, my stinginess has allowed me to see through GOG and Valve’s sneakiness quite easily the whole time – I’m not like an idiot on my friend’s list who has over 2,000 fucking games on Steam alone (not including additional DLC, I believe), buying a ridiculous amount of games, that he probably doesn’t even like, whenever a sale comes around. No, I have 486, which is obviously quite a lot, of course – but keep in mind that many of those (I would think somewhere between 150 – 250) were part of bundles and that goes for any DLC I may have (which I typically don’t buy anyway).

That number has stuck around there for quite some time anyway, as I don’t even buy Humble Bundles that often any more, carefully considering if I really want or need the games included in those after all. In fact, the only two games I can remember buying in the past three months are Thief (which I pre-ordered at the dastardly cheap price of £15) and the Collector’s Edition of Dark Souls 2, which I found at a cheaper price at Tesco than other remaining retailers selling it.

So it has gotten better and, though I may have been prone to making some idiotic decisions in the past and cringe at some of the games I have in my “collection” (I find this term silly when you’re talking about a rather strict digital-only platform, though I do have some physical Collector’s boxes), I’m quite content now, having gotten past that initial lunacy, and that’s a very good feeling to have indeed.

Alas, I fear that books are my new buying addiction.

To be fair, I should point out as we come to this juncture that I don’t actually spend money on DVD’s, blu-rays, music or anything like that – it’s only my two favourite hobbies that I really use my money for. And, like those video games I’ve bought over the years, I am careful about how I spend my money, always checking what other sellers are charging for a book compared to Amazon itself, something a lot of people seem to forget to do. Likewise, I’ve recently started using eBay, which has been incredibly useful at saving money. But regardless of how careful you are, sometimes buying too much amounts to too much money spent.

Recently I have bought a ton of 2000AD comics, as I’ve mentioned in several blog entries briefly. From Prog 112 all the way to 763, with some missing issues, to be exact. The earliest Prog up until 536 were all from the same seller, six separate lots of about 50 that only I bidded on, which meant that, with this kind chap combining postage, I got these at really great prices (and all bagged, if you can believe it). From another guy I got Progs 532 – 763, not bagged, but for only £30, again being the only bidder. But total all that up, in addition to my recent purchasing of back issues of the Megazine and their floppies which you’ll already know of, as well as today’s arrival of Progs 2013 – Prog 1873 (that’s last year’s entire run until when I re-joined), and yeah, I’ve spent a lot of money to say the least.

It’s not good.

Yet like anything else, it’s through these mistakes that you truly learn your lesson. Although I’ve got a list of books I’m looking to buy as they come out this year – in fact, Volume 1 of The Mek Files, collecting every A.B.C. Warriors strip, arrived this morning too – my intentions are to be much more careful. There will certainly be no more purchasing of ye olde 2000AD comics – I’m done with those, particularly since the Prog apparently turns into a nightmare entering the 90’s, which is where I’ve ended – or, for that matter, the modern age.

It’s done.

Not just because my room is too small to hold all of these books and comics (though I intend to get proper boxes for the latter, which should stack neatly in the corner with a little tidying, in turn freeing room under my bed), but because I realise that, like my Steam and GOG lists, I’ve created a backlog that is going to take me ages to get through. Not as long obviously – video games take far more of your time up, especially if you play them as I do (if I find a game world immersive, I treat it as I would if it were the real world by playing in a slow paced manner) – but certainly quite a while. There is simply no need, in other words, to keep buying more and more at the speed I’m doing so.

We’ll make the most of it though. For a long time I’ve been fooling myself into thinking that this blog will have room for TV shows, films, novels and video games, but it really is a blog all about comics, now beginning to centre around 2000AD. So on the contrary of all my promises of talking about this or that, I think that’s what it will primarily be – although I still hope to do so one day, I don’t see myself talking about video games the way I do with my friends, as good as I think those posts could be. It’s a comics blog and I have a mountain of the damn things.

So here’s what’s coming up on the blog.

Right now I’m working on a four part series in which I catch up with the Judge Dredd Megazine, from issues 333 to 346, and will then begin to review them individually from 347 onwards. What I’m doing for the first three posts in that series is picking my favourite covers, Judge Dredd one-off’s, prose stories, etc. in catching up, then reserving a whole post to the floppies, of which I have many. Hopefully this is a post I’ll have done before going on holiday at the end of the month. Before you see that I’ll be reviewing all of Dan Abnett and Colin MacNeil’s Insurrection, having recently read the trade paperback in which the first two stories were collected and reading the last in the Megazine, which you should definitely see before I go on holiday.

Another few posts I hope to get done in this month are more of those using my own pictures. The one I’m undecided on bothering with is a look at the contents of my Collector’s Edition of Dark Souls 2 that arrived yesterday – you can, after all, find videos of what it looks like online and besides, I’m not sure anyone who didn’t buy it really cares. But those I’m certain I’ll bother with will be of the 2000AD lots that I bought, which are not only in very good condition but just fucking fantastic in general. Seriously, I can’t keep my hands off the damn things with all their amazing stories, and I think I feel a need to show ’em off.

Otherwise it will be business as usual, weekly reviews of the Prog still coming; and I’ll have a review of the Free Comic Book Day issue too.

After my holiday, and presuming I have the Megazine catch-up done before then, I have plans at the ready. As I mentioned in a few recent posts, I’ll be doing Retro reviews of these old Progs. Not all of them, of course, but I’ll be selecting a bunch, maybe even only a cover that I really liked, and having a chat about them. And similar to the Megazine catch-up, I’ll be doing one for the modern 2000AD stuff that I’ve missed too, making my way through Prog 2013 onwards until I get back to where I (re)started. Not individually, of course – I’ll probably just be picking some favourites again.

So there you have it. Madness. Absolute fucking madness. Guess I’d better make myself busy…

Until next time.

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