Aaron Brethorst

Round peg in a square hole, rabid generalist.

How to Find Great Deals on Video Games

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A few years back, I had an idea for a website that would let me track all of the console video games I wanted to buy, set a price, and then forget about them until the games finally reached my price threshold. I made a few half-hearted stabs at building the web app here and there, but something lit a fire under my ass a couple months back. I’ve been working on the project during nights and weekends for a while now, and finally have something cool to share. The site is live, and will help you find the games you want a cheap price.

Here’s the backstory: when an Xbox 360 game is released, it costs $60. Somewhere between 3-12 months after release, it will likely drop by 50% or more in price. There are always some exceptions to this: so-called AAA titles like Halo Reach, for instance. But, virtually everything else will follow this rule. Of course, waiting for the price to drop has a few downsides:

  1. You have to wait until the games drop in price.
  2. You have to remember which games you wanted to buy.
  3. You have to still be interested in these games 6-12 months after they’re released.

For me—and for lots of other people, I think—issues 1 and 3 aren’t particularly big deals. There are 15 Xbox 360 games ranked 90 or higher on Metacritic that I have never played. The two games I know for a fact I will buy between now and Christmas are Fallout 3: New Vegas and Civilization 5. These two games will more than occupy me until 2011, which means that it will be months or years before I get around to playing Dead Rising 2, Halo Reach, Call of Duty: Black Ops, Fable III, or Castlevania: Lords of Shadow.

And that’s not saying anything about those 15 90+ games I have yet to play, let alone Bioshock 2, Call of Duty MW2, Prototype, Alan Wake, or the dozens of games for other platforms that I have never gotten around to playing.

However, none of this addresses Issue 2: you have to remember which games you wanted to buy. And that’s where Truedat comes in: you have a hefty backlog of games you want to play, they cost too much right now, you have too many other things going on, and you just want to be told when they end up becoming really, stupidly cheap. Like, latté cheap.

Truedat lets you track all of the games you want to buy, and say what price you’re willing to pay for them. The web app will automatically email you when your games’ target prices are hit. Did I mention it’s totally free? I intend to make money on the site through Amazon’s Associates program, which means I don’t have to charge you a cent for using it. Nor does your purchase price change.

So, sign up now: you have nothing to lose, except more of your time ;-)

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