Wednesday, July 20

Collector's Editions: Lots of dollars, not much sense

There's only one collectors edition (CE) that I've purchased that has actually provided value for money. Back when the concept was still in its infancy - in Australia, at least; few made it to our shores early on - the limited edition package for Bioshock had it all: a figurine, soundtrack, the game and a steel bookcase. Even better, it was no more expensive than the standard game. As a matter of fact, I purchased it for about twenty dollars less than the retail price of the game alone.

 The Big Daddy of all bargains.

The game was - and still is - fantastic, I still have the soundtrack, and I managed to sell the figure for the sum of fifty bucks once the novelty wore off. No other CE has come even close to fulfilling Bioshock's value proposition; even when I managed to pick them up for a fraction of the asking price. The Terry Bogard statue included with King of Fighters XII can't hold his cap as pictured, plus some of his fingers have since snapped off. The tiny Chris Redfield that came with the Resident Evil 5 CE shattered from a short drop.

My loving wife even paid over one hundred and fifty dollars for the Street Fighter IV CE which came with two minuscule figurines of Ryu and Crimson Viper, an animated movie on blu ray (which I never watched), and a mini comic. So much money, so little value. I guess if anything, it proved how awesome my spouse is. I wish I could have saved her the money all the same.

With a little bit of self-control, I've managed to go about a year without buying a collector's edition for a new release (the sole exception being inFamous 2: Hero Edition which I pre-ordered for a fraction of the recommended retail price). I've picked up several on the cheap - some as few as six months after release - and have enjoyed being able to spend more money on actual games instead of worthless trinkets.

Skimming through the news today though, and it looks like that is about to change. I'm sorry, Matt: I tried.

Batman: Arkham City
Forgetting that I'm a huge fan of Batman and Rocksteady's previous effort: this package offers so much more than the average, limited-run package. Including a Batman statue, art book, soundtrack, a dvd with the animated feature Batman: Gotham Knight, early DLC access, collectable cards and A BATMAN STATUE: this will be an essential purchase. The package will retail for just under one hundred US dollars, meaning that Australian consumers can look forward to a price tag that should be double that amount. I'll be looking to import in the first instance, but I don't think I can walk away from this much Batfan service. 

Na na na na na na na na EXCESS!

Source: Kotaku

Star Wars: The Old Republic
My interest in this package makes no sense; at all. I love Star Wars - there's no denying that - but I haven't played an MMO since the Guild Wars beta. I also very rarely buy PC games at bricks-and-mortar retail, with Starcraft II being the last game I procured in a box. Still, SWTOR's CE comes with an awesome statue, a soundtrack and oodles more assorted geekery. It's rumoured to cost more than minor veterinary surgery (about two hundred and twenty US dollars), but it looks so(ooooooooooooooooo) cool. 

 Search your feelings, you know it be truly ridiculous. 

Source: G4TV, Bitmob

Do you buy collector's editions? Or, are you one of those disciplined, sensible individuals who would rather buy two games instead of a nonsensically-expensive one? Are you likely to be lured in by any of the loot above?


  1. I prefer to buy standard games although I do contemplate the odd special edition especially when figurines are involved ie SFIV, GoW etc. I do tend to fall for special edition movies and tv series. I stopped after Family Guy Star Wars Something Something Something Dark Side. It came with a shirt, cards, a cool box and some other stuff but the decal on the shirt peeled off in the qld sun. I don't use the bonus stuff and realistically I just want the product. At 28 the bonus stuff just doesn't hold value

  2. At 27, that stuff shouldn't hold value for me. It does in pictures, but once I have it in my hands I can't help but feel severe buyer's remorse.

  3. Funnily enough, mere days after this post I bought the SFIV CE... but only because it was $25. Plenty of value there at that price!

    I'm actually happier to buy the special editions if they are the same price or less than the standard, but if often means I have to wait a little while. I have to admit though, the extra stuff for Arkham City is enticing (though not enough for me to buy)

  4. Good pick up, TJ. SFIV is one of 2009's finest releases