I Sure Am a Consumer Who Wants to Buy Stuff (That’s Why Companies Must Love Me)

I’m keen on buying (useless) game related stuff. I buy new video games. I buy new board games. I buy all sorts of material that will “help me make games”. I even bought a custom card deck (that maybe actually was useful. Maybe. Kind of) Of course I’m doing this to get better knowledge about the gaming industry (yeah, right).

I suppose that when I say mention to collegues how I’m “doing market research” (buying video games), “benchmarking competitors” (testing board games), “learning game design” (buying new board games) they nod their heads in respectful manner and agree that “we all need to know what’s happening in our industry”… but who am I really fooling? We are just kids who wants toys. We just have hard time accepting that.

Okay, maybe I really learn from the stuff I buy, but I think my wife is kind of right when she asks me “do you really need all that new material to make games?”

I know you guys might be in the same situation, and I know we kids need toys to play with, but how you guys really argument all the purchases you do? How you convince yourself to buy new gaming gear?

Are they really that useful?

Or are we just consumers that are fooling ourselves?

Juuso Hietalahti


  1. @Brian: I start calling it “occupational hazard” too ;)

    @Jake: Hah, hah. Sure :)

  2. I was thinking the same before but now stopped buying this tool and that program. I told myself not to buy anything befre the next project is finished. And surprisingly it works great!

  3. Just get the game done dude. Then buy some neat games as a reward when you are in the brainstorming phase for your next game.

  4. I call it the “occupational hazard” of a game developer.

    One thing I’ve been doing more of lately is getting more stuff on the cheap. I play Flash games and load up emulators (of games I have sitting in storage, right?) to get my inspiration. I look for discount games that people used to rave about. Steam’s specials are also useful for picking up a game on the cheap.

    Rushing out and buying the game on release weekend or buying a new board game because the box was attractive isn’t really “research” though. ;) But, I won’t tell anyone your secret if you don’t….

  5. No, this kind of research isn’t very useful. It seems you’re buying everything “cool”, not necessarily related to the project you work on at the time. You’re writing “Dead Wake”, and how does a custom card deck relate to your game? It doesn’t make sense to be paranoid about not knowing enough about the gaming industry – if one had a full time job of “being up to date” in the industry… he would have to work overtime a lot. Limit your research to what’s relevant to your current project. The rest of the stuff you buy is just for fun (of course, there’s nothing wrong with that), don’t fool yourself :)

  6. I stopped kidding myself that I buy a game to gain creative ideas or whatnot from, long ago.
    The thing I fight over now is, I know I shouldn’t buy the game, because in all honesty I already have a hard time finding the time to get all the work I want done. But I still buy and play games, and then I feel guilty for it.

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