From my first VCS(late 70'S) to 2013, I bought games I liked. Ended up getting almost complete collections for ALL the usual suspects. Figured I might as well complete them. This was a dangerous turn. Ended up collecting more than playing.Collection was amazing, but it was more like a job than a fun hobby.
I'm not exactly sure when my slow accumulation of videogame cartridges turned into a collection. I was happy and content when it reached 2 systems and about 30-40 carts each. That would be the VCS and Intellivision. Incidentally, or not, most of our local arcades seemed to have about 30-40 games. So maybe I unwittingly used that number as a defining point.
In the months leading up to getting rid of my storage and warehouse efforts it felt more and more like a job. One of the precipitating factors was when ports started proliferating. There's only so many versions of Defender one can play while still enjoying it. And trying to get multiple 5 or 10 ports, 1 for each system, instantly became a hollow chore. I couldn't enjoy the games. My buddies couldn't enjoy the games. And it was a major hassle going to storage to retrieve something.
If you really think hard about and grind down to the very basics, collecting beyond 2 or 3 systems is very very self-defeating.
So. Currently I maintain a couple vintage PC rigs and a modern one. This covers all my electronic needs past, present, and likely future. They're repairable and replaceable and extremely versatile.
By staying in the virtual digital realm, punctuated by a few special physical items, I'm free to easily segue from topic to topic. For example I just finished up organizing and collating all my older versions of X-Plane, all nice and tidy. Kept the mail order boxes too, btw. Next it will be all the versions and printed and scanned material for Doom. That's a week-long gig. But it'll be fun and there's no timetable to completion. Just having a couple of strategy guides and books is more than enough to lend a sense of physical presence.
I like focusing on one system. It is a lot of fun when a new Jag game comes out. I get excited and it seems more special than just buying stuff for EVERYTHING.
That's the ultimate evolution of a collection. Every acquisition becomes a special treat.
Collectors often think the speed at which something is growing is a benchmark of how well their collection is doing. It is not.
Edited by Keatah, Yesterday, 7:17 PM.