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why don't people clean their carts before attempting to sell them on craigslist? i spent two days trying to meet up with a guy selling a few gba carts for $6 each. when i got there and bought 5, they wouldn't work and there was dirt and nail polish on the backs of the cartridges. i tried 3 of them in my gba sp in the car and they wouldn't boot. i showed the seller and asked for my $28 back. yes, i know i could take them home and clean them with alcohol and a q-tip, but why wouldn't the seller have done this? its not like they were $1-$2 each. it just left a real bad taste in my mouth that (most) people don't take very good care of their things, yet they expect to be paid for them and believe they have value. i had to explain to my 10 year old daughter who was with me that we really don't need other peoples "junk" and just in case you're wondering these were games like spongebob squarepants and teentitans, nothing special.

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There is a retro video game store near where I live that speciali in selling video games from past to present, movies, cd's, vinyls, comic books, etc. Lot of the cart based games are just filthy especially the pins. A lot of the n64 games have them where they are corroded and just shot. I especially hate buying these type of games online at a store. They never clean them when selling the games to them or have them do it theirselves. Total common sense. Especially with cd/dvd formatted games. I always gently take care of it and make sure it ain't scratched, nicked, or gouged anywhere. Usually Game Stop preowned games for that specific media have that issue. There's been countless times that I have had to excgange a game due to it being scratched and gouged all over.

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I've found that even ebay listings that specifically state that the game has been cleaned and tested are usually dirty 9 times out of 10.

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I just picked up NES Gun Smoke from my local retro game shop and man was it filthy. The board contacts have some corrosion most likely from moisture. However I cleaned her up pretty and she loads fine on both my front and top loaders. I actually enjoy taking a dirty nasty cart and shinning it up.

Edited by Oldschool80skid

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Part of it depends on whether you are buying from a collector or not. Sometimes people are just selling the junk their kids left behind or don't use anymore. Not only do they not care, but they probably aren't aware of the need or the proper procedures for cleaning stuff. You should have seen what the Atari Heavy I bought off craigslist recently looked like. I bought it from an Asian guy in a nice house in a pretty nice neighborhood across town. It was a complete set with CX-10's and everything. And it was FILTHY! So much so that for the very first time I actually put an Atari in the dishwasher (which really didn't clean all that well btw for the record. Soap, water and a tooth brush work WAY better).

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I looked at some Coleco tabletop arcade games from Craigslist once. They were brought to a meeting place covered with dust and grime, peeling labels, beat up and water damaged. They appeared to have been stored in an open shed for years and years. The lady was downright insulted when I offered her less than the new-in-box units were going for on eBay. She called me cheap. I agreed and left with my cash still in my pocket. She seemed to have no clue what her merchandise actually looked like to another set of eyes.

 

Based on some other recent, more extreme experiences and observations, I'm convinced that there are people who truly do not recognize that things have an attribute called cleanliness. I'm a bit of a slob myself, but I'm fully capable of recognizing dirty when I see it and am fully capable of doing something about it. I know it adds to the appeal of an object for sale, if not the actual value. Some people either aren't aware or don't care. With some people, it's a downright delusional state of mind and they don't see the filth in front of them.

 

Having said that, if you want to buy my NES Power Glove, it might be a bit dusty when you receive it. :D

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I'll add that a lot of these sellers are completely clueless. They are the kind that see item X being offered at high prices so they think there's is also worth that. They have no clue and don't realize that condition, model, accessories and specifics play into value. They also don't understand the difference between ASKING and SELLING prices. I answered a CL ad for an "Atari + Games + controllers, huge lot" recently. The guy was asking $300 with no pictures. Turns out he had a light sixer, about 20 or so completely common games and the standard compliment of controllers. The only less-than ordinary thing he had in the lot was a Wico trackball with box. I explained to him that I sold a fully loaded, AV, modified Sixer with 66 games for way less than that. He wasn't upset, but he just really had no clue. He just knew he had a "lot of stuff" and it was "all original and in good condition".

 

As a general rule of thumb, people just have no clue.

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Sometime the clueless part play in your favor :D

 

I once spotted an ad that was as bland as this :

Title : Atari

description : Atari system and games

No picture.

Asking price as 5€

I called the seller. I was expecting an Atari 2600 with some carts that would in fact sell for 20€ but turns out...

It was an Atari STe, with original Atari color monitor, mouse, one joystick, and over one hundred of 720Ko floppies (almost all copies) for REALLY 5€.

It sure was a bit dirty, yellowed and dusty when I picked it up, but it was (still is) working fine and for the price you can't complain :D

 

Sadly those ads are getting very rare.

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Anything that I sell has been cleaned, because I clean everything when it comes in to my house.

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Last year I bought Gex 3 for the N64. Seller has/had a 100% positive feedback rating. Described "game has been cleaned, tested, and working order" (the usual standard tagline on a video game product on ebay. Received it in the mail a few days later. Popped it in my N64 the first time didn't boot up. Then second time, firmly inserted the cart and fired it up; didn't start. Grabbed the 91% alcohol and a qtip cleaned up the pins and started it a few more times. Never started up. So I inspected the pins on the bottom of the cart, I happened to see a pin was completely corroded and faded away and the game was deemed unplayable. Got a refund. And left negative feedback. Said it was tested and in working order, where in reality it was damaged.

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