Tell Us Dammit

Tell Us Dammit

Yesterday I did this: I left the office, hopped on the train and went straight to my local JB Hifi. They were having a sale, I wanted to buy stuff — I wasn’t sure what kind of stuff. Just stuff. I waste so much money. So I guess my question is this — what things that you’ve bought on complete impulse do you regret purchasing the most?

Yesterday I was so proud of myself. Here is the list of things I picked up, fully intending to buy.

– Akira on Blu-ray – Tree of Life on Blu-ray – Rise of the Planet of the Apes on Blu-ray – A new Xbox 360 for some ungodly reason – An tablet of some kind – A Macbook Air for my wife – Various different video games

Yep, I was really just about to drop over $2000 I didn’t really have on stuff I didn’t really need. But then I had an epiphany: I was about to buy all these products just for the bloody sake of it. It wasn’t out of need, want or even boredom, it was out of a primal desire to simply consume stuff.

I was so proud of myself. I walked out of the store with absolutely nothing. In saying that, I did waste a good hour of my life.

Anyway, my question is this: what is some of the most stupid things you’ve bought on impulse? Anyone suffer from massive buyer’s regret?


  • I have the worst habit of buying useless stuff…. bought an XB360 never played it, bought a Sony Xperia Play used it for a week, $2000 desktop…which I know use at work because I financed an Alienware m17x R3…. financed and iPad 2, so I could read books on it…it’s forever flat… own an iPhone 4 (why did I get the Sony Xperia?)…so much stufff that just sits there… plus my 40′ TV which is also never use. But I shall never sell any of it… 😛

    • Man that was disappointing. What sort of unspeakable evil only has the power to possess one person, and then die in less than 20 hits? It didn’t even have more than one form! WHAT WERE THEY THINKING?!?

      • “We want the experiance to be about you… which is why we’re giving the main avatar a voice actor and making him act like a three year old. Big bad evil guy? Sure, but he still farts at people and giggles”

      • What can possess a man and yet die in less than 20 hits? How about one of those slugs from The Puppet Masters? They seem pretty evil, and I wouldn’t want to speak about it.

  • My steam catalogue is about 90% games I’ve never played that I bought because they were on sale.

    I was a bit disappointed by the JB hifi sale. I don’t really buy DVD’s or blu-rays. I went for a good set of headphones, but all the best brands were excluded anyway so it was a complete waste of time.

    • Same here Thom, I was looking for a nice pair of skull candy headphones for the wife and they weren’t on sale… Oh well

      • If you’re looking for headphones try this site, they’ve got heaps of good stuff (housewares, clothing etc, even Super Mario wall paper stuff hehe)

        Be wary though, postage is expensive to Australia. Its very fast, but also expensive so you think you might save $100 but then it costs you $150 for postage. They have heaps of different headphones. Bought some Skullcandy earphones for $10 – they’re broken now of course as earphones always do but atleast one earphone still works lol

  • Besides several cars over my lifetime, just about every overpriced collectors edition of any game I own. Seems like a good idea at the time until you realize it’s mostly crap and ends up stuffed in a drawer somewhere. Yet as soon as the next game I want comes up I’m down preordering the most expensive and limited edition that I can.

  • Well done, that’s impressive.

    I’ve wasted money in the past. I spent like $310 trying to get a Kindle Fire here in Australia, before realizing the apps won’t work. Ah well, at least I’ll have an attractive brick to look at when it shows up. For the record, I blame the article on Kotaku saying it was the hottest thing this christmas.

    But again, well done on not impulse buying. Plus, you can always wait for the Akira remake. Did you hear who they have lined up for the female lead? rofl rofl noooo…

  • Spent ~$800 on new PC parts recently for no real reason other than I had made a few trips to that store beforehand to buy headphones. No regrets yet.

  • Call of Duty Black Ops. I was in a bad mood needed some credit card therapy and was happy for all of about 20 minutes.

  • My wife has been lusting after a Thermomix (some super-fancy kitchen appliance, don’t ask me what it actually does) for ages. But she hasn’t bought one because they’re also super-expensive. So last week I decided that I’d buy her one for xmas as a surprise. I placed an order on Friday, and on Monday my credit card was charged. As soon as I saw it there (I won’t go into detail, but you wouldn’t get a whole lot of change out of 2 grand) I thought “WTF have I just done? All that money on what appears to be a glorified blender??!”. I guess the real test will be when she finds out. If she’s happy about it, then it’ll be OK, but the more I think about it the more I think she’ll be p*ssed off with me for spending that much money without even discussing it with her first. If I end up dropping that kind of cash and it actually ends up p*ssing her off rather than making her happy, then we will be talking MASSIVE regret as I think about paying lots and lots of money to piss off my wife when I can think of plenty of ways to do that for free.

    • Good luck!

      If all goes pear-shaped, you can always sell for 10% less than you paid. Plenty of people would snap it up. It’s the new kitchen Kraze apparently. I went to a Thermomix dinner party and wasn’t totally blown away, but will admit it’s a reasonably impressive bit of equipment

    • a couple of friends of our have this thermomix, they swear by it and it actually do quite a lot. But yea, $2000 is a bit excessive for a glorified blender…

  • Sword of the Stars 2.

    Complete POS at launch, still doesn’t function. Wasn’t even a beta, it was an alpha with countless features missing and bugs everywhere.

    Still waiting on Paradox to honour its agreement to hand out refunds

    • oh god, oh god not you too….

      Seriously, I was sold up pretty hard on that game… but what a fumble.

      Release the beta by accident, appologise. Release the beta again. Appologise. Release the ‘real’ version, turns out its beta.2.

      Get an appology and told “We will fix it.”

      Say what you will about the big name titles, most of them work straight outta’ the box.

  • I bought a 3DS on impulse when they were released…. all i played on it was Pokemon Black and that was a DS game. Although i don’t really regret it now. i probably wouldn’t be able to get it with all the new games out now even with the price drop. And I’m sure ill find some way to get mariokart 7 :3

  • Up untill a month ago, the 3DS was my biggest regret of an impulse buy….I bought one at launch (yeah I know, why bother considering the lousy launch line up)…it sat collecting dust for months and truthfully made me feel that I wasted 350$ on a DUD….thankfully, Super Mario 3D Land and Mario Kart 7 did change that outlook…but yeah for a long time, I fully regretted buying one of these at launch

    999$ Launch PS3 would be the other regret…Don’t get me wrong, I think the system has improved drastically from when it launched…but yeah the launch games were a bit of a mess (I remember buying Tony Hawk Project 8 and that game had so many frame rate issues it wasn’t funny)…Resistance was cool but once again, for a long time I couldn’t help but feel burned that I spent 999$ on a system that had inferior ports and a lack of anything compelling to play…thankfully that ain’t the situation now

      • Actually, I wonder why we _don’t_ put the dollar sign after the amount. It better matches the way we speak about monetary figures. You don’t go around saying “I spent dollars one hundred today”, after all.

        • That’s my thought too Deek…So I sometimes put it that way…I’m more than aware that it’s “wrong”, but alas I do it anyways

  • Where I live (regional Victoria) I usually have a massive amount of time between desire and purchase.
    However, my biggest case of buyers remorse came from a grey-imported HTC Desire.
    For a slight discount I ended up with a non-native recharger and an adaptor, and a great phone which slowly broke down over several weeks until it was beyond recovery.
    While still within manufacturers warranty (the company I bought through had since disappeared) I had to go through Italy to have the phone repaired and since they refused to communicate in english I essentially ended up with a very expensive paperweight with a large microSD.
    I learned my lesson and my new HTC Sensation was purchased locally on a plan and after the screen failed was swiftly replaced.

  • I look at some of the anime box sets I bought a few years ago and facepalm at myself. But those are hidden away in storage now so I’ll never see them again.

    In terms of games, the most notable dumb purchase was Stoked, a snowboarding game that I bought on impulse because I wanted to relive the glory days of SSX. I soon discovered that Stoked is a ridiculously difficult game, and when I’d failed enough at the tutorial, I gave up completely and the game has been hidden away ever since.

    • I’m in the same boat, on impulse I bought what I thought was a good transformers season back in the day.. Only to find out it was all in Japanese and extremely bad, (I actually enjoy some japanese dubs, but this was outrageous..)

  • In terms of actual genuine regrets?

    Nintendo DSi…I really don’t know why I traded my DS Lite for that thing…regret it to this day

    My 42 inch Samsung LCD TV – Well not a full regret…I like the TV, but there is apart of me that wishes I had paid the extra and went with a 50-55 inch Plasma (or LCD – or even have waited a little longer and went LED)….I like my TV, but I kind of regret that I didn’t go bigger

    iPod Touch – I have an iPhone, have an iPad and am still struggling to figure out why I bought an iPod Touch…probably the biggest regret of an impulse buy

  • Everyone needs a copy of Akira on Bly-ray.. unless you’ve already got it on DVD I guess… and everyone definitely needs another Xbox 360, so their wife can play Lego Harry Potter in another room…

    I buy things that I enjoy for short periods, I don’t usually regret the purchase, rather I regret that I don’t get more enjoyment out of them. I have a few RC cars and helicopters that were fun for a while but now gather dust.. not to mention that Wii, it has been enjoyed in short bursts but not for months now.

  • GZA/Genius – Words From The Genius – “It’d be interesting to hear GZA before Wu-Tang” I thought. “Might as well complete my GZA collection” I thought.

    *plays album* o_O”

    I think I’ve played the cd maybe 3 times since I bought it.

    The Iron Giant (DVD) – the reviews were good, but I really didn’t like this movie and ended up selling it for like $5

    Buying a mini-disc player back in 2001 wasn’t one of my smartest decisions, thought that format was gonna take over lol

  • I bought a ipad, i used it for a month and then put it in a draw and didn’t use it for 4 months. Foretunately i use it more now days. But i regretted it for so long! I also bought a launch 3ds but i always thought it was worth it. I didn’t play a 3ds game for ages just played pokemon, then zelda, then starfox and Mario 3d land. I always had something to play o it!

    • Timely example…my ladyfan was thinking about getting me an iPad for Christmas, but I’m just not sure I’ll get much out of it. Hmmm…what to do guys??

      • I love my iPad, I use it every day. A whole lot more comfortable using the internet without lugging the Laptop around. Sure, I think my mindless browsing quota has gone up a little…

  • A bunch of PS2 games which I am yet to play. As an unemployed graduate I always find myself buying games when I don’t have the money for them. My regret is less on the money aside and more on the fact that I have yet to touch either of those games in 6 months or more. I can deal with paying for the games but it really hurts me when I look at the games and realise I haven’t touched either of them. It’s like buying fruits and forgetting to eat them after a week and they go bad. Now that is all my ps2 impulse buys are rotting fruit. This is complicated further by the fact that I now have a PS3 and some of those games look really crappy. Also some of the games now have HD re-releases making me regret the purchases even more.

    My new year’s resolution will be to try and finish a good number of those games.

    Another Impulse buy I regret is my Android phone. After reading reports on various apps and games on the go I was psyched for a new phone. Little did I know I would barely use any of the apps and that the battery life was piss poor. I use the phone out of spite nowadays but I think I might go back to my plain old nokia which just makes calls and texts but the battery lasts for over a week instead of a day with my android phone.

    • What sort of Android did you get? Was it a Galaxy S2? I had similar problems but then downloaded juice defender and it literally triples the battery life.

      I am starting to miss some of my IOS games though…

  • You’re a better man than I.
    I did the same last night, walked into one of the local JB’s for the sale.
    Left ~$300 poorer, but with a bucket load of Blu-Rays.

    Although about 2/3 of what I picked up was for gifts.
    (If I planned ahead I could have bought online for probably loads cheaper… but I left it too late…. and I’m a consumer whore 🙁 )

  • Brink.

    I avoided this game for so long, but one day I just thought “Why not”

    Why not indeed.

    Also Bullet storm, Divine cybermancy (What was that I dont even) Sword of the Stars 2, Assassins creed 3 (I WANT TO LOVE YOU, DAMMIT) Battlefield BC 2: Vietnam, Men at War vietnam, Kane and Lynch 2 (See AC3).

    Plus I also dabble in 40k, and as any 40k player can attest, you simply burn money to play.

    • Divine cybermancy is awesome.

      But it is one of those games I think where your either gonna love it or despise it

      • I’ve heard it described as “Like driving a car made of cyber-punk into a wall of quasi-religious sub-text at a thousand miles per hour. You might just walk away with a few scratches, or you might die.”

  • I didn’t have a list as big as yours, Mark. I did however have the same sense of baseless self satisfaction when I walked out of JB with nothing last night. I was also going to buy another 360… one for every room in the house I guess?

    PSPgo…. nuff said

  • Alienware Area 51 ALX

    Its an amazing machine, I love using it, but I really I could have bought a gaming pc and a gaming laptop, console and probably a decent TV for the price I paid.

  • With so much regret in the comments Mark I think it would be best if you replaced the article picture with a picture of a cute kitten or puppy to placate all our disappointment and regret.

    If not please follow up this article with a feel good piece or a calming YouTube video. Thanks.

      • I did have to double check what year the film came out, but I didn’t cheat and look at the file name to know what movie it was.

        Although I did look at the file name after posting that comment, realising that there may have been other films or TV shows where Alicia Silverstone gleefully goes shopping.

        • See: Every movie with Alicia Silverstone in it, or that cartoon where she voiced the girl with comically large braces.

      • I watched Clueless something like 20 times during HSC English. I am not eager to see any references to it on Kotaku, lest all my quotes and comparisons to Jane Austen’s ‘Emma’ start to re-emerge. 😛

        Anyway… on topic. I plan out basically everything I buy, so I rarely get buyers remorse from an impulse decision. I do start to feel guilty whenever I buy a big-ticket item that I don’t really NEED though (PS3, new computer, etc). Being frugal has its pros and cons, I suppose…

  • An Asus 1215B netbook.. Cost me $500, it’s barely used… I wanted something to install/test/learn Linux with, but I’ve got bugger all time to actually use the thing and now I can’t even sell it without taking a massive loss on it’s value because I removed the recovery partition.

  • There’s a few things I can think of and see lying around. The eagle eye PS3 converter, a set of plantronics PC gaming headphones, The Force Unleashed 2. Nothing overly expensive–nothing over $100 but I’m missing some, I’m sure.

  • A PSP GO – I never use it now…the Australian store collection is terrible & now I just wish I could play all of those cheap disc based games. Sits in the bottom draw now…

    • Yep… I wanted a PSP for years. I was a kid when they were first out, my parents never bought me one! Then when it was rumoured to be killed off, the price of the GO was down to $200 with 10 free games (I think this was almost a year ago now). The games were pretty good (GTA:VCS, FIFA 2010 WC amongst the highlights). But I bought it years too late, I’ve played it a bit, but it wasn’t worth it. I think the fact that I had a PS3 by the time I bought the GO was what killed it. The games were a throwback to the PS1 and PS2 generation. Now I really want a 3DS for Super Mario 3D Land and Mario Kart 7, but I don’t think I’ll regret it like the GO because they’re games that can’t be bought for the Wii, and I bloody love Mario!

  • Biggest regret… Probably the pile of plastic instruments (including two drum sets) now collecting dust and cluttering the spare room.
    I walked out of jb with a decent stack of games last night (gears 1,2,3, la noire) and a Michael Buble Christmas cd… But it was all to use up those pesky vouchers since there’s nothing I’ll need from there for quite a while. Technically no money wasted on my part.

      • Yep! I almost repeated the mistake two years later, too. Also got my tv, xbox and computer on impulse. I have a problem 🙁 Oh, and countless Steam games that I’ve never actually played.

    • My dad does the same thing sells ss ute and merc buys lexus, 4 months later buys limited edition hsv only to want to sell it 12 months later to get a limited edition mustang.

      • Which is hard, because first he obviously has to find a way to climb out of his swimming pool filled with cash, and trust me, those pool edges made of crushed diamonds can get REALLY slippery.

  • Back in my heyday of anime fandom I lay-by’d a US import box set of the first series of Tenchi Muyo from Cartoon Gallery (which overpriced anyway since they could get away with it, back before ezydvd arrived and made anime accessible and cheap. Where’s cartoon Gallery now? WHERE ARE YOU? YOU SUCK!).

    Anyway, I paid it off at like $50 a week over about eight weeks (yes, it was $400 for 26 episodes over 8 DVDs. I was buying the import because my buddy at Madman said they had no plans to get the rights to distribute it locally (they only had the OAV series, which I already owned).

    Looong story short, I blew $400 on DVDs which I watched once. Shortly thereafter I got a girlfriend and anime became less important to me. Also, anime is crap now, not a patch on what it was in the late 90s.

  • I went to this JB sale and walked out with nothing. hoping to score a third PS3 for brothers Xmas. I buy way to many games in collectors edition so there is my issue. that and warhammer RIP OFF

  • I bought a toshiba libretto fuuuuuuuu

    its a useless piece of crap the only time i turn it on is to try to install android on it to make it useful only to have it overheat and die.

    I bought it because it was a “touchscreen device” i could play wow on and i thought that was epic

  • I bought a copy of Metroid 2 for Gameboy from Cash Converters.
    I got confused between that and Zero Mission…luckily it was only $10

  • There’s a lot to be said for being stupidly poor and living week to week. We get a bit silly if we have any money saved up and/or around birthdays and Christmases.

    I regret buying launch copies of AC: Rev and Batman: AC and Uncharted 3, considering that they’re already $30 cheaper apiece.

  • $150 RB3 pro guitar. Picked up a $90 acoustic a month later, and now all my plastic instruments sit in a corner gathering dust.
    Also, a Wii – traded it in for a PS3 after playing the 2 games that interested me.

  • I spent thousands on converting the garage at my parents house into the ultimate cinema/ gaming man cave. I also spent weeks of work doing insulation, ply panelling, air con, power sockets and lighting, painting, setting up the projector and 7.1 setup all myself. Now apparently mum wants to sell.

  • Anything apple, I’ve had so many of their products over the years and have always replaced them in frustration.

  • Playstation 3. Used it to play MGS4 back in 2008 and that was an incredible week. Nothing on the console has interested me since.

  • A 27″ iMac at last years Black Friday Sale.
    Only switched it on about ~10 times this year. I have a 09 MBP in the lounge where I do most of my work on computer.

  • Dropped nearly $3000 on a pinball machine.

    I’d finally gotten a proper job after ages being out of uni with nothing happening, and a couple of weeks later a guy pops up on the forum trying to sell this machine he has. While there’s a few interested, we’re basically all either teens or early 20s, so none of us really have the money to afford it. Except my pay rate was pretty awesome, so I figured hey, I got this job for pretty much this exact reason. Why not.

    It was kind of both impulse and thought-out. I did research on it a bit, and went to make sure I knew what I was getting into. But I’d still pretty much decided straight away that I wanted it and was going to get it. Tried to talk him down a bit over the weeks, but in the end he didn’t end up budging at all. I’m not much of a haggler.

    I drove the 10 hours down to Melbourne, went to his place to check it out, then brought it back with me. Now it sits in my room barely getting used. There’s some sense of regret at times, I guess. But it’s the crowning piece in my Nintendo collection, and should hold its value fairly well. I just wish I had the means to move it around more easily, so I could take it to gaming meetups for all my friends to play. Also that I wasn’t so lazy and looked more into fixing up some of the little things wrong with it, even getting it to accept money.

    Other impulse buys include getting a second Virtual Boy (which I now have to get rid of somehow), just because it came with nearly every US game bar one (I already had anyway), which meant that it also had the impossible-to-get-without-paying-a-ridiculous-ransom US version of Jack Bros. But that was a pretty good deal for what I got, and I don’t think I should have *too* much trouble making the money back. But I still have to get around to actually doing something about it.

  • I just got a new lightsaber that was supposed to have sound and an ultra-bright LED installed…… The thing got here, I switched it on….And…….. Speaker wire broke straight away. And it wasn’t as “ultra bright” as advertised. The guy forgot to mention you should get a better board and driver for it if you want it that bright….

    Cost me 222 USD inc. shipping.

    I’ve actually sent it to someone else to tear the guts out and install some quality components.

    So, any Star Wars fans wanting a cool lightsaber replica that actually works, avoid a place called SaberForge online. After I read up about it, the guy has a pretty bad reputation among the community of lightsaber enthusiests….
    Dunno if thats spelt right, but meh.


    yeah, no

  • I regret nothing D= But probably my biggest impulse buy is the Link and Midna Statue which is costing me $450 dollars (on layby). Oh and a replacement xbox 360 that got the red ring of death despite the fact it wasn’t meant to be capable of it.

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