Today is the final day of the Kotaku Kristmas Giveaways -- and it's a humdinger!
As always, I'm going to leave it to Chuloopa, the Kotaku Kristmas Project mastermind to introduce the competition...
So it's finally here. The final community prize for the Kotaku Kristmas Project. And BOY-O-BOY is it every BIG!
The crew at the Head Office of Gametraders have been so insanely generous as to donate a Nintendo 3DS to our cause to be given away to a lucky reader!
To fully convey just how awesome Gametraders have been, I need to tell you a short story as to how this all came about. If you want to skip this and get straight to the competion, feel free to scroll down below. I do recommend, however, in the spirit of the KKP, that you read what I have to say.
Cue the twirly flash-back effects!
DOO-LOO-LOO-LOO DOO-LOO-LOO-LOO DOO-LOO-LOO-LOO
After ordering all the KKP gifts for the staff at Allure, i had quite a bit of excess left over. I decided this should be used to buy a couple of rad prizes for the community. So i immediately shifted back into 5th gear and got onto emailing various places to see if they might be willing to maybe sell me one or two things at a slight discount in exchange for the promotion they would receive, and also, of course, for the good will of it.
I didn't ask for anything big, really. I emailed EB. They basically sent back a "here's one i prepared earlier" emails to me basically blowing me off in a well-worded way. Game and JB never got back to me.
But one place did, and with much consideration, and it happened to be the first people i emailed. A representative from Gametraders got back to me and, i must say, seems like one of the nicest fellows i have ever come across.
A fellow by the name of Rob.
What i had asked of Gametraders was if i could purchase a Nintendo 3DS off of them and maybe they could either provide a small discount, or maybe one or two games. A reply came back to me that head office doesn't keep stock of any consoles or the like, but he did have a demo console which they had used a few times that he would offer me.
"Great" i said "how much would you guys like for it?"
Rob sent me a single line reply that really was one of the most generous actions I'd seen during the KKP.
"No charge - I'm giving it to you. It's our in-house demo model, but hardly used. Is that ok?"
It was at this point i flipped my wig. In a good way. "MORE THAN FINE OMG OMG OMG OMG I LOVE YOU" were possibly my words. I don't really remember. It's still all a glorious blur.
Some of you may be saying, "dude, it's a demo model. Who gives two shakes!?"
Yes, it's a demo model. But it was THEIR demo model. Something they had no reason to give away freely, other than in the name of good will. Would any of you hand over your consoles to another person just because they asked you nicely? No, i wouldn't think so.
The strange thing is that it made me both happy and sad at the same time. And if you'll allow me to digress from the competition for the moment, i'll tell you why.
I've grown up with Gametraders, along with a couple of other independents, which have now gone. Gametraders is one of the last of a dying breed since stores like EB have swept up, seemingly overnight, and have consumed all the food in the retail environment, much like a cane toad, leaving the remaining natives hungry and slowly dying out.
I know it sounds like a horrible analogy, and i have nothing against EB Games for the most part. Heck, my local Geelong stores are staffed, in the most part, by some of the nicest people i have come across. But it's not the same as walking into places like Gametraders, or the now long-gone Video Games Heaven, now, is it?
Gametraders are franchises opened not by investors wanting to make a quick buck, but rather people who have a passion for what we all here at Kotaku do -- games. They are just as passionate about what we all do. The people who serve you always seem to know what they are talking about and, not only that, are friendly and usually up for an enthusiastic chat.
The stores that used to be nearby my mums place in Melbourne have all closed now.
The closest to me is now a half an hour away from work, in the opposite direction from home, which is a good 50 minutes drive away, so i don't get to go there as much as i'd like. But when i was a kid, I'd walk into these stores and see rows of old games, new games, toys and systems all set up, playing some of the greatest games I had ever known.
It wasn't a shop for me, it was an experience. A manifestation of all my dreams of gaming in a neat shopfront.
I know it may sound crazy, but stores like Gametraders are a good part of the reason I am the type of gamer I am today. They helped keep the flame alive and have shown me things i would have, quite possibly, never otherwise discovered for myself.
Now, on the other hand i know the pricing for some things at Gametraders can be INSANELY overpriced, mostly on some of the more popular retro games. For example, i've seen copies of FFVII going for $120. More so, when i asked why it was so expensive, i got the reply "because there are people who will pay it". At the time i was flabbergasted, but now that i'm in my first year of commerce in getting a grip on how markets actually work, it makes more sense, in a way. But at the same time it's things like this that can drive a consumer away. Never-the-less, I find their current pre-owned and new games to be quite competitive with the big guys, if not better in some cases. And they have always had the fairest trade prices on any games I happened to want to trade. When we talk price, as with anything, it's going to be a mixed bag. In the end, GT do what they have to do to keep themselves afloat.
Where I am going with all of this is that no other store evokes the same feeling in me. None. I can wonder in and happily float around 'ooo-ing' and 'aaahhh-ing' and everything in the shop, whilst Bee, my lovely partner, tugs on my arm and tells me she's bored and wants to go, sighing as loudly as possible. And if there is one thing I can ask other people, is that if they have a store nearby to take a moment to appreciate the sheer scale of an entire history before your eyes, and the Australian business that offers it to you. This is one place that needs your support, and more-so, your constructive feedback on how to better suit your needs.
I'm not asking people to spend beyond their means. I, for one, don't have much of a disposable income, so places like Ozgameshop, ebay and even Cashies are a common visiting place for me. But when I have some extra money and I want something then and there, and I happen to be near a Gametraders, I am more than happy to contribute to something that has bought me so much joy in my life. In fact, almost every time I happen past a Gametraders store, it's rare that I don't walk out with something, even if it's just a cheap sale-in game. There's always something there for me, personally.
Be as dismissive as you want. I have not been asked to say any of this. In fact, Rob has no idea that I'm even doing this. I only say all this because I don't want to see one of the last great retailers we have disappear and become a stale world of white shelves and counters staffed by people who would be more suited to a career with Supre.
I say this because I care, and I'm a nostalgic old fool.
If you want a hint of the generosity of Gametraders and just how much they care about you in return, check out their Facebook, if you have one. they always seem to have some kind of give-away going on, even though i never seem to win :P Maybe you'll have more luck.
Now, all rambling aside, on with the competition!
Up for grabs we have 1x Nintendo 3DS, donated by the good chaps at Gametraders.
What do you have to do to win?
Simply explain, in 25 words or less, what retro game most needs a 3D remake and why.
The best answer takes home the 3DS.
Best of luck, everyone!
Best of luck everyone! Drop your comments below!
Terms and conditions can be found here.