These days it takes a whole heck of a lot to really make a dumb gaming purchase. You have so many reviews available, including ours that are objectively the best ones out there, and with social media, you can almost instantly see if a game is worth it or not. The days of truly regrettable purchases happened in the days where your only source of information was maybe monthly magazines and you had to rely on your intuition and judgement of game boxes. Sometimes it was just a gamble and while you can find some really good games accidentally, you can also just pick out the worst ones and live in a big ol’ sea of regret.
Since I’m most certainly not the Wolf of Wall Street, I don’t have cash that I can just throw off my boat, not like I have a boat either, and I do a lot of research on a game before I buy it. Look at reviews, watch some gameplay, talk to some friends who played it and all that. Because of that, I don’t really have a recent game that I would consider a “dumb purchase”. However, there’s one game that I bought when I was a wee boy without access to the internet that will forever haunt my dreams.
Picture me, a young and somewhat poor suburban boy who just wants some new games for his PS2. I have saved up some shekels from doing hard labour in the sun and I’m looking for something to make all the struggle worth it. On the shelf among the many games on offer, I spot a game with a cover that features one of my favourite rappers, 50 Cent, also known as “Fiddy”. You have to give me a break, this was the mid-2000s and things were weird at that time. I also blame GTA: San Andreas for making me a huge fan of gangster rap even though I was as pale as a lukewarm glass of milk.
The game in question was 50 Cent: Bulletproof. An action game featuring one of my favourite rappers and it’s also violent? Sign me right up, brother. I’ll deal with the ramifications of just awful parental guidance later in my life, let’s buy this incredibly expensive for the time game and we’ll have ourselves an unforgettable ride.
In many ways, I’m very grateful for this game because it taught me true disappointment very early on in my life. It was a bog-standard mediocre gang shooter featuring 50 Cent mumbling nonsense and Eminem sometimes just popping out of the woodwork. It was cringy as all hell and I even realised this as a 12-year-old boy, who we all know are the little kings of cringe.
The most insulting thing about the game is how short it was. The same day I bought it, I finished it. It must have just taken me a few hours and after it was done, there was nothing left to do. I just spent all this child labour money and I was done with it on the same day I bought it? I’ve just started getting to terms with true disappointment in my young life, but this was something else. It was a betrayal. Fiddy himself betrayed me.
After that point, I started researching every game extensively before I bought it. Such a blunder will not be allowed to happen again. Even though I have bought some terrible games over the years, all of them were bought on some kind of sale. I got Pimp My Ride for like R50 and I honestly would give R100 to erase the memory of that game from my brain forever, but at least it wasn’t bought at full price.
So, that’s my little story of disappointment, ignorant adolescence and the lessons I have learned from gangster rappers. What is your dumbest game that you bought at full price and tell us a little story of why it happened? I’d love to know and I feast off the pain of others. The comment section is open, ladies and gentlemen.