Back around the end of January, when I thought I’d be attending Unity Games 17, I arranged to get in on a game of Planet Steam.
This is a game I’d seen played at previous Unity events and had my eyes on for some time. There were a few times when, flush with some kind of bonus cash, my finger hovered over the “Buy” button, but never quite pressed, as its $90-or-so price tag always held me back. This time I would play it at Unity and, if I liked it, maybe get a copy.
My trip to Louisiana kept me from attending the event, however, and it looked like I was just going to have to move on. Again.
But, thanks to the magical algebra of Miserable Week + Internet Connection + Maker’s Mark + Credit Card, I decided that, no, I wasn’t just going to move on. The hell with it, I was going to just go ahead and buy a copy of the game!
Easier said than done. It’s out of print, so none of the online shops had a copy. A look through the BGG Marketplace revealed nothing available either. Some guy on Amazon had two copies for $230 each, and I thought about emailing him and saying, “Look, I want this game, I am in the mood to spend stupid money, and I have some stupid money to spend and I’m still not biting, so I’m not sure exactly who you’re waiting for.”
I went back to BGG and posted a message saying I was looking to buy the game but that I was only looking for reasonable prices. Someone asked what my definition of “reasonable” was, to which I replied, “Reasonable to me is not much over MSRP plus actual shipping. As I said, I’d just like to have the game, I don’t need it to replace a failing kidney. If someone is looking to make a $50 profit off this LQQK RARE game then I’m not their customer.” This was not a hypothetical statement: someone had already offered to sell it to me for $170 plus shipping, which I (politely) laughed at.
Someone mentioned that the game store in Maine he shops at had a copy on the shelf, and a few emails later, Brenden at Crossroad Games had a copy on its way to me at no more than MSRP. It’s the most expensive boardgame I’ve ever bought, but not the most expensive one I’ve ever bought while sober.
I now have my own copy of this expensive behemoth! I’ve no doubt that I paid too much for it and there’s a very real chance the actual game won’t come anywhere close to being worth it, but the geek blood in me I try to deny cries out its primordial hunger every so often, and must be sated.
I’ll let you know how it is once I’ve actually played the thing.