Overcoming Fears of Collectable Gaming

Paul A. DeStefano
6 min readSep 28, 2021

There’s often a dread surrounding blind booster collectable games. For the uninitiated, that’s games like Pokemon or Magic: The Gathering, where you’re not a hundred percent sure what you’re getting in the pack. It is easy to understand why the fear and hatred. They can get expensive. So can biking, skiing, cooking, gardening, playing non-collectable games and pretty much any hobby you become passionate about.

I think the term Money Pit is most often associated with CxGs (collectable Card/Mini/Dice games). While this may be true, there are several tremendous advantages to CxG games.

While you may spend $500 on a single CxG fairly easily, opponents may argue that you could have had 15 other brand new games for that price.

Well, what if I don’t WANT 15 brand new games? What if I don’t want to buy games that will hit the table one or three times and vanish? What if I don’t want to skim a game and move on to the next? What if I want to get overly engrossed in a single system?

And what if I simply don’t like those other games as much as a CxG?

There’s also those who spend that $300 on a single board game (Oathsworn, anyone?) or drop the same amount on a huge bunch of random boosters for a single game. If the same amount of entertainment is gained, is there really any difference? Some people want to concentrate all of their effort to a single activity, some want to spread. I would never pinpoint either philosophy as better.

The dollar/fun factor can easily be far greater for a collectable game than individual purchase. Certainly less time is spent learning rules and having the learning curve of a game tucked under your belt and more time spent in the meat of the game. You and your group already know the game, you’re just buying random expansions. Sure, one day you buy boosters and it’s already stuff you own, but that’s part of the lottery thrill of the purchase.

$4 or $8 for a booster isn’t much. It can satisfy the need to walk out of a game store with something in hand. My son, was a Pokemon collector and player at 8. He scraped together $4 from leftover snack and lunch money for a new pack of cards pretty easily. Saving $45 for the latest Nintendo game was a bit more difficult. Yes, he’d done that, too. Just…

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Paul A. DeStefano

Author, Board Gamer/Designer. Paul D’s Tainted Dragon Inn on FB for geeky stuff. Represented by B Swanson The Purcell Agency. Riftsiders. www.PaulADestefano.com