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Thread: Been buying Japanese games lately and Why do the Japanese games come mint and ours are crap.

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    Insert Coin (Level 0) PROTOTYPE's Avatar
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    Cool Been buying Japanese games lately and Why do the Japanese games come mint and ours are crap.

    Japanese take care of their games way better then us, They totally get it but us? Manuals missing, CD scratch the #$@ up, cases are crack or broken and labels mess up ... list goes on and on. But Japanese games are usually complete and like new condition.WHY?
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    Alex (Level 15) InsaneDavid's Avatar
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    USA: Home video game era booms with a game rental culture, all that matters are the games themselves.

    Japan: Home video game era booms with no game rental culture (if I recall it had something to do with a government ban, I'm sure someone can correct me on this), resale culture instead. Higher re-buy prices for games in better condition, complete, etc. means more importance on keeping things together and in good shape.

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    Key (Level 9) wiggyx's Avatar
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    Plenty of games in Japan are treated like shit, you just won't see a lot of them on eBay and such. I buy large lots of GBAs from Japan and the vast majority are covered with stickers, beat to shit, have bug carcasses in them, etc. and those are from a time when rental and resale were far less common than today in Japan.

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    While what InsaneDavid said might have some truth to it, I don't think that's all. Particularly because I live in Norway, and although it did exist, video game rental was never big here. I think it has much more to do with cultural differences. I think the Japanese, on a general level, are basically just better at taking care of their stuff. Perhaps it's because the things they own more than people in the west do, or maybe it's something completely different. But that's my hypothesis, at least.

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    I import lots of different kinds of used products from Japan (books, music CDs, figures, etc.), and I do think the Japanese do, in general, take better care of their possessions than Americans. They don't have a throwaway culture to quite the same extent that we do. For one, their homes tend to be much smaller than the average American home, so you have to consider what you're bringing in in the first place (only things that are truly valuable to you), keeping organized is a must if you want the most out of your space, and things are less likely to get forgotten, lost, and abused in some dirty corner of a basement/garage/attic/etc. There's also the fact that they're really big on recycling and minimizing trash, so they're not inclined to constantly throw out things that have been ruined out of carelessness. It's more likely for a game to at least be kept in functional shape and then sold off to a used game store when no longer wanted.

    That said, wiggy is right in that Americans are getting a filtered view of what retro game collecting is like in Japan. We usually get the cream of the crop because, really, a beat-up loose Famicom cart worth only a buck isn't worth the effort of exporting. The profit margins need to be big enough to be worth the effort, otherwise they'll just throw it on a used game shelf in Japan for Japanese shoppers. If you ever watch something like Game Center CX, where they visit a lot of used game stores, you'll see MASSIVE amounts of loose carts, some with marker writing or otherwise in compromised condition. Also, smoking is really popular in Japan (far higher up on the list of cigarette consumption per capita than the US), so it's not uncommon for used goods to smell of and/or be stained by smoke. But again, these items often stay within Japan.

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    Key (Level 9) wiggyx's Avatar
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    Oh man, I forgot about the smoking thing. Indigo GBAs often show up damn near black and glacier units are sometimes so stained that they teeter on orange/brown

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    Basically all the various comments are true. I have evidence of everything. Of course most items are in great shape, many looking like brand new more or less. And I have stuff from the other end of the quality spectrum, old loose FC carts with marker on the back and stains on the generic warning label on the back of the cart and such. Smoke-stained goods are much more obvious with hardware, consoles and controllers mostly.

    Still, most things are good and you won't see supremely defaced items like some of the really sick, disturbing, really fucking repugnant shit like some people talk about buying used USA games. (People talking about opening a USA cart to find soda damage for fuck's sake!)

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    I find what seems to be soda or some sticky liquid and dead bugs in many of the GBAs that I get from Japan. In fact, way more dead bugs than I've ever seen in units purchased in the US.

    Kids are kids. They spill stuff no matter what country they're in.

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    Ick. Guess I have a bit of luck I guess. Typically I get stuff that looks fine and is rated fine, but when it arrives it's hard to tell if it's even been used.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wiggyx View Post
    Plenty of games in Japan are treated like shit, you just won't see a lot of them on eBay and such. I buy large lots of GBAs from Japan and the vast majority are covered with stickers, beat to shit, have bug carcasses in them, etc. and those are from a time when rental and resale were far less common than today in Japan.
    This hasn't been my experience, but yeah, a lot of us have a better opinion of Japanese stuff in general because of self-selection. If you buy big lots of games then that's probably a much better indication of quality.

    Anybody remember this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by PROTOTYPE View Post
    Japanese take care of their games way better then us, They totally get it but us? Manuals missing, CD scratch the #$@ up, cases are crack or broken and labels mess up ... list goes on and on. But Japanese games are usually complete and like new condition.WHY?

    Obviously, the people you are buying stuff from don't sell the poor condition stuff.

    I went to a used game store when I was in Japan a couple of months ago, and they had stacks of loose carts that were in terrible shape. Of course, you could buy 25 of them for 2000 yen, so it was very cheap. I remember opening up a SFC cart and many of the components were so corroded that they fell off the board (somehow, the game still worked). I honestly don't believe that people in Japan keep things in better condition than US people in general, it is just not worthwhile for sellers to sell crappy condition stuff to overseas buyers.
    <Evan_G> i keep my games in an inaccessable crate where i can't play them

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    I suppose they'd probably only sell a really stained copy if it's something really in demand, like um, Gimmick.

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    Do any retail chains in Japan purposely toss out boxes, manuals, etc like American ones?

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    I also import alot of stuff from Japan, mostly games, magazines, cds and dvds. While it may be true that they have their fair share of shitty conditioned stuff, in my experience their used items are in far better condition than used stuff here. And I'm not just talking about Gamestop's shitty used games, I'm also talking about what you'll typically find at yard sales, flea markets and thrifts such as Goodwill. Beyond the less than steller condition you also find missing disc, missing manuals and sometimes a completely different game than whats suppose to be in there. Even when I import games from Japan in the 50 cents to $5 range it's usually in far better condition than what I'd find over here listed for $20-$40 used. The condition of Japanese games I receive is pretty much in the same condition that I keep all of my personal collection in so importing works out pretty well for me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Az View Post
    Do any retail chains in Japan purposely toss out boxes, manuals, etc like American ones?
    Well, as far as I could see, there weren't any dedicated video game stores that sold used games. The big box place I went to was Tsutaya, which sold books, DVDs, CDs and video games. They also rented these all out (yes, CD rentals happen), so I imagine they sell the games used after a while. Going to the second hand shop that sold games, the vast majority of the cart based systems were loose. I don't actually think that most people kept the boxes and manuals.
    <Evan_G> i keep my games in an inaccessable crate where i can't play them

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    Quote Originally Posted by FoxNtd View Post
    Ick. Guess I have a bit of luck I guess. Typically I get stuff that looks fine and is rated fine, but when it arrives it's hard to tell if it's even been used.
    It's a mixed bag. I've purchased lots of stuff that's in amazing condition, but my only point is that not everything is minty-mint in Japan

    Quote Originally Posted by Ed Oscuro View Post
    This hasn't been my experience, but yeah, a lot of us have a better opinion of Japanese stuff in general because of self-selection. If you buy big lots of games then that's probably a much better indication of quality.

    Anybody remember this?
    That's why I made sure to mention that I buy in large lots. This is stuff that isn't worth the time to sell individually because of the condition, but it most definitely does exist.

    Quote Originally Posted by badinsults View Post
    Well, as far as I could see, there weren't any dedicated video game stores that sold used games. The big box place I went to was Tsutaya, which sold books, DVDs, CDs and video games. They also rented these all out (yes, CD rentals happen), so I imagine they sell the games used after a while. Going to the second hand shop that sold games, the vast majority of the cart based systems were loose. I don't actually think that most people kept the boxes and manuals.
    There are LOTS of used stores in Japan, they're typically just tiny and tucked away in corners.

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    The second hand store I went to was neither tiny, nor tucked away. I'm sure there were some smaller stores in the city I was in, but I didn't see them in the areas I went to. The store was pretty neat, they had sections for every console I have ever heard of. The SFC section was between the Wonderswan section and N64 section.
    <Evan_G> i keep my games in an inaccessable crate where i can't play them

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    I've always had good luck with japan items but I think thats just what is chosen for sale here by importers and collectors more than anything also I've heard (perhaps falsely now it seems) that the japanese care for there items more, prices tend to be higher and this rental businness is news to me but would make sense also

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    Quote Originally Posted by FoxNtd View Post
    Typically I get stuff that looks fine and is rated fine, but when it arrives it's hard to tell if it's even been used.
    Thats been my experience as well. I'll buy stuff thats listed as good or very good and when it arrives theres not a single mark(cart) or scratch(disc) on anything. The majority of stuff is basically in new condition minus any factory seal. And if it's a cd or cart it always has all of the inserts. The only thing that might be missing from time to time is the obi card but thats usually listed in the description. And like I said in my previous post, these aren't all expensive items(atleast not in my case). I've been importaing alot of Xbox and Xbox 260 Japanese stuff over the last few months and I've been getting it for the same cost it goes for in Japan, anywhere from 50 cents to $5. And even the stuff sold in that price range is in immaculate condition.
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    A lot of what I've bought there was in solid shape, but as noted it is a smoking culture and many have reeked f cigarettes.

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