The timing was perfect, or disastrous depending on how you look at it. I had just been paid and was nearing the end of a week off work. I was heading, fiancee in tow, to the UK’s biggest retro video games market. I have been to many collector’s shops, but never anything on this scale; to say I was excited was an understatement.
The Video Game Market at the Doncaster Dome ran from 11am – 4pm on Sunday March 3rd 2019, and as I walked in just after opening, the hall was already heaving. In the same fashion I would approach an adventure game, I carefully and logically planned my route so I wouldn’t miss out on any secrets or treasures. As I made my way around the many stalls, I was surrounded by whispers of: “This is the busiest I’ve ever seen it” and “I’ll have nothing left to display in my shop after today”. There was pretty much everything up for sale you could have wished for, ranging from an actual Virtual Boy to a limited edition Gears of War 4 2GB Xbox One bundle. It didn’t take too long before I made my first mistake.
I happened across a brand new copy of Starlink for the Nintendo Switch, complete with Arwing model for £15. Sadly, this particular trader didn’t accept card payments, and as usual, I had no cash on me. In fact, I had just used my last £1.86 in change to purchase a Splinter Cell: Blacklist steelbook. Instead of rushing to the cashpoint, and asking the very pleasant chap to save the game for me, I decided to leave it in the hands of fate, continue browsing and return later. Of course, it had already sold.
The market didn’t just sell video games, there were all sorts of accessories up for grabs including keyrings, mugs and t-shirts as well as board games. My urge to spend was rising, and was in constant conflict with the bargain hunter inside me. As well as my shiny new case for my Xbox 360 version of Splinter Cell: Blacklist, I also found a sealed copy of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance for Xbox 360 for a pound. “Definitely worth a punt at that price”, I thought.
I used nearly all of the five hours available, briefly broke for some lunch, and made several loops of the hall to try and make sure I didn’t miss anything. In the end I was pretty well behaved in terms of spending, but picked up a few bargains across the day. There were also a few YouTube famous faces in attendance, some live streaming from the event itself. I only know this as Ryan, my other half, recognised one straight away, whereas I was blissfully unaware.
I can honestly say attending the Doncaster Video Game Market was thoroughly enjoyable, and I would recommend the market for gamers and geeks alike. Replay Events organised the day – and massive thanks to them for providing the passes – and the next market will be opening on Saturday 29th June, once again in the Doncaster Dome.
For more info, why not check out www.thevideogamemarket.co.uk