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Surviving the Sales

I have learned a great secret this past weekend. A secret so great that I cannot resist shouting it from the rooftops. It’s not going to bring about world peace or cure disease or feed the hungry, but it might just help the next time your favorite purveyor of games absolutely destroys prices…

This past summer, Steam had their absolutely insane summer sale. If you aren’t familiar with Steam, they’re a digital distribution warehouse that supports games of every stripe: brand new AAA titles all the way down to free-to-play indie games and everything in between. If you’re a gamer, I highly recommend getting acquainted with them.

A few times a year, Steam has an absolutely blowout sale. Select games go on sale for 75% off. This most recent sale I bought Civilization V (ESRB: E10) for $7, Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (ESRB: M) for $7, and a four-pack of Torchlight 2 (ESRB: T)  for $12 – lots of people on my nice list getting Torchlight 2 this year. The damage could have been much, much, much worse, but I’ve learned a secret. Or, rather, I’ve adapted my Hoard Pack plan. It goes like this:

Get out your trusty notepad and write down your hard cap figure – the absolute maximum amount you can afford to spend on this sale (for me it was $30). Every time you make a purchase, adjust the figure on that notepad so you know how much you have left. When it hits zero, back away from the game vendor.

This totally works in the Crown shop as well! When KI pitches us the stuff-a-palooza sale, figure out how many KI Crowns you’re willing to throw at this and write it down. Buy your pets, gear, mounts, houses, whatever, and keep track of it. When you hit zero, close the Crown shop and don’t return – avoid the temptation!

Do you have any tricks for avoiding Holiday overspending? Share them in comments so we can all avoid destroying our Holiday budgets!

2 thoughts on “Surviving the Sales

  1. Nice idea. One thing we use is a prepaid card. Put the money on that and you cannot spend more. Granted, the notepad showing the amount left is a great idea so you see WHERE the money is going and how close to running out you are. I think we’ll adapt that little trick.

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