Gaming on a college budget


tex playing video games
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For gamers, money has long been the greatest obstacle in playing games. However, with the advent of the internet, dozens of outlets have made paying full price for games a thing of the past. Here are some resources I use when I am looking to buy new games.



Reddit is simultaneously one of the best websites ever created and the potential downfall of mankind. For those unfamiliar with Reddit, it is a content aggregator that relies on user-submitted content. Along with the front page, there are “subreddits”, which are dedicated sections of the site that concentrate on a subject, such as news, music, movies, or pretty much anything you can think of.

One of the most useful subreddits I’ve visited is GameDeals. It consistently has new deals for both physical copies of games and digital titles of all genres from a wide variety of websites. The moderators also mark when a deal is no longer valid. This is probably the most useful tool I have with looking for cheap games.


Steam, the digital game platform created by the developer Valve, used to be a joke among gamers due to the platform being extremely buggy. However, in the past few years, they worked out most of the kinks and is now a staple for any PC gamer’s computer. I love Steam due to the sales they have. Every week there are usually a few good games on sale.  Along with this, Valve holds two week-long mega-sales every year where a majority of games in the entire store are on sale. One sale happens towards the end of summer, while the other one happens in December. If you have a computer that can run games decently, Steam is a necessity if you don’t already have it.

Humble Bundle

Humble Bundle is one of  my favorite ways to get new games. They offer bundles, usually ranging from 5-10 games. Instead of paying a set amount, you can pay whatever you want. If you pay higher than the average amount paid, which is usually around $5, you can get additional games. The bundles usually include DRM-free copies, Steam keys, and soundtracks. You can also decide how to split your money between the developer, the Humble Bundle, and a charity. This started out with indie games, but they also do more mainstream games. I recently got a bundle that included Battlefield 3 and Dead Space 3, among others. Right now, they have a bundle for Android games if you have an Android phone, along with a bundle with titles from the developer Nordic Games.

Other Websites

There are a plethora of websites out there that specialize in digital games. You can find many of them on Reddit. I frequent Good Old Games because it has a great catalogue of older games, including some rarer games that are usually difficult to find anywhere else. Gaming is not just limited to the actual games. Hardware, including cables and computer components, can be expensive if you go to the wrong places. If  you’re building a computer or looking for computer components, TigerDirect and Newegg are two great places to look. If you’re looking for cables, especially HDMI cables, look on Amazon or Monoprice. HDMI cables are often overpriced, so never pay too much for one.

If I could stress anything here, it would be to research games before you buy them. If a game seems expensive and it has been out for a while, it’s probably cheaper somewhere else. The right price could be in another castle.