Low-Spend 2020: Putting a Halt to Impulsive Game Purchasing

I’ve known for awhile that I have a problem with impulse purchasing, but I try not to think about how big of a problem it actually is.

I have not actually played anywhere near that many games – I do tend to idle for cards, which makes at least that portion of my calculator very very wrong.

Of course, bundle buying absolutely throws the account value out of whack. On the other hand, this is only games I own on Steam, and it’s still way too many. So I’ve decided to slow my roll next year, and stop buying things just because they’re cheap or they look interesting or I’m having a bad day.


Low Spend 2020 – Allowed Spending

Subscription Spending

I’m allowing myself the full 12 months of Humble Choice, as well as one paid MMO subscription and one paid gaming subscription service at a time.

Non-Subscription Spending

I am allowed to spend up to $50 gifting games to others during the Summer and Winter Steam sales, and I am allowed to purchase non-Collector’s Edition expansions for World of Warcraft or Elder Scrolls Online. Additionally, I may elect to purchase one new co-op game or MMO to play with my husband if something comes out he’s excited about.


Other than what I’ve indicated above, I will not be purchasing any new games, or making any cash shop or micro-transaction purchases in 2020. This includes purchasing any bundles other than the Humble Choice subscription.

While I acknowledge that I’m still allowing myself a massive budget, I still feel like this will be an improvement over what I’ve been doing – which is just making game purchases without a whole lot of thought behind them. It’s not really about the money – although I love to shop, I don’t spend to the point where it strains our budget. But by always chasing the next great deal, I am not really enjoying the things I buy.


While it’s not restricting myself to only five games for an entire year, I am hoping it’ll encourage me to play through some more of my library, as well as better evaluate the worth of the various gaming subscription services that are out there.

5 thoughts on “Low-Spend 2020: Putting a Halt to Impulsive Game Purchasing

  1. “Additionally, I may elect to purchase one new co-op game or MMO to play with my husband if something comes out he’s excited about.”

    One for the entire year? Per month?

    If the former, wowser! Although with the subscription service option and the humble choice, this may still be enough. But I think I would struggle.

    Cyberpunk 2077, Ori and the Will of the Wisps, Dying Light 2, The Last of Us 2, Monster Hunter World: Iceborne expansion and Nioh 2 are just some of the titles top of mind that I’d like to pick up next year.

    Ori and the Will of the Wisps I would almost be willing to bet money will be in the Xbox Game Pass. Possibly even Dying Light 2 (although I wouldn’t make a significant bet on it). The others though almost certainly wouldn’t be.

    So if we’re talking just one for the year.. Holy moly.

    But! Having said that, I like the concept here. Enough here that I might be able to bounce a post off it as well. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. One for the entire year; mainly this is a concession to the oh-so-slim possibility of Diablo 4 releasing during 2020. He plays World of Warcraft almost exclusively (and only Classic currently), so it’s very rare for something new to show up we’re both excited about.

      I don’t own a console newer than the XBox 360, so console exclusives are no temptation, and I rarely buy big budget titles close to release anyway. There’ll likely be a couple of indies that hurt a bit, but I’ll struggle more with passing up a good deal than with any single game.

      Like

  2. Finally, someone who owns more games than me! My hero!

    Lighthearted joke aside, I enjoy my 1633 games and counting Steam collection and as long as you aren’t spending beyond your means, embrace it. The Humble Bundle restriction is a great choice, I find I haven’t even spent much the past two years because I keep thinking, I bet it’s coming out in a bundle soon(TM). Sure enough, it usually does. My Time at Portia being one of the latest on that list.

    For everything else, I have often stuck to a wait till it’s 66% or 75% off rule, and that works well for me. One still gets the effect of disciplined delayed gratification, as those prices tend to occur on certain seasonal sales, and it gives around 1-2 years wait time for it to potentially come out in a bundle. I find by resisting the $60-80 day one launch purchase, that gives me room to buy 10+ smaller less known indie games on sale, while that uber popular game is going to wind up in a bundle eventually.

    The thing we game collectors could be better on is actually sitting down to try out the games we own. Imo, we buy them because they sound interesting and promise some kind of an experience we find intriguing enough to purchase. But instead of just buying and enjoying the dream, it’s nice to occasionally refine what we like and don’t like through actual experience.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The fact that I have so much un-played (as opposed to merely having SO MUCH) is mostly why I’m doing this. Everything being digital has made it so much easier to just collect things, and I want to take a step back from that, and experience some of the things I’ve collected.

      Liked by 1 person

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