Nickling and Diming: Limited Edition Games of 2009


Posted December 11, 2009 - By Sterling McGarvey

If you ask me, it’s rare to find a collector’s edition that’s actually worth collecting and hanging onto. Most of the time, you’re better off getting pre-order swag than what you’re paying an extra ten to twenty bucks for. And again, if you ask me, exclusive pre-order DLC needs to go away, and fast. As the year comes to a close, I decided to tally up the Limited Editions that have graced our offices, be they publisher-sent or employee-purchased. I’ve broken down the contents, retail price at launch, the current lowest eBay price/resell value, and the badass to bamboozle ratio.

Nickling and Diming: Limited Edition Games of 2009

Street Fighter IV (360, PS3)
Released: 2/17/09
Limited Edition also contains: Limited edition figurine, hour-long HD anime movie (Blu-ray on PS3, game disc outputting in 720p on 360), mini-strategy guide, CD soundtrack.
Retail Price: $79.99
Cost difference: $20
Badass to bamboozle ratio: Do you live in a city far removed from shops where you could just buy a Ryu figurine? If the answer is “yes,” then $20 isn’t a bad price to pay for said figurine. You should probably just buy it used at this point, though, if that’s what you’re looking for. The anime movie is one step removed from Flash-generated fan art. Figurine tips the scale slightly away from bamboozle.
Office-friendly swag? A Ryu figurine, while geeky, is far less ridiculous than most plastic baubles in your cubicle.
Lowest eBay price as of article publish: Same retail price (sealed), $50 used.
eBay resell value: Roughly on par with the amount the game's price has dropped since releasing ten months ago.

Resident Evil 5 (360, PS3)
Released: 3/13/09
Limited Edition also contains: A bonus disc with special features, including "The Making of Resident Evil 5," a digital art gallery, and a trailer for Resident Evil: Degeneration. A Tricell messenger bag featuring designs based on the game's storyline and setting, a Chris Redfield figurine, a BSAA patch, a Kijuju-inspired pendant, a custom-made steel case with special art showcasing signature elements of the RE5 campaign.
Retail Price: $89.99
Cost difference: $30
Badass to bamboozle ratio: There’s a nine year-old Spike Lee movie about racism on television... basically, there’s little badass here, and a lot more bamboozle. No matter how ardent of an RE fan you are (and trust me, I liked RE5 a lot more than Mr. Sessler), it’s hard to justify damn near $100 with sales tax for a few baubles and a metal case. The Chris Redfield figurine isn’t too impressive, and the messenger bag feels cheap.
Office-friendly swag? Unless you want your co-workers to think that you’re a sucker and a huge nerd, don’t bother showing any of this stuff off. Better yet, don’t bother with it.
Lowest eBay price as of article publish: $9.99 sealed.
eBay resell value: Woeful.
BlazBlue (360, PS3)
Released: 6/30/09 (Limited Edition), 7/28/09 (standard edition)
Limited Edition also contains: Two-disc original soundtrack and a bonus video with tutorials.
Retail Price: $49.99
Cost difference: $10. Already out of print; this was the rare occasion when the limited edition released first for the fans.
Badass to bamboozle ratio: You know if you’re the target audience for BlazBlue. A one-month headstart on the general public is more badass than bamboozle, even if that time’s up now.
Office-friendly swag? Not a bit of it.
Lowest eBay price as of article publish: $36
eBay resell value: Not that high, currently.
Nickling and Diming: Limited Edition Games of 2009
Batman: Arkham Asylum (360, PS3)
Released: 8/24/09
Limited Edition also contains: Waynetech Batarang Storage Box 12” In-Game Design Batarang; 50 page character encyclopedia, behind-the-scenes five-chapter series DVD featuring interviews with Mark Hamill and Kevin Conroy, exclusive Challenge Map DLC.
Retail Price: $99.99
Cost difference. $40
Badass to bamboozle ratio: The Batarang is plastic, and it’s mounted to a stand. Take off your rose-colored Bat-goggles and decide if that’s worth an extra $40.
Office-friendly swag? X-Play’s Matt Keil has the Batarang above his cubicle. Let’s ask him what he thinks:
“By far the worst Limited Edition I’ve ever bought, certainly in memory, because nothing in it is useful. The Batarang is deliberately preworn, so it looks like it was scuffed, but most likely by someone in a warehouse. The encyclopedia contains the same material that you unlock in the game, but in print, and I never watched the DVD. The box can’t fit anywhere. I still have it in my cubicle, because I have nowhere to fit it at home.”
Lowest eBay price as of article publish: $84.99. Used.
eBay resell value: Shockingly high.
Demon’s Souls (PS3)
Released: 10/6/09
Limited Edition also contains: 150 page strategy guide and large outer slipcase.
Retail Price: $69.99
Cost difference: $10
Badass to bamboozle ratio: It’s a strategy guide for one of the most balls-kickingly difficult games in recent memory. Don’t worry, the only people who will look down on you are checking GameFAQs for walkthroughs behind your back.
Office-friendly swag? No reason to keep it at your cubicle when it should be on your coffee table with a bottle of Maalox.
Lowest eBay price as of article publish: $71 sealed.
eBay resell value: Word is that this one's already out of print. Check back in a few months. It could skyrocket in value.
 Nickling and Diming: Limited Edition Games of 2009
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (360, PS3)
Released: 11/10/09
Hardened Edition also contains: Steel case, “Behind the Lines” concept art book, Call of Duty Classic downloadable voucher.
Prestige Edition also contains: Night Vision goggles with stand and the contents of Hardened Edition.
Retail Price: $79.99 (Hardened), $149.99 (Prestige)
Cost difference. $20 (Hardened), $90 (Prestige)
Badass to bamboozle ratio: Depends. After pushing my sinuses into my neck, I needed to loosen up the goggles a bit. They’re fun, but getting $90 worth of it depends on how often you plan to cosplay as Capt. Price or Soap McTavish.
Office-friendly swag? If you have a pair of $90 night vision goggles at your cubicle, you either work somewhere with trustworthy folks or you’re crazy. As for the Hardened Edition, you're basically paying $5 for a tin box and an art book and committing to purchasing Call of Duty Classic.
Lowest eBay price as of article publish:
Hardened: An auction on the verge of finishing is up to $62. But Amazon is selling it for the same price as the standard game as of writing.
Prestige: A heated auction that ends in 15 minutes is up to $130.
eBay resell value: Still high. The buzz on MW2 is still strong. Check back in six months.
Nickling and Diming: Limited Edition Games of 2009
Assassin’s Creed II (360, PS3)
Released: 11/17/09
Limited Edition also contains: ginormous collectible tin, an 8.5” Ezio collectible statue, two exclusive in-game maps (if you want 100% completion, apparently you need the exclusive maps), hardcover art book, bonus disc including soundtrack and behind the scenes footage. Asia got two similar limited editions with two different Ezio statues.
Retail Price: It was a Gamestop exclusive that retailed for $80. Good luck finding one now.
Cost difference: $20.
Badass to bamboozle ratio: As Limited Editions go, this is actually pretty badass. The statue is cool, the tin is large enough for some sort of reuse (controllers, peripherals, etc), and the game soundtrack is good enough to listen to on its own.
Office-friendly swag? An 8.5” statues is pretty big and bulky, but it's a nice statue. Depends on the geek threshold of your co-workers.
Lowest eBay price as of article publish: $95, but it’s also got 8 bids. Most bids have tipped well over $100, and only one used copy has surfaced.
eBay resell value: A search for used Master Assassin’s Editions on eBay reveals one being sold for around $65. At that point, though, you’re paying for the statue, the game, and a tin box. The DLC codes have probably been used. Take that for what you will.
This won't be the last time I focus on Collector's Editions. In the future, I'll be taking a look at Limited Edition games from years past and seeing if they've actually increased in value. For now, let the buyer beware!


Nickling and Diming: Limited Edition Games of 2009


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