PC & Video Games

Frugal PS4 owners, ~how much do you spend/year on games?

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  • Aug 13th, 2020 4:31 pm
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Member
Feb 24, 2018
364 posts
170 upvotes

Frugal PS4 owners, ~how much do you spend/year on games?

Roughly how much do you spend on PS4 games per year and how much do you play per week assuming that you aren't someone who buys titles at launch? I'm trying to get a better sense if I plan to get a PS5.

I'm on last-gen right now so I don't know what PS4 game prices/sales are like but I know things have gone up since PS3 games when we had a stronger dollar and more stores/sales to buy from physically.

I'm thinking if you manage to play ~7 hours per week on average, you can get by with 8-10 games per year assuming at least a couple of those are sports games with higher replay value. If I'm buying games used once they've been out for at least an year then I'm assuming I'm looking at an average of like $25/game so something like $200-300 would be reasonable every year on PS5 games?
31 replies
Deal Addict
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Jun 16, 2009
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PHuth2 wrote: Roughly how much do you spend on PS4 games per year and how much do you play per week assuming that you aren't someone who buys titles at launch? I'm trying to get a better sense if I plan to get a PS5.

I'm on last-gen right now so I don't know what PS4 game prices/sales are like but I know things have gone up since PS3 games when we had a stronger dollar and more stores/sales to buy from physically.

I'm thinking if you manage to play ~7 hours per week on average, you can get by with 8-10 games per year assuming at least a couple of those are sports games with higher replay value. If I'm buying games used once they've been out for at least an year then I'm assuming I'm looking at an average of like $25/game so something like $200-300 would be reasonable every year on PS5 games?
Well for starters you would probably want to get PlayStation+ if you want to save on buying games. Assuming everything remains the same with their service, that's 2 games per month you get to play for "free" (as long as you add the game to your library AND continue to pay for PS+). Right now the 12-month PS+ is on sale but I'm not sure when the offer expires - it is a part of PlayStation Days of Play event. It is usally $70, but is cheapest at Costco right now at $48.99 for the digital code. You can purchase it today and redeem the code later, like once you get a PS5. It doesn't expire. I have used PS+ code cards from the PS3 days and the codes have always worked when I redeem them. Oh and PS+ users usually get slightly better sales on games in the store, so if it is 20% off for PlayStation unsers, it might be 30% off for PS+ users.

https://www.costco.ca/playstation-plus- ... 68027.html

As far as games, I try to buy used. I might buy 1-2 new releases a year, but the rest of the time I use Kijiji or This site. It is an auction site partnered with BestBuy, I have used them for years and they are reliable and legitimate. Registering is free. Keep in mind the tax and shipping for each item, but you can get good deals as long as you are patient.

So I don't know how much I spend but PS+@$50 + 3-4 games from this auction site at about $30 ($30x4=$120). 24 PS+ games and if you buy 4 used then 28 games total in a year for about $170? This is all rough math but you get the point. But very important to keep in mind that PS5 games will be more expensive in the first year because the market for used isn't quite there, they would get cheaper as the years go on.
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Deal Fanatic
Dec 12, 2006
5455 posts
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calgary
I mean for it just depends on what you want to play and when you want to play it.
At least for PS4 I typically only play the exclusives and I typically wait 3-6 months to play them and at that time they usually drop in price by around 50%, if you wait longer they will drop further in price.

Your price of 25$/game would indicate probably at least a year old, but it all depends on the publisher (ie. Rockstar games and Activision games rarely get a deep discount until several years later).

I supplement that with an Xbox/PC and a gamepass subscription. Outside of the Sony Exclusives there are very few games that I want to play that don't end up hitting gamepass (basically anything that isn't Ubisoft/EA/Activision seems to end up on gamepass at some point and well those publishers account for a lot of AAA Games I don't like a lot of stuff from those publishers).
There are also a lot of good F2P games that eat a lot of time, like in the past year or two or so I've sunk considerable amount of time in games like Apex Legends and Smite and now my latest addiction is Valorant on PC.

You can also take advantage of EA Access and Ubisoft Access. A well timed subscription to those means you could play several AAA titles for very cheap.

Excluding Nintendo games (because they are a rip off and I usually end up getting them for my kids as presents) I think in the last couple years I've managed to spend ~100$/year on games and do end up playing most of the AAA stuff.
Deal Addict
Sep 22, 2013
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I generally only buy one ‘new’ game a year and a few after heavy discounts.

I try to trade/sell games where I can. I would say I probably send about $200-$250 or so a year on games.
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Jun 16, 2009
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SpicYMchaggis wrote: Excluding Nintendo games (because they are a rip off and I usually end up getting them for my kids as presents) I think in the last couple years I've managed to spend ~100$/year on games and do end up playing most of the AAA stuff.
I wouldn't call Switch games a rip off. The first party games are definitely pricey, but my kids really get a lot out of them. They played Pokemon to completion, and have had Animal Crossing since a few weeks after launch and still play it daily! I look at that game and do not understand how it can amuse them that much, it is Digital Indentured Servitude for $80 but they play it to death.

PlayStation is ok for the value, but I always saw the XBox as a better frugal purchase. There are all those passes you can purchase giving you tons of games. Also with this new gen I suspect XBox will launch a bit cheaper than PS5. I personally won't switch from the PlayStation brand but if you're rocking a PS3 right now those games won't carry over to PS5, its like you're starting over. Games usually cost the same between consoles, so why not wait to see if PS5 adds some passes to its service and see what each console price is at launch? XBox might be a better choice for you then.
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Sr. Member
Jul 14, 2014
924 posts
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Toronto, ON
I rarely buy games when they release, except for a few exceptions like Red Dead Redemption and Grand Theft Auto, and maybe this year I'll get Cyberpunk 2077 at full price.

I get most of my games long enough after release that they are heavily discounted, which allows me to buy more.

So I'd say I buy about 15 games per year.
Deal Addict
Nov 24, 2015
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I try to pay $0 to $10 max per game, always physical copy
1.
-Always do e3 preorders for $50-60 if they are available on AAA games, I play these for a couple weeks and then sell them on kijiji for the same price I paid or more.
-Some of those e3 games I got, but don’t have time to play right away so I sell for $70+ in the 1st week for a small profit

2.
-I try to buy good games used on kijiji within 1 month of release, play for couple weeks and resell for same price I bought or slightly less
-For instance I recently bought RE3 remake for $60 used, beat it a couple times and sold again for $60

3.
Take advantage of eb games promos (before COVID...) (can combine with 1 and 2)
-They constantly had promos to trade new releases for $50, so I would trade games that I paid $50-60 for (used or e3) and then buy games that were released couple months prior but already had a price drop
-For example, I had death stranding from e3 for $50 plus tax, played and beat it, then traded it for The outer worlds which had a price drop to $50 (you also save tax with trades) This way I paid $56.50 and played two AAA titles, and then repeat

1,2,3 is my system for newer releases, otherwise I have been buying older games from eb and other sources when the game costs $20 or less, and had success trading them back to eb during min $10 days and similar promos

I also bought my PS4’s using eb promos, Black Friday sales and shoppers drug mart promotions, so in the end my current PS4 pro has cost me nothing and I made a bit of money reselling or trading the other ps4’s I had
(PS4 pro RDR2 at Shoppers with 20% off, combined with 20x points $262 after selling RDR2 for $70; shoppers bonus redemption offers; Best Buy Black Friday ps4 Spider-Man 1TB slim for $260 + tax; etc)


I used to buy games digitally before as well when they are $10 or less, but then can’t resell those ever and many I have not got around to playing yet
Deal Fanatic
Oct 23, 2004
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Toronto
I only play exclusives on it and always wait for at least 50% off so maybe $50-60 per year at most. The last games I bought and played were God Of War and Spiderman which I spent $25-30 each which is on the higher end for me. Other older exclusives I picked up for as little as $5-10. I never pay for PS+ and do all my other gaming on PC which I find to have far better and more frequent sales.
Deal Fanatic
Feb 11, 2007
8728 posts
3090 upvotes
Right now a bunch of the best PS4 exclusives are on sale for $9.99 each at Best Buy if you can find stock:

Uncharted 4
Uncharted Collection
Bloodborne
The Last of Us Remastered
God of War
God of War 3 Remastered
Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition
Until Dawn
Ratchet & Clank reboot
PHuth2 wrote: Roughly how much do you spend on PS4 games per year and how much do you play per week assuming that you aren't someone who buys titles at launch? I'm trying to get a better sense if I plan to get a PS5.

I'm on last-gen right now so I don't know what PS4 game prices/sales are like but I know things have gone up since PS3 games when we had a stronger dollar and more stores/sales to buy from physically.

I'm thinking if you manage to play ~7 hours per week on average, you can get by with 8-10 games per year assuming at least a couple of those are sports games with higher replay value. If I'm buying games used once they've been out for at least an year then I'm assuming I'm looking at an average of like $25/game so something like $200-300 would be reasonable every year on PS5 games?
I own all 3 current gen consoles and a gaming pc and gaming laptop.
I probably on average spend two to three thousand + a year on games or hardware since the start of this console generation but I buy new games at launch often.
Last year I bought a new gaming PC and gaming laptop so that was an outlier year for costs.

I also collect 4K UHD HDR blu-rays but the amount I spend on that depends on how many movies I want to watch and keep that release in a given year.
There are plenty of more expensive hobbies out there.

.
Deal Expert
Dec 26, 2010
18790 posts
5423 upvotes
I have been buying all the season passes for Destiny 2, so that's probably about $80 right there. I pick up games on sale where possible but only a few ever grab me. Bought Borderlands 3 on the expectation it would be as good as Borderlands 2 and Pre-sequel but I was dead wrong on that one as I hardly ever play it. I buy the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate when it's on sale as that's a great way to play a variety of games you might never play. I'm not a big PS exclusives fan. Most of the Sony games don't appeal to me. But Destiny 2 is played on the PS4, even though more people I know have Xbox units. I have the VR but considered it a failure in my household. Bought a Switch recently but haven't used it much. No killer games on that system appeal to me. Looking forward to both new systems. Will buy them both, probably at launch unless I win them as I did last time.
Deal Addict
Nov 29, 2011
1914 posts
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Toronto
Some suggestions for saving money on new PS4 games.

Buy physical copies and sell/trade them while they still maintain good value.

Almost all new PS4 games are on sale 5-10 weeks after launch. And then they quickly go back to $80. Take advantage of this time to buy the game for $50+tax, complete it and sell it on Kijiji for $50.

If you are willing to wait, you could get physical or digital copies of AAA games for under $20. A great example is the Days of Play sale mentioned above.

Might not be possible under COVID, but check if your local library has games.

You could make an arrangement with your friends where you borrow each others games.

All PS4 games go on sale. I've bought games for $30, kept it in my backlog only to see the game go down to $10-20. The exception to this is physical copies of some niche titles / limited edition copies.

Personally, I don't like to rely on PS+ for games. It's hard to predict the two "free" games provided each month. You also don't want to force yourself to play something just because it's in the line up.
Deal Addict
Feb 21, 2013
4522 posts
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Toronto
heywhatsmyname wrote: Some suggestions for saving money on new PS4 games.

Buy physical copies and sell/trade them while they still maintain good value.

Almost all new PS4 games are on sale 5-10 weeks after launch. And then they quickly go back to $80. Take advantage of this time to buy the game for $50+tax, complete it and sell it on Kijiji for $50.

If you are willing to wait, you could get physical or digital copies of AAA games for under $20. A great example is the Days of Play sale mentioned above.

Might not be possible under COVID, but check if your local library has games.

You could make an arrangement with your friends where you borrow each others games.

All PS4 games go on sale. I've bought games for $30, kept it in my backlog only to see the game go down to $10-20. The exception to this is physical copies of some niche titles / limited edition copies.

Personally, I don't like to rely on PS+ for games. It's hard to predict the two "free" games provided each month. You also don't want to force yourself to play something just because it's in the line up.
There's also gamesharing two accounts – that's kind of like the digital version of "borrowing games from a friend", but we've yet to find out if that works for next gen....
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Deal Fanatic
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Mar 12, 2005
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I do buy a few games a year right on release date, but there' usually a way to get PSN credit for discount. IE last Christmas you could get 20% cashback from Toys R' US for using your RBC credit card, plus another 20% for using the amplii app. Technically it wasn't supposed to work on the latter, but it did. I ended up buying a bunch of credit at 40% which means I'm paying closer to $50 to play last of us II. In the past there's been $20 of $100 costco master pass deals, best buy coupons, staples coupons. Things always get tightenup, then another company seems to create a way to get some. Key is to load up when you can find discounted credit.

In regards to games, it depends on how long you can hold out for when new games comes out. Basically it comes out at full price.. usually stays there for a few months. Then starts going on sale ever few weeks, and the discounts get bigger and bigger the older the game is. To get them super cheap they usually need to be a few years old.
Deal Fanatic
Jun 18, 2012
8771 posts
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Toronto
I have two PS4s, one hacked one with v5.05 firmware that plays backed up games/isos and a PS4 Pro that's on latest fw. For the games that work on the hacked one which were released before 2018 I pay $0 lol

the amount of games i've played on the jailbroken ps4 pays for the hardware itself
Deal Addict
Oct 18, 2007
3157 posts
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I dont buy games on launch. I wait for the games to be under $40 before I consider buying it. My average spend per game is $15-30. So, I probably buy 3-4 games per year. When I buy the game I do spend a lot of time playing it, I could spend 3-4 hours a day playing until the game is done.

I will probably wait for next year or after before I buy a ps5.
RFD is bad for your wallet's health 😂

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