Do the prices of Virtual Console games seem high to you? They do to us, as well, but it turns out that they may not be as bad
a deal as they look. JJ Hendricks compared some recent secondhand sale prices for vintage games with their VC price, and found that for almost every VC system, you save
money by buying the virtual version -- if
you buy every game. With the exception of the NES, the aggregate cost of every VC game for each system was lower than the cost of physical copies. In the case of the Turbografx-16, the difference is especially
dramatic: when calculating the difference between total cost (which was already $883
in favor of the Virtual Console), JJ couldn't find a recent price for the super-rare Dynastic Hero.
One of those just ended on eBay for an initial bid of $350
Of course, with the Virtual Console, you don't get a physical item. That may be important to you, and used
to be for us, but these days, with limited storage space and unlimited desire for things, we find it slightly distasteful when something takes up space.
In that regard, virtual copies are a bonus for us.
Where this really
falls apart is buying individual games. You're unlikely to buy every
game using either method, and while you save on something like Shining Force
($31.99 out in the real world vs. $8) you lose on more common stuff like Soccer
(which you shouldn't be buying anyway). But the point stands that the Virtual Console pricing is not ... one hundred percent terrible.
Of course, you could always just use this article as a guide to which games to buy on the VC and which to buy from eBay. Be a smart shopper!