Cheat Codes for Life

Zack Huffman offers advice about clearing out your backlog, selling games to afford food, and more.

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TortelliniOn the date of August 24th, 2005, I was caught with my pants down in front of a cop car that had been set on fire, while holding a book of matches in one hand and a tank of gasoline in the other. As part of my community service, I’ve been ordered to bestow my vast knowledge upon the gaming masses.

Dear Zack,

I own roughly 253 videogames, and I’ve only beaten half of them. Not even half. Actually, not even anywhere near half.

Of course, some of those games can’t really be beaten. Puzzle games and such that have no real ending. But most do, and it’s starting to bug me that I haven’t been able to finish them. In fact, it’s gotten to the point where I’ll buy an easy-to-complete game—say, a trivia game—just so I can beat it and raise my beaten:non-beaten game ratio.

I’m obsessed with having a completed collection, but I haven’t been able to achieve one, either because I just flat-out can’t beat many games or because I haven’t had the time to. How can I improve my ratio without resorting to selling games I’m unable to beat?

Yours truly,
The End Isn’t Near

Dear The End Isn’t Near,

If you seriously want to improve your ratio of beaten games to un-beaten games in your collection, you could always stop buying any new games, quit your job, drop out of school and spend the next year in a dark room doing nothing but playing games and looking for FAQS on to help you beat the more difficult ones. But then what? You’ve wasted a year with ultimately very little to show for it.

You’d be wasting your life trying to complete 253 videogames. The inherent purpose of a videogame is to entertain you. As soon as the game becomes a chore, it’s purpose is defeated. I’m sure there are at least a small handful of core games you tend to replay because you enjoy them. Other than those, I suggest that you get rid off all of your other games. Sell them, burn them, bury them or give them to one of your friends. Either way, the best thing that you could ever do is not let yourself be obsessed by this shit.

If you actually do decide that you’re too useless to be allowed outside of the house for extended periods of time, and that you do actually want to beat these games, then try I know some gamers frown upon to idea of using online guides, but there’s no point to playing a game that isn’t any fun. If finding out how to get past a particularly irritating allows me to continue with the game, then I’m sure as hell going to check the Internet.

In the meantime, not being able to beat a videogame isn’t a problem. Spending Friday and Saturday night alone in your room with a stained T-shirt that reads “All Your Base” is a problem.


Dear Zack,


I’ve done the one thing I always vowed I’d never do: I’ve started selling my games on eBay. I’ve never wanted to be That Guy, but I’m left with few other choices; I can’t afford to live my extravagant college-kid-eating-lots-of-pasta lifestyle without making a few bucks, and there aren’t many part-time jobs that fit my class schedule.

If I’m going to go to such extreme lengths I’d at least like to maximize my profits, so do you have any suggestions for doing so? Any thoughts on other ways I could make money would be appreciated as well.

Tortellini’s My Favorite

Dear Tortellini’s My Favorite,

There are about twelve steps to recovering from being a gamer. I think selling off your games is step 5, so congratulations on that.

When selling games, you have a number of options. You could sell them to game shops, like E B Games or GameStop, but you’re going to get ripped horribly, and you’ll probably only get store credit. You could also try selling to your friends, but if you don’t sell them for cheap or even give them away, then you’re a douche bag. Ebay is good, but the chaotic nature of auctions will require you to put a ton of effort into making your auction really appealing.

My preferring method is You can name your fixed price, and there are no auctions. It’s owned by eBay, so if you have an eBay account, you’ve got a account. You can also get a feel for what sells when naming your price. That’s about the best you’re going to do with game selling.

For making money in general, there are a few options. If you’re too high-and-mighty to rob the elderly, you could always try prostitution. Just close your eyes an pretend it’s a girl’s dick that you’re about to suck, and cold hard cash always makes your ass hurt less. You could also take a more moderate approach to that, like nude house cleaning. A friend of mine claims that there’s some decent money in that.

Legitimate advice aside, it’s probably a safe bet that you’re gaming happens often put a hurting on your wallet. If you aren’t making enough money, then consider spending a lot less. Giving up gaming would be a great start.


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About the Contributor

From 2005 to 2007

Zack Huffman is a former staff member from GameCola's early days as a monthly email newsletter.

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