Following on from our last interview with a retro game collector here at RetroCollect, Gaz Backhouse (more commonly known as lostruin) has kindly stepped forward to give us a guided tour of his room of doom. With shelves packed to the brim with RPGs, just wait until you see his overflowing gaming cupboard.
Also making use of the collection tracking tools here on RetroCollect, Gaz's impressive collection showcases some of the finest titles around predominately coming from the Sega libraries. But enough talk about statistics, let's hear from the man himself before taking a guided video tour.
Collector Interview with Gaz Backhouse (lostruin)
RetroCollect: Looking at your Collection Photographs uploaded to RetroCollect, it seems that you collect for just about every system going. What originally drew you into retro gaming and what platform do you find yourself buying the most games for?
Gaz Backhouse: It all started for me back when I was just 8 years old (born in 1975). After a visit from Santa on Christmas Eve, I was left with a Sinclair ZX Spectrum, only to fall in love with Atic Atac, Football Manager and the Horace games! Years later I got hold of a Sega Master System for my Birthday, before buying myself a imported Japanese Megadrive from the local video shop, quite possibly before the official UK release.
I've been collecting for around 6-7 years now and when buying retro games, I tend to look for the Sega stuff first. However as you are probably aware (as my collection suggests), I will buy just about anything. So much so that there are some games I own which I can't play, as I don't have the system to play them on. One day though!
RC: How would you describe yourself as a collector? Which direction do you see your collection heading in the next five years? Are you aiming to complete any full sets or is it all about the games?
GB: Originally I would have described myself a casual collector, as I don't usually go out of my way to buy games. However if I do have some spare cash, I often find myself game shopping. As time has passed, I guess I became a bit more serious about collecting, especially when |I had to ask myself "How can anyone with over 600+ games be described as a casual collector?".
Within the next five years, I'm confident I'll still be collecting retro games. While I haven't planned to aim for any full sets just yet, I might be slightly tempted if I manage to get closer to completing one of the sets along the way.
RC: Out of your collection, what are you most prized possessions and why? Are there any titles you've paid over the odds for or any you've sourced for mere pennies?
GB: My most prized possessions within my collection are some of my RPG items. RPGs are my favourite genre and I have amassed a good collection across various formats. I have a decent Final Fantasy collection alongside a growing Shining Series collection, whilst always on the lookout to add to the RPG collection when I can!
The American import Shining Force Sword of Hayja on Sega Game Gear was something I paid deeply for at £28 via eBay, however I had the money at the time and really wanted it. That aside I have picked up some absolute bargains, namely the rather rare Theme Park for the Sega Mega CD and Championship Hockey for the Sega Master System, both of which I paid nothing more than a couple of quid for!
RC: How do you currently go about finding games for your collection? Do you have local shops you frequent, friends online to trade with or find yourself trawling eBay on a regular basis?
GB: I'm rather lucky as I have a few places I buy from, as well as being fortunate to be near a dedicated retro game shop (Retro Station) less than 10 minutes away on the train. I do a fair bit of business there, while sourcing a lot of my Japanese games from a seller in Japan via eBay, who has consequently become a Facebook friend recently. I tend to my fair share of trading on eBay now and then, occasionally finding some cracking bargains, but as most of you are will agree, I'd say the prices are rather inflated!
I've also made quite a few trading friends on the fantastic RetroCollect forums, completing some amazing trades and sales with a few people (you know who you are!) while also giving away some games to some other users here!
RC: What is the one game which continues to elude you which you would do anything for it to be present within your collection?
GB: The one game that I'm hunting for is Shining Force CD on the Sega Mega CD (I've seen it on eBay a couple of times but it's usually out of my price range), which would make a fantastic addition to my Shining Series collection. I'm also looking for the Limited Edition Final Fantasy I Wonderswan console and game pack, which I'm hoping to track down as soon as I can!
Many thanks to Gaz for taking time to answer our questions and give a more detailed look at his impressive collection.
Guided tour of Gaz Backhouse's (aka lostruin's) Games Room
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