Video Gaming Cost: The Bottom Line.

What do you need and how much does it cost to play video games? Video gaming cost can vary from very expensive to not much more than a dinner and a movie (which can cost a hundred dollars).

money bag
                            “IT AIN’T FREE”

In this post, I will look at the different equipment needed to play video games. I will compare the pricing for games, consoles, and any other device one may use to play.

“How can I save money and get the best deals cost-wise?” This is a very important question, especially, if you are living on a fixed income or you don’t want to waste your hard-earned cash.

I don’t mind the video gaming cost, but I want to get my money’s worth. And I am sure most everyone else feels the same way.

I hope the information provided will be helpful and useful in your video gaming cost decisions. I have another post that may be helpful in making buying decisions. Please check out.

You know my MOTTO fellow gamers: “Let’s Game!”

So what equipment or devices are needed to be a video gamer?

1. TV: The cost of television is not usually an added expense for playing video games. Most homes have at least one television set, if not more. However, there are other ways to play video games without a TV as we will see later.

I personally recommend a larger TV, at least a 42″ high definition screen. I have a 46″ myself, but I am asking Santa Claus for a 65″ or 70″ for Christmas. (and yes, I still believe in Santa Claus).

I want the video game characters to be larger than life. Also, a bigger screen is helpful to read the playing instructions. (My eyes ain’t quite as good as when I was a younger buck).

TV price ranges:

  • Budget TVs: 40 to 43 inches: $170-$400. 49 to 55 inches: $250-700. 60 inches or larger: $500-$1100.

                                                                                    “THE BIGGER THE BETTER”

  • Mid-level TVs: 40 to 43 inches: $350-$550. 49 to 55 inches: $650-1200. 60 inches or larger: $950-$2300.
  • Top-Tier TVs: 40 to 43 inches: $400-$800. 49 to 55 inches: $750-$3000. 60 inches or larger: $1600-$6000.

2. Consoles: Okay, since you probably have a television set already, it’s time to look at video game consoles and the different pricing. The cost for systems can vary, depending on if it is new, used, the amount of storage available, or if it is an older generation of an existing system.

Another factor to consider is what games appeal to you. Each system has games that are exclusive to each particular brand. For example, The “Halo” series is for the Xbox. “God of War” is for PlayStation and “Mario Brothers is exclusive to Nintendo.

The cost for the major consoles can vary.

Xbox (Microsoft):

  • Original Xbox: Cost from $49-$100 depending on the condition.

                              “THIS IS A VERY GOOD SYSTEM”

  • Xbox 360: Cost from $50-$100 depending on if the system is new or used.
  • Xbox One: Cost from $200-$500 for newer ones. It varies based on the amount of storage and type of bundle one chooses.

PlayStation (Sony):

  • PlayStation One: I was surprised you can still purchase this console. At a website called Stuccu, you can get it for $42.
  • PlayStation Two: At Amazon, you can purchase this system for $40-$50. This system has sold over 155 million units worldwide. A very good system. I have one my self. I still love playing with it, especially, Ace Combat.
  • PlayStation Three: The slimmer version seems to be the most popular. I was able to find one online for around $125 after doing some research. A very powerful system.

                        “OLDIE, BUT A GOODIE”

  • PlayStation Four: I have one of these as well. Very nice gaming system. I found a slim version for $280 and a Pro version for $365. Some of PlayStation exclusive games are “God of War” and “Spiderman”.


  • Original Nintendo Entertainment System: This console was one of Nintendo’s greatest successes. It helped introduced interchangeable cartridges. Cost from $50-$100.
  • Original Super Nintendo Entertainment System: This was the first Nintendo 16-bit system with enhanced graphics and a new controller. Cost from $50-$150.
  • Nintendo 64: This console introduced the modern joystick and had four controller ports. Cost from $80-$250.
  • GameCube: First Nintendo system to use disc formats and additional memory cards. Cost from $50-$150.

                        “MARIO BROTHERS/ NINTENDO SYSTEM”

  • Wii: One very popular feature was the motion controls where a player can interact with the gameplay. Cost from $35-$180 (some with extra accessories like a steering wheel).
  • NES Classic Edition 2016 mini: This is a newer version of the original. It also includes 30 classic NES games. Cost from $70-$85.
  • Nintendo Switch: This console is a new hybrid of home and portable systems. Pretty cool feature. Being newer the cost ranges from $250-$350.
  • Super Nintendo Entertainment System Classic Edition 2017: This is also a mini version of the original Supersystem. It includes 20 built-in games plus a bonus game, Star Fox 2. Cost from $100-$150. There was one on eBay which has over 350 classic games available.

3.Handheld Video game systems:

  • Wolsen Color: A little 8-bit emulator that comes with 152 games along with the memories these games can bring back. Cost/$18.
  • GBA Retro Mini: After playing games (Contains 1600+ games), you can kick back and watch TV on this device. Cost/$33.
  • I’m Game 120: This one is great for road trips or traffic jams if you’re not the driver. Cost/$40.
  • Rongyuxuan Console: Hard to pronounce, but fun to play the old classic video games. You can also hook it up to your 4K big screen. Cost/$23-$60.

    Sony PSP
                    “GAMING IS ON THE MOVE”

  • Sony PSPGo: With a 3.8” LCD screen, you just slip it in your shirt pocket. It also has a built-in microphone for skyping. Cost/$80-$127.
  • Nvidia Shield: You can stream games from a computer or Android device. The controller is one of the best for handheld systems. A little pricey, Cost/$200-$250.
  • LeapFrog Leapster: This is a great system for kids. The teaching games offer math, science, geography, and keeps the young ones quiet while playing. Cost/$17.
  • New Nintendo 3DS XL: A bigger screen, enhanced control and rapid processing power makes this one a step up from its predecessors. Cost/$165.
  • Sony PlayStation Vita: This handheld combines extraordinary gameplay and crisp visuals. Also, you can play games remotely from your PS3 and PS4 consoles. Cost/$110-$250.
  • Nintendo Switch: Whether at home or on the road, you can play this one on your home console or as a handheld device. It is also very durable when the little ones get a hold of it. Cost/$299.

4.VR (Virtual Reality):

  • Samsung Gear VR: Cost/$95.

                                     “ARE YOU KIDDING ME?”

  • HTC Vive: Cost/$599.
  • Google Daydream View: Cost/$80.
  • Sony PlayStation VR: Cost/$427.
  • Samsung HMD Odyssey Windows Mixed Reality Headset: Cost/$399.
  • Google Cardboard: Cost/$15.
  • Merge VR: Cost/$43.
  • Oculus: Cost/$399.

Most virtual reality systems need a phone or a PC/gaming console to use. Another thing to consider, but it is worth it. These things are awesome. You are actually in the game.


  • PC (Laptops & desktops): Refurbished desktops start at $158. Brand new ones can begin at $400 and you can go higher depending on the amount of power and storage you want. With power and storage comes better gaming graphics and gameplay. Laptops can be purchased for $125.

                                “NEVER TO YOUNG TO GAME”

  • Tablets: A lot of families have these for their kids. Besides just playing video games, tablets are a very useful learning tool. Some games can be educational as well as entertaining. These are very affordable starting at $29 and up.
  • Phones (Smart/Android): Most people today in our techno age have a phone of some kind. They are like mini-computers you hold in your hand. The price range depends on the extra “whistles and bells” that fits your personal wants and needs. Phone costs are anywhere from $20-$1000.

I lumped PC, tablets, and phones together because most people have some form of a computer in their lives whether for work or pleasure. 


(To play a game, you will need the game). Game costs go from free (with subscriptions) to over $100 depending on the edition (deluxe, premium, gold or platinum), add-ons, or what bundle package one wants.

Video games for consoles and/or computers are easy to purchase or purchase/download. Also, a lot of games are free and fun to play.

god of war 1

There are plenty of places to buy all you need to start your video game adventure. Here are a few.

  • Retail stores: Best Buy, Walmart, GameStop.
  • Add-ons purchased online.
  • Monthly subscriptions:
    1. Game Pass
    2. Gamefly
    3. GSA
    4. Xbox Live
    5. PlayStation Plus
    6. Online websites.

There are always deals at these stores or websites for video games or systems. Just take the time to browse and do research to see what system or game is best for your family and yourself.

                                “SHARING GOOD TIMES”

How to cut/save on Video Gaming Cost:

  • Trading with friends
  • Holiday/Birthday Gifts
  • Refurbished/Used games
  • eBay
  • Pawn shops
  • Sales in stores
  • Online shopping:
    1. Amazon
    2. Gamestop/ You can trade in old games in for credits.
    3. Major retailers: Walmart, Best Buy, or Target.

Last but certainly not least, Google it. The odds are someone will probably have what you are searching for. Doesn’t hurt to try.

Or, if you’ve got plenty of money, don’t worry about gaming cost and saving. Just buy the most powerful computer/console, the biggest TV screen, and the best audio system available and enjoy the hell out of it.

Please check out this link about costs in making a video game.

I hope this post has been helpful in sorting out any questions about the basic video gaming cost. It doesn’t have to be expensive.

Most people already have most of these devices in their lives that offer video gaming in some form or fashion. Technology is part of our culture whether you are a gamer or not.

There is nothing wrong with having fun with our modern gizmos and tech-toys. The electronic world doesn’t have to be all about business or learning.

                             “TICK-TOCK TICK-TOCK”

Sometimes we can, and need, to just escape from the hustle and bustle of our go-go world.

We love the idea of going to worlds of fantasies. It touches a part of our hearts, the hearts of our childhood, places where the IMPOSSIBLE is the norm. A place where dreams are not dreams, but reality.

A world where what you do matters more than what you say. But not just in a video game, but in our lives as well.

Please understand, I don’t believe we should use video games or anything else in our lives to replace eye-to-eye, hand-to-hand, heart-to-heart relationships.

Whether it be with your kids, your spouse, your parents, your friends, or just another fellow gamer, our interaction with each other counts more than a game.

If you have any questions or comments, please leave at the bottom of the page or you can email me at  . Thanks, everyone.

                                                  “WATCHER OF THE  WOODS”


Grandpa, johnny, the Grey Wolf.

“Let’s Game”

20 thoughts on “Video Gaming Cost: The Bottom Line.

  1. The name “Gaming with Grandpa” is great. It conjures up images of kids having fun with granddad and granddad spoiling them!  You have opened my eyes to far more gaming options than I was aware of. My boys have  Nintendo, PlayStation and X-Box, but I didn’t know about the newer editions and the variety of hand held gaming options that are available. Some great hints to keep the costs down as well like swapping with friends. Happy gaming.

    • Hi LineCowley, 

      Thank you for your kind words. That image you mention is exactly right. That is a reality for me when my granddaughter, Sierra, visits. She sets on the couch with me in my recliner going head to head in some kind of fighting game like “Injustice”. She loves these types of games and she is good at them. She kicks my butt every time.  But we have so much fun together. I miss her. I am ready for her next visit. 

      I’m glad you liked the cost-cutting tips. I don’t like spending fifty to sixty bucks for a video game. I will usually wait for the price to drop over time. Also, I usually put off buying consoles for a year or two from their release dates. This gives companies time to work out any kinks or problems. 

      I appreciate your time and comments, LineCowley. Game on.  

      johnny, the Grey Wolf, watcher of the woods. 

  2. Hi Johnny

    Very interesting post. I’m trying to keep my young sons away from the newer games for two reasons, the potential impact to their psyches and the costs. Their friends, of course, have all the latest, but my wife and I like to keep it simple and face-to-face interactive…not virtually interactive.

    We actually got a Nintendo Wii. Talk about old school. 🙂 It was free through an Aussie site called BuyNothing. It’s been really cool. Maybe I could write an article for GamingwithGrandpa. HA..



    • Hi Dave, 

      I agree we have to be careful what our kids are playing and what they are watching. Sometimes what they see can be worst than what they play. 

      I love face-to-face interaction as well. I don’t think we should ever lose that, it is so important. 

      Speaking for myself, when my granddaughter, Sierra, visits, we play video games. We also do other things as well. But those moments when we play video games together as magical and special for us. We laugh, have pizza, and just enjoy being together. It’s not about playing a video game, playing catch, taking a walk, or “you name it”, it’s about spending time with someone I love very much. 

      What kind of games are you playing on your Nintendo?

      We will see about writing here,  I am still learning myself. 

      Thanks for your thoughts, Dave. 

      johnny, the Grey Wolf, watcher of the woods. 

  3. This is a great post and has given me some excellent ideas.

    Especially since I have a 10-year-old grandson who loves them. I tried playing a game with him once and I didn’t stand a chance. It’s amazing how quickly today’s kids figure tech stuff out. 

    You did a good job of describing the best T.V’s and game counsels available for purchase. It’s especially important to someone like me who doesn’t completely understand how it all works. I have a big T.V. and your post has given me some excellent gift ideas for my Grandson for Xmas and birthdays.

    I’ll buy him a new video game and challenge him to bring it over and see if he can beat grandpa. (Which he probably will).

    Your post gets a five-star rating from me.  Well done!

    • Hi Ray, 

      I really appreciate your generous rating. I am glad this post was helpful. It is amazing how tech-savvy kids and younger adults are today. I have seen young gamers buy a game and have it completed in a weekend. It takes me months to complete a game, mostly because I not that good at them. I still love playing them. I don’t have to be good, just have fun. 

      I think that is a great idea about getting a game the two of you can play together. Your grandson will love it and I bet you will too.  Another idea is your grandson and you can shop for games together. 

      Ray, it is so good to hear from a fellow grandfather who is open to something new and different. Being a kid today is a lot different than when you and I were kids. Maybe playing video games with our kids and grandkids will remind of us of when we were kids. I know it does me. 

      Thanks for your time and thoughts. 

      johnny, the Grey Wolf, watcher of the woods.   

  4. Hi dear

    What I usually take for granted is my tv or laptop. But lately I come to realize that with a good TV or computer, playing video game is a way a better experience.

    I like the pricing list you have made but I would have love to get a specific recommendation from you, can you give me one? A given model and why it will be better for playing video game.


    • Hi Adyns68, 

      Thanks for your comments. 

      I usually don’t play video games on my computer. I prefer to play on my big screen TV with speakers. I like that theater effect, a big picture with a big sound. 

      As far as a recommendation, there are so many options for TVs and gaming systems. I would shop at websites like Best Buy, Walmart, or Amazon. You can also shop at the stores. It is easy to find an affordable big screen TV in the $500 to $1000 range. You don’t need a five thousand dollar TV to have a good experience playing video games. 

      I wouldn’t worry a lot about what TV or gaming system to buy. Just shop around and see what fits your budget and your wants and needs. I would recommend getting at least a 42″ big screen TV. 

      I hope that helps. I appreciate your time, Adyns68.

      johnny, the Gey Wolf, watcher of the woods. 

  5. This is so true, people think it cost thousands of dollars if you are into videogames, sure, it can cost a lot, but it depends on what kind of video games you’re into actually.

    I love playing video games, and no, not consoles. PC games are way cheaper and I enjoy playing them much much more. Handheld video games are my 2nd choice. They are very handy and fun.

    • Hi Isaac, 

      Thank you for your reply. 

      I don’t play video games on my computer very much. I do a lot of work on my computer, so playing on my big screen TV is more enjoyable for me. The handheld video game screen is too small for me. 

      Right here is a great example of all the options we have today as a gamer. You like playing PC games, I prefer playing on a console, but we are both still playing. That is so cool. 

      Have a great day, Isaac. 

      johnny, the Grey Wolf, watcher of the woods. 

  6. Thanks for this great post.  I’ll have to admit, I’m overdue for a new gaming system.  That said, I have some reservations…

    I’ve had all kinds of gaming systems over the years.  My most recent ones were the X-Box 360 and Nintendo Wii (as I said I’m overdue).  My concern comes from simply not using them any more.  I thought I’d get back into it with Titanfall, but I really didn’t.  Nintendo gets me with the Zelda franchise almost every time.

    For me, capability is important but, in the long run, game selection/franchise is what draws me in.

    Right now, Nintendo has my eye, as it has the games I play (or used to play) most (Mario, Zelda, etc.).  I also have my gaming PC for World of Warcraft but even with that, I’ve been lacking when it comes to actually playing.

    I appreciate your cost breakdowns and saving money hits.  I’ll be checking back here when I go to make my next purchase, just to make sure I don’t miss anything before I do.

    Thank you again for this post,


    • Hi Scott, 

      Good to hear from you. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a reply. 

      To be honest, I really don’t play video game very much either. I have an Xbox One and a PlayStation 4. I hardly play at all during the week. It is mostly on weekends. This is why I love the save button. I can go for days without playing and grab the controller and pick up where I left off. Sometimes I do forget how to control the character. 

      I would like to get the “Switch” by Nintendo so I can play the Mario Brothers games. I miss playing those. They are so much fun. 

      I don’t play video games on my computer. I prefer the bigger screen of my TV. 

      I am currently playing “Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End”. I just order the new “Spider-Man” game for PlayStation 4. I think it is exclusive to PlayStation. I am looking forward to playing “Spidey”. 

      Let me know what you end up buying and what games you will be playing. 

      Appreciate your comments, Scott. 

      johnny, the Grey Wolf, watcher of the woods. 

  7. Fantastic post! It is great to see a website that focuses on this niche. I personally have a PS2 and a switch. But now I usually play on my desktop as I am more into computer games like LOL and Overwatch. I think this post is very informative and will be very helpful to those who are new to gaming. I will definitely recommend this to someone who want to buy games. Thank you for sharing and keep up the good work!

    • Hi Jayden, 

      I am glad you found the post helpful. That is what I was hoping for. I hope to educate people about all aspects of video gaming good and bad. I know I am learning so much myself. I really enjoy sharing it with others. 

      I have an Xbox One and a PlayStation 4. I hope to get a Switch so I can play the Mario Brothers games, especially the newer versions. 

      I don’t play video games on my computer. I like playing on my big screen TV better. I like the bigger than life effect of the larger screen. 

      What kind of games are you playing now? I am playing “Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End”. 

      Thank you for your comments, Jayden. 

      johnny, the Grey Wolf, watcher of the woods. 

  8. I love video games!! But I only really enjoy the car racing games. Even though I was one of the ones who grew up in the 80’s so I’m a huge fan of mario bros! That’s one of the best in my opinion. The prices aren’t that bad, and if you have the money to buy one or two a week, depending on someone’s budget, that’s cool!

    • Hi Buffy, 

      Thank you for your comments. I like racing games too, but I am not very good at them. Thank God for the reset button. I crash all the time. I still have a lot of fun. 

      Yeah, I agree, Mario Brothers is a classic. 

      I usually wait to buy games when the prices drop. I am not a fan of playing fifty or sixty bucks for a game. After a time the prices start to drop to around twenty to thirty dollars. 

      Also, I might buy two to three games a year. It takes me months to complete a game. I definitely get my money’s worth. 

      Besides racing games, what other games do you enjoy playing? 

      I just ordered the new “Spider-Man” game. 

      “Let’s Game”, Buffy. 

      johnny, the Grey Wolf, watcher of the woods.  

  9. Hello Gaming Grandpa,

    I used to play video games a lot. Preferred sports games like hockey and football. Also enjoyed first shooters like halo and call of duty. I have not been able to play for a long time due to carpo-tunnel syndrome. I would be interested to read content on this issue if you can recommend me some.

    Everything you laid out on how to set up a gaming center is spot on. From the selection of a tv to the console, games and the audio system all are needed to really enjoy the game to its fullest.

    Wish I could play still but sadly those days are now behind me.

    Thanks for sharing, brought back sweet memories of past fun times!

    Proud papa of two,


    • Hi Jody, 

      I am sorry to hear about your carpal tunnel. I hope you don’t mind but I did some research on this. I wanted to see if there are other options for you. I am adding a couple of links that may be useful. One is about treatment for gamers with carpal-tunnel. The other is about video games controlled by your voice. I think it might be worth checking out. I hope it helps. Also, I would suggest Googling “Video games controlled by voice”. Several links popped up.

      I agree with you about having a good setup to enjoy the gaming experience. I usually don’t play on my computer. I like the big HD screen with stereo sound. It’s like setting in the theater. I love it. 

      I hope one day I get a post from you telling me you are gaming again. I wish for the best for you, Jody. 

      johnny, the Grey Wolf, watcher of the woods. 

  10. I’m a Grandpa that didn’t know any of this “gaming” stuff. I have no experience at all with any of those forms of game playing, I must be “boring”. I have heard of some of the hardware names and knew nothing about them , but, I do now. This is a topic that a lot of seniors would find helpful in suggesting ways to keep the brain and hand co-ordination working, and could possibly be used in addition to the usual type of exercises for hand -eye coordination. 

    Is video gaming similar to online gaming that I have heard about?. I particularly like and agree with your comments about interaction with others.  

    • Hi Graham, 

      Thanks for taking the time to reply to my post. To be honest, Graham, I don’t know that much either. I just do a lot of research. I learn new things about the gaming industry with each new topic. 

      I love the concept that video games can be used to help older adults with their minds and bodies. I am looking forward to researching done in this area of the gaming world. 

      You don’t sound boring to me. Video games are not usually associated with older adults. It’s new territory for us older folks. But it is a fun journey. I think you will be surprised at how much you will enjoy playing video games. It is really special when you get to do it with your kids or even better, your grandkids. There is nothing like it. 

      When my granddaughter, Sierra, visits we play video games together. I bought her a special controller just for her. 

      Video gaming and online gaming are basically the same, they’re games. With online gaming, the player usually plays on their computers while using the internet. The internet provides the ability to play with other players from around the world. Cool stuff.

      With video gaming, you don’t need the internet to play. If you want to play with other players, you can buy memberships with Xbox Live or PlayStation Plus networks. This would be similar to playing online. 

      I hope you take the plunge Graham and join us as a fellow old-time gamer. If I can help in any way let me know. 

      johnny, the Grey Wolf, watcher of the woods. 

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