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'I can very rarely afford to fork out £40 on a new game'

Mailbox: Is it time to start renting?

On last week's mailbox Brendan Richardson e-mailed GM to say he's had enough of Square Enix teasing a Final Fantasy 7 remake and said that they should either put up or shut up.


This week Harry Sherlock e-mailed in to extol the virtues of renting video games, which he says can be an excellent alternative to shelling out £40 every time a new game comes out.

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Let me start with a revealing personal note: I can very rarely afford to fork out £40 on a shiny new game so, as a result, I usually have to trade games in to buy games. A case in point is Red Dead Redemption. I traded it in when I finished it to buy another game (its name evades me at this time) and then the zombie downloadable content was dropped.

I was gutted to tell you the truth, but that isn't the point. My point is this - more people should give rentals a try. I've been a member of a very well known rental shop for around three years now and I find it an awesome tool to tell the duds apart from the greats.

For example, I recently rented Brink and I hated it. I just couldn't get my head around it in any way. I also recently rented DiRT 3 and I loved it. I'm now saving to buy the game so that I can play online, what with the online pass unavailable. But that was a minor gripe. The game cost me a fiver for a week and I got an awesome amount of playing time out of the awesome rallying.

Brink also cost me a fiver and although it was disappointing, I felt relieved that I hadn't splashed out forty quid on that awfulness. As a result, I genuinely believe that rentals can be the answer to many people's gaming addictions. Thanks for taking the time to listen to my ramblings.

GM says: Not much we can add to that, Harry - you've put your point across brilliantly. Joining a rental scheme means that you get to try out games that you'd never dream of dropping 40 notes on, and does wonder for your Gamerscore! Publishers might not be too comfortable with the idea, but using your experience with DiRT 3 as a case in point, if a game is good enough people are going to want to add it to their collection permanently.

CVG says: We wholeheartedly agree. Renting a game is an excellent way of experiencing a everything without cleaning out your bank account. The trouble is finding a rental outlet worth its salt. We've heard mixed opinions on LoveFilm and Blockbuster stores are becoming increasingly rare.

If any fellow CVG readers can offer opinions on LoveFilm or any alternatives let us know in the comments below.