Skylanding for fun and profit

I find a lot of evidence of a cultural phenomenon stuffed in a box

A few years ago I started collecting some Skylanders. If you don't know what Skylanders are, then that means you're a normal person who probably wasn't a kid, or had any kids, or was adjacent to kids from about 2011 to 2018. Skylanders is a series of video games based on the mechanic of you (the player, or, more likely the player's parents) buying real-life Skylanders figures to use in the game. And by 'use in the game', I mean that you go buy a figure of Hex and then you bring it home and put your figure on the Portal of Power and Hex will show up in your game. It's a neat idea, but also a kind of dangerous one. If you wanted to have the full set of Skylanders, you'd have to buy around 40-50 of the things (assuming you could find them all), each time a new game was released. Expensive for you, but gold for Activision.

Unless the market gets flooded, but that almost never happens.

So, after the market was flooded with Toys-to-life figures and Skylanders unofficially died, there were a lot of figures and games to be had for cheap. In one case, $0.43 per figure and $2.00 per game cheap (or thereabouts, I can't find my receipt). I figured that I had no real interest in the series, but at those prices I could grab a few (or a lot) and see if they were worth playing.

I spent the next few months picking up odds and ends to fill out the collection, but they stayed in their boxes because I was doing other things (and, honestly, wasn't all that interested in them anyway). Once I had picked over every store in town I sat there looking at the intimidating pile of figures and games still securely packed away and decided to open them all. Maybe putting them on display will help me want to play the games? It didn't, but at least they were easier to display.

After about another year of them sitting on display and gathering dust, I ended up moving to a new house. I packed up the Skylanders and games into three(!) moving boxes. I took them to the new place and let them sit in their boxes for a little over a year. I only recently discovered them again about a week ago.

There's a part of my brain that wants me to keep these things. To add them to my personal museum of video game artifacts. But there's another, more rational, part that realizes that I haven't done anything with these things in the few years since I got them, and it seems silly to put them in a box to just ignore them forever.

So I did what any rational person would do. I found a website dedicated in identifying Skylanders figures to identify them all, I placed them all into individually-labelled bags, made an online inventory, and am preparing to sell them to someone else.

Because I realized that I did already have fun with them. It was fun finding the extreme bargains. It was fun finding the figures all over town. It was fun re-identifying the figures that I had displayed. It was even fun setting up the inventory page (even though I hand-wrote XML and XSLT to do it).

But these figures hold no special value to me. They don't represent any kind of memories I had or anything like that. The fun was in the hunt. The collecting. And now that it's over (It's over because I'm deciding that it's over. I could spend the rest of my life combing through thrift stores and flea markets and yard sales and Used Pop Culture stores to try to eke out another 0.1% completion, but that's energy I'd rather spend elsewhere) it's time to move on. It's time to let someone else enjoy the fruits of my labor and move on to another project. But this one was fun while it lasted.

This entry's fake tags are:

● Skylanders ● Collecting ● You can't keep everything 

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