Interview with CheapyD from Cheapassgamer.com

One of my biggest pet peeves about anything in this world is paying full price for something. It’s almost a sickness, and I probably spend so much time hunting down a good deal that the time + gas money spent probably don’t add up to any real savings. I was not always like this until a few years ago when I came across a website that completely changed my spending habits when it came to video games:

Cheapassgamer.com

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Cheapassgamer, or CAG, is a site that I almost have a hard time recommending people go to. While it’s a great site to find video game deals, you’ll never look at the value in a video game the same again. Since I started going to the site I thought I would save money, however now instead of buying one $25 game, I’ll buy five $5 games. It’s harder now to justify purchasing a $60 game, when CAG has lead me to deals on AAA games that were only a couple bucks.

Cheapassgamer.com is a wonderful site though, and in this day of expensive games, microtransactions, and $40 demos, it’s great to have a site looking out for the wallets of the gaming community. The website is continuing to grow and shows no sign of stopping. Recently CheapyD, the man who runs Cheapassgamer, took the time to discuss with Diehard GameFAN some of the history of Cheapassgamer. The following is the transcript of that conversation.

Matt : Do you mind if I call you CheapyD during these questions? Because I have no idea what your real name is. :)

David : It’s David

David : Anything is fine

Matt : Okay. Now I’m a big fan of the site and I’ve been a CAGer for a couple of years now. When did the site get started and how did you come up with the idea?

David : I started the site in May 2003, so we are about to have our 5th anniversary.

David : Being a big gamer, and a fan of more general deal sites like benbargains.net, I found myself constantly searching game retailers for the best deals.

David : I decided that I wanted there to be a game deals site like Ben’s Bargains and thought it would be a good experience to try and create my own website.

David : It’s certainly not an original idea, just something specific that I wanted to exist…that didn’t.

Matt : Over the years Cheapassgamer has grown into a fairly large community. Did you anticipate that there would be this much interest in the site?

David : When I started the site, I really didn’t look too far ahead. With no web experience whatsoever, I really had no idea what I was doing. I wasn’t as concerned with how popular the site may or may not be as much as I was just getting the thing to work!

David : However, I was optimistic that the site would do well. In fact, at the time, I wasn’t making very much money at my real job and was hoping that the site would take off so that I could supplement my income.

Matt : Ha! That’s great. It seems it’s really paid off for you.

David : There’s no doubt that I am “living the dream”.

David : Although I guess that depends on your definition of “dream”

David : and “living”. ;)

Matt : Now you’ve probably had some high and low points at various times with the site, what would be your best and worst memory about running Cheapassgamer?

David : Wow, thats a tough question.

David : I think a lot of my best memories indirectly come from CAG.

David : I remember when my wife and I decided that we would move to Japan. If there was no CAG, I highly doubt I would have quit my real job and made that big step. Not only leaving the country, but being my own boss…it was a pretty big deal to me.

David : Also, I’ve had a lot of fun meeting people in the gaming industry and community. Last year’s E3 was an especially great time. I certainly wouldn’t not have been in attendance if it wasn’t for CAG.

David : Most of my bad memories relate to technical problems with the site.

David : Staying up all night trying to fix these problems isn’t a lot of fun. I guess I’ve been lucky that I don’t have any worse memories than that. Nobody has tried to stab me with their love knife…yet.

Matt : Love knife?

David : Urban Dictionary Definition. To stab someone who you love. Used mostly to describe crazed fans of musicians. They love the band so much, they want to ‘love knife’ them and stab them. Coined by Kyle Gass from the band “Tenacious D” in their late 1990’s HBO comedy shorts. (Matt’s note- credit to Urban Dictionary for the definition)

Matt : Oh, I thought you were making a weird innuendo for a moment.

David : heh

Matt : Recently you received the 2007 Padcast Award for Gaming. What do you think separates your podcast from other podcasts about gaming?

David : People seem to like the odd chemistry between myself and Wombat. Also, gamers might identify with us more than your average game review writer (pulling double duty as a podcast host) on one of the big sites. I think those guys sometimes forget what its like to be just a “regular gamer”. Wombat and I are on the cusp of being in the game industry, and that tends to make things more interesting.

David : Also, a lot of podcast hosts aren’t up for the challenge of entertaining an audience for any extended period of time. I really work hard at it.

Matt : That’s part of the reason I listen to you guys actually. You both seem like regular guys.

David : See, we fooled you.

David : ;)

Matt : Only two more questions than I’ll stop bugging you,

Matt : Now that you are a parent do you think that will change the way you view some video games or your own gaming habits?

David : My gaming habits have definitely changed. There is just less time for gaming and many games that I enjoy just aren’t appropriate to be played in the presence of a baby. I think my son has already heard way too much machine gun fire (from Call of Duty 4).

Matt : Heh

David : I’m sure I will be careful on which games I will introduce to Tai, but I’ve got some time to worry about that.

Matt : Where do you see Cheapassgamer going from here? Are there plans to expand into further areas of video gaming, (such as news/reviews), or expanding into deals on about other media (like movies/electronics)?

David : We are close to launching a complete redesign of the site, with a new look and a lot o new features. The focus of the site will always been video game shopping, but I really want to give the users more ways to spend their time on CAG, rather than just posting and reading a message board.

David : We are going to have user blogs, a game database with a user collection and trading system. We will allow users to review games and input at what price they recommend a purchase.

David : There will be some new social networking features as well. I think people are going to be very impressed and surprised.

Matt : I can’t wait to see it. Also I lied, I’ve got one more question for you that’s probably the most important one…

David : Sure

Matt : What’s the most you’ve ever spent on a game?

David : Hmmm

David : Like most people, I’d have to say Rock Band.

David : I had to import it to Japan too, so, with shipping, It cost me quite a bit.

David : Although I just bought the drums and the game, since I already had a guitar from GHIII

Matt : Ouch

David : I think the shipping was about $30 for the drums, which actually isn’t too bad.

David : i think in total

David : It was about $160

David : I’m not a game collector, so thats probably the most I’ll ever pay…until Rock Band II.

Matt : Thank you very much for taking the time to answer these questions!

DHGF would like again to thank David for the interview, and if you’re reading this and have ever though to yourself, “Man, I paid way too much for this game.” then head on over to Cheapassgamer.com. Beware though, once you start hunting for deals, it’s hard to stop.

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