Visiting the UK’s Biggest Retro Gaming Market

With the gaming industry slowing becoming obsessed with digital only products, retro game collecting might become a distant memory of the past. Until that time though, events like the Video Game Market will continue to thrive! Toted as the UK’s biggest and longest running gaming market, the Video Game Market opened its doors again at the Doncaster Dome a few weekends ago , which isn’t all that far away (by car at least) from where I live!

This bustling market offers visitors a broad range of items to peruse, including recently released games, handmade items, retro toys and games, and collectible cards to name a few. I didn’t exactly have any items in mind whilst browsing aside from maybe boosting my Pokémon card collection and my adding to my recently acquired Amiibo but that was actually a blessing in disguise. Rather than rushing past each stall trying my best to find what I wanted, I made a point of stopping and having a careful search through everything.

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The organisers offer a very helpful early entry ticket that can be pre-booked from their website, costing a measly £4.34. A slightly odd amount of money, especially as the regular adult ticket, costs £2 but the 34p is a fee charged by EventBrite. This early entry ticket allows admission from 10AM as opposed to the usual 11AM and is limited to just 500 people. I’m not sure if they sold all of these tickets but we arrived dead on 10am and the queue to get in was already impressively long, so I think they probably came close! It did go down quite fast and it didn’t detract from my experience in any way.

While there was a huge amount of stalls to browse around, two particular ones caught my eye. Deadpan Robot offers a massive selection of items to modify and customize all versions of the Nintendo Game Boy. From modification kits to spare parts, these guys have you covered. I don’t want this to sound like an advertisement for them but I was genuinely impressed with the selection they had to offer.  The prices were also really fair, something that is always positive.

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Deadpan Robot

Another super interesting stall I came across was that of the craft designer and animator, Dogtor Who! This table consisted of a fabulous array of hama bead creations, anything from Harry Potter to Pokémon and Star Wars. There were even some creations with more dimension, with characters attached to stands. All were super adorable! I had a little look on the DogtorWho YouTube channel too and found a delightful selection of crafting videos and some animated ones too! My favourite video was the stop-motion recreation of Super Mario World using hama beads. It was very well animated and each frame of each sprite was meticulously made. It was a pleasure to discover both Dogtor Who and Deadpan Robot, and if you ever cross their paths, I would absolutely recommend supporting them both!

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Dogtor Who

As I mentioned before, I didn’t really have a clear goal in what I wanted to buy. I did set myself a maximum amount to spend though, as I usually do when attending events such as these. I find that this is generally a good thing to do. Aside from it being a fun challenge, it also saves my wallet from all that wear and tear!

This time, I decided on the rather conservative budget of £50. There’s plenty of other events that i’m going to attend in the near future, so i’m trying to limit what I buy at each venue. Plus, I always enjoy the challenge of finding some absolute bargains!

  • Cloud Strife (Player 1) Amiibo – £15
  • Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus Collector’s Edition Guide – £5
  • Pokémon Sun & Moon Set Booster Pack – £3
  • Pokémon Ocean Bomb Sparkling Water £2.50
  • Scyther Pokémon Card Jungle Set – £1.50
  • Pinsir Pokémon Card Jungle Set – £1.50
  • Dark Hypno Pokémon Card Team Rocket Set – £1.50

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I think I got a great little haul for £30. Obviously, i’m really happy with my Amiibo and Pokémon card purchases, but the Wolfenstein II guide and the Pokémon drink were an unexpected bonus. Even though I could have spent a lot more money during my time there, I have no regrets getting the things I did. I will absolutely be attending again because it really helped scratch my nerdy itch.

Thanks very much for reading this post about my time at The Video Game Market! If you liked it, then please follow this blog for similar updates in the future.

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