Author Topic: Sudden Impact: A Look at a Retro Gaming Store  (Read 930 times)

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Offline Steel Diver

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Sudden Impact: A Look at a Retro Gaming Store
« on: April 09, 2014, 06:17:35 PM »

With a booth at PAX East, Sudden Impact offers a lot of retro gaming wares.

If you have gone to PAX East previous years, you may be aware of a gaming store in the Greater Boston area know as Sudden Impact. Along with their booth at PAX, Sudden Impact is located in Winthrop Massachusetts. Besides current video games and gaming systems, the store specializes in retro video games.  As a reader of this site, a location such as this may appeal to you, so even if you can’t go there, you can still experience the store vicariously through this feature.

I have visited the store multiple times over the past year to purchase items such as an N64, a GameCube, Pilotwings 64, and Super Mario Sunshine. Their collection of gaming goods goes far deeper though with available games and systems going as far back as the Atari 2600. While most anything can be found online these days, nothing on the Internet provides the same surreal experience as walking into a store in 2014 to see never opened SNES systems, in box, and ready to be played.

Sudden Impact opened in 2009, and is named after the Clint Eastwood spaghetti western of the same name. The owner, Dom Cerulli, decided to get into the retro gaming business after 32 years in the auto retail business. After the last 18 years spent as a manager of a large Toyota dealership, he got the idea to open a video game store after walking by an empty storefront while recovering from a back injury which occurred while he was working. It was the perfect time to act on a new venture because he recently lost his job. Dom is no stranger to video games due to his interest in the art in games. He is also an artist and still uses his skills in order to make custom gift cards and store window murals.

Upon opening the store, Dom would receive trash bags of no longer wanted old games and systems. At the time he was selling N64 systems for around $20. Today, items are acquired through many means, be it customers looking to sell or trade, and from other stores including a retro gaming store in Alabama that closed. This store closing, excitingly, enabled Sudden Impact to stock up on copies of Shantae for the Game Boy Color.

Prices range greatly depending on condition and rarity. While everything is guaranteed to play, there are some items that are available new in box that you wouldn’t expect. Specifically a R.O.B. in its original box, never opened. You can even find Virtual Boy systems, boxed Philips CD-i consoles, and Powergloves, which are indeed “so bad.” Other collectibles are also available. I personally love the store’s Kirby and Pikmin merchandise.  Customers can also find items from less expected games, like Conker’s Bad Fur Day.

As previously mentioned, Sudden Impact will be having a booth at PAX East 2014. If you can’t check it out there, you can also check out the website here.

I'm a staff writer here at good ol' Nintendo World Report, but I also have a Nintendo website at

Offline Ian Sane

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Re: Sudden Impact: A Look at a Retro Gaming Store
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2014, 07:00:34 PM »
Just to be an ass I'll point out that Sudden Impact isn't a western, it's a Dirty Harry movie. ;)

I like finding out about stores like these.  I may never visit Boston but if I do I know I need to check this place out.  Though "new in box" items would be way out of my price range.  I'm typically fine with loose cartridges.  And with SNES games, my main focus for retro games, even those have become expensive.

On that note I reached a milestone in my SNES collection on Saturday.  I final got Chrono Trigger.  This was undoubtedly the big gaping hole in my collection, the one title that anyone familiar with SNES games would be shocked to find out I was missing.  It's just been hard to find as I don't buy retro games online.  Finding titles "in the wild" is part of the experience.  I had only seen Chrono Trigger once, cartridge only, for $100 and that seemed like too much money.  But I started collecting SNES games shortly before the Gamecube was released so it wasn't weird to get titles like Super Metroid in mint condition with box and manual for only 20 bucks.  The prices have sky-rocketed for SNES titles in recent years, likely due to the VC exposing new generations of gamers to these titles.  That and these games are now over 20 years old when they weren't even ten when I started.  At the time I balked at the idea of paying such a high price.  $40 had pretty much been my limit.

But I regretted it as the prices continued to go up and it seemed like maybe $100 might have been an okay deal as my friend who just started collecting SNES games was paying $60-80 for games that had cost me $30 years before.  So Chrono Trigger finally reappeared and it was still $100 but this time I bought it and I don't regret it.  I've played through it recently on the VC so I'm not in the mood to play my cart right now but I loaded it up to make sure it worked and see if the save battery is still good (it is).  Seeing the opening with the pendulum swinging on my CRT TV coming from a real SNES instead of emulation was a surreal moment.

Since this news post is a big shill for a store I'll shill my local store as well.  If you're in Langley, BC (for some reason) check out Willow Video.

Offline Retro Deckades

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Re: Sudden Impact: A Look at a Retro Gaming Store
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2014, 10:53:36 PM »
I don't always agree with everything Ian says, but I have to agree that everyone passing through Langley should visit the Willow Video. I'm a local resident and frequent it often. Their prices are relatively fair, and their selection is usually pretty good. Unfortunately, it's stock of older Nintendo games has been dwindling lately. Hopefully that will be rectified soon when the garage sales start up again.

Glad to hear that Ian found a copy of Chrono Trigger. There are some games I've been on the hunt for that I've never laid eyes on. It's unfortunate how difficult it is to find some of these old cartridges.