It’s been some time since I posted my thrift store finds. Don’t let this hiatus lull you into thinking I’ve abandoned my post at every Goodwill in the tri-county area. There have been several good finds along with a couple of amazing finds. And, as always, these games are available for our members or readers of this blog at The Gaming Annex.
Thrift Store Finds July 2017
I first learned about the Bermuda Triangle in 1977. Charles Berlitz, a renowned writer of the paranormal, authored a popular book about the infamous area of the Atlantic. His work spawned a creepy episode of In Search Of with Leonard Nimoy.
Berlitz’s book did more than spawn a TV episode though. Milton Bradley released a pick-up and deliver game called Bermuda Triangle the year after Berlitz’s book. I’ve blogged about the game in my essay about the origins of Ameritrash. It’s been a game that I’ve wanted since my childhood.
And the Goodwill in Grandville delivered! (Figuratively. I mean, they didn’t drive the game to my house).
Players must move about the eastern Caribbean, picking up goods an delivering them. Players get paid for making deliveries (total cash determines the winner). However, there are clouds forming. The area bound by Miami, San Juan and Nassau is haunted by an amorphous black fog. It’s magnetic properties screw up your navigation and cause your ships to be lost.
Each player has a complement of ships. These plastic ships have a magnet on them. When the storm passes near them, the ship can be picked up. This means the ship is lost and you will have to buy a new one.
The game is beautiful for a 1970’s game. And the components are fun. I like the idea that the magnetic storm simulates the magnetic anomalies that sailors have noted in the real Bermuda Triangle. Ultimately, the roll-and-move aspect sinks this game by today’s standards. Still, I’m glad I found a copy!
A Cache of Dungeons & Dragons Books
Several weeks ago, a follower of ours on Facebook was looking to sell some D&D books. She asked if I would post her wares on our page. I obliged. The post drew a tremendous amount of interest from the Muskegon area. Seems everyone and their brother wants some D&D books.
Joann, one of our members, really wanted those books. Unfortunately, the books sold before she could make arrangements.
I was perusing the Goodwill on Harvey Street about two weeks later. I hadn’t found any noteworthy games in some time. The shelves were filled with dreck. I walked past one of the new merchandise bins. I found six, count ’em six, D&D books! And by some serendipity, the six books matched the titles I was asked to post on Facebook a couple of weeks earlier.
The clerk rang up the books at 80 cents a pop. $5.09 later, I had a budding collection of 1st edition Dungeons & Dragons books. I was only too happy to give them to Joann who missed out on the ones being sold on our Facebook page (which were $20 each).
I keep finding copies of Enchanted Forest. I’m not complaining. People in our group who have kids clamor over it.
I believe I’ve found 4 copies in 2017. Two members, Holly and Jonathan, got copies to play with their families. I now have an additional copy available.
Snorta! is another great family game. The components are cute plastic animals and barns. The game play revolves around being the first to make an animal sound when a card is flipped.
I’ve found a couple copies of this in 2017 that were incomplete. To my dismay, I was not able to cobble together a complete copy with them either.
But I did recently find a bona fide complete copy. Keeping with tradition, I gave it to Holly. Her kids are going to be inundated with games if this pattern keeps up.
IfSnorta! is a good farm animal game for children then You’re Bluffing is the same for adults. You’re bluffing is farm animal auction game. You either auction off an animal and collect money or you make a blind bid against an opponent’s animal. The goal is to collect entire sets of animal so they are worth points.
I was first introduced to this game by long time member Bruce. I found a copy for myself at a thrift store copy several years ago. I loaned it to former member Charles who ended up moving to Maryland–taking You’re Bluffing with him.
I made a local trade to get another copy for my library. But a recent trip to one of the thrift stores on 29th Street yield some thrift store gold: a complete copy of this prized game!
Now I have an extra copy available. I believe it’s earmarked for Tasha. But if she passes on it, I’ll make it available to the general public.
Arab Israeli War
Finding Avalon Hill games at thrift stores is like grabbing the brass ring. There are two reasons for this. The first is AH games are generally good games that stand the test of time. The second is owners of AH games take care of their games so most thrift store finds will be complete.
I found a copy of Avalon Hill’s The Arab-Israeli Wars, complete and mostly unplayed. Some of the counters were unpunched. Some gamer must have bought a copy of this game hoping to find a game group with which to play it only to have it sit idle for years on his shelf. If this is the case, I have a local game group that you will want to join!
Dinosaurs of the Lost World
I’ve been wanting a copy of Dinosaurs of the Lost World from Avalon Hill for a while now. The game has two modes: family and strategy. The game has better components than most Avalon Hill games (AH was known for the quality of game play, not quality of components). And I’m a huge fan of Jurassic Park so the theme works for me.
But the price doesn’t.
The game goes for $70+ when you can even find a copy. I put it low on my priority list.
While making my rounds one afternoon, I saw a game with this familiar title on it. I thought, “No way! This is some similarly named game.”
But to my pleasant surprise, it was a complete copy of the Avalon Hill classic. The game is now a permanent edition to our library.
Other thrift store finds
Where the thrifting never stops…