How Much Do Pawn Shops Pay For Video Games?

Are you looking to make some quick cash by pawning your old video games? With the rising popularity of retro gaming, many pawn shops are eager to stock classic titles. But how much can you really expect to get for your games at a pawn shop?

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll give you the inside scoop on pawn shop payouts for video games.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Most pawn shops will pay between 10-40% of a game’s current retail value, with newer and more popular titles getting offers on the higher end. Factors like condition, demand, and the shop’s current inventory play a big role.

How Pawn Shops Determine Video Game Value

When it comes to valuing video games, pawn shops rely on a variety of factors to determine how much they are willing to pay. Understanding these factors can help you get a fair price for your games when considering a pawn shop as an option.

Current Market Value

One of the key factors that pawn shops consider when valuing video games is their current market value. They will often research the prices of similar games on online marketplaces, such as eBay or Amazon, to get an idea of what the game is currently selling for.

This helps them determine a fair price to offer you.

For example:

Let’s say you have a popular video game that is currently in high demand. In this case, a pawn shop may be willing to pay a higher price for it because they know they can resell it quickly and make a profit.

Condition and Completeness

The condition and completeness of the video game also play a significant role in determining its value. Pawn shops will carefully inspect the game to assess any damage or missing components, such as the game disc, case, or instruction manual.

For instance:

If the game is in excellent condition and comes with all the original packaging and inserts, it will likely be valued higher compared to a game with scratches, a damaged case, or missing components. Pawn shops are more likely to pay a premium for games that are in great condition.

Local Demand and Inventory

The local demand and inventory of video games in a pawn shop’s area also influence how much they are willing to pay. If there is a high demand for video games in your area, pawn shops may be more inclined to offer a competitive price to attract customers.

For example:

If a pawn shop already has a surplus of a particular video game in their inventory, they may offer a lower price for that game since they have limited space and want to avoid overstocking. On the other hand, if they have noticed an increasing demand for a specific game, they may be willing to pay more to meet that demand.

It’s important to keep in mind that pawn shop valuations can vary, and it’s always a good idea to shop around and compare offers from different shops to get the best price for your video games.

Average Payout Percentages for Video Games

When it comes to selling video games at a pawn shop, it’s important to have a realistic expectation of how much you can get for your games. Pawn shops typically offer a percentage of the game’s value as a payout.

The payout percentage can vary depending on various factors such as the popularity of the game, its condition, and its age. Here is a breakdown of the average payout percentages for different types of video games:

New and Popular Titles: Up to 40%

For the latest and most popular video games, pawn shops may offer a payout percentage of up to 40% of the game’s value. These are typically games that have been released recently and are in high demand.

Examples of such titles include the latest installment of popular franchises like Call of Duty or FIFA. Since these games are in high demand, pawn shops are willing to pay a higher percentage for them.

Common and Older Titles: 20-30%

For games that are still fairly common and not as new or popular, pawn shops may offer a payout percentage ranging from 20% to 30%. These are games that may have been released a few years ago or are not in high demand anymore.

While you may not get as much as you would for new and popular titles, you can still expect a decent payout for games in this category.

Obscure and Retro Titles: 10-20%

When it comes to obscure or retro video games, the payout percentage drops significantly. Pawn shops may offer a payout ranging from 10% to 20% for these types of games. These are games that are hard to find or are considered collectibles.

Examples include vintage consoles like the Atari 2600 or rare games like EarthBound for the Super Nintendo. Since the demand for these games is limited, the payout percentage is lower.

Keep in mind that these payout percentages are just averages and can vary from one pawn shop to another. It’s always a good idea to shop around and compare offers from different pawn shops before making a final decision.

Additionally, the condition of the game, whether it includes the original box and manual, and any additional accessories can also affect the payout amount.

For more information on pawn shop payouts for video games, you can visit websites like or

How to Get the Most Money for Your Games

If you are looking to sell your video games at a pawn shop, it’s important to know how to get the most money for them. Here are some tips to help you maximize your profits:

Check Prices Online First

Before heading to a pawn shop, it’s a good idea to check online marketplaces or websites that specialize in buying and selling used video games. This will give you an idea of the average selling price for your games, allowing you to negotiate a fair deal with the pawn shop.

Websites like eBay or Amazon can provide you with valuable insights into market prices.

Clean and Restore Games Beforehand

Pawn shops are more likely to offer higher prices for games that are in good condition. Take the time to clean your games and make any necessary repairs or restorations. This can include removing scratches from discs, cleaning the cartridge contacts, or replacing damaged cases.

A well-maintained game will not only attract higher offers but also demonstrate that you have taken care of your belongings.

Negotiate Respectfully With the Clerk

When you visit a pawn shop, it’s important to approach the negotiation process respectfully. Be polite and friendly when discussing the price with the clerk. It’s also helpful to have done your research beforehand, so you can confidently negotiate based on the market value of your games.

Remember, a positive attitude can go a long way in securing a better deal.

Consider Selling Online Instead

If you want to get the highest possible price for your games, you might want to consider selling them online instead of going to a pawn shop. Online marketplaces like eBay or dedicated video game trading websites can connect you with a larger audience of potential buyers.

While this route may require more effort and time, it can often result in higher profits.

By following these tips, you can increase your chances of getting the most money for your video games when selling them at a pawn shop. Remember to do your research, prepare your games for sale, negotiate respectfully, and consider alternative selling options. Happy selling!

Factors That Decrease Payout Amounts

Damaged Discs or Cases

One of the factors that can significantly decrease the payout amount for video games at pawn shops is if the discs or cases are damaged. Pawn shops typically prefer to buy games that are in good condition, as they are more likely to resell them at a higher price.

If a game has scratches on the disc or a cracked case, the pawn shop may offer a lower payout to compensate for the potential difficulty in reselling the item. Therefore, it’s important to take care of your video games and keep them in good condition if you plan on selling them to a pawn shop.

Missing Manuals or Cover Art

Another factor that can affect the payout amount at pawn shops is if the video game is missing its manuals or cover art. These components are considered essential for a complete package and can increase the value of the game.

If you are missing these items, it is possible that the pawn shop will offer a lower payout. However, it’s worth noting that some pawn shops may still accept games without manuals or cover art, but the payout amount may be decreased.

Untested Games

Pawn shops typically prefer to buy video games that have been tested and are in working condition. If you bring in a game that has not been tested, the pawn shop may offer a lower payout or refuse to buy it altogether.

This is because they may not want to take the risk of purchasing a game that may not work properly. It’s always a good idea to test your games before bringing them to a pawn shop to ensure that you get the best possible payout.

Poor Store Inventory

The payout amount for video games at pawn shops can also be affected by the store’s current inventory. If a pawn shop already has a large number of a particular game in stock, they may offer a lower payout amount for that game to avoid an overabundance of inventory.

On the other hand, if a pawn shop is in need of a specific game or has a high demand for it, they may offer a higher payout amount. It’s always a good idea to research the inventory of different pawn shops before deciding where to sell your video games to maximize your payout.


Selling your old video games at a pawn shop can provide quick cash, but you’re unlikely to get top dollar. By understanding how pawn shops value games and negotiating wisely, you can maximize your payout.

With some prep work, patience, and possibly exploring online sales instead, you can turn your gaming clutter into cold, hard cash.

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