What happens when your collection reaches critical mass?

Hi, my name is Richard, and I am a collector.

I’ve been a collector for as long as I can remember. As a child it started with action figures and comics. As I got older, it morphed into RPGs, CDs and DVDs. Now it’s Tabletop games, 3D printed terrain or whatever else I can feed through my printer, craft and hobby paints, miniatures, and whatever else catches my fancy. Some things have dropped off over time, only to be replaced with other things.

The game den is fairly packed out these days, between my paint station, row of shelves, display case and wire rack storage, there is almost zero visible wall space in the room. I imagine this isn’t uncommon with other collectors/gamers such as myself, but I could be wrong. Even with the current status of our gaming space, I still find myself looking through the various sale and trade groups. Looking for that elusive item that will help “finish out” my collection. But therein lies the problem with thinking that I can ever “finish” a collection. Like fashion, there never an “end.”

It’s an unachievable goal. A fallacy.

Now does my new found insight mean I’m giving up my collecting ways? Of course not. But what it does mean is that I’ve become more discerning in what I look to add to my collection. And how have I accomplished this new mindset? By not letting FOMO get the best of me. Always wanting to make sure I had a seat at the “hey I got that new thing” table, I was acquiring things that I oftentimes knew would never make it to the table. There are still games on my shelves that have never seen the light of my game den (I’m looking at you Godfather from the great Kohl’s run of 2018).

So all this say, what does happen when you reach critical mass with your collection? Is there such a thing for you?

Part of my shift in how i think about my collection is looking at certain items in it, and how i feel about those items. I think collectors all share a singular trait (more I’m sure) in that we all have some level of emotional connection to our things. Perhaps they remind us of when/where we purchased them. Or maybe a great game session played with it. Or knowing that the item is OOP or no longer available leads you to never wanting to get rid of it, for fear of never being able to reacquire it.

So what does all this mean?

Well honestly it depends. Some might read this article and continue on as they always have. Myself, I am working on being a better collector. A more focused one. And I want to make sure I curate my collections with items that not only hit the right notes on an emotional level, but also make sense logically. And that includes no longer holding on to items because they might one day make it off the shelf. After all, a collection is a reflection of it’s owner in a lot of ways.

What does your collection say about you?

As always, leave a comment with your thoughts. Until next time, LLAP!

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