Hoarding All the Good Stuff for a Video Game's Rainy Day

In today's open thread, let's talk about the things we carried, and kept on carrying even though we really shouldn’t have.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/hoarding-all-the-good-stuff-for-a-video-games-rainy-day

I have trouble playing any game that allows for inventory management for this exact reason. Ammo, potions, and treasures from fallen foes all head into my rucksack to sit for the rest of the game.

The impending end of Destiny is finally allowing me to get rid of that weapon that I’ve been waiting to level up and use. I’m finally burning through all of my consumables that I’ve gathered over the two years I’ve been playing this stupid game. It’s almost cathartic.


I had so many weapons saved in Zelda. So many crazy strong claymores and broadswords and fireswords and whatnot. I wanted to be ready when I finally faced Ganon.

Never used a single one of them during the fight.


Sort of in the opposite direction than Rob hoarding grenades for a big opponent, I always feel like I need to carry around a melee weapon in games like Fallout, even though I always play on survival mode where enemies die with relatively few bullets and I’d rather pick up an enemy firearm than actually pull out my knife (or actually it’s a power-fist at the moment) if I run out of ammo. I never use the melee weapon I carry around, but it just feels right to carry a crowbar, or stand-in wrench (or power-fist).

Also, since I’m thinking Fallout, I also carry around a ton of meds (mentats, buffout, etc) which I almost never use. Naturally, these are the sci-fi equivalent of potions.

Almost every JRPG I play ends with a huge amount of crap in my inventory. It’s rare the game that forces me to use expendable items.

Persona 4 definitely wheedled some out of me when I was faced with a few of the tougher fights.

Nowadays I try to have more fun with expendable items, but the hoarding instinct will always be there. I think of it from the perspective of the game’s “GM” (so I can more easily identify with it). In tabletop games, I spend so much time wondering why players aren’t using things they’ve been given, so I’m trying to let the game “have fun” by allowing it to show me what happens when I use what it gives me.

(it’s tough though)

I just started playing Diablo 3 again and it reminded me of how I get sentimental about the weapons I use. I think Borderlands was the worst. I would keep carrying a gun that I liked even if it was statistically worse than the things I was looting. It does less damage but it has personality!


I am terrible at this. You would think after 30 odd years of getting to the end of RPG’s and going “I have 99 health potions, I am a dummy” I would learn to use stuff but NOPE. Playing Setsuna currently and doing the exact same thing.

Thinking about it, it’s not just RPG’s though. I finished last year’s Doom with so many rockets etc after dying numerous times but not using them “just in case I need them later”.

Plus I am currently hoarding all the pretty looking weapons in Zelda and trying to kill everything with a club. Seriously, I could play twice the number of games in a year than I do currently, if I just used shit.

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I have plenty of experiences hoarding items in games, but the strangest one of all has nothing to do with the “saving it for a rainy day that never comes” situation.

No, my hoarding story is from Firewatch. I hoarded books. Those of you who’ve played Firewatch might recall that the game has no inventory. There’s just the item you can hold in your free (non-radio) hand. If you want to look at your map or your compass, you have to set whatever you’re carrying down. I carried every book I found, one by one, back to my watchtower and put it on my shelf. I was distraught when the ending of one day required me to set down my book so I could interact with something in the world and relieved when I was able to return to that spot and the book was still there.

I’m not sure why I did it. I think I did the first one just to see if I could, and then I kept doing it–I guess because it felt like something Henry would do. After all, he needs something to pass the time in his watchtower, and isn’t that why the rangers left books in the supply caches to begin with?


I have the general awful habit of doing things like hoarding grenades, potions, and also that if I’m getting rid of stacks of items I get rid of all but one of them for some reason because??? Even if it’s an item whose sole purpose is to be sold for money I’ll keep it in my inventory for some reason.

Also I have the extremely bad habit of hoarding mp or similar resources. I’m the idiot who’ll have spellcasters use regular attacks because I need to save it for big fights and will also be the person who keeps backtracking to places where I can fully heal if it’s feasible.

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I hoard sentimental items in MMOs. My first legendary or max-level weapon, all my old gear sets, any time-limited items. My Warcraft bank was full of costumes and sentimental weapons and armour pieces. I’ve carried the same habit over to Destiny; my vault contains the full raid gear sets from past raids. Even though they’ve since raised the level on those raids so that they drop the same armour sets at max level, I still have the original versions. I kept some of the cool looking cloaks from the early game, and all my favourite weapons from the past few years. There’s my first Rare gun (Painted Suros CGB-47), my first legendary (The Comedian), The Grim Citizen III that I used when I first ran Crota’s End. My vault space is completely full and I don’t have anywhere to put all the new gear I get, because what if I want to dress up in the year 1 Vault of Glass set one day? Maybe I’ll want to do that?


Do it.

The one “artifact” my brother and I have carried since vanilla WoW has been a grey pitch-fork, with a fiery enchantment. It’s been on seven servers, and held by I think five accounts, fifteen or so characters?

I don’t care if my shaman is holding Doomhammer. It has no meaning in the universe to me compared to that pitchfork.

I hit a weird turning point with this awhile ago? I think monster hunter helped cure me of constantly hoarding because it gets impossibly out of hand after awhile.

I want to talk about solutions to this! Are there any that would be reasonable? This is a problem almost everyone I know has in games so it’s surprising to me that devs haven’t found way to ease this instinct. Consumables could have a rarity assigned to them to let players know “just slam em down’” or “this is more precious than your life”. An annoying thing is in many games you just don’t know if there’s going to be some big bad you’ll need to take down at some point. Communicating that better would be helpful too. An annoying but effective solution would be putting expiration dates on items or decay of some sort. Older potions might be less effective or the like. I don’t know, there’s got to be ways to help curb my hoarding instincts!

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I played Persona 3: FES a few months ago and when I got to the final boss I realized I had 52 of the “revive” item in my inventory, which was the most stark reminder of my hoarding tendencies I’ve ever gotten

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Doom 2016 did a great job of saying “look at all of this ammo we placed for you have fun shooting demons.” So when I would enter one of their designed battle arenas the BFG ammo and rockets were visibly plentiful. Plus the ability to gain more ammo through glory kills.

I was determined to carry the garden gnome in Half Life 2 (or one of the episodes?) from the first scene it appears to the end of the game. It wasn’t just a sentimental thing — I had convinced myself that there would be some sort of super-secret hidden achievement for pulling this off. I think I got about as far as the prison with it until reaching a point where it could no longer actually be taken with me.

I’ve gotten a lot better about this. I tend to be quite liberal with using grenades and stuff like that now, since I know there’s probably more to come.

What I absolutely still must do is to pick up everything valuable I can carry in any game that allows me to. I never keep it - I sell it as soon as I can, or dismantle it. In Prey I get all the garbage everywhere, cause I want those lil cubes. I need the cubes. I have 37 exotic material as I haven’t been able to use it all, and uh, I might have done a bad thing (it’s the right choice and you know it!!!). There’s some weird instinct in this need to acquire material wealth. It makes me feel safe.

That’s actually a criticism of the weapon system I (and others obviously) have. I ended up hoarding the good weapons so much I never used em, like you say. Was just always waiting for the “right” time, which never really presented itself outside of Lynel fights because eventually you armor spec in that game so that virtually nothing takes that much health, and healing becomes way too feasible. Late game BotW suffers in its gameplay mechanics compared to late game, but tbh even criticizing it I still enjoyed it and still consider it my favorite game in years.

I like the idea of expiration dates as long as those were easy to check. If you put that in a modern Fallout (and improved inventory management when it starts to get bloated), it’d be pretty compelling.


I’m pretty bad for this in any Final Fantasy game but it’s especially bad in one of my favorite games, Fallout New Vegas. If my backpack weight isn’t almost preventing me from running I get antsy. What if someone DOES need those ruined books and old toys?!?

In the game you can increase your max carry weight by drinking and taking drugs. My initially clean character plunges into and out of addiction several times before I even make it to New Vegas.

The time this collecting habit went really overboard was at the end of one of the DLCs. You get an option to take very valuable but very heavy treasure at the end. I think the developers mean for you to take some treasure but definitely not enough to slow you down because as you’re collecting the treasure a boss is coming to kill you. BUT if you have a ton of points in stealth and some stealth boys, you can grab EVERYTHING and slowllllly head out of the dungeon, and slowlllllllly walk to a town, since encumberance prevents fast travel, to sell all the sweet sweet loot.

I think that took me 30 real life minutes and really made me re evaluate my pack rat habits.

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