With the cost of living in the UK as high as it is, there was a sudden realisation that hit me over the past week; despite my plans throughout 2022, I wouldn't be buying an Xbox Series S on Black Friday. Against the best laid plans of mice and men, no, I wouldn't be able to afford any of the Cyber Monday gaming PC deals I would be covering for work.
Every time Black Friday and Cyber Monday gaming deals come around, I'm sure I'm not the only one that feels an enormous amount of pressure to make the most of them. Especially when it comes to gaming hardware, there is no better time year-round to get some of the best products on the cheap. This year, with rising inflation, criminally high energy prices, and even Tesco meal deals getting that little bit more expensive, a fear of missing out is looming large for me.
What makes it all worse, is that while everything else is getting more expensive, previously elusive bits of gaming hardware are now at "historically low" prices. SSDs, 30 series GPUs, DDR4 RAM - it's all the most affordable and most tempting it's ever been. And then, of course, there are deals on consoles like the Xbox Series S, which is now at the most affordable it's been this calendar year. And yet, even at these lower-than-ever prices, the sad truth is - I still can't afford them.
...But that's alright
Yes, it is sad that I (and I'm sure a lot of people) won't be able to afford new gaming kit this year. On the other hand, let's zoom out for a moment. I, for one, might not be able to afford a beefy upgrade to my gaming PC. That space I'm saving on my TV unit for a sleek Series S might have to stay vacant for a little while longer. But, on the other hand, I can afford rent. Food - for now, I can still afford that. I might have to forgo a couple hundred FPS on PC, but at least those aforementioned energy bills are covered.
The sad fact is, a lot of people aren't even as fortunate as that at the moment. Yes, consumerism and the culture around Black Friday and Cyber Monday will tell you that you're missing out if you don't make the most of the best deals, but in reality, there's a lot more you could be missing out on.
Cyber Monday deals I can afford
With that in mind, there are other ways to make the most of Cyber Monday. For example, you could pay £1 and get GamePass Ultimate for a month (opens in new tab). You might not be able to afford a new gaming PC, but you could spend half the cost of one, and get a new GPU instead.
On that note - I've collected a few affordable gaming deals that I've bookmarked this past week and listed them down below. If any of them appeal to you, maybe they'll help to stave off that nasty FOMO.