Nostalgia near NAIT: NexWave Games showcase

by | Dec 13, 2022 | Web Archive

Located across from the CAT building’s parking zone, NexWave Games has a unique storefront; their use of iconic characters and logos is sure to catch the eye of any passerby and bring them into the store.

Gamers who grew up in the early 2000s will remember the excitement they felt when going to a retro gaming store, and when I entered NexWave games for the first time, the kid in me got excited. It still looks like something out of that era, as if somebody took a store from 2004 and placed it in the modern day. The dark carpeting and slightly dimmed lights offer a relaxed atmosphere. The store has a Nintendo 64 demo booth from Blockbuster, which adds to that feeling of nostalgia. NexWave Games is also simultaneously compact and open. There isn’t a single bit of unused space, but it also never feels crowded. A R.O.B. (a toy robot from Nintendo that was released in the 80s) acts as a mascot and sits at the store’s front desk. Finally, tying everything together is a Golden Axe arcade cabinet by the entrance. Kain, the store’s owner, does an amazing job creating a nostalgic feel.

A non-working R.O.B. toy from the 80s acts as the store’s mascot. Photo by G. Mara Killian/ The Nugget

The store opened in 2004 when Kain bought NexWave Technology. He took this struggling tech store and saved it by turning it into a used game store that’s still going strong today. He opened the store with the intent of helping others broaden their collections. To achieve this, he travels throughout North America, seeking out new merchandise. His most recent venture outside of Edmonton was to the Portland Retro Gaming Expo.

Stating that he “want[s] to keep [NexWave Games] local,” Kain is against selling any of his merchandise online. He wants to get people in the doors so that he can give a more personal experience with every sale. This excellent customer service is one of the things that sets NexWave Games apart from the others.

Another thing that sets NexWave Games apart is the prices. Kain sets fair prices for all his games rather than trying to get the best value out of them. He still wants to make a profit but also wants to help others expand their own collections. Additionally, he’ll buy used video games from anybody above the age of 18. The games need to be in good physical condition, and the amount he gives for each can vary depending on many factors. This includes rarity, edition and how many he has on hand. He’ll pay out around 50 per cent of the value in cash and between 75-90 per cent of the value in in-store credit. These are the best values you can get in the city by far.

If you want a blast of nostalgia or want to check out a retro gaming store near NAIT, I’d suggest giving NexWave Games a try. And if you want to say hi Kain himself, he’s usually at the NAIT location between Monday and Wednesday. NexWave is located on the corner of 118th Ave and 104th St. NW.

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