PHOTOPHILE- Battle stations: Hopeful toy buyers make their play
Beginning in the wee hours of Wednesday morning, November 15, excited gamers and entrepreneurs camped outside Charlottesville's Best Buy, waiting for the 8am Friday release of the long-awaited Playstation 3.
Retail price for the "PS3" is $600, and most campers interviewed said they planned to sell the in-demand game system on eBay for an estimated $3,000. (At presstime, most units on eBay price were hovering around the $1,000 mark.)
In all, 26 people waited for the chance to snap up one of the approximately 20 gaming systems the store had available. But not everyone had designs on the toy: the wait was all in a day's work for Amber Felts, who was earning $15/hour to stand in for would-be buyer Ben Brooker.
When time began to drag on Thursday evening (presumably without a Playstation to help pass the hours), some of the creative campers launched a competitive tournament of beanbag-tossing, aka "cornhole," in the back of the store.
First-in-line Greg Totillo, a UVA student, said he'd been waiting since 1am Wednesday.
A group of seven UVA students chill outside their tents. Only one of the seven, Aaron Pike (fourth from left), plans to keep the Playstation 3 for himself.
Bill Yoder, 20th in line (and last guaranteed PS3), and #18's stand-in, Amber Felts. "I'm getting paid $15/hour to do this," Felts admitted.
Amber Felts knits as she passes the time.
"I'm going to sell mine on EBay," Ben Brooker said. "That's the only reason I could pay Amber."
To get to be numbers 23, 24, and 25, UVA students Mike Gannon, Paul Quinn, and Eric Berchum parked an RV outside the store. "We've pretty much been jamming for 38 hours straight... played one too many G chords," Berchum joked.
A stimulating game of "cornhole" erupted behind the Best Buy.