Redartz: Welcome, everyone! We all share a love for comic books, and many of us have at some point in time accumulated a sizeable collection . Aside from enjoying the art and stories, we also may find ourselves interested in the historical aspects of the comics. Who were the early comic creators; where did Green Arrow first appear; how many issues of Marvel Tales were published? Then there is always the question asked by many collectors (of comic books or otherwise): "how much is this comic worth?". Of course, the initial answer to that is "as much as I'm willing to pay for it", and how special that item is to the individual.
That said, there has long been a desire for some overall guidance as to how much a given comic might cost to acquire. Illustrated below are two of the most familiar sources of such information: the Overstreet Price Guide, and Wizard magazine.
The Overstreet Guide has been published since the early 1970's, and Wizard had it's heyday in the wild, speculative 90's. And now,in this current internet-based era, we have ComicsPriceGuide.com, a site listing thousands of comics and continually updated with market information. All of these, and other sources, provide pricing information on a wide range of collectibles. The Overstreet guide, in particular, has a wealth of data on first appearances, artists, crossovers, and other minutae. Which brings us to our topic today: What do you think of the various price guides, and what do you think their effect has been on our hobby? Have they been a helpful source of needed information? Have they been culpable in the problems the industry has faced in the last couple of decades; do they promote investment at the expense of esthetics? Or has their effect been neutral, just another part of the comic collecting field- no different than with other hobbies? Go ahead and vent!