This is where the qualities that make a great gamer -- focus, quick reaction and attention to detail -- can also save your budget. If you want the latest and the greatest, you need to keep your eyes open for sales and be ready to pounce. Holiday sales are common, whether they're through big-box sites like Target or Amazon or smaller retailers. If you plan for sales, you may be able to buy a year's worth of games in one cost-efficient swoop.
Another way to soften the blow of new game console and game prices is to be well-positioned come release day. Loyalty bucks and game site (or brick-and-mortar store) subscriptions can put you in a prime spot for a bargain. Investigate online sites or purchase a membership card to your local game shop. If you're an avid gamer, it'll pay off.
Finally, consider going old school to get something new. Remember the days when you could put something on layaway that you really wanted? Well, consider yourself a layaway service. If there's an upcoming game that you've just got to have the second it comes out, then set some money aside with each paycheck. Come release day, you'll be able to walk out of the store smiling and guilt-free.
Budgeting in the gaming world isn't much different than making smart financial decisions in your day-to-day life. You just need to understand the gaming community, your personal preferences and tendencies and decide when it's OK to pull the trigger.