Reading old gaming magazines from the early 90s has reminded me just how expensive games were; I'd only get a brand new game if it was my birthday or something. But I wasn't a dedicated gamer, so Birthday's and Christmas I'd be more likely to want toys than games anyway. Whereas my older sister had outgrown all that, and she seemed to know her stuff when it came to buying some of the best/highly rated new releases. So I got to experience a lot of classics thanks to her - stuff I wouldn't have known about or risked buying. When I discovered the used gaming market in my local shops - buying my own games suddenly became a lot more affordable and I'd spend my pocket money or leftover birthday money there. Still, the best games would still be more expensive or rare to see any way - I never saw the likes of Sonic, Streets of Rage, etc preowned.
Another thing about that era that's easy to forget is game availability. If there was a game you wanted and couldn't find it, or if you could find it and it was too expensive, then too bad, you had to deal. If you got lucky a friend might have it and be willing to let you borrow it. There was also a lot more risk buying games - unless you regularly bought magazines you couldn't just look up reviews whenever you felt like it and even then opinions could wildly differ. If you saw something on the shelf that looked interesting it was a big risk buying it. I'm sure we all got burned a few times back then.
So by the time I started gaming more in the PS1/PS2 era, I'd already learned to take fewer risks. I'd only buy stuff outside my usual choices/interests if I'd had chance to experience it for myself either via a friend or a demo and I'd be reluctant to spend full price on a game - even if it had rave reviews. Value for money became a big factor - I'd spent the 90s buying cheaper preowned games, so that skewed my judgement.
The number of games in my library for each console definitely got smaller with each generation.
General and high profile video game topics.