So way back in March Mandarake launched Urban Mines. Their normal auction normally sells thing such a scripts from anime episodes or older anime cels. Stuff like that. The Urban Mines, however, is stuff that they would normally sell in the Mandarake stores proper but for various reasons can’t or won’t.
Better yet everything starts at 1 yen.
The creation of this lead to my (temporary) destruction as the situation spiraled more and more out of control. Addiction is a scary thing, kids.
I’ve always thought I have pretty good self control. I was definitely wrong. Penny auctions of anime goods was where I lost control. It wasn’t as big of a struggle as some people face with their addictions but there was no doubt in my mind that I was addicted.
Every morning before work I would open Mandarake to check where I was on my bids. Because it starts at such a small amount, the number of things I was bidding on just kept piling up. People kept telling me to stop but I just couldn’t.
Even now I want to look at the current bids just out of curiosity but I don’t trust myself enough to not bid on something and so between now and March I’ve only gone on the site once.
This wouldn’t be such a big problem if it weren’t for my very expensive Japan trip coming up in a few months. The amount I spent should have been put away for that where I could have bought stuff at an actual Mandarake store in person.
I do want to show off all the things I got from that terrible and embarrassing ordeal even if it’s been a few months now. Better late than never.
“First order?” Yeah, this dumbass didn’t learn her lesson the first time and ordered a second one. It wasn’t nearly as big or as expensive as the first one though. The first one came in the biggest box I have ever had shipped to me. I wish I had taken a picture to compare because I’ll never have something that big shipped to me again.
Nuko de Ppou’s Sukusuku Hakutaku Set (Touhou)
If this wasn’t Mandarake I’d be worried about getting bootlegs of these popular little plushes. There are a lot after all. However, they feature the Nuko de Ppou tags still and gosh they’re just the softest things ever.
I was only really interested in the Keine Kamishirasawa and ExKeine ones (and Mokou I suppose because that is my all time favourite Touhou ship) but the set also came with Sanae and Kanako. I was going to try and sell them eventually but I’ve taken them out of the packages so I don’t know about that any more. I guess they’re nice collectors items at least. I have surprisingly very little Touhou merch right now.
Yuki Yuna is a Hero Glass Cup
This is one of those ~killer~ deals where you get a sweet cup just for the price of shipping. Okay, to be honest when I bid on it I didn’t even know what this was. That’s how out of control I was.
All I know was I saw Yuyuyu and I got excited because I love that series. Luckily, nobody else seems to because no one else bid on it at all and I got it for 1 yen.
Jolyne Kujo and Joseph Joestar Figures
Figures were a lot harder to win at a low price. Despite my loss of control, I still set a limit for myself. Aside from the Nozomi thing I wouldn’t go past like 600 yen so I lost out on a lot of normally expensive figures just because I wouldn’t/couldn’t pay 2000 yen for them. 2000 was a steal compared to how much some of them normally go for.
There were quite a few Jojo figures from this series up in groups of two but I only bid on this one because I love me some Jolyne and who doesn’t love Battle Crusaders Joseph? I mean, I like Caesar better but gosh I couldn’t get lucky enough to find my two favourite characters together like that.
Pripara/Cinderella Girls/misc Keychain/Badge
Four hundred yen? My god, what an idiot.
Haiyore! Nyaruko-san stickers
So I had bid on these on eBay before (alright maybe my problems DIDN’T start with the Urban Mines) and lost. I didn’t even watch Nyaruko-san but Hastur cosplaying Bridget was something I desperately wanted. Also I love stickers.
Turns out they’re actually huge and I have no place to put them. But I got ’em.
Smile Precure Noren
Like the Yuki Yuna cup, I didn’t know what this was when I bid on it. Again. I am not a very smart or good person. It turns out it’s a little curtain thing. Unfortunately I have no place for it so it’s just hanging out by the dozen Precure picnic sheets I own from eBay.
Nozomi Toujou Keychains/Figures/Badges/Straps
The whole reason I started bidding was because I wanted this. The great English Mandarake Twitter account posted a picture of it and I wanted it from the start. I love Nozomi and I could go full armor with this in one fell swoop!
I dedicated myself to winning it. There were a couple times I was outbid but I was quick to fix that. Because I was constantly watching the auctions. I told myself I wouldn’t go over 3000 yen for this and luckily it didn’t come to that. But still. I now have a bag full of Nozomi Toujou stuff and no idea what to do with it.
I haven’t counted the goods proper but there were two prize figures, a nendoroid petite without a stand, tons and tons of can badges, multiples of two dif rubber keychains, a large phone strap, a plush keychain and some other keychains that weren’t in the sets.
This one was important. Important-ish.
As I was paying for my first order I HAPPENED to see a certain item on the home page of the site and after that I knew I had to have it. I figured, then, that I might as well get a few more things.
I still felt pretty bad about spending so much the first time so I reigned it in I felt.
Idolm@ster Nendoroid Petites
The most expensive thing I got this time around. I don’t even particularly like any of these characters that much. I mean, Makoto sure. Everyone likes Makoto but this is early Makoto and eh. Not a huge fan. Right now I like Iori. There’s no Iori.
Well, suit Ritsuko is pretty nice.
Idolm@ster Plastic Straps
Everything after the Nendoroid Petites was 1 yen. Nice. Though if I didn’t need the Petites, I sure as hell didn’t need this. It’s two straps of each girl so I have 24 (twenty-four!!!) of these things. I gave some away and I’ll save them for like secret santas and stuff but oh my gosh. I don’t even like Idolmaster that much!!
Puella Magi Madoka Magica Can Badges
The only thing not related to idol anime in this order. I don’t know if I love keychains or can badges more but gosh I couldn’t resist. Three sets for 1 yen isn’t so bad, right?
Rin Hoshizora Wallet
This was the thing that caught my attention. I was really trying to find a new wallet and I had seen these while searching.Except I couldn’t find a place to order them. Even now, I can only find them on auction sites. Were they bootlegs I would think they would be easier to acquire.
In any case, I love my new Rin wallet (though a Nozomi one would have been preferable) even if it caused me to spend more money like a fool. At least this one was kind of practical unlike literally everything else.
So what was the cost of all this? Well, besides my dignity there was my Mandarake account. You might think “oh this doesn’t seem like THAT much” but I assure you I had bid on and won a lot more items than just this. I stressed thinking about paying for them all before I deciding to do the selfish thing and be a terrible customer. I paid for what I could and left the rest.
The result, as you can imagine, was having my account taken away. This was a reasonable response and helped me cut ties with the site and the damaging effects it was having on me.
The actual costs though…
The first order cost 3,203 yen and shipping for that huge box was 6,100 yen. The total was 9303 yen.
The second order cost 603 yen and shipping was 1780 yen. The total was 2383 yen.
I spent 11686 yen on all this junk. That’s money that definitely should have went towards my Japan trip. Even now I’m still filled with regret and anger at myself. Don’t be like me. Have fun with the Urban Mines. I’m sure you’ll find something really good and exciting. But don’t lose control like I did.