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eBay goes Xbox 360 crazy

Fancy a solid gold faceplate?

As Xbox 360 shortages continue on both sides of the Atlantic, eBay has gone mental with all manner of auctions listed by people hoping to cash in on the craze.

One cheeky scamp is asking £160 for nothing more than an Xbox 360 VGA cable - but it's all right, says the seller, because 80 per cent of the profits are going to charity. Postage, by the way, is an extra £8.

If you're so rich you think that £160 for a bit of wire sounds quite reasonable, you might be interested in the solid gold Xbox 360 faceplate that's been listed by "a private seller who wishes to remain anonymous, as with anyone who has too much money than they know what to do with."

Apparently it's a "pure 999.9 solid gold 'bar' that has been cast into the shape of a functional Xbox 360 faceplate", weighing in at around 900g. [Bollocks it is. - Ed]

"When my friend brought the plate over, there was this heavenly *clunk* sound that resonated through the house as it hit the counter top," says the mysterious seller's representative.

"MAN - I just wanted to grab it, whack him over the head with it, and run... My precious!!!!"

So who is the faceplate's current mystery owner? His representative tells us: "My friend is very unique. He is very frugal and clips coupons for Arby's beef and cheddar sandwiches and yet owns a matching pair of black and white Diablos.

"Just before he left with the plate I told him it must be nice to be so stinking rich to be able to afford these kinds of eccentric toys. He just smiled and chuckled saying, 'I'm not rich... I'm poor. I'm a poor man. But I am rich in friends!' I guess I feel better about not whacking him on the head."

If you think 36k is a lot to pay for a faceplate, how about $600 for an empty Xbox 360 box? And not even a real one at that.

The seller, Silentbarrel, stated in the listing: "You are getting an empty box... This is not even a factory made Xbox 360 box. I made it myself, just a few minutes ago."

But that didn't stop one eBayer from bidding $611 for the item and winning the auction. According to Newsfactor.com, Silentbarrel claims he then sent an email to the buyer telling him not to send payment - and received an email full of swearing in return.

"I never thought people would bid on this. I thought most people that were spending any money on anything would read what they are buying," Silentbarrel said, adding that he's been "laughin histriocally" at the situation. eBay has failed to see the funny side, however, and suspended his account.

Many eBayers are selling Xbox 360 boxes with Xbox 360s actually in them, however - including one Chris Bourne, who's been dubbed "the greediest man in Britain" by news site ICBirmingham.co.uk.

The "shameless dad-of-two" has managed to obtain no less than 30 consoles, and is hoping to make a fat profit by selling them to desperate gamers.

"I reckon I'll be able to sell them for at least £200 more than they're going for in the shops," he told IC Birmingham.

"I'll probably end up with about £5000, which I'll spend on the wife and Christmas."

Bourne, who works as a windscreen fitter when he's not selling Xbox 360s on eBay, said he ordered the consoles from Amazon back in August. Which is odd, since many Amazon customers have recently been complaining that they still haven't received their Xbox 360s - despite pre-ordering months ago.

The craziness will no doubt continue for as long as shop shelves remain empty - but that won't be for too long, if Microsoft has anything to do with it.

Speaking to Eurogamer recently, UK Xbox boss Neil Thompson pledged: "Every week we're going to be shipping units in. We're doing all we can to get as many planes and ships through as fast as we can - so that's my guarantee to people, that that's the effort we're putting into it."