By Shakezula84 0 Comments
Listening to the GiantBombcast recently upset me. The reason of course is they were debating a topic that I couldn't chime in on and so I take the opportunity on here.
The first issue was the complaint of the online pass. This came out during the discussion about the new Batman. Catwoman can only be played if you buy new (and have an online connection).
I can understand why this is a bad idea. Not everyone has online. And I use to sell games for a living and know a lot of gamers are offline (either by choice or otherwise). It sucks to be them. They paid new price and are gonna mis out what's been described as a side story, but one that helps with the overall story.
The part they focused on in the Bombast however, was that GameStop would be printing the codes with the used copies. Of course the obvious explanation should make every gamer happy. Warner Brothers is getting a cut of the used sales (I heard the same thing happened with Moral Kombat, another WB game). That's great news. Not only does WB get money, but people still have the cheaper alternative. Why the big deal?
Because GameStop is evil.
Its not. GameStop is a business. It has a responsibility to its shareholders to make money.
And money is not made off of used.
A brand new game has a $5 mark up. So when you pick up Batman (for example) from any retailer you give $55it to the game companies and $5 to the store (and for where I live, another $5 to the state). That's not much in the grand scheme. Even if a store sold 100 copies in a week, that's $500. Minus employee pay, building rental, shipping costs, and etc. Its not that much anymore.
And that's why video games are located at the back of most stores. Its considered simply a means to get you into the store to buy more.
And GameStop (and now Best Buy) have found a means to make even more money with the used market.
Nothing wrong with that. Im broke. If I go in today for Batman, and GameStop has a used copy and the code comes with it, ill buy it. Im poor, and every dollar I save is a plus.
"Your just saving $5, Shakezula84. Just buy the new one." Screw you. $5 is my lunch today.
So the online passes. Great idea. It encourages people to buy new. At the same time if you buy used it can ensure the companies get compensated somehow at one point. However the poor person like me probably doesn't have internet. Online passes don't matter to much (im using my cellphone and I tether it to my PS3 at night to play games). So if I bought Batman used and no code was provided, I may never play Catwoman. But it is. And whether I use it or not, WB makes money.
I also mentioned reorder bonuses. They are the cheap alternative to marketing. Instead of giving the game cheaper to a store (who wouldn't give a discount to the customer) they provide something to bring people into the store. The only time I have a problem with that is if it never becomes widely available. Its evil if you are forced to buy multiple copies across retailers to assemble the puzzle. Its good business to release it as DLC (even better if it was always gonna be DLC).