The Goozex Thread!
Now with movie trading! (coming soon)
Yes, the points will be cross-compatible with games, so you can trade games for movies or movies for games.
Wait, what is Goozex?
It's only the most awesomest alternative to GameStop ever. Ok, so you have a lot of games you want to get rid of, and probably a lot more games you want to play someday. This other guy over in Nevada is already tired of the games you want, and wants the games you have. The solution? GOOZEX! It matches you up for the old junk someone else doesn't want in exchange for the old junk you don't want anymore.
Sounds like a scam to me.
It's not! So, you have old games to get rid of, and you want more stuff. But how do you keep it fair and balanced?
Each game is worth a set amount of points in the Goozex system. An old junker of a game - for example Star Wars Rebel Assault 2, while a game near and dear to my heart, is just not something that everybody wants anymore. It would be listed at the lowest point value, 100 points. The newest, latest, greatest game, for example Prototype, would be the standard 1000 (except for the PC version
), which is usually how high games go. I've seen them break the 1000 point barrier for collector's editions, but it's not very common. You can buy 100 points for $5 if you don't want to trade anything, so 1000 points in real cash money would be about $50. It's not the same as the buying price for the game, but to be fair you are selling it used. Increasing the point limit to 1200 would start inflating other games, and it just makes the whole service more expensive, so they stick to 1000 as a cap. A game's point value is adjusted weekly according to supply and demand, with current retail price taken into account.
But how do you determine who gets what, especially for popular stuff?
Predictably, each game has a queue. It works like first come, first serve... but with a bit of a twist. If someone at the front of the line isn't ready for a trade, be it for points or trade credits or open trade slots (I'm getting to those, hold on) it moves down to the next person in line, and so on and so forth, until it reaches someone who has enough trade credits, open slots, and points to successfully request the game. It then sends an email to the seller with the details of the trade - where they live, how many points, expected quality - and then they can accept the trade or get put back into the queue in a couple of days. You can't just reject a trade and move on to the next person - it would enable direct trading which defeats the point of the system. Goozex keeps track of the trade via user feedback - whether the game arrived on time, was in good condition, etc. If there's something wrong with the trade the buyer can leave negative feedback, which shows up on the seller's trading history for other potential buyers. Enough negative feedback and a seller gets crippled - fewer trading slots open at once, you don't receive the points until a successful trade, etc.
What are these trading whozawhatsits?
Ok, there's three things you need to complete a successful trade.
1) Points. You get these by buying them or trading off other games.
2) Trade slots. You get two(?) by default and open more by completing successful trades and getting positive feedback.
3) Trade credits. This is where the business part of Goozex comes in, and the only place you have to spend money.
Ok, so Goozex has bills to pay, a website to run, staff to keep the database organized and resolve disputes. They need cash, and they get it with trade credits. Every time you buy a game, you use one trade credit. You can buy them in packs of five or more (the basic five-pack costs $5), with a price break depending on how many you buy at once. You also get a free one when you refer a friend and they successfully complete their first trade.
I got a broken game! What the fuck?
Don't panic, you'll get your points back. Just leave the appropriate negative feedback. However, to prevent people just claiming willy-nilly that the games they've received are broken, there's an option for a seller to open a dispute. If there's a dispute over a broken game, the buyer has to send it in to be tested and verified at Goozex HQ. They compensate shipping with an appropriate amount of free trade credits.
Ok, I'm ready to start trading. Got any tips for me?
When you send a standard DVD-sized game (pretty much any console game and most modern PC games) you want a size #0 bubble mailer. You can get these about five in a pack for $2.50 at your local WalMart, or possibly grocery stores in your area. Don't buy them from the post office, it's highway robbery. Note that these games WILL fit in here, but when they come from the factory sometimes it's a bit snug. If it doesn't quite fit, stretch it open with your hands a bit and then firmly press the game inside. Don't press too hard or in the wrong direction or you'll rip the package. Then you have a couple of options.
Option 1) Goozex shipping. You need a printer for this. I've never used it personally, but I think they calculate the approximate weight of your package according to a database, charge you for shipping, and give you a label to print out and attach to your package. Then you just leave it in your mailbox and wait for it to arrive.
Option 2) PayPal shipping. This is like Goozex shipping but you need to have your own scale (or use the one at the post office) to know how much the package weighs. If you don't have one and you're in doubt, guess high. If you guess it weighs too little it'll have insufficient postage and will get sent back to your house. This works the same, the prepaid shipping label will send it straight to your buyer from your mailbox.
Option 3) The post office. This is the one I always use, because I don't have a scale and my printer is in a box somewhere. When you go up to the desk, say these words: "First class delivery confirmation." (Then they'll ask "Is there anything liquid, fragile, perishable or potentially hazardous?" Yes, I have been to the post office too many times.) Don't accept anything other than First Class, because it's a ripoff. It's not media mail, it's not Priority, it's first class. Get the delivery confirmation because it's good to have a paper trail with an electronic receipt saying "I sent this out on this day. If it gets lost in the mail it's not my fault." Send this tracking number in the "Confirm Shipping" dialog box in Goozex. Some post offices (not mine, god damned South Carolina) have kiosks where you can buy a shipping label. You want the First Class Delivery Confirmation option.
Option 4) FedEx / UPS. Not really worth it, they charge way more than the post office unless you've got some kind of cheap deal with them through work or whatever.
Other tips via Daedalus:
Do give feedback promptly after getting your game.
Do e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
if someone tries to scam you; they're very responsive on this.
Don't use the folded piece of paper they call the Goozex Mailer; your game will break in the mail and you will recieve negative feedback.
Don't ever accept a trade cancellation, under any circumstances, if you already put the game in the mail.
Don't make more than one account with the same address; they'll catch you and ban you.
Don't worry if you don't get positive feedback right away: if the reciever never gives out feedback it will automatically become positive feedback after 21 days.
Don't, and this should be obvious, give positive feedback before you recieve and test the game.
Note that scamming techniques include using numbers as well as letters in the address, and/or a terribly formatted address to attempt to get around the "one house one account" rule, attempting to get you to ship the game somewhere else, or addresses of "PM the seller for address." PO Boxes are probably OK.
There's also a European version of Goozex but I hear bad things, like the moderators neglecting to return points for negative feedback or bad trades for weeks on time. "Circling the drain," is the phrase, I believe.
I think that's about all you need to know to get started trading. If you're interested, there's a referral link in my signature.