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[Gamestop] is quite possibly fucked

cloudeaglecloudeagle Registered User regular
edited January 2019 in Games and Technology
Ah, Gamestop. That ubiquitous game company we love/hate/endure with grumbling. The damn things are everywhere, even towns that have a total number of stop lights you can count on one hand. They're going to be part of our lives forever, right?

Well, maybe not. They've been losing a LOT of money lately -- $489 million last quarter alone. They recently sold off its Spring Mobile business to stay afloat (granted, Gamestop running a cell phone business was asinine, but still).
They've also been trying to sell themselves, which sounds like truly bad news. But now they've stopped trying to sell themselves, which manages to be worse:
GameStop Tuesday announced it was no longer trying to sell the company due to a “lack of available financing on terms that would be commercially acceptable to a prospective acquirer.”

The company didn’t lay out what that meant in terms of the future for the company.

What that means, according to Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter, is that while GameStop may have been able to find investors, they weren’t able to find any lenders who thought that company was a good investment.

What's going on is fairly obvious -- Amazon's eating their lunch, and the move to digital has investors spooked. Explains why they keep clogging up the stores with random merch, huh? Granted they're not at Toys R Us levels yet, but things are looking pretty darn grim.

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    3cl1ps33cl1ps3 I will build a labyrinth to house the cheese Registered User regular
    Who could have guessed that a business model based on selling products secondhand and making the consumer experience miserable as they tried to hoist a dozen additional purchases on you would result in loss of business to more convenient sellers?

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    Dark Raven XDark Raven X Laugh hard, run fast, be kindRegistered User regular
    Their pivot to game merch is sensible, but yeah they're kinda effed on the gaming front, there's not much reason to ever buy a game there.

    Maybe they could find some life as a game rental place? Be the vidya blockbuster?

    Oh brilliant
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    3cl1ps33cl1ps3 I will build a labyrinth to house the cheese Registered User regular
    edited January 2019
    I actually expect Gamestop's demise to be the canary heralding that we're entering another substantial game industry crash. They were one of the first companies in gaming or a gaming-adjacent field to go for a PROFIT UBER ALLES model and forego long-term thinking for short-term gains to satisfy shareholders and they're crumbling first as a result, but many of the big AAA publishers have moved to the same model and we're starting to feel distant rumblings of trouble coming down the pipe as a result.

    3cl1ps3 on
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    3cl1ps33cl1ps3 I will build a labyrinth to house the cheese Registered User regular
    I realize that's a gross oversimplification of Gamestop's woes and everything going on with this, but I do feel it's a portent of the total unsustainability of the gaming industry's development during the 00's.

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    LucascraftLucascraft Registered User regular
    Good. Fuck ‘em.

    Seriously though, how they managed to stay around for so long while treating their customers the way they did is honestly baffling.

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    cloudeaglecloudeagle Registered User regular
    3clipse wrote: »
    I realize that's a gross oversimplification of Gamestop's woes and everything going on with this, but I do feel it's a portent of the total unsustainability of the gaming industry's development during the 00's.

    You may be onto something. And don't forget that there's rumblings of a new generation coming, which will force the shiny-chasing pubs to devote even MORE resources per game.

    Things could get very painful and/or weird in general.

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    BSoBBSoB Registered User regular
    I remember buying Halo 2 at midnight on release day, at the Wallmart next to game stop. I'm not sure the line outside had moved from the time I went in to the time I came out with game in hand.

    It was at that point I realized that Gamestop doesn't make money selling games. They make money charging 5 dollars for pre-orders they hope nobody picks up, and buying used games for a song and reselling them for almost the cost of a new one. I don't know if amazon has a piece of that pie.

    I think the biggest thing killing them is less amazon and more Steam. When I can buy a game for 50% off 3 months after release, the need for used games becomes basically zero.

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    SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    Their pivot to game merch is sensible, but yeah they're kinda effed on the gaming front, there's not much reason to ever buy a game there.

    Maybe they could find some life as a game rental place? Be the vidya blockbuster?

    In your own words, that sounds like a bleak recovery to undertake--both practically and from an investor standpoint. There's probably even less room for physical rentals than physical sales, I'd have to imagine. Nor would they be alone--Red Box is probably the largest single entity supplying that service across the United States, anyway?

    On the other hand, I have no idea how to save the model. I like the brick-and-mortar locations in my community, Gamestop included, but that's entirely because of the locality itself bridging the gap from suburban to small city, and in general retail becomes less interested in chatty-friendly-Southern-comfort-salesman-bullshit and efficient competence for people in a rush.

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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    In my town we have a decent used game place. They buy for more than gamestop and sell for less. Their profit margins are quite probably a lot smaller, but they make up the difference by not sucking.

    I hope they eventually move to selling new games as well.

    I actually LIKE preorders personally. You are guaranteed to get the game on release and you've already paid for at least part of it. Win / win in my opinion.

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    3cl1ps33cl1ps3 I will build a labyrinth to house the cheese Registered User regular
    Gamestop needed to forge better relationships with publishers to get a more equitable profit-sharing model back when it had any amount of goodwill with them in order to have a sustainable brick-and-mortar model. Instead, Gamestop's directors took the company in an antagonistic direction and lost any chance of that happening.

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    Jubal77Jubal77 Registered User regular
    This hurts rural areas though. Walmart doesnt get titles at release around here and most other rural places from what I have heard. And so if Gamestop does die the only avenue for some release day titles for me is online only. I realize their practices were aggressive but I never really found them to be much of an issue with having brick and mortar and convenience/not having to try to sell my shit online.

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    cloudeaglecloudeagle Registered User regular
    Jubal77 wrote: »
    This hurts rural areas though. Walmart doesnt get titles at release around here and most other rural places from what I have heard.

    Holy crap, really? I'm sure Walmart's figured out this practice manages to maximize profits or something but it's a truly shitty practice.

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    AxenAxen My avatar is Excalibur. Yes, the sword.Registered User regular
    edited January 2019
    My Gamestop Story happened years ago and involved the first Gears of War.

    It was Day One of the game's release and I was excited to get it. Fool me decided to stop at Gamestop on my way home. I get there and of course try to purchase GoW and was told I couldn't unless I had preordered, which I hadn't.

    Being shit outta luck I walk back to my car only to see Best Buy across the parking lot. I had also spotted a large crowd from a distance at Best Buy and had assumed it was because of GoW so I didn't have high expectations for getting the game at BB either. I pop inside only to find out that the place was absolutely flooded with angry women. Turns out an expansion for The Sims 2(?) had also come out that day and BB had apparently ran out of copies. Luckily for me I was there for GoW and not only did they have GoW, but they also had a bunch of the sweet ass Collector's Edition for like ten dollars more. So I grabbed the CE and merrily drove back home wondering how the fuck Gamestop was even a business.


    edit- I too now live in a rural area, but the Walmart here does have games on release day. It is pretty standard for me to swing by there after work to pick up a day one release.

    Axen on
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    Jubal77Jubal77 Registered User regular
    cloudeagle wrote: »
    Jubal77 wrote: »
    This hurts rural areas though. Walmart doesnt get titles at release around here and most other rural places from what I have heard.

    Holy crap, really? I'm sure Walmart's figured out this practice manages to maximize profits or something but it's a truly shitty practice.

    Yeah it is usually a week after. It may be different now. I havent really bought a game there in a year or so because of that fact.

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    delf4delf4 Registered User regular
    Jubal77 wrote: »
    cloudeagle wrote: »
    Jubal77 wrote: »
    This hurts rural areas though. Walmart doesnt get titles at release around here and most other rural places from what I have heard.

    Holy crap, really? I'm sure Walmart's figured out this practice manages to maximize profits or something but it's a truly shitty practice.

    Yeah it is usually a week after. It may be different now. I havent really bought a game there in a year or so because of that fact.

    So things may have changed in the last few years but how new games on release date get sent to the store probably has a big part in this. So when I was the electronics manager at Target, unless the game was a major AAA release that we would get a hundred copies of, most of the time we would get new games on release day delivered via UPS in the middle of the day. Since I was someone who was actually into games I would make sure to go grab them off the dock and then make room in the case for them. If I didn't do that, they would just ended up being stocked in the backroom until the case plan-a-gram was updated then pulled out onto the floor. Which could be anywhere from a week to two weeks.

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    NightslyrNightslyr Registered User regular
    I'm a monster because I abuse GameStop's resale system:

    1. Get games as gifts (Christmas and/or birthday) from non-gamer family
    2. Play, enjoy (or not), and beat (or not) said games
    3. Sell them to GameStop for local funbucks on my account
    4. Use funbucks for accessories (replacing dying controllers mostly) or digital cards (eShop, PSN, etc.)

    The people in step 1 don't care what I do because they're not gamers themselves. My friends either live too far away (like, several states away) or don't own consoles, so I can't swap with them. So, selling to GameStop (or Amazon) when I'm done makes the most sense*. Given their shitty customer service model, I don't feel bad for never actually paying them actual money while I spend theirs.

    *I don't do Gamefly for a couple reasons - I hold onto titles I want to replay, which I can't know before actually playing them, and I like getting the 1st time purchase codes

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    KupiKupi Registered User regular
    I once managed to get """the last copy that wasn't preordered""" five consecutive times.

    Hmmmmmm.

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    urahonkyurahonky Resident FF7R hater Registered User regular
    I've never had any issues with my local gamestops and will be quite sad to see them go. I vastly prefer to go into a Gamestop over Walmart or Target to get my stuff. Plus sometimes you can find some used games for pretty decently priced. I'll definitely be sad to see them go... Looks like Best Buy is my last physical shop for electronics.

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    urahonkyurahonky Resident FF7R hater Registered User regular
    Nightslyr wrote: »
    I'm a monster because I abuse GameStop's resale system:

    1. Get games as gifts (Christmas and/or birthday) from non-gamer family
    2. Play, enjoy (or not), and beat (or not) said games
    3. Sell them to GameStop for local funbucks on my account
    4. Use funbucks for accessories (replacing dying controllers mostly) or digital cards (eShop, PSN, etc.)

    The people in step 1 don't care what I do because they're not gamers themselves. My friends either live too far away (like, several states away) or don't own consoles, so I can't swap with them. So, selling to GameStop (or Amazon) when I'm done makes the most sense*. Given their shitty customer service model, I don't feel bad for never actually paying them actual money while I spend theirs.

    *I don't do Gamefly for a couple reasons - I hold onto titles I want to replay, which I can't know before actually playing them, and I like getting the 1st time purchase codes

    @Nightslyr

    Note that if you do decide to keep a game from Gamefly it's as if you got it from the store. All codes are available in the box and I've never had an issue redeeming them.

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    EchoEcho ski-bap ba-dapModerator mod
    edited January 2019
    As was foretold.

    Yq80kVWl.jpg

    Echo on
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    KoopahTroopahKoopahTroopah The koopas, the troopas. Philadelphia, PARegistered User regular
    Yeah, I'm take it or leave it. I wish that they had all the gamer swag that they have in their store now when I was a kid, walking in there with a pocket full of money and leaving without a plushie or a knick knack is hard.

    However, I fully despise their used policies and reselling tactics. It's garbage. If they actually bought games and consoles off of you for a legitimate price instead of 10% it's real value, I would be more interested in their services.

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    ManetherenWolfManetherenWolf Registered User regular
    I find it hilarious that everyone talked about the possibility of Gamestop being sold was a sign the company was dying, and the announcement that they aren’t selling is also a sign the company is dying.

    Disclaimer: I work for Gamestop. I am not denying there are some challenges out there for the company as the gaming industry is moving more and more towards digital distribution. Which, while I still don’t see going 100% anytime soon just because the infrastructure is not there in large portions of the US to support it for customers, it will happen eventually.

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    ElvenshaeElvenshae Registered User regular
    Gamestop, for me, is mostly a Pokemon plushie store at the moment.

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    cooljammer00cooljammer00 Hey Small Christmas-Man!Registered User regular
    Oh okay.

    My problems with GameStop are well worn territory at this point, but this would also explain why every purchase I've made with them recently keeps netting me some sort of credit for toys or collectibles or other bullshit I don't want.

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    cooljammer00cooljammer00 Hey Small Christmas-Man!Registered User regular
    Echo wrote: »
    As was foretold.

    Yq80kVWl.jpg

    Partially, because these days people are still buying physical, just from ANYPLACE else.

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    cloudeaglecloudeagle Registered User regular
    I find it hilarious that everyone talked about the possibility of Gamestop being sold was a sign the company was dying, and the announcement that they aren’t selling is also a sign the company is dying.

    Disclaimer: I work for Gamestop. I am not denying there are some challenges out there for the company as the gaming industry is moving more and more towards digital distribution. Which, while I still don’t see going 100% anytime soon just because the infrastructure is not there in large portions of the US to support it for customers, it will happen eventually.

    It's not that they decided not to sell.

    It's that they couldn't sell the company, after months of trying, because no investor decided it was a good use of money.

    That's kinda hard to spin positively.

    Switch: 3947-4890-9293
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    JasconiusJasconius sword criminal mad onlineRegistered User regular
    edited January 2019
    most gamestops are built in rented storefront space

    a lot of retail has been going under lately, but the stuff you hear about being rescued are big retail that owns buildings

    so usually they get bought out or "rescued" as a sort of property speculation... the company has hard assets no matter how bad things get

    Gamestops only assets are huge piles of 2nd hand Nintendo DS carts

    people criticize Gamestop on all sorts of fronts, but the reality is the only way this company could ever exist was thanks to it's pawnshop business. carrying the new games was a nasty side effect of owning a "game" store, something they had to do. but that's a shit business. it was shit 15 years ago. now it's worse than shit

    i don't see this company getting rescued out of bankruptcy. I think it's headed for liquidation

    get ready for the sales!

    Jasconius on
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    ManetherenWolfManetherenWolf Registered User regular
    Jasconius wrote: »

    i don't see this company getting rescued out of bankruptcy. I think it's headed for liquidation

    get ready for the sales!

    You do realize Gamestop isn’t anywhere close to bankruptcy right?

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    LilnoobsLilnoobs Alpha Queue Registered User regular
    Gamestop sucked but being able to buy and resale videogames was and is great, especially in an industry that has somehow managed to convince lawmakers and society that their products are beyond the legalities of receiving a refund.

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    El MuchoEl Mucho Registered User regular
    I wonder what will happen to GameInformer if Gamestop goes under. I quite like their podcast and some of their reviewers are pretty decent.

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    cloudeaglecloudeagle Registered User regular
    El Mucho wrote: »
    I wonder what will happen to GameInformer if Gamestop goes under. I quite like their podcast and some of their reviewers are pretty decent.

    Given Gamestop's precarious position and the current digital media bloodbath I'm kind of shocked GameInformer still exists.

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    El MuchoEl Mucho Registered User regular
    cloudeagle wrote: »
    El Mucho wrote: »
    I wonder what will happen to GameInformer if Gamestop goes under. I quite like their podcast and some of their reviewers are pretty decent.

    Given Gamestop's precarious position and the current digital media bloodbath I'm kind of shocked GameInformer still exists.

    They are still going strong as far as I can tell. I mostly keep up via the podcast, but also will pick up digital copies of the magazine that have cover stories that are of interest. Decent industry interviews as well at the back end of most of their podcasts.

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    DibbyDibby I'll do my best! Registered User regular
    edited January 2019
    Gamestop for me is, and always has been, simply a convenience. I have one that's like 5 mins from my house, so it's super duper easy to just go there and nab a new game on release day. Which is nice, because I don't have to worry about looooooong slow download/install times (if buying digitally), or shelling out extra cash for "same day" shipping only to have it not actually get there on the same day.

    So it's just a convenience for me, to be able to take the 5 min drive and just pick up the thing I want right then and there.

    BUT ALL THAT SAID, YO FUCK EM

    I FEEL GROSS AND SLIMY EVERY TIME I WALK IN AND OUT OF THERE

    "DO YOU HAVE A GAMESTOP POWERGLOVE REWARD PUZZLECARD™?" NO BITCH I DON'T. "DO YOU WANT TO SIGN UP FOR OUR GAMESTOP POWERGLOVE REWARD PUZZLECARD™????" I SAID BIIIIIIIIITCH, MAYBE YOU DIDN'T HEAR ME THE FIRST TIME.

    "DO YOU WANT TO PRE-ORDER ANY GAMES--" NOPE JUST HERE FOR THE ONE, THANKS

    "DO YOU WANT TO SPEND $3 ON OUR LONG CON GRIFT "GAME PROTECTION"??" NAH I'M GOOD THANKS

    "HOW ABOUT PICKING UP SOME RELATED GAMER MER-CAN-DICE™" NOOOOOOPE

    "WOULD YOU LIKE TO SELL YOUR SOUL TO OUR DARK LORD SAY-TAN" YEAH NO THANKS I THINK I'LL PASS THIS TIME

    fuck gamestop. fuck em. slimy grungy assholes.



    edit: oh, and one time the cashier tried to guilt trip me into donating money to a charity by saying "gee, guess you just hate kids then" when i declined. thanks???? for that??????????

    Dibby on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    I feel kind of bad because they're forced to say that kind of stuff. Hard to get too mad at a guy just trying to hang on to a job.

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    Jubal77Jubal77 Registered User regular
    I just let them go through their script and im in and out heh. I get asked pretty much everywhere else these days for things like warranty plans and the like.

    I mean I understand people take offense to having the script given to them its just never been a problem for me.

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    DibbyDibby I'll do my best! Registered User regular
    Xaquin wrote: »
    I feel kind of bad because they're forced to say that kind of stuff. Hard to get too mad at a guy just trying to hang on to a job.

    well yeah, don't shoot the messenger and all. i get it. Big Daddy Gamestop makes em do it. i don't get mad at the cashier or anything.

    but it's still the fault of Big Daddy Gamestop so i can get mad at Gamestop, not these dudes just tryin' to get by.

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    PolaritiePolaritie Sleepy Registered User regular
    Gamestop used to be where I went to get niche titles... but these days Best Buy has the same stock and is a less shitty company so....

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    ManetherenWolfManetherenWolf Registered User regular
    Dibby wrote: »
    Xaquin wrote: »
    I feel kind of bad because they're forced to say that kind of stuff. Hard to get too mad at a guy just trying to hang on to a job.

    well yeah, don't shoot the messenger and all. i get it. Big Daddy Gamestop makes em do it. i don't get mad at the cashier or anything.

    but it's still the fault of Big Daddy Gamestop so i can get mad at Gamestop, not these dudes just tryin' to get by.

    Keep in mind there are several people on here that are employed by Gamestop too.

    You may not like your local store (sorry if you have a store with bad staff. It can happen sometimes unfortunately). But that doesn’t change that this is the livelihood of a lot of people that you are effectively saying “fuck em I hope they close” to.

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    EnigmedicEnigmedic Registered User regular
    Eh gamestop is just a convenience because they are often the only place to buy some things when the local walmart or target is just a shithole. But they certainly are focused on the wrong things. IMO it is an abomination to walk into a gamestop and literally have the wall is covered in those ugly funkopop things. Like nobody buys those. If i could get some actually decent game related tshirts or pins or mugs or whatever from gamestop that would be great. But it is usually really cheap crap that is as overpriced as it is ugly. Ive bought more gaming tshirts from spencers than gamestop.

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    DibbyDibby I'll do my best! Registered User regular
    Dibby wrote: »
    Xaquin wrote: »
    I feel kind of bad because they're forced to say that kind of stuff. Hard to get too mad at a guy just trying to hang on to a job.

    well yeah, don't shoot the messenger and all. i get it. Big Daddy Gamestop makes em do it. i don't get mad at the cashier or anything.

    but it's still the fault of Big Daddy Gamestop so i can get mad at Gamestop, not these dudes just tryin' to get by.

    Keep in mind there are several people on here that are employed by Gamestop too.

    You may not like your local store (sorry if you have a store with bad staff. It can happen sometimes unfortunately). But that doesn’t change that this is the livelihood of a lot of people that you are effectively saying “fuck em I hope they close” to.

    i didn't say that though? i'd appreciate it if you didn't twist my words. literally all i said was "fuck gamestop", i never said "i hope they close".

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