Retailer and Tech Developer Battle Over Used Games

July 13, 2010 -

At the ongoing Develop Conference in the UK, a representative from GameStop Sweden and the CEO of a new company attempting to make games as easy to play and share online as YouTube videos got into a bit of a dustup over used games.

GamesIndustry.biz details the flare-up between GameStop’s Niall Lawlor and InstantAction chief Louis Castle. Lawlor told Castle that the used game business helps GameStop preserve its margins, but that, “We don't like being in the used business, it's very difficult to manage.”

Lawlor said that without used game sales, GameStop would not be in business.

Castle answered that selling used games would quicken the demise of brick-and-mortar stores, adding, “While you're preserving some margins, used is accelerating changes. He continued, "I can see the train wreck, it's coming. Pretty soon everyone is losing money. Used is accelerating the decline of profitability for publishers. The oxygen is being sucked out of the room.”

Castle previously labeled retail stores as a “parasite,” which “abused the industry horribly.” When asked if his new venture would kill physical store locations Castle replied, “I hope so.”

In related news, the company who supplies Gamestop, Wal-Mart, 7-Eleven and Toys “R” Us (among others) with the technology needed to manage their used games business is close to releasing an app that will let iPone users administer their own personal game inventory. Game Trading Technologies’ GameBook Mobile application will let users scan in their game inventory, locate stores and, perhaps most importantly, track the market values of games in real time to see if they are trending up or down, allowing users to make trade-in decisions accordingly.

President Todd Hays said that the app would let users, “make timely, well informed trade-in decisions for every title, system, and accessory they own.”

No release date for the app was provided.


Comments

Re: Retailer and Tech Developer Battle Over Used Games

Rather then comparing other mediums let's stick within games. Game rental establishments actually purchase their games and movies from a special type of seller. This gives them special licenses to rent out the movies and games. I know because I grew up in a small town with a rental shop owner and she showed me the weekly order book she received. It included other supplies (plastic cases, etc.) but also listings for new movies and games. I noted that at the time a new game for me at walmart (the only game retailor in my area) was about $50 on launch day. For her to buy a single copy of the same game for rental it was $65 to $70 because of the increased cost for the rental license. Are books the same? I don't know, but I hazard a guess it is something similar, an increased up front cost to compensate for the rental.

Re: Retailer and Tech Developer Battle Over Used Games

Without used games GS could not keep its B&M locations thus reducing sales of new games.....why is this so hard to understand?


I have a dream, break the chains of copy right oppression! http://zippydsmlee.wordpress.com/2010/05/21/cigital-disobedience/


Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Let's renegotiate them.

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Re: Retailer and Tech Developer Battle Over Used Games

Yeah, and you know what else pisses me off?  Libraries.  People can just read books without compensating the publishers.

Re: Retailer and Tech Developer Battle Over Used Games

I was under the impression that book publishers were in fact compensated for books being used in libraries.  I'm unsure of the mechanics of it, but I would assume it's similar to the tax you pay if you want to play music at some event (weddings for example (and it costs more if you let people dance!)).

All the money from it gets stuck in some fund and distributed to the various publishers (using some arcane methodology to work out who gets how much I'm sure).
===============

Chris Kimberley

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Chris Kimberley

Re: Retailer and Tech Developer Battle Over Used Games

Libraries pay wholesale(possibly retail) prices for the books they lend, but do not pay anything more. So the publishers/authors do get compensated for the initial sale, but the right of First Sale allows for libraries to lend those copies without further compensation to the publisher/author.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Retailer and Tech Developer Battle Over Used Games

In soem small way they are compensated, they perchase of item being lent out and the ability for the CP owner to deny a item to be lent out.

 


I have a dream, break the chains of copy right oppression! http://zippydsmlee.wordpress.com/2010/05/21/cigital-disobedience/


Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Let's renegotiate them.

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Wonderkarpever wonder if there's an appeals process for AO?05/28/2015 - 6:55pm
Matthew WilsonDanny and Andy play the first couple of levels of the upcoming Hatred http://www.gamespot.com/videos/hatred-gamespot-plays/2300-6425016/ imho it does not look like it should be AO.05/28/2015 - 5:57pm
Andrew EisenHey, remember Kung Fury? That short film that was funded via Kickstarter a few years ago? You can watch it now. I suggest you do. It's fun! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bS5P_LAqiVg05/28/2015 - 5:14pm
Goth_SkunkOriginally, yes. Some content was cut out in order to reduce its ratign from AO down to M, but PC users could work around that an unlock the full content by means of a patch. Which is what I did. :D05/28/2015 - 3:56pm
Andrew EisenKarp - Yes, for strong sexual content. Although the recent remaster contains all that content and was rated M.05/28/2015 - 3:54pm
Andrew EisenDepends on if you consider Hatred misrated. I haven't played the game or seen the ESRB's rating summary so I'm undecided.05/28/2015 - 3:53pm
WonderkarpDidnt Fahrenheit have an AO?05/28/2015 - 3:52pm
Matthew Wilson@AE that is why I said it seems more moral panic to me.05/28/2015 - 3:51pm
Andrew EisenMatthew - From what I've seen (just the trailers) the game is nowhere near as gory as many, many other games. But again, I'm guessing the AO rating comes from theme and tone rather than outright gore.05/28/2015 - 3:50pm
Andrew EisenKarp - It didn't show penetration or nudity.05/28/2015 - 3:50pm
WonderkarpI'd say Mortal Kombat X has more Gore and Violence than Hatred.05/28/2015 - 3:50pm
Matthew Wilsonwhat I mean by worse in this case its not more gory/violent than others.05/28/2015 - 3:48pm
WonderkarpI forget....did Hot Coffee actually show Penetration?05/28/2015 - 3:48pm
Andrew EisenKarp - The Skyrim mods are external mods. The Hot Coffee mod unlocked content on the disc. Big difference. Still, the content that was unlocked was still perfectly in line with an M rating in my opinion.05/28/2015 - 3:47pm
Andrew EisenThemes are factored into ratings, not just mechanics. Still waiting for ESRB's rating summary. Very curious to see what it has to say.05/28/2015 - 3:46pm
Matthew WilsonHatred is a top down shooter though, and isnt any worse than other top down shooters?05/28/2015 - 3:45pm
Wonderkarpyeah, San Andreases rerating was ridiculous. Why not rerate Skyrim with all its crazy sex mods out there? But yeah, ESRB is good as policing itself. 05/28/2015 - 3:45pm
Andrew EisenManhunt 2 and Hatred though? Eh, there's an argument to be made for the higher rating.05/28/2015 - 3:43pm
Andrew EisenRerating San Andreas was a mistake though. That seemed to be the result of kowtowing to public pressure.05/28/2015 - 3:42pm
Andrew EisenThere wasn't one. It's just a dumb rating.05/28/2015 - 3:42pm
 

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