Michael Pachter, gaming research analyst for Wedbush Morgan Securities, says that schemes to recoup cash from used game buyers doesn’t seem to be having an impact on sales at GameStop. In a post-financials report on the retailer, Pachter said that the country’s largest games retailer remained unscathed in its latest quarter and that aggressive code-based schemes for used games weren’t hurting the retailer’s bottom line. This could be because most of these schemes from EA and THQ (in a small measure) are targeting multiplayer, which GameStop says only 25 percent of used game buyers are interested in.
"The company has not seen a negative impact on used software sales from first-use codes or new competitors in the space," Pachter said. "The company estimates that only 25 per cent of used game buyers play online.”
Naturally EA and THQ have just barely rolled out such schemes on a couple of titles. We’ll see how it affects used games sales of titles like the latest Madden game in the next quarter. Pachter also shared his pessimism on GameStop’s plan to create a digital market space to sell DLC.
"We remain skeptical about how GameStop will participate in digital distribution," he said. "After a successful trial run in 35 test markets in the spring and summer, the company will complete a full DLC kiosk rollout in Q3."
"While we agree that the DLC opportunity is large and growing, we are skeptical that it will be a sales growth driver. Rather, we think that DLC will at best forestall the inevitable cannibalization of physical disc sales and allow GameStop to capture a small percentage of this cannibalization, with relatively insignificant margin contribution."
Source: MCV UK