Speaking to Gamasutra Best Buy and Target both claim that, while Gamestop may have the lion’s share of the used games market now, things will inevitably change. Last week both Best Buy and Target announced the launch of used games initiatives, and while both companies have different approaches, the goal is the same: to tap into the lucrative market that Gamestop has managed to keep all to itself.
Right now both companies are not actually selling used games; Best Buy is using a third-party company to refurbish and repackage the games – with plans to start selling them "soon" while Target will take those used games and sell them or recycle them.
Best Buy merchant director of gaming David Benson told Gamasutra in an email that the company is not concerned about GameStop’s years of experience and stranglehold on the used games market:
"No, our commitment to creating an improved gaming experience begins with giving customers easy and exciting ways to connect with the games they love."
Benson added that Best Buy has been successful in online video game trade-in program for about a year, as well as a successful test of an in-store trade-in kiosk model:
"Based on these positive experiences, the time was right to expand the offering chain-wide," he said.
Last week, Best Buy announced that it would expand its in-store video game trade-in program to 600 stores nationwide, starting August 29, with more locations to follow. At the same time, Target said that it would accept used games for store credit.
Target spokesperson Janna Fischer told Gamasutra in an email that it wasn’t getting into the business of selling used games:
"To be clear, Target isn’t in the used game business" and has not announced a plan to sell used games. That being said, we will continue to keep close watch on the competitive landscape of the video game industry as a whole and will look for new ways to engage with and provide value to the gaming audience."