Feedback Weighs In On Used Games

Posted: April 18, 2012
Feedback Weighs In On Used Games
Blair Herter and the Feedback crew discuss used game sales. Publishers would have you believe used game sales are hurting the industry, but retailers like GameStop disagree. Where do you stand on the issue?

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  • Gamer Muzz

    My thoughts on this are expressed best in my most recent article.
    http://www.nerdko.com/2012/0 5/10/used-games-dlc-online-pas s-etc-the-views-and-opinions-o f-one-video-game-store-ownerga mer/

    Posted: May 11, 2012 9:50 AM
  • sabresong

    Maybe I've got a different perspective on this than a lot of other people. At $60 a game, I can only afford two or, at the most, 3 games a year. I buy my games through Amazon, often used at a great discount. I'm disabled, and can't get out of the house much, so gaming is pretty much my only outlet. And there are thousands of people like me. Maybe too small a number for the industry to care about, but used games make it possible for people like me to game. And I DO buy all the DLC for the games I love.

    Also, Gamefly makes it possible for me to see which games I want to own and which are a waste of my money. Every game from Gamefly qualifies as used. So does the industry expect me to simply trust them that I'm going to love a game? They tell me I'll love Modern Warfare, but that's not my kind of game. Fine for others, but not for me. If I hadn't been able to try it first, I'd never have known, and I'd have wasted my money.

    I don't think it's good business for any company to alienate an entire segment of the market. I know, people are going to say that a multi-million dollar corporation doesn't care who it isolates. But you know what? I'm not that jaded. I've gotten excellent results dealing with major corporations when I needed to. And PR goes a lot further than dollars do in the long run.

    Posted: April 25, 2012 10:03 AM
  • habahnow

    i wanted to comment on what Nikole had stated towards the end,
    she basically said that Gears 3 is a great model for all games since they keep on releasing more online content that add to their multiplayer and increase replayability thus decreasing used sells .

    that is great and mostly true except for games without mutliplayer. La Noire and Heavy Rain are two examples of game without multiplayer and cannot be given any extra content except things that add to the story. Even then, not players will feel the need to keep the game after it is "finished". where as games with online components can keep used sales low. I mean even the Uncharted series was given online probably to combat used game sells.

    i feel that single player games need to resort to some other method (besides online passes) to decrease their used game sales. i personally am not even certain as to what should be done. i mean one could say, "why not decrease the price?" well that would give the implication that they spent less time on the game than any other game with online. They could just add a cheap online component to increase the value of the game.

    this should probably even be something discussed in feedback, what can singleplayer games do to keep themselves in the market, besides adding a terrible online component, just to keep their used game sells down?

    Posted: April 24, 2012 9:39 PM
  • kylezilla

    I buy yoused games becas i cant aford new ones and im not willing to whate a long time to get the game at a cheper price...

    the resen pople sell thear games is becas thay buy the game and it suks becas thay mad a bad call by looking at the cover not buy waching a revew.or thay dad mabe gotin a game for crismiss and its just not thear game and the worce cace sinareo the game just dint work....

    so when i go to get a game at a ponshop i go to i see thes omost all the games are crapy games nowone wants to buy becas thay feal cheep a few games are newear thats relly good but are more expinsef and mabe one or 2 ofe thos games might be brok....

    i buy a game only after i wavh the revew and if i find it yoused ill get it if it has scraches on the dist and thay tell me its still good i blow my top off...

    but ass for the how yoused games are going to kill the indestry i dont thank so monies mak remaks all the time and i know games do to so just quit the bull and just make good games we dont wana sell ok :D

    Posted: April 24, 2012 12:21 PM
  • mikepjr

    Why the hell are they bleeping things now?!!!
    I hate it!
    This is not TV, it's the damn internet!

    Also... um is it just me.... or is Nintendo the only ones rumored to NOT be including this.. thing.. where games get locked to a system?

    Also.. for me.. if the game is not available in stores.. it better cost a HELL of a lot less..
    Also... broadband is not available everywhere.. it won't work to be required to ALWAYS be online!

    There are a lot of problems facing the industry right now.

    Posted: April 24, 2012 11:29 AM
  • metallaw

    So much of this on all ends, new games, used games, whether console manufactures should "ban" used games, is all about supply and demand, what people are willing to pay for a used game, sell a game for, etc.

    But the thing that has so massively skewed this demand curve is people being suckered by Gamestop's effective high pressure marketing to think they are saving so much money on used games. For me, the very slight discount of about 10% that they offer on a used game is pretty neglible. I am as cheap a gamer as has ever lived, and while I ve essentially bought every game new over the past few years, I almost never pay much more than $30 for a game. Sure, I have to wait a few weeks, but if you re really about saving money maybe you can be patient and the game will be the same one it was a month before. Keeping an eye on sales and price drops will save you far, far more money than buying that used game for $5 less at Gamestop. If consumers woke up to this, their used game model would be far, far less effective. Hell, it s so laughable that occasionally Gamestop will have a price drop or sale on a new game so it is cheaper than the used version, and they re still trying to talk you into the used copy. But, I guess people get what they deserved if they are so easily swayed by that GS s clerk about how much money hey save. It's no different than non gamer parents being talked into strategy guides and similar items while they are there.

    Case in point, I just bought Mass Effect 3 on Amazon for $30, brand new today. Sure it s been out a few weeks, but that s 50% off what you would have paid when it came out, and probably 40-45% LESS than what you would have paid for the used copy. Meanwhile, it s $48 at Gamestop USED right now. So someone who walks in there and buys it used is going to pay $18 MORE than a brand new copy. Consumers, wake up!!

    I used to buy used games all the time in the PS1 days, and I was delighted when a local store would sell a game for $20 that cost $40 new. To me, that was a worthwhile savings that made it worth getting a used disc. And used books and many other mediums have that same basic markdown on used items of about 50%. But, Gamestop has been able to talk too many people into buying it for a much smaller markdown, so, good for them I suppose.

    If you really are cheap and have to save money, be a smart consumer and wait for a good deal on a new copy. You ll save a lot more.

    Posted: April 24, 2012 7:45 AM
  • JonMangod

    It sucks that Nikole represents my feelings on this show, but she can't seem to form a solid argument; ever. She needs to read Aristotle's Art of Rhetoric or something, and then open her mouth.

    Posted: April 24, 2012 6:24 AM
  • scuzzmonky


    $60 dollars isnt overly expensive when you concider the amount of time you get out of it. Around ten hours for every game, which is five times that of a movie. And gamestop does allow you to get full money back in the first week of geting a used game, for any reason, so you generaly don't have to worry about that problem. However I do agree that it's not hurting the market. These companies are smart, if they wernt going to get they're money back, they either wouldnt make the game, or the price would go up.[/quote]

    What Gamestop do you shop at? In the ancient time of 2005, EB did that for me. Then Gamestop bought out EB and the hammering began. These days I've inquired about returning a game the next day and, at best, I'm offered 50-60%. So I'm left with the option of keeping it or selling it on Ebay and, after they and Paypal take their fees, I get back 70-75% of the price of purchase.

    Posted: April 24, 2012 12:07 AM
  • Tmidiman

    Why not put in place better pricing for older games? Its so obvious.

    If an old / new in wrapper game, say 1-1.5 years old, was $15-20 I would buy it instead of a used version. Also it would cut into Gameslops profits, because most people IMO would go for a new game over a used game.

    The problem is that XBL, for example, sells old games for $30. Thats too much and one reason why I never buy digital copies of games. $20 after a year and $15 after 1.5 to 2 years makes sense.

    Either that or I get them 5 for $30 at Blockbuster. Your call game companies!

    Posted: April 23, 2012 3:57 PM
  • LPHeadstrong

    I understand that used games can and probably do affect the games industry negatively but for people who literally can't afford to buy a game full price or those of us to cheap to pay it anyway it's a good system! I bought Assassin's Creed for 5 and bought each game since brand new (most even LEs). Also Lost Odyssey for 10 by two developers I've never heard of before and now I'd gladly spend full price on a game from either of them!

    If they are getting rid of used games then at least replace them with demos/trial periods for every game!

    Posted: April 23, 2012 2:34 PM
  • EpicGamerGeek

    For decades we have had used record stores, used cars, used clothing, etc., etc. The manufacturers of these products are not making any money on the sale of used items. Why does the video game industry think they are special?? If it isn't GameStop or Best Buy, people will find away to sell their used items -eBay, garage sales, etc. It's an unrealistic expectation of companies to try to make money on used items. It does NOT hurt new sales. I personally prefer new games, than used, but occassionally I have purchased used games....and used CDs, clothing, etc.

    Posted: April 23, 2012 12:41 PM
  • Realmreaver

    I think honestly you make it DLC only and you'll lose ALOT more sales. Take a chance and enjoy the fallout. I dare you. To the more sensible types I am sorry but there needs to be at least a one year limit before a game can be sold as used. Period. Same for movies or anything else media like.
    I also think we need to unplug and find a way to create a media file ROM that CANNOT be copied used for ALL media universally.

    Posted: April 23, 2012 12:35 PM
  • poyyo90

    well at the end this is all about human nature of always wanting more, the sellers think they should be earning even more money and the consumer thinks he should be able to buy more games for less money. By doing that, sellers make games less enjoyable with the less multiplayer options, and more expensive, and consumers wont give enough money to sellers to make more games. I do not think this is the best solution for that problem, if sellers don't want to make a multiplayer game nor have used pc games industry then make an exclusive pc game, i believe the solution relies on sellers to make their game worth the money and if possible make console games 4 or at least 2 multiplayer splitscreen, that way consumers will want to have the game for themselves... for example NFS hot pursuit was a game not worth the money for me, because it did not have splitscreen, couldnt choose anything from a different class, and there was not even a custom mode race, and there was less action than the previous hot pursuit game, the ps2 version. how do they want to make money making bad games like that?

    Posted: April 23, 2012 10:27 AM
  • DKBomber13

    if you gamefly a game. It is just like buying it used. All passes and such you have to purchase.

    Posted: April 23, 2012 10:15 AM
  • shin0bi272

    according to microsoft used games are the devil's spawn. Hence why they are planning on not letting anyone use them in their new haxb0x. To the console gamers (since there's no used pc game market) its a good thing because you can pay a lot less for a game that you wanted to play for much less than it still costs on the store shelves. Plus the game company still gets their 60 clams out of someone and that someone turns around and sells their game that they paid that 60 clams for, for about 12 bucks. Then the store he sold that game to sells it again to you for 30 bucks. So there's no harm to the game companies what so ever. Now piracy and torrents do cut into their profit margins but thats not what this discussion is about.

    Posted: April 23, 2012 6:58 AM
  • Uldum

    Why is it that we only hear out cries about used sales from the gaming industry? Surely the used car market brings in much more money but we don't hear the dealerships crying. Or even text books college kids buy for school, always buy used. Not, digital, because you dont get any money back, not new because theyre crazy expensive, but used. Is there an outlet for text book publishers to cry?

    I just think some game publishers make used game sales into too much of a big thing where basically every other industry besides for food has to deal with it as well. They say gamers are sick with entitlement but it is surely the other way around when publishers are crying about used sales.

    Posted: April 22, 2012 10:49 PM
  • GravedgerV15

    The only people that are being harmed financially are the consumers. The gaming industry is making money no matter what. The price of new games now at $60 a shot is a bit ridiculous, buying used is really no better because, say you buy the game used and three days after buying it it stops working. To some it all up your buying someones problem. On a side note it doesn't really pay to trade in your games o begin with, your selling them back to the store for a fraction of what you originally paid for it. Again not fair to the consumer. Granted the stores like GameStop have to make money too, but the amount they offer for the game is too low. You buy a $60 game and they give you barely $10 for the trade-in. Bottom line the game companies aren't being harmed by the the sale of used games its the consumer being hared by the low buy back rate these stores offer.

    Posted: April 22, 2012 6:30 PM
  • FreshCut_T70

    No it actually helps it since the game publisher already got the new price and now someone else gets to enjoy the game and probaly buys the DLC. Letting companies have "Online Passes" is basically double dipping...no where else in any industry does a company get away with this. If you agree boycott any game that has these Online Passes as a requirement.

    Posted: April 22, 2012 5:55 PM
  • Pie47

    The people get money no matter what because places like gamestop purchase them from the company and get some of the profit made on the game.

    Posted: April 22, 2012 4:43 PM
  • LHRjimbone


    i "rent" alot from gamestop and when i do like the game i buy it but after buying new games like neverdead rage duke brink homefront la noire even mw3and others that i had to sell on craigslist to make not even half the money back sometimes ive been sooo disappointed now im only buying new games that im willing to deal with the consequences and know what im getting into, bf3, skyrim dead island gears saints and i just bought witcher all new but that might be it for a awhile i dont know sure max pain looks good but others do to, im half way paid for bioshock too, idk maybe ike stated before if it was 45 to 50 dollars 64 if it comes with bouns stuff like posters or key chains dlc etc.

    Posted: April 22, 2012 4:00 PM