News Article

GameStop Defends Xenoblade Chronicles Pricing, Plans More "Vintage Titles" Like Metroid Prime Trilogy

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

"As always, our pricing for these games is competitive"

Earlier today we reported that questions had been raised about GameStop's increase in Xenoblade Chronicles stock; the title had been difficult to find for an extended period. Despite the title's rarity for a number of months, many GameStop stores now have multiple "used" copies available, as well as on its website, and these second-hand copies carry a cost of $89.99.

There was an implication that GameStop had produced these copies to fill its second-hand inventory, with a Kotaku source stating that "the retailer printed a few thousand copies of the game with no shrink wrap", though that was an unconfirmed statement. However the inventory was acquired, the retailer was suddenly offering plenty of copies at a high price, a privileged position as the sole retail distributor of the title.

The retailer has now issued a statement on the issue to Kotaku, defending the Xenoblade Chronicles pricing and giving a relatively vague statement on sourcing that stock, and stating that more major "vintage" titles are on the way; one of these is confirmed as the hard-to-acquire Metroid Prime Trilogy.

GameStop regularly receives feedback from our PowerUp members regarding old titles they would us like to bring back, such as vintage games like Xenoblade Chronicles. We were recently able to source a limited number of copies of this title to carry in our stores and online.

In fact, we have sourced several more vintage titles that we will be hitting stores in the coming months, including Metroid Prime Trilogy.

As always, our pricing for these games is competitive and is based on current market value driven by supply and demand. PowerUp Pro members always receive a 10% discount and earn PUR points on pre-owned purchases.

Pricing by market demand is standard for retailers, of course, and it'd perhaps be naive to expect a company to pass up the opportunity to make as much money as possible, even if not all consumers will necessarily approve. Nintendo has declined to comment on the issue, meanwhile, which will do little to assuage some suspicion over the sudden re-stocking of Xenoblade Chronicles.

On the one hand some rare games are being made available, with more on the way, while on the other GameStop is perhaps cashing in cynically in the case of Xenoblade Chronicles due to its exclusivity over the product; therefore forcing the demand and high prices.

With more older games apparently on the way to satisfy demand, what do you think of this?

[via kotaku.com]

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User Comments (160)

TromboneGamer

#5

TromboneGamer said:

I would love to acquire a copy of the prime trilogy as I missed it back at launch, but it's used price kept climbing. Unfortunately I also lost my xenoblade disc which was likely swiped by a fellow student earlier this year and of course it's my fault since I was too careless.

ShadJV

#7

ShadJV said:

Conspiracy theories. I highly doubt the used copies being sold are actually new. If more copies were printed, it would be in Nintendo's interest to mention it. If it was somehow done behind Nintendo's back, Nintendo would be able to make a court case out of this and would've by now.

Awhile back GameStop emailed me asking for my copy of Xenoblade for $45. It's fairly obvious they procured the copies this way. I knew it would definitely be selling used for more than I bought it new, so this doesn't surprise me, I'm just glad I held onto it.

Also, I really think Nintendo should just print some more copies, it'd be easy money for them and Monolith.

ShadJV

#9

ShadJV said:

@GuardianKing

eBay, Amazon... There's a larger used game market than just GameStop. And you could be paying a pretty penny for Xenoblade through those methods as well.

idork99

#11

idork99 said:

GameStop. More like "GamePawn."

Since many new games are now available digitally, compulsive buyers no longer need to go to GameStop to purchase games and that's where GameStop's money came from. Countless times I was at the store when the compulsive shoppers came in and gave up their 2-4 week old games, and would use all those games for "trade in" value to purchase the newest game; only to sell it back to GameStop and repeat the cycle. Now, those shoppers can't sell back the digital versions so they no longer need to go to the store to throw away their monies. They can now do it from the comfort of their own gadget.

Caryslan

#13

Caryslan said:

Yeah, I'm really supposed to believe Gamestop. It might be a little easier to earn their trust if almost every single new game that I buy there did not happen to be their "last copy that was use for display." It does not matter if I'm buying a PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, DS, or PSP game, it's always the same excuse. And this is at several diifferent Gamestop locations.

What amazes me is how a store like Big Lots can have display cases, but Gamestop can't.

I won't even get into the fact that virtually none of their PSP games have cases anymore. Am I really expected to believe all the people that bring in PSP games lose the original cases?

Really Gamestop?

Gamestop is a sham, and it's a shame they are the only major player in town. I really miss Game Crazy. Gamestop always had their issues, but they really turned horrible after Game Crazy when out of business.

unrandomsam

#14

unrandomsam said:

What people ignore is that Gamestop were given exclusive rights to sell this.

(If they deliberately only sold a certain amount of the copies in order to do this. By keeping them back then opened them so they could get away with ignoring what they agreed with Nintendo to sell them originally that is shady as hell).

It is not actually that rare either. (500,000 copies is not that rare).

unrandomsam

#15

unrandomsam said:

@ShadJV All the copies were either sold by Nintendo (Directly) or Gamestop. Nobody else could sell it. (Accidently finding another box and opening them all to get around the Nintendo contract is very plausible and probably legal. Just not ethical but companies seem to get to be unethical without any stigma attached).

tanookisuit

#19

tanookisuit said:

They're crooks. This is a reprint from the looks of investigation over at nintendoage.com where they're digging at it and taking images. The original release and new (used) release have different clam shells where on the interior the support struts of the plastic around the edge has been change and the emblem had a switch from showing above the disc Nintendo and then Wii. There's a company online that you can charter to take an existing game with permission and have reprints issued of it nearly identical to the original.

Gamestop is basically taking their scams up a new notch in defrauding the consumer. Instead of pulling the old bait n switch on cheap trade in to higher than retail price stuff, now they're plotting out release of valuable desired games and then not reopening the 'new' sku their system has and making them USED (despite being unsealed new) and charging whatever they want thumbing the nose at the real MSRP of the items. Odds are they're using a company called Games Quest Direct which reprints games with permission to sell as new, and their website has select product as far back as the SNES I believe.

JQuest

#20

JQuest said:

@ShadJV right, or better yet make these titles available in the eshop. I'd snap them up that way. There would still be a market for those who want a hard copy for their collection.

Edit: they offered me a "high credit" for my copy as well... They do that on stuff that's popular and need used stock on. Not to mention if you buy from GameStop and you are a power up member in particular, it's pretty easy to track who has what games.

SphericalCrusher

#21

SphericalCrusher said:

GameStop is a glorified pawn shop, so they can price their own games how they want. People just have to deal with it, or don't shop there. I am very thankful I bought Xenoblade and Metroid Prime Trilogy at launch. I still have them and they will never go anywhere! =)

TheHunter

#22

TheHunter said:

If those are vintage to Gamestop, they'd make more profit by selling their time machines, as they must be from the future.

LindsayPez

#23

LindsayPez said:

This is really frustrating. I would love to get a copy of the game and give it a try since so many people have said wonderful things about it. But there is NO WAY I would pay $90! Hopefully a bunch of people will share this sentiment and eventually GameStop will lower the price when they see nobody will buy it for that much. I can dream, lol.

JQuest

#24

JQuest said:

@TheHunter it's just semantics really. Vintage by definition is of old, recognized, and enduring interest, importance, or quality. The rare nature of these games allow them to fall in the vintage category.

Man, I remember when GameStop was still FuncoLand, and they sold used copies of Chrono Trigger north of 80 bucks.

WaxxyOne

#26

WaxxyOne said:

I stopped shopping at GameStop a long time ago. They're seedy, pushy and have shown that they will do underhanded things that hurt their customers and the gaming community as a whole whenever it suits them. I am looking forward to the day when digital content makes them obsolete entirely as a company.

jd45

#27

jd45 said:

I sincerely hate this store. I hate the fact that every time I go in to pick up a game I get asked a million questions about joining their stupid rewards program or whatever it is, and when I decline they give me this smug look like "Are you sure? Boy, you're dumb."

On top of that, their "experts" have pathetically given me incorrect information about titles and console specs. I just sorta nod politely and smile.

Since most of the titles are readily available elsewhere, I prefer to shop at Best Buy or Target and save myself from the smug comments and awful attitudes.

Tasuki

#30

Tasuki said:

Oh Gamestop will your cons never end? Nope and thats why I can't wait for the day you go out of business.

I hope its sooner rather then later

unrandomsam

#31

unrandomsam said:

They seem fairly similar to game.co.uk (In that they get preferential treatment from Nintendo but are the worst of the worst). Wouldn't be surprised if they were given a subsidy in the form of preferential pricing on eshop codes in a similar manner.

manpretty

#34

manpretty said:

Wow, give GameStop the Devil's Tarot card. When asked to comment on an accusation of bad business, they spun it into a promotion. That takes 20 pound balls.

ShadowFox254

#37

ShadowFox254 said:

That reminds me, I still need to get Metroid Trilogy. I'll buy it as long as the price is reasonable, but I still don't like GS.

SCAR392

#39

SCAR392 said:

How can anyone give GameStop crap when the only reason they're selling the game for that high is because of independent second hand sellers?
This game would not be priced at $90 at GS if no one sold it for that high in the first place. They're competing with eBay and Amazon with that price.

C7_

#40

C7_ said:

It's not competitive pricing if you're the only one selling it. You aren't competing with ANYONE on the sales. Competitive pricing usually means that you're trying to sell it for less than the competition (which doesn't exist in this case) in order to gain more sales.

This is price raising because you are the exclusive seller and therefore DON'T have to price competitively.
This is called a monopoly, the exact OPPOSITE of competition.

SCAR392

#41

SCAR392 said:

GameStop has been good over the years. If you're going to trade in your old games and stuff for less than it's worth, that's your deal.

Unca_LzStaff

#42

Unca_Lz said:

@C7_ You need to do some research. You'll find that other used copies of this game are sold at the same price. That is still competition (for used copies)

SCAR392

#43

SCAR392 said:

@C7_
How much would you sell me an EarthBound cartridge right now?
Nintendo has the game on the Wii U eShop for $10. Will you sell me the cart for $10? No? Moving along...
Their competing against eBay, Amazon, etc. sellers. I'm not gonna argue that, because $90 is still a better price than $100+.

Wheels2050

#45

Wheels2050 said:

OK, cue rant... (This also refers to comments from the previous article).

First up - I'm not a huge fan of Gamestop (or the Australian extension, EB Games) and, yes, $90 US is quite a bit for the game.

However:

1. AFAIK, Gamestop can charge whatever the hell they want for a game, as can any retailer in the US. Unless there is a law I'm not aware of, the MSRP (that's R for "recommended") is not a legally-binding amount - it's simply what the manufacturer thinks the product should be priced at. Normally, a company would be silly to charge more for their product, since their competitors will likely charge around the MSRP, but in this case Gamestop's only competition is third-party sellers. Which leads to my next point:

2. Gamestop is competing against 3rd party sellers - people selling of stock they bought up a while ago, or selling used copies. Have a look at what they have been asking. Go on, I'll wait (assuming they haven't adjusted prices since this news came out). Back now? They were charging well over $100 for Xenoblade copies on eBay and Amazon. If one can get that sort of money for a copy of the game, then Gamestop would be a bad business to not have a crack at getting something like that themselves. Supply and demand, people. They're not under any sort of obligation to sell you games at prices you consider 'reasonable' (at least, in a strict sense - of course if they're outrageously expensive they'll go out of business).

3. What benefit would selling used copies over new give them? I'm quite serious, please name one. Presumably they could charge even more for new, sealed copies - why would they take of $10 or so from every copy by ripping off the shrink wrap?

4. There is no way in hell Gamestop would have illegally ordered a reprint of Xenoblade. The legal repercussions would be enormous, and they would risk their relationship with Nintendo. @tanookisuit: they are some pretty big accusations you're throwing around there.

5. Again, AFAIK, there are no bootleg Wii games that will run on unmodded consoles. At least they're not at all common. The suggestion that these are bootleg copies is, frankly, absurd.

I don't know what has truly happened here - we'll probably have to hear from Gamestop employees to ever find out. However, people online have been labelling this a 'scam' and accusing Gamestop of all manner of illegal activities to explain this. Firstly, I don't see how it's a scam, and secondly, as mentioned above, Gamestop would be idiotic to do something horribly illegal and advertise it prominently on their website. Particularly considering the pretty marginal amount of profit they would make from this, in the scheme of things.

I understand people are upset that they have to pay $90 for a copy of the game, but that's capitalism folks. This is why laws against monopolies exist - if a company can become the only one in their area selling something, you can be sure they'll squeeze the consumer for everything they can. You should feel lucky that this is the exception rather than the norm.

jos

#46

jos said:

wow , never knew they were that limited in the US. my local tescos not so long ago was selling the Metroid prime trilogy for 15 euro

Dauntless

#47

Dauntless said:

You can hate Gamestop all you want but its Nintendo's fault. You wouldn't have the game if it wasn't for Gamestop financially backing it up because NOA didn't want to bring it over. And we all knew this was going to be a limited release that would only go up in price. Just about everyone had a Wii when it was released thus there is very little reason not to have gotten it at regular price at release unless you were actually flat broke and couldn't spare 50 for anything. Gamespot can sell this at whatever they want and I'm not going to complain about it because if it wasn't for them this game wouldn't even be available to begin with.

UgliestSoup

#48

UgliestSoup said:

The day i see a Metroid Prime Trilogy on any store shelf, I dont care if its Gamestop, I will immediately buy it.

rjejr

#49

rjejr said:

Download version on Wii U eShop would make this all go away. And now Nintendo knows they can sell a digital copy at zero cost to them for $90 so I think the ball is in Nintendos court. Id bet anything that exclusivity agreement had a timeframe that has long ago expired.

3DSAllDay

#50

3DSAllDay said:

Sadly the only game store I know of that is close by is GameStop and that means if I want the physical copy of a game I will need to get it from GameStop. I think that the pricing for these used games is just ridiculous. I know I have bought games at GameStop used (most of my GameCube games) but they were at least $10 or less than the new copy and most times they never had new copies of GameCube games during 2009-2011.

DerpSandwich

#51

DerpSandwich said:

Someone remind me again why Nintendo refuses to print more copies of this highly sought-after game that came out fairly recently? And why they don't release it digitally or something?

Dpishere

#59

Dpishere said:

Though I want the Metroid Prime Trilogy, I do not plan to shell out 90 bucks for it.

Wheels2050

#62

Wheels2050 said:

@Brother_Jolteon: That simply is untrue. Where do you think the games come from in the first place? They don't magically appear out of thin air - Nintendo sells them to Gamestop. After that first sale the publisher doesn't see any more money, but that's the case in every used sale.

Shane904

#63

Shane904 said:

I wouldn't, but now if someone wants one of these games, people are even more likely to resort to piracy for them. That is just bat.... crazy for them to price it that high.

Wheels2050

#64

Wheels2050 said:

@Subie98: Thanks - I do get frustrated on here by the amount of ignorance and misunderstanding displayed in the comments section.

Parkavenue359

#65

Parkavenue359 said:

though this wasn't entirely gamestops fault, GameStop still gets my flaming middle finger of disapproval any day of the week...

GN0LAUM

#67

GN0LAUM said:

Sorry to get all economisty on you but:
"GameStop is perhaps cashing in cynically in the case of Xenoblade Chronicles due to its exclusivity over the product; therefore forcing the demand and high prices."
Exclusivity over a product does not impact demand. It does (as you point) out lead to an increase in price however, due to limited supply. Demand for this game is not caused by limited supply, it's caused by the fact that this game is so high in quality. That has nothing to do with Gamestop shenanigans.

If anything, increasing the available supply will lead to an overall decrease in price, which is good for everyone. To be perfectly honest, less than $100 is actually pretty reasonable for the game at this point.

theblackdragonAdmin

#68

theblackdragon said:

It's the same thing they've always done. This is nothing new. shoot, I remember heading to the mall after school was out to mill around in the local Babbages and EB (before they both became GameStop stores) with my buddies, they used to have a locked case behind the counter where you could see copies of rare SNES games they had available — stuff like Chrono Trigger, Earthbound, or Final Fantasy titles. Of course anything in that case was sold at a serious premium.

People want to believe the worst about a company they already hate. It's whatev', but diving off the deep end into conspiracy-theory land gets you nowhere, especially when there's a plausible explanation at hand. This looks like something they've been planning for a long time now (that e-mail went out back around February btw) and would easily explain why they suddenly have enough to go around when they (supposedly) haven't had any at all for a long time now — they've been saving them up for this sort of move. They could also have come across a cache of older stock in a warehouse, who knows.

If you don't want to buy a game from them, whether Xenoblade or anything else, no one's forcing you to — there's always places like Amazon, eBay, or Craigslist for the old or rare [Atlus] stuff and Wal-Mart, Best Buy, and Target for the new [first-party] stuff. That's the way it's always been. Nothing has changed.

ueI

#70

ueI said:

I find Gamestop's excuse to be annoying, yet believable.
Nintendo has to stop selling games through exclusive retailers.
It. NEVER. ends. well.

DeathlyDarkness

#74

DeathlyDarkness said:

I wonder why Nintendo refused to comment... :/

Anyway, peace-lovers say what you will, this just doesn't seem right to me, something's up. :P

It'll be interesting to see if GameInformer says anything about this...

Personally, I've never played XenoBlade or the Metriod trilogy, I understand they're good games, just never played them... $90.00 seems utterly ridiculous for a used copy of a last-gen title. Considering I could buy Mario Kart 7 and Professor Layton And The Miracle Mask for that price, it's unlikely I'll buy this or Metroid.

Also, these games are hardly "Vintage". Stupid GameStop doesn't even have the equivalent of a 13 year olds grammar and vocabulary capability. That's just tragic.

crazyj2312

#75

crazyj2312 said:

I'm going to assume that if you do trade in metroid prime trilogy or xenoblade they'll give you ten bucks for em

triforcepower73

#76

triforcepower73 said:

If this is true, that they printed a few thousand copies then sold them as used for $90, that is SOOO incredibly selfish of Gamestop! I made the huge mistake of not buying it for 50 bucks when I could have, and now I have to look for someone who actually owns it (haven't found one yet) or just blow $90 on it.

kondabasu

#78

kondabasu said:

@theblackdragon To be clear, we're not talking about one or even several copies of a rare old game. We're talking about thousands of GameStop stores nationwide suddenly coming into possession of ostensibly new but unwrapped copies of an extremely rare game, with reports of the Club Nintendo code still being intact and slight variations from the original box art. If it weren't GameStop, it'd be reasonable to assume these are unlicensed bootlegs. It's unreasonable to assume they're anything other than reprints.

Every one of the sixteen GameStop stores in a hundred mile radius of my home shows "low stock" for this game, and the NeoGAF forums and Kotaku's columnist report the same in New York and other areas. (Meanwhile, only one GameStop store in the same radius has a preowned "Metroid Prime Trilogy" in stock.)

I don't begrudge GameStop for making a quick buck out of a rare and desirable game, and agree in principle that we can take our business elsewhere if we dislike it, but I don't think people are in the wrong to call GameStop sleazy for selling reprints as though they're preowned copies from the game's original run. That's misleading and very different from the kinds of markups you see on genuine first or early prints of games or books.

QuickSilver88

#79

QuickSilver88 said:

I don't particularly hate gamestop but do wish they weren't the only game around in the US as far as video game centric retailers....I mean sure we have Best Buy and the big boxes but you would think in a country of over 300mil super consumers we could support a competitor. I remember when they did a similar thing the Shenmue 2 for dreamcast.....they were allowed to import the EU version and distribute it with a special boot CD. It was priced up $10 because the boot CD but then quickly disappeared new and was going for even more used. In some way the finger of blame should fall on Nintendo because with a game so great and with so many Wii owners in the US they should have done a general release and even marketed the game. Just remember this when X comes out for WiiU...get your copy new at release because it will likely get limited prints and be gone soon after. Atl least it will be digital on eShop.....which Xenoblade never will be because there is really no mechanism to distribute and run full DVD games in Wii mode.

I-U

#80

I-U said:

Xenoblade at $90 is worth it. If you wanted the game, you should've gotten it earlier at $50. Their price is completely fair for the value of the game's experience.

Setrodox

#81

Setrodox said:

It's probably been said - there are too many comments to read - but there is another option. If there is a market for a game, print more copies. Should be easier than scrounging up used ones (or supposedly printing new copies and selling them as if used).

KnightRider666

#83

KnightRider666 said:

@Kyloctopus: Try $85. Yeah that's what it's selling for used, along with Fire Emblem Radiant Dawn for $65, Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3 & Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition for $55 each. Ridiculous!

Than64

#84

Than64 said:

I received Metroid Prime Trilogy as a Christmas gift when it was released, and I snatched up Xenoblade new when it came out. It's simply a fantastic game.

I now wait and see what these other "vintage" titles are going to be.

coolvw93

#85

coolvw93 said:

I honestly have no intentions to get the trilogy like i once did when it first came out. I own 1 & 2 on for GameCube and 3 on Wii. But maybe I'm missing the part of being able to play 1 & 2 on the Wii with Wii controllers, but I'm fine with that. Though this new idea of "vintage" stuff should be interesting. I'm in if they bring back game boy player for GameCube, an accessory i missed out on...

Einherjar

#86

Einherjar said:

The only thing such an action achieves is the artificial inflation of the price overall. When GameStop sells it for nearly a hundret, it will go for 120 on amazon, and then afor 130 on eBay and so on and so forth.
I still dont know why its not a problem to constantly print 20-30 year old movies (and some PC games) so that they are available pretty much anytime but games have a shelf life like fresh milk on a hot summer day.
With that kind of system, games will end up costing ludacris amounts of money with an added sticker to the front saying "as long as its available", becoming collectors items a week after release.
I guess thats the time, digital releases really come to save the day :/

Captain_Gonru

#87

Captain_Gonru said:

A few random points no one will scroll down to read.
1. If these allegations are true, Gamestop would have to sell them as used. Agreements with the distributors, much like street dates, require GS to sell "new" at or around MSRP. "Used" games, meanwhile, are past that first sale, and can be sold for whatever a store wants to charge. There is a limit on how long this holds, of course, or else you never see "mint in box" games. And by the way, GS to customer is first sale. Distributor to Gamestop is wholesale.
2. Gamestop will only buy and sell at amounts determined by what the market will bear. If no one trades in a sought-after game for $20, they'll offer $25. And then sell it for $50, unless no one buys, then they'll cut it to $40. That's basic economics.
3. Lastly, if they have in fact pulled some shenanigans, I'll be first line with broom in hand. Until then, how about we all take a deep breath, and chill the &#%@ out?

Wheels2050

#89

Wheels2050 said:

@kondabasu: "...selling reprints as though they're preowned copies from the game's original run. That's misleading and very different from the kinds of markups you see on genuine first or early prints of games or books."

Have they actually claimed that, though? I haven't seen anywhere where Gamestop has said that these are from the first print run. The markup here isn't because it's a rare first printing - it's because people will pay it. In any case, video games commonly get several printings with minor variations between them and that's never pointed out to consumers.

Henmii

#91

Henmii said:

EPIC FAIL!!! HUGE FACE-PALM!!!

And I thought dutch shops really had no sense!!

pamplemousse_mk

#92

pamplemousse_mk said:

I don't understand these prices. I bought recently a used Xenoblade for 35€ or something, through eBay. I live in France, and we can metroid prime easily here for 15€ to 20€.

allav866

#93

allav866 said:

I do want the Metroid Prime Trilogy, but if GS is gonna charge a ridiculous amount for it, then I'd rather put that money towards other games.

Ernest_The_Crab

#94

Ernest_The_Crab said:

@Caryslan Well the last time I visited EB Games (which is owned by GameStop) they let me trade in a game that had no case though then again it was a DS game so probably more durable than the average CD.

zionich

#95

zionich said:

Honestly I dont care what GameStop does. Shame on the people that buy it for that price.

banacheck

#97

banacheck said:

Xenoblade at $90 is worth it.

I don't care how good Xenoblade is, i would never pay that for a second hand last gen game. If i was them i would push the price right up, because idiots well pay for it.

cornishlee

#98

cornishlee said:

I actually gave Prime Trilogy to my little brother for Christmas the year it came out. Later that year he traded in his Wii and all his games. So, I've never played it.

theblackdragonAdmin

#99

theblackdragon said:

@kondabasu: (A) There is no proof behind any of this, only a 'Kotaku source', rumor, and speculation.
(B) one copy counts as 'low stock'.

Heck, for all we know they went on a buying spree themselves back when Amazon and eBay prices were still lower than they planned to sell for. if you want to buy into the conspiracy theory, good for you, but I'll be more than content to sit here waiting for hard evidence to prove common sense wrong.

JebbyDeringer

#100

JebbyDeringer said:

What is more likely happening is Game Stop found a source of games, opened them, sells them used because the used prices aren't defined by Nintendo or the games industry.

Pod

#101

Pod said:

I wouldn't ever pay more than the original full price for a video game. I'm not sufficiently avid a collector or player.

Luckily I own both Metroid Prime Trilogy and Xenoblade Chronicles from back when online retailers sold them at very reasonable prices.

For anyone who is interested in buy Prime Trilogy at a primium, I'd just like to put out a warning, though. The two first games, while having been brought to true widescreen and having been upgraded for Wiimote controls, they have also been clogged up with "achievements" that will flash onscreen all throughout the story, and parts of the unlockable art galleries are now not accessible at all unless you swap "tickets" with another owner online.

@JebbyDeringer
Certainly.
GameStop knew at the time that demand for these games weren't that high, but likewise knew the reviews were through the roof.

They've likely kept half a crate of each around until the price went up.

elstif

#102

elstif said:

LOL They call it "vintage" when it was released just 2 year ago in Europe and a little over 1 year in the US!!!!
I understand the price for the "real vintage games" like Earthbound or Secret of Mana "Carts"

I lot of people (like me) got to know about the game late (1 year late) and instead of finding it cheaper (new and used) like most games are after a year or so of being released, it is twice the price

This game is very good so there was more demand than offer, this made the game rare and the price high.

I dont understand why Nintendo, after finally localizing it, is not printing more copies knowing there´s demand for it. There will be money for them and the developers who deserve it after making such a great game. And we´ll be able to buy it at a standard price. Thats how it work on every other market. Produce some, if sold out there is still demand produce more to get more profit out of it.

The videogame second hand market is roten and this is proof of it, these big companies paying peanuts to users for used games and then selling them for almots the full price in most cases. This will only kill the game industry.

I prefer buying retail games over downloads but I will go the download route if these doesn´t change

BTW, I bought a used copy of Xenoblade for 40€ directly from another person, I stop buying used from these companies a few years back

Araknie

#105

Araknie said:

Vintage?
Are they stupid or what?

Even if was SMB1 Nintendo always has renovated license for everygame thanks to Virtual Console.

Any Nintendo game they print will start a legal action.

As i said in the other Game"must"Stop argument, they need to close or do something againts their monopoly.

This is the same kind of crap that made Banks go down, monopoly is a big deal.

6ch6ris6

#106

6ch6ris6 said:

"the retailer printed a few thousand copies of the game with no shrink wrap"

printed copies? wtf? what does that mean? gamestop cant produce the games.

MayhemStaff

#107

Mayhem said:

If they are going to reprint Metroid Prime Trilogy, they gonna make more steelbook packaging too?!

XyVoX

#108

XyVoX said:

I pre-ordered Metroid Prime trilogy with the steelbock packaging for about £23 and still to this day they are my favourite Wii games, level design/geometry are spectacular shame more people didn't get to experience these Gems.

kyuubikid213

#110

kyuubikid213 said:

I'll watch out for the prices that are obviously robbing people, but I will continue to shop at GameStop. I don't buy too much stuff online and I won't for a while now. Not to mention, I love having the actual box and game disc as opposed to an image and some lines of code on the system. That reversible cover is just... Beautiful.

And... "Vintage"? Wouldn't vintage be more like the GameCube games they stopped carrying? Or selling N64 carts?

Dogpigfish

#111

Dogpigfish said:

Nintendo, you can fix this problem by publishing both games to the eshop and not hurt your relationship with this company.

kondabasu

#112

kondabasu said:

@Wheels2050 You're right, and even if their fine print doesn't disclaims the idea that "preowned" games are necessarily that, "I bought a game preowned, but it was new" is an unlikely lawsuit. I think what they're doing is misleading, but it's not categorically dishonest.

Usually Nintendo does a better job as a publisher making it clear that games are reprints too. The red box "Nintendo Classic" SNES games, for example, or "Player's Choice" on the Game Cube, or the Wii's "Nintendo Selects" line. Sounds like that's not being used here.

ToxieDogg

#113

ToxieDogg said:

It's extremely unethical and dishonest whichever way you look at it. If Gamestop have suddenly come across old unsold stock of Xenoblade Chronicles, then they themselves caused the crazy preowned price problem by not getting them onto shelves in the first place when they should have done (which suggests it was intentional)....if, as has been suggested, they've actually reprinted copies, then there's no reason why they can't print enough to meet demand at the normal RRP, but (IMO) they're abusing their position as the game's sole US distributor. Price fixing is illegal here in Europe (Nintendo themselves actually received a hefty fine for it about a decade ago), so I'm surprised (shocked even) that a lot of you in the US think it's acceptable what Gamestop are doing. They seem to have gotten hold of way too many copies all of a sudden for it to just be genuine trade ins due to that email they apparently sent out a while back.

kondabasu

#114

kondabasu said:

@LzQuacker Nay, sir, nay, I explicitly said the opposite of that!

"If it weren't GameStop, it'd be reasonable to assume these are unlicensed bootlegs. It's unreasonable to assume they're anything other than reprints."

I doubt a national chain retailer with the visibility of GameStop would stoop to unlicensed bootlegs (pirate copies) to make a fast buck. I don't see how this many copies of the game could be anything other than a reprint, but since it's GameStop I think it's safe to assume it's a licensed reprint.

kondabasu

#115

kondabasu said:

@theblackdragon So GameStop runs something like four and a half thousand brick-and-mortar stores nationwide, and this game is also one of their best sellers online.

Intentionally withholding stock while speculating on game prices? Mass-purchasing copies from the competition? Do those scenarios really sound more reasonable to you than a reprinting deal with the publisher? Bosh and phooey!

GameStop, a prominent retailer of video games, approached Nintendo, with whom it has a healthy working relationship, about a popular but unavailable game for a popular and widely available system. Talk was talked. A deal was struck. There's no dark conspiracy here. No one's suggesting GameStop's some kind of Illuminati of the gaming industry.

Dr_Corndog

#116

Dr_Corndog said:

They can stick used copies at whatever price they want. But if they're actually printing up new copies and selling them at $90, well, that's crooked.

Anyway, this piece makes me want to go hug my copies of Xenoblade and MPT.

Rensch

#117

Rensch said:

You can get both of these for 35 euros each here in The Netherlands when you buy them secondhand from game shops. And then there's stil plenty of new copies for roughly 40-45 euros apiece.

mike_intv

#119

mike_intv said:

Gamestop is selling the games as used, so that let's them set their own price. Selling used items at more than their original price is nothing new for Gamestop — or any retail sector (many a used paperback for college courses about 30 years ago carried bookstore prices over their original cost).

As for competitive pricing, this game is usually over $100 on both eBay and Amazon right now.

The problem people are having is the quantity that showed up all at once — and how some seem to be in different style cases and insides intact. (I have many times bought used games with Club Nintendo codes unused — so that is not uncommon. However, GS worrying about such, considering it just issued a corporate edict to trash DS cases/books and just sell the carts, is more surprising).

What is much more amazing is the price for Metroid Prime Trilogy — $85 on Gamestop and higher in secondary markets. BestBuy dumped that game for $20 at one point. (I never bought it since I had all the component games and had not played them yet — an obvious error on my part but one I am not willing to spend $100 to rectify).

E-Man

#121

E-Man said:

Wow! Makes me feel good that I bought Xenoblade (new) at GameStop early this year and bought Metroid Prime Trilogy (new) years ago back in 2008. And I didn't even want it but it was part of the Toys R Us' buy 2 get 1 free deal at the time. Glad I choose Metroid Prime Trilogy.

chiefeagle02

#123

chiefeagle02 said:

As much as I hate to see games outlandishly expensive (cough Shantae cough), Xenoblade Chronicles has been going on eBay and Amazon (new or otherwise) for around what GameStop is asking since February (Source: http://videogames.pricecharting.com/game/wii/xenoblade-chronicles).

Question: If GameStop was indeed reprinting Xenoblade Chronicles and selling them at "used" prices to bloat profit margins, isn't that legally a form of fraud?

DarkKirby

#124

DarkKirby said:

While I am one to support pricing by supply and demand (and a critic of when companies decide to "raise prices for their competing products together", so they will all profit together and not have to compete with lower prices), what GameStop is allegedly doing is selling counterfeit items at authentic price. Although I have to say, if companies like Nintendo and Monolith Soft want to "get their fair share" and put a stop to these practices they should just release the game on the eShop at normal retail value (or lower because the games are old and digital release). As Valve's Gabe Newell says, the key to beating piracy is to make your service more convenient then that of the pirates.

I have to wonder how video game companies actually benefit from having limited physical releases only and no digital release at all.

SCAR392

#126

SCAR392 said:

I have Xenoblade. I've actually had chances to buy MTP multiple times, but I had the GCN versions and I've beaten 1 & 3(didn't really like 2) countless times on the original discs, so I didn't really care to buy it.

I wanted the pre-order t-shirt more than the game, honestly. It's just funny that people sell these games for such a high price in the first place.
If I just want to play a game, it's not really worth paying a collector's price.

theblackdragonAdmin

#127

theblackdragon said:

@Kondabasu: If you want to accuse GameStop of committing piracy by having games reprinted and selling them as used, best of luck with that. I'll be over here chilling with my tin-foil-lined hat and waiting for the hard proof to arrive before I start casting stones along with the rest of you. I'm sorry I'm more willing to give the benefit of the doubt than you on this one, but please know that what you're suggesting seems as silly to me as my thoughts on the topic apparently seem to you.

kondabasu

#128

kondabasu said:

@theblackdragon Nowhere have I accused GameStop of committing piracy. As I said in my first reply to you:

"If it weren't GameStop, it'd be reasonable to assume these are unlicensed bootlegs. It's unreasonable to assume they're anything other than reprints."

I made that distinction precisely to emphasize that a reprint is not the same thing as a pirated version or unlicensed bootleg. As I said in my previous reply to you, this situation is most likely the outcome of an exclusive deal with Nintendo.

theblackdragonAdmin

#129

theblackdragon said:

@kondabasu: I kinda thought you'd get the hint from my last comment, but apparently not — this is the point where we agree to disagree with one another. I'm going to go back to not caring about this issue at all because I've already got my copy and have long-since enjoyed it thoroughly, and everyone else can continue milling about as they were.

Unca_LzStaff

#131

Unca_Lz said:

@ToxieDogg "In the United States, price fixing can be prosecuted as a criminal federal offense under section 1 of the Sherman Antitrust Act.[1]"

This is actually not price fixing btw. The price was determined by the market (Amazon and eBay) BEFORE Gamestop set the price.

SCAR392

#133

SCAR392 said:

@kondabasu
They aren't reprints at all. GameStop obviously collected some copies for a while, then shipped them out or whatever.

EDIT: They aren't reprints, they didn't open them to sell used, etc. I called several GameStop stores, because I just so happened to see they had them in stock. There were 8 in my location, and I called to see whether they had the booklet or case. The completion of each copy varied, just like any other used game at GameStop.

This whole story is BS. The title of this article should have been "Used Xenoblade Chronicles Shows Up at several GameStop. Get it While You Can!" or something.
Instead everyone has to think nothing is real, they're fake, GameStop sucks. etc.

kondabasu

#134

kondabasu said:

@SCAR392 That's what @theblackdragon thinks, too. I think it's extremely unlikely:

When I looked yesterday, every GameStop in 100 miles of my home, and probably every store in the country (from spot checking a few other zip codes and from similar reports on NeoGAF) — about four and a half thousand stores in all — had at least one of these "preowned" copies in stock. In addition to those, there are the copies they're selling online: Xeno is currently one of the best sellers on gamestop.com

I don't think GameStop could acquire that many copies all at once, not even through an extremely aggressive "buyback" in-store credit deal. I'm not so ready to dismiss the multiple reports of "like new" packaging that are popping up, either.

IIRC GameStop had exclusive retail rights for this game when it initially launched in the US, so I'm not sure why a second exclusive deal seems so far-fetched.

SCAR392

#135

SCAR392 said:

@kondabasu
So you seriously think 4,500 stores have at least 1 reprint out of 500,000?
Like I said, I called around and some of them were missing manuals and cases.
If you want to think these are reprints, go ahead, but you're wrong. GameStop already commented and said this is that "Vintage" thing.

SCAR392

#136

SCAR392 said:

@kondabasu
The copies they sell online are the same as the ones on the shelf. When you order a game, they pull it straight off the GameStop shelf and send it with their regular shipment.

They hold it for you as soon as you place the order.

FlyingKickPunch

#137

FlyingKickPunch said:

The last time I ever went to Gamestop was when GBA was the reigning king of handhelds, and I went to buy Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones. So, I go up to the guy and ask for the game, and he's all like "Awww man sorry bro the last one we have is the floor model, but lookie here we have the game box!"
So he goes and boxes it up, and went and rang it up as full price. And I said, "Hey, wait a minute pal, you're charging me full price for a game that was already opened?" And he's all like "Yeah bro man, it's just as good as new! Fully guaranteed!"
And I was all NOPE.AVI
And that was the last time I ever went to Gamestop. I send my wife as a last ditch effort if I can't find a game at Target or somewhere like that. Let her deal with their constantly trying to get you to pay for extra crap.

kondabasu

#138

kondabasu said:

@SCAR392 I just read up on the "Vintage" thing. Paul Raines said a while ago (1) that one of the inspirations behind the idea is the amount of merchandise they're unable to clear simply by lowering prices. That's a point in your favor, and would explain the consistent (but not universal) reports of like-new packaging.

When Xeno was first launching, Nintendo actually had to print a second run to meet backorder requests (2). It doesn't seem unlikely that the second run was overkill with the dross being warehoused ever since. Again, a point in your favor.

That's an interesting nuance about ordering online too, and counts as another point in your favor since it means less logistical overhead to maintain their "online" stock.

Alright, then. You've won me over. :) I now think you and @theblackdragon are right.

Sources:

1. http://www.joystiq.com/2012/09/07/gamestop-ceo-details-progress-of-vintage-game-sale-initiative/
2. http://www.gonintendo.com/?mode=viewstory&id=174270

Blue_Yoshi

#139

Blue_Yoshi said:

I think it's time to go all digital. forever. That way we'll never have this problem. By now after all these years a digital license for Metroid Prime Trilogy would cost about $20 maybe even $30 at the most!

ueI

#142

ueI said:

Ditto all the "since when is vintage only a year old?" comments.

@Blue_Yoshi Or more likely they would remove such a game from the eshop like they did with Zelda Four Swords Anniversary and Donkey Kong Country.

Subie98

#143

Subie98 said:

@Blue_Yoshi im glad most people dont agree with you. Consoles need physical media. Not everyone wants to pay for something they cant hold. I rarely buy digital anything. The only thing ive ever paid for digitally is earthbound. Xb1 is a fine example the vast majority rejects digital. As do I. I want my consumer rights.

ToxieDogg

#144

ToxieDogg said:

@LzQuacker How is it not?

Unless Gamestop are genuinely selling preowned copies that they've sourced from previous owners (in which case I'd agree with you), then they're selling new copies as 'used' and selling them at a price comparable to a used game market where there's not many copies to go around when they themselves have plenty of copies to go around apparently.

I'm pretty sure that the law would take a dim view of it. If a large national retailer is allowed to sell previously unused copies as 'used' in order to hike the price and people just accept it, then what's to stop them getting distribution exclusivity on any other game and artificially inflating the price by holding back the stock after the initial shipments have sold, waiting until demand goes up on Ebay/Amazon and then just selling the rest of the copies as 'used' with premium prices then?

Unca_LzStaff

#145

Unca_Lz said:

@ToxieDogg You have yet to prove that they are "new" copies. The law won't do anything without evidence. Also, price fixing is the process of bringing that price up. Since they had nothing to do with the other prices, it's not price fixing.

JaxonH

#147

JaxonH said:

@Kyloctopus
Just one month ago,
Metroid Prime Trilogy's price was conveniently raised from $59 used to $85 used.
Xenoblade's price was conveniently raised from $59 used to $90 used.
And Fire Emblem Radiant Dawn's price was raised from $45 used to $65 used.

Just 4 months ago, I bought all three of these games through Gamestop by tracking down out of state locations that happened to have complete near mint copies, and had the 3 separate Gamestops each ship one of the above games to my local one. I was using a Buy2Get1Free coupon along with PowerUp Rewards 10% off. Ended up paying about $108 + tax for all three.

I respected Gamestop for offering these games at a fair price. Might've had to spend some time with their website's search engine to locate stores around the country with copies, but it could be done. And they would always ship them to your local store if requested. But I've lost all respect for Gamestop. They corner the market, monopolize the supply, then mark up the already-above-MSRP prices for used copies by 50%. I am a staunch supporter of capitalism, but this is not one of it's finer moments.

JaxonH

#151

JaxonH said:

@One-Winged-Pit
Absolutely. Use GameStop's website to search the game you want. Click "check availability" or "pick up at store" and it will search a 100 mile radius. You can then search 100 miles of any zip code or city. Call the ones you find listed, and ask the condition and if the game has case and manual. Once you find the copy you want, ask to put the game on hold (or do it from the website list results). Call your local store, give them the phone # to the store with the copy, and ask them to call and request the game to be shipped to them so you can buy it.

Subie98

#152

Subie98 said:

@JaxonH they wont always ship to another store. Ive asked before a few times. The stores trade inventory so if the other store doesnt havent anything they want they dont do it. Its stupid

JaxonH

#153

JaxonH said:

@Subie98
Huh, they've never said no to me, and I've been doing it for years. At least 15 games I had shipped, over 5 of them from out of state. I'd try having a different GS call to request games to be shipped. Maybe the one you go to just had employees that don't care about helping the consumer.

One-Winged-Pit

#154

One-Winged-Pit said:

@JaxonH Well I knew about the website already but I had no idea they would ship it. Thanks! Although this would have been soooooo helpful months ago when Gamestop stores still carried Gamecube games. T_T

Subie98

#155

Subie98 said:

@JaxonH she asked her manager and said they couldnt. Apparently a 1 hr drive isnt far enough for them to bother shipping

Subie98

#156

Subie98 said:

@Buzkeel google it just like the rest of us would have to. Yo handz aint broke if you can post asking someone else to do it

JaxonH

#157

JaxonH said:

Bogus. I.guess they don't like making money. Still, I'd try a different employee or a different GameStop (if you have another one close by). I try to be friendly and get to know the employees a little bit with conversation, so they might be a little more apt to go out of their way. If you can manage to find a GS employee who doesn't mind calling to request games to be shipped, it's a handy tool to have at your disposal. Can't believe your GS is turning down your money like that. Morons...

One-Winged-Pit

#158

One-Winged-Pit said:

I would just tell them to mail it. It would be way cheaper outside of a 10 mile radius to just mail a game (especially with no case) than the gas would cost.

Bensei

#159

Bensei said:

@ShadJV What if they held back several copies on purpose, knowing they can ask for even more money once the first batch is sold?

Bensei

#160

Bensei said:

@Buzkeel: As they are older than a year, you will get around 2 bucks at Gamestop (which is unfair, imho, as they sell those game for 10 bucks and up)

Try to sell them elsewhere. You should get way more for the Marios. Though I guess you won't get much for games like Iron man 2

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