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Would Gamestop be in a better state if they respected customers?

cnorwood

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,444
Lol we're digital girls in a digital world now. Every physical game I have is annoying and changing discs is annoying or impossible if I am remote. Digital is the future
 

Madds

Member
Feb 2, 2018
76
Overall, my experience has been positive. But I have definitely gotten my share of "new" games that were opened, and in some cases there was damage to the box/case because it was the "display" copy. Thats pretty annoying. And its an easy fix too. Get a blank case, print out a cover, problem solved. Nope. Lets open our one copy of this niche game to display it, and when we do sell it, we'll just tape the case closed. Oh, and the "new" game has stickers all over the case with the price. Absolutely ridiculous.
 

Tbm24

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,063
Eh, I've never felt anything weird in all my years going to gamestop. I have one near my home which is super convenient. Otherwise I need to go to target or Best Buy which don't carry nearly the same selection. I also tend to buy used switch games and often I get good deals.
 

Jessie

Member
Oct 27, 2017
7,939
It wouldn’t have saved them. But it would have prolonged their downfall if they didn’t treat their loyal customers like piñatas.
 

Syysch

Member
Oct 30, 2017
252
I had mostly decent experiences with them but their policies drove me away. It had been years since i bought anything from them, but I was looking for some older games a couple months ago and they had decent prices so I ordered from them. I got an email that the order had to be verified and then about 10 mins later got a confirmation email that it was good to go, then 90 mins later another email canceling the order with no explanation. Maybe they should do that kind of shit less? Didn't even bother fighting with them, I just turned around and paid a little more on Amazon.
 

Imperfected

Member
Nov 9, 2017
6,571
It might have let them transition into more of a (tabletop) Local Game Shop vibe (read: financially non-viable for the most part), but in terms of maintaining this massive retail entity, no. There's an inevitability to what's happening here brought about by a change in technology. It's like when the advent of home refrigeration killed the corner ice store.
 

Aaronrules380

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
8,892
I mean they might be in a bit better position, but lets be real, Gamestop isn't the only retail store dying in the face of amazon, and the rise of digital games only exacerbates that issue as well
 

Ensoul

Member
Oct 27, 2017
459
I didn't have great customer experience in the 90s and the last few times I went in there (once to buy a ps4 pro and another time to buy a controller) they were perfectly fine.

Regardless of how they treated their customers they would be in the same boat though. People are buying digital and physical media is going away. It is what happened to blockbuster and it is what is going to happen to gamestop.
 
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Gravy Boat

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,835
Remember that these people live and die in corporate's eyes depending on how many pre-orders and insurance things they sell. They're usually cool people that are fine with you just saying no thanks. No need to get annoyed.
It’s very annoying when what should be a simple 1 minute transaction gets dragged out to 15 minutes because of stuff like that. I get it’s not the fault of the staff but it’s still a very annoying experience and one that means I actually buy a game in Game once every few years at most. If I knew I could just walk in and buy what I wanted and leave I’d shop there more often. It’s a terrible shopping experience.
 

MattEnth

Member
Oct 25, 2017
171
San Francisco, CA
Disclosure: I've made a ton of money shorting GameStop (GME) and am still short

Ultimately, the big problem with GameStop is "what's the value of a dedicated gaming store?" Is GameStop such a better experience than buying video games at Walmart, Target, or Best Buy? What value does GameStop really bring to the table?

The answer used to be "used games." The used game economy was just incredible for GameStop. Where a new $60 game brought in a $12 contribution (the retailer's cut), used games could bring in $30-$40 contributions. At one point during my time shorting GameStop, I became convinced they were selling "new" games as "used" to try to get people back in the habit of buying used games.

But the used game value prop has been shot by both the transition to digital and the aggressive sales and marketing from publishers. I forget which game, but some AAA game last year was already 33% off within its launch month. Sales like that cut deeply into GameStop.

I am sure we'll have physical game discs for a long, long, long time. We still have physical CDs and DVDs in Target/Walmart. I'm sure games will be there for a long while.





tl;dr - Stores like Walmart, Best Buy, Amazon and Target have been just as good as GameStop ever since the decline in the used games market.
 
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feonando

Member
Mar 26, 2019
584
Gamestop overall is no different than most retailers. It obviously gets more attention in here since is gaming related, but their ways to upsell, "bother people" with credit cards and subscriptions, and so on.

But is like someone mentioned long ago: Gamestop gets more mentions around simply because many gamers are not social. So anything that involves going out of that comfort zone, forcing them as customers having to talk, demand or just say no makes them uncomfortable.

The many examples in here and other forums of people buying something from Gamestop, not liking it (not wrapped, damaged, wrong item, etc) and instead of complaining in the store, returning home, complain about it online, ask for suggestions all while talking about how they had their worse customer experience.

There are many things that suck at Gamestop, but in general is no different than others. Many of the things are out of their hands even. People complain about the famous "gutted copies" , but publishers rarely if never send any display copies. So same way other retailers have to open refrigerators, headsets, speakers to "show them" they have to fo the same. And they won't spend millions in printing/making display copies, neither more millions to redesign their entire stores so that every game is behind a display case.
 

Omegasquash

Member
Oct 31, 2017
3,052
I stopped going regularly over a decade ago. I had two experiences where my pre-order bonuses were 1) not given to me, and I was told that they just didn't get them, too bad for me and 2) where a box had been opened and the CD soundtrack wasn't there (box looked like it hadn't been opened. Another time, at a different store, I asked for a game, and the rep walked over to the shelf, grabbed the box, then grabbed the disc from a drawer behind the register and told me it was new, despite doing what they just did.

I feel for the employees, but they simply weren't honest.

This is factually inaccurate. GameStop does not sell used games as new.
Yeah it's never happened, despite people sharing that it's actually happened. Frame it however you want, if a representative of the store sells an open product as new, then that's what happened, full stop. I didn't have to skim two pages into the thread to see one account, and it's been pushed on me, too.
 

thebishop

Member
Nov 10, 2017
1,627
This is factually inaccurate. GameStop does not sell used games as new.
If you buy the last "new" copy of a game, it will be the open display box. The discs are kept in sleeves in a drawer. That's already stretching consumer expectations for "new". Beyond that, the buyer has no way of knowing that Gamestop staff don't take those discs home with them.
 

Venatio

Member
Oct 25, 2017
786
Gamestop overall is no different than most retailers. It obviously gets more attention in here since is gaming related, but their ways to upsell, "bother people" with credit cards and subscriptions, and so on.

But is like someone mentioned long ago: Gamestop gets more mentions around simply because many gamers are not social. So anything that involves going out of that comfort zone, forcing them as customers having to talk, demand or just say no makes them uncomfortable.

The many examples in here and other forums of people buying something from Gamestop, not liking it (not wrapped, damaged, wrong item, etc) and instead of complaining in the store, returning home, complain about it online, ask for suggestions all while talking about how they had their worse customer experience.

There are many things that suck at Gamestop, but in general is no different than others. Many of the things are out of their hands even. People complain about the famous "gutted copies" , but publishers rarely if never send any display copies. So same way other retailers have to open refrigerators, headsets, speakers to "show them" they have to fo the same. And they won't spend millions in printing/making display copies, neither more millions to redesign their entire stores so that every game is behind a display case.
What an incredible post. You typed all of that nonsense out and you still felt like it was a good idea to hit the post button?

1) Customers are not the problem. And even if they were (and they're not), the onus is on GS to serve their customers.

2) GameStop is not like every other retailer...they became huge because of used games sales. Now that that's going away, so are they. They're essentially a glorified pawn shop.

The rest....I just don't know what to say. You're actually defending their practice of gutting boxes and selling them as new? Why? Why should I buy that when no other retailer would pull that shit? What makes GS so special?
 

Schopenhauer

Member
Oct 27, 2017
168
I stopped shopping at Gamestop about 10 years ago. Had pre-ordered a game as a gift for a friend. I go to pick it up and find that they had already gutted it and somehow damaged the case in the process. When I asked for an unopened game, explaining it was a gift, he got all defensive and argumentative for whatever reason.

Finally got the game unopened from another store, but that was the end of my dealings with GS.
 

The Mollusk

Member
May 13, 2019
30
tl;dr - Stores like Walmart, Best Buy, Amazon and Target have been just as good as GameStop ever since the decline in the used games market.
Not for me. They have always been a great option for me in terms of having a local option for older, previous-gen games that are no longer available at the other retail stores
(or were never there to begin with). It was extremely convenient to be able to go through individual store inventory online, and place an order that would be pulled and set aside for me to pickup. Sure I'll still have access to older titles through eBay and Amazon, but neither one of those will I be able to pickup same day, and I'll not be able to evaluate the condition of the disc(s) themselves, nor be able to determine whether it "complete" with case and manual if the seller does not include this themselves, and in the event the disc isn't completely functional I'll have to mail it back instead of just dropping it off for a swap.

I recognize my use of their store probably doesn't mirror the majority of gamebuyers, and for many the inconvenience of not being able to evaluate goods before payment isn't significant enough to make them hesitant about buying from internet stores. Regardless, I'll miss my periodic raids of my local stores when the inevitable does come to pass.
 

brinstar

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,442
Best Buy's GCU pulled me away from Gamestop and nowadays I download most games.

My local GS has definitely become an unpleasant place to shop at. There's only ever one person working there now at a time, so on top of the spiel you have to listen to at the register you often have to wait in a longass line. During the 360/PS3/Wii days that store used to be kind of like community hotspot for nerds and they'd have parties and stuff for midnight launches that was really fun. I remember they threw a MvC3 tournament when it came out and I made a lot of friends through it. I don't know if they still do that stuff at other stores but it feels like those days are long gone here.
 

KingDrool

Member
Oct 27, 2017
384
I can only speak from my experience and say that I don't shop at GameStop because I don't like the feel of the store, and I hate the constant upselling. Just let me buy my game and GTFO. I've shopped there once in the past five years, and it was only because the game I wanted was a GS exclusive.
 

blame space

Resettlement Advisor
Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,488
i personally don't see any reason to have more than one person working at a store at a time. think of all the money you'll save on payroll!
 

AstronaughtE

Member
Nov 26, 2017
1,548
For me, it certainly would. I remember how excited I was when they moved into my small town. That lasted less than a year.

I was lied to repeatedly. Sold gutted copies, sold used games as new, attempted to upsell, condescended to, and tricked into unnecessarily driving to the store. I've heard salespeople lie to moms and shush and shame children trying who were trying to set their parents straight.

I would say that I've never walked out of a Game Stop happy. But that's not 100% true. I can remember 2 visits, at a different, much further away store, that went extremely well. Every single other time I left feeling cheated and angry.
 

Aaronrules380

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
8,892
Not for me. They have always been a great option for me in terms of having a local option for older, previous-gen games that are no longer available at the other retail stores
(or were never there to begin with). It was extremely convenient to be able to go through individual store inventory online, and place an order that would be pulled and set aside for me to pickup. Sure I'll still have access to older titles through eBay and Amazon, but neither one of those will I be able to pickup same day, and I'll not be able to evaluate the condition of the disc(s) themselves, nor be able to determine whether it "complete" with case and manual if the seller does not include this themselves, and in the event the disc isn't completely functional I'll have to mail it back instead of just dropping it off for a swap.

I recognize my use of their store probably doesn't mirror the majority of gamebuyers, and for many the inconvenience of not being able to evaluate goods before payment isn't significant enough to make them hesitant about buying from internet stores. Regardless, I'll miss my periodic raids of my local stores when the inevitable does come to pass.
Yeah, I used to prefer them because they were more likely to stock niche jrpgs and other niche games I enjoyed. That said this has become pretty much irrelevant in the age of online and digital
 
Dec 16, 2018
61
Having worked there, GameStop stumbling is death by 1000 cuts, but the inability to adapt to anything is probably the biggest downfall. They made no attempts to really future proof their business and the people who work there pay for it. In the 4 years I worked there, employee benefits were cut back, hours cut back, managers lost perks, etc. I worked in TN where new employees got minimum wage, key holders got 9/hr, ASMs got 11/hr and who fuckin knows about management. I’m not going to defend the business or the practices by any means, but the employees are just trying to get by and not go down to single digit hours. Stores are def understaffed and workers passions exploited.

GameStop isn’t gonna change. The proposed changes to the power up card, lack of competitive features like price match and a lot of other nonsense are gonna sink them. They think that because they are a “game specialty store” that sets them apart which is the same rhetoric they threaten employees with. I get not going back, but don’t take it out on employees.
 

jwhit28

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,365
Walmart has one way gates at doors now, the beauty supplies have a security guard and their own sectioned off register, and every shopper has to have their cart and receipt looked over 30 seconds after paying another employee. Respect has nothing to do with it.
 

Tbm24

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,063
Disclosure: I've made a ton of money shorting GameStop (GME) and am still short

Ultimately, the big problem with GameStop is "what's the value of a dedicated gaming store?" Is GameStop such a better experience than buying video games at Walmart, Target, or Best Buy? What value does GameStop really bring to the table?

The answer used to be "used games." The used game economy was just incredible for GameStop. Where a new $60 game brought in a $12 contribution (the retailer's cut), used games could bring in $30-$40 contributions. At one point during my time shorting GameStop, I became convinced they were selling "new" games as "used" to try to get people back in the habit of buying used games.

But the used game value prop has been shot by both the transition to digital and the aggressive sales and marketing from publishers. I forget which game, but some AAA game last year was already 33% off within its launch month. Sales like that cut deeply into GameStop.

I am sure we'll have physical game discs for a long, long, long time. We still have physical CDs and DVDs in Target/Walmart. I'm sure games will be there for a long while.





tl;dr - Stores like Walmart, Best Buy, Amazon and Target have been just as good as GameStop ever since the decline in the used games market.
The target game section is almost always an awful experience. I've yet to go to a Target that actually cared about it. Best Buy has gotten considerably better Mostly by shafting their movie sections around in favor of games and game related goods.
 

RedOnePunch

Member
Oct 26, 2017
843
I recently bought a used Dreamcast game from their site. The photo made it seem like it came in a jewel case. I received the package with just the disc in a sleeve and the disc was smashed during shipment. So that’s the first and last time I buy a used game from their site.
 

genjiZERO

Member
Jan 27, 2019
684
Richmond
Stopped shopping there years ago (at least 15 at this point) when it was clear they were selling me used games as new. It's a shame they bought out and destroyed both Babbages and Electronics Boutique which were awesome stores. I'm glad to see them go.
 

Mix

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
95
New Braunfels, Texas
I stopped going regularly over a decade ago. I had two experiences where my pre-order bonuses were 1) not given to me, and I was told that they just didn't get them, too bad for me and 2) where a box had been opened and the CD soundtrack wasn't there (box looked like it hadn't been opened. Another time, at a different store, I asked for a game, and the rep walked over to the shelf, grabbed the box, then grabbed the disc from a drawer behind the register and told me it was new, despite doing what they just did.

I feel for the employees, but they simply weren't honest.



Yeah it's never happened, despite people sharing that it's actually happened. Frame it however you want, if a representative of the store sells an open product as new, then that's what happened, full stop. I didn't have to skim two pages into the thread to see one account, and it's been pushed on me, too.
I'm sorry, I should have been more clear. Yes, at GameStop they use a copy of a new game as a display case, which I completely agree is wrong. They also print sleeves for cases all the time and should use those as display cases, not gutted copies. It's something I tried to do when I was a manager there, but alas, I didn't get the approval.

If you buy the last "new" copy of a game, it will be the open display box. The discs are kept in sleeves in a drawer. That's already stretching consumer expectations for "new". Beyond that, the buyer has no way of knowing that Gamestop staff don't take those discs home with them.
I am extremely familiar with this system, I was a manager at a GameStop in central Texas from 2014-2016. I get it, it's lame to push that as a brand new product, which no one ever does. They'll tell you it's new, but at least all of my coworkers, colleagues, and employees always told the "guest" (ugh) the condition the product was in. And guess what? If someone complained, GameStop will discount the product 10%. I know it's not a lot, but if you choose not to buy it at that point, then that's totally your choice as a consumer. I personally wouldn't and still won't buy the gutted copies, so I get it.

Others have already responded, but I'll just reiterate that that's a load of horseshit.
Thanks, but the point I was making was that GameStop will never purchase a game from a customer for trade in and then sell it as new. If this has happened to you, report it. Their NPS rating are literally what keeps a store and it's employees alive.
 

blame space

Resettlement Advisor
Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,488
to not gut A copy of their last game would result in even more inventory shenanigans than already exist. it's not feasible to have a dummy box for every game you have in stock.
 

Mix

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
95
New Braunfels, Texas
to not gut A copy of their last game would result in even more inventory shenanigans than already exist. it's not feasible to have a dummy box for every game you have in stock.
Exactly. It's already a nightmare situation when someone finds a copy of a game they want when it's fallen out of your inventory somewhere. It would only be worse if it happened with new games too.
 

blame space

Resettlement Advisor
Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,488
he's calling you out because employees can and do check out new games. whether a game is played by a trade customer or an employee doesn't matter in regards to it being used.
 

Mix

The Fallen
Nov 17, 2017
95
New Braunfels, Texas
he's calling you out because employees can and do check out new games. whether a game is played by a trade customer or an employee doesn't matter in regards to it being used.
Some stores, some games. My store did not allow checkouts, and our District manager was against it, too. I understand this is not the case for everyone, but the idea that every new game that gets released is taken home by an employee is the same as thinking that every single game that gets packaged gets played by someone in manufacturing.

I understand it's not literally the same thing, but come on.
 

blame space

Resettlement Advisor
Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,488
it's GameStop policy that new games can be (and are) checked out by employees. if the distinction exists for trade customers, it also exists for the company accepting the trades.
 

Poutine

Avenger
Oct 27, 2017
492
Never had a problem with Gamestop at retail, I think the issue here is more than the retail landscape is shifting and Gamestop was not prepared for it.
 
Oct 25, 2017
6,717
If you buy the last "new" copy of a game, it will be the open display box. The discs are kept in sleeves in a drawer. That's already stretching consumer expectations for "new". Beyond that, the buyer has no way of knowing that Gamestop staff don't take those discs home with them.
My friend that used to work there told me they used to do it all the time.
 

Waffle

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,635
I’ve been to GameStops where they treat you well and some that are so uncomfortably pushy with trying to selling you stuff by lying about products even after saying I’m not interested. Also one of the employees pretty much laughing at me for not wanting to pay the price of a new game when they already opened it was a weird experience. They didn’t have much to say when I asked if they’d give me a full refund if I bought a new game and opened it outside and brought it back in. Experiences like this doesn’t seem unusual from what I read online so I guess they might have been doing better by having more loyal customers if they treated people better.
 

blame space

Resettlement Advisor
Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,488
the customer is assumed. it's about what you can do with the customer. it's like clay, it's art. selling culture. circle of life.
 

Hero_of_the_Day

Avenger
Oct 27, 2017
4,006
Last time I was there a few weeks ago buying the new Switch, the guy working insisted I had to use Nintendo branded SD cards with the switch. I rarely go to GameStop, but I swear every time I do I hear some bullshit.
 

Liquid Snake

Member
Nov 10, 2017
996
Gamestops major issue seems to be that they hire order takers but want salespeople. Pay more than minimum wage and then you might be competitive with people who can make qualified sales.
This is a key point and one of the primary reasons Gamestop is widely considered to be one of the worst companies to work for — They require you to put forth a commission-based sales performance for minimum wage with zero commission. Lol. Upsells, pre-orders, warranties, etc etc etc etc etc.

Not only do they expect you to do it, it’s tracked and typically your future as an employee is based on these things.

In other jobs where sales are tracked and employees are personally responsible for them, generally speaking there’s significant financial motivation to do so. So Gamestop is in a lose/lose position. Employees are miserable and underpaid, mature customers are annoyed and feel pestered when they go into the store.

Now that consumers have more options (digital, Amazon, Walmart, etc) they’re less willing to put up with all the bullshit.
 

Calamari41

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,927
their parent company -- Barnes & Noble --
Oh wow, I didn't know GS was owned by B&N. It looks like they spun it off in the 2000s, but it's still funny because I get the same treatment from B&N when I'm just trying to buy a kids book for my son. They offer you all the different memberships and cards, then they offer you the special kids book of the month, then they start offering you toys right in front of your kid (which is absolutely ridiculous and unethical, as they're basically trying to trigger a tantrum from the kid in order to force the parents to give in and buy the toy.) All of that coupled with the fact that (at my two stores at least) they make it so that you have to walk through a toy section before you get to the kids book section has made me avoid going there as much as possible. I'm lucky that my son doesn't go crazy in the face of all of the toys being thrown in his face there and just wants to go look at the books, but a lot of other parents aren't so lucky.
 

Surakian

Avenger
Oct 27, 2017
860
Whenever a customer was uncomfortable buying a gutted copy of a game, I always offered 10% off the listed price. I hate the idea of gutting games. GS should just have display cases of all of the game available for purchase or like implement a browsable mini tablet in a new game section so it saves space and gives customers a direct view of what we have in store.

But what do I know.

Anyways, GS is dying because of their policies, and those policies make it impossible for employees to have more genuine interactions with customers and also keeps GS from innovating in a way that would keep them from being beat out by digital sales and online retailers.
 

Aomame

Member
Oct 27, 2017
243
Why is complaining about a gutted copy wrong?If I can’t open something in the store and then right there return it as unused you shouldn’t be able to sell it opened.

Especially knowing for a fact sometimes those copies do get used by employees.
It's infuriating that people trot out this complaint every time GameStop comes up. It's company policy to offer a shopworn discount to guests who are not happy about being sold the gut, and even if that's still not acceptable for you, nobody is holding a gun to your head and forcing you to shop at GameStop. There are plenty of others options.

It's frustrating because there are much more meaningful conversations to have about GameStop -- the ways they have failed consumers writ large (99% of who don't care about a game being in plastic), the abysmal treatment of their employees, the way they ate up independent mom and pop game business, and the tone deafness of corporate in the last 10-20 years.

And yet every GameStop thread turns into people complaining about gutted games and rejoicing at the prospect of the company going under and thousands of people losing their jobs.
 

AstronaughtE

Member
Nov 26, 2017
1,548
Some stores, some games. My store did not allow checkouts, and our District manager was against it, too. I understand this is not the case for everyone, but the idea that every new game that gets released is taken home by an employee is the same as thinking that every single game that gets packaged gets played by someone in manufacturing.

I understand it's not literally the same thing, but come on.
I wanted to buy Bayonetta, it was 1 or 2 years old at the time. I was asked if I want a used copy for $10 less. I said no. The copy they gave me came out of a sleeve and had several noticable light scratches on it. "I said I wanted new." "That is new. Take it or leave it."

Last game I bought in their store.
 

sredgrin

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,426
People celebrate because gamers are petty as fuck that the gamer girl at the counter told them that Halo was coming out on PS4.

Gamestop is dying because retail for specific products is dying, and with video games especially, they are moving more and more toward digital incentives. You pretty much have to at the very least be aiming for a large chunk of stuff like Best Buy (and even they are struggling). The best customer service in the world doesn't matter when Amazon can get you the same thing in the same day and cheaper, and the game you used to trade in now has 2 years of DLC planned.