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GameStop considering online store for vintage games

By: Muhammad Qasim Hassan

  |   September 3rd, 2012   |  

Even as we continue to move towards what is commonly regarded as a better future, completely letting go of the past is proving to be harder than everyone thought.

Looking to capitalise on the nostalgia that generally persists in the community, American video game and entertainment software retailer GameStop has come up with a rather bold idea to add vintage games to its inventory.

During an interview with Polygon, GameStop CEO Paul Raines stated that his company is looking to tap into the market of vintage games as there seems to be enough demand for it. He did, however, acknowledge that the idea is not free of problems and will definitely bring up a number of challenges.

“We think there’s a vintage sales opportunity, so we’re accumulating some inventory,” he said. “It’s a big idea, and there’s a few problems with it. The first one is sourcing the product, the condition, the refurbishment, all that stuff. But there’s a customer for it.”

Raines conceded that he got a bit of encouragement after finding eBay offering Collector’s stuff on its site, a clear sign that there is indeed a market for items that may not be present in stores anymore, but still have plenty of demand for them.

Adding an entirely new store for classic video game cartridges and discs appears to be an unviable option and therefore GameStop considers its official website as an ideal place to put this latest idea in action. This will be both cost-effective for the company as well as convenient consumers. Raines also admitted that it would, to some extent, allow them to go head-to-head with the likes of Amazon.

“We can’t just be trying to go head-to-head with Amazon, beating each other to death on delivery dates. We do plenty of that,” he said. “But we’ve got to be a destination for gamers where, for cool stuff for gaming, you’ve got to go to GameStop.”

Selling classic game titles, ones that gamers born in the previous century would most likely want to get their hands on in order to re-live their past memories and experience, does seem like a very good business idea.

There is one thing, however, that makes this idea seem like a pretty bold one. Of course GameStop will be investing in a lot of money to get their hands on the vintage video games in order to build up an acceptable inventory. It is still not clear how they plan on getting people to pay for these games when roms for these games are already available on the internet and can be downloaded for free. It remains to be seen whether there are enough consumers willing to possess the physical object instead of simply looking to experience the game.