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GameStop Refusing to Sell Console Bundles that Include Digital Download Vouchers

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  • GameStop Refusing to Sell Console Bundles that Include Digital Download Vouchers

    GameStop is pulling a GameStop and are going to stop carrying console bundles that include downloadable vouchers for games. This was revealed during a recent earnings call (PDF).

    Executives at GameStop revealed their plans to move away from digital bundles and instead are opting to focus on carrying "physical" bundles instead. This plan actually kicked off last month with Madden NFL 16. "But Zips, they still totally sold the Madden NFL bundles in their store!" Yes they did, John, but they were selling bundles with physical copies of the game included. How? Apparently GameStop "worked with Sony, Microsoft, and EA" to reach an agreement for GameStop to provide a physical copy of the game with every new console purchase.

    What does this mean for the holiday bundles both major platforms have planned? GameStop said that if Sony and Microsoft continue to offer up digital only versions of bundles, they will resort to "third-party" physical bundles. This seems to indicate that they will go directly to game publishers to include free physical copies of the games with new console purchases.

    Why are they doing this at all? Come on, GameStop thrives on buying and selling used games. GameStop is failing to adapt to a world that is increasingly becoming more reliant on digital goods and services, especially when it comes to modern-era gaming. It seems weird, however, that publishers would be interested to help with this since they don't really benefit at all when games are traded in and sold as used through GameStop.

    "Power to the players" indeed.