Feb 08 2015

GameStop Pricing is Hilarious Sometimes

Occasionally in my quest for software for my Wii, I will hit GameStop to see what might be lying around cheap. The Wii is a system at the end of its life, and while it was a popular game console, it seems that only a small selection of titles ever show available in the second hand market locally, in comparison to other game consoles like the Playstation 3 and the Xbox 360.  This means that to at least have a chance at finding a good deal locally I have to venture into the one game store I despise to scour through a tiny back corner in the hopes of an interesting title for a good price.

This has proven to be worthwhile in some situations, as I have been able to snag several Dance Dance Revolution titles for under $5 each, and some other good games for $10 a piece. Other times, I have either found nothing good, or found the same old games which I constantly have to turn down due to their consistent prices. Keep in mind, these are used titles which have been traded in by their original owner. These are games that are sometimes in rough shape, and in many cases do not have their original manuals or storage case, which in any other situation would decrease their value. Instead, you can find these used game disks for sale for sometimes only $2 or $3 less than their new price in another retailer. Super Smash Bros. Brawl, as an example, is still $29.99 new at most retailers, even though it is a game from 2008. Its price at GameStop is $27.99 used, and some slightly lower price with their special membership. Is this really a savings? Is it really worth it for the hassle when you go to check out on being pressured into various memberships, subscriptions, and recently, a credit card offer? No, hardly! That’s not even my gripe here, that’s for another article.

The pricing is the subject of this article, and not even the hilarious used price for a game like Smash Bros. Brawl. No, in this case, I’m going to show a few prices I snapped pictures of in-store, while telling you what these games are priced at in normal retail stores.

Mario and Sonic at the Winter Games – Vancouver 2010

sonicI took this as the last of my 4 pictures, thinking this was the 2014 release, which is priced at $20 in stores. Nope! As I was writing this article I noticed this was the 2010 Olympics release. A 5 year old game, with a niche market, being sold used for $20? Really? I don’t see this in stores at all anymore, and haven’t for many years. This just an hilarious price, and I would hope no one would pay this much for this game when it’s barely worth a few dollars in my opinion. This game though, as I said, isn’t in stores much anymore, so I will let it pass, and move on to the next offender in my list.

New Super Mario Bros. Wii

mario wii

Okay, here we have a quality game overall, or so I would imagine, However, this game is available for sale new in for $29.99. Yep. 30 Dollars for a NEW copy of this game. Not $35 for a USED copy. What in the world is this? The whole idea of the used market is to pass the savings on to the consumer. A person can walk into any other retailer and buy the game for cheaper and not get hassled like happens inside of a GameStop. This is silly, and not in the good way. This isn’t the worst offender though, oh no, not by a long shot.


Mario Kart Wii

mario kart$40 dollars for Mario Kart Wii? One of the best selling Wii titles? Okay, sure, it’s still a $29.99 game in stores, and it has high enough demand still, but not to justify this price. That still wouldn’t justify the price of it used it it equaled store prices for a new copy. That’s just insane. Maybe if this was a used copy in 2008, just after its release this would make sense. Not now, in 2015. The game should be under half this price. As stated before, it just doesn’t make sense for a used game to cost more than a new copy in a store.

Bonus points to this one costing $40 and coming looking like it has been drug through dog shit. I did a larger crop on this photo just to show the filth living on this box. The best is yet to come, though. To end this little rant of an article, I present the most absurd price I saw in my trip to the wonderful world of GameStop…

Wii Sports

wii sportsI think I died a little on the inside when I saw this price. Let me explain:

Wii Sports was the pack-in game with the Wii for the first 5 years of its life, give or take, here in the US. This means that it is a game that most Wii owners would already have. I would say at least half of all Wii owners did indeed get this game with their systems, thus making demand for it probably rather rare, especially considering it was sold on its own.

That alone though doesn’t make this hilarious but horrible. No, one other fact makes it amazing to see this price on this particular 9 year old game.

See, the fact is, Wii Sports is, based on sales, the most common video game in existence. It has sold more copies, being bundled with the Wii, than any other video game in history. This means copies of it should be easy to find, and indeed, they are. This means even if demand is high, the game is out there – you can get a copy for cheap. There is absolutely no reason to ask $20 for this game. It wasn’t even worth $20 when it was new, depending in who you ask, as all it amounts to is about 5 minigames that make horrible use of the already terrible motion controls on the Wii. It’s an over glorified tech demo and nothing more. The game has minimal demand, save for people like me who did not have a pack in game with their Wii. That’s really it.

There is simply no reason for this to be priced as it is, and yet, I saw it today, with my own eyes, the most hilariously absurd price on any video game ever. The most pathetic, common game in existence and it costs $20. Super Mario Bros. 3 cost me less than that the other week, and that game is considered to be one of the best games ever. Its price is only that low due to it being the most sold NES game of all time – if it was more rare, you can believe its price would be higher. Heck, $20 is what I paid for one game I own that only 17 copies in the ENTIRE WORLD exist of. You can’t tell me something isn’t wrong with the pricing of Wii Sports in this situation.

I don’t even have anything to close with beyond this one statement: I pity the ill informed parents who go to GameStop thinking they are getting a deal on games for their children. I can say that while I know personally many good people who happen to work for that company, that something very wrong is working deep down within that company, and I for one never wish to be a part of it more than I need to in my quest for gaming entertainment.

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