Wal-Mart, Best Buy End Used Game Trade-In Programs

Wal-Mart, Best Buy End Used Game Trade-In Programs

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The used game trade-in trials at Wal-Mart and Best Buy have been brought to a close as e-Play, the company which provided the trade-in kiosks used by both companies, suspended its operations today.

There's gold in them thar preowned videogame hills, for anyone who can figure out how to find it. GameStop certainly has; roughly half its profits come from the sale of used games. In mid-2009 it looked like Wal-Mart and Best Buy had decided that they were going to muscle in on the action; both retailers launched test programs in conjunction with a company called e-Play, which provided in-store kiosks that rented games and DVDs at a rate of $1 per day and also employed an automated system to purchase used videogames from customers at fixed rates.

e-Play was never entirely clear about how it intended to make money on the traded games, saying only that it had a "couple different methods" for reselling them. It doesn't appear that any of those methods were terribly effective, however, because e-Play suspended operations today with nothing more than a recorded message on its 800 number advising customers about how to return rentals. The performance of the kiosks was "underwhelming," according to Sterne Agee analyst Arvind Bhatia, and the two companies have decided not to pursue the used game business any further, bringing the Great Used Games Experiment to a rather undignified close.

When the program was first revealed, some observers suggested that Wal-Mart's foray into used games could pose a serious threat to GameStop's domination of the market segment. Analyst Michael Pachter got it right, however, when he predicted that it would have little impact. "I can't see this having tremendous appeal to hardcore gamers, unless the credits are substantially higher than those offered at GameStop," he said. "Even if this takes off, it's not going to make much of a dent in the used market... I don't see it being a big deal."

Source: IndustryGamers

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Ouch. Well, I've never seen an e-play machine before, and I live in the major American city of Philadelphia.

We have things called RedBox which only rent movies.

I have never heard of ePlay. Also, who uses the e prefix anymore? Seriously, they would've been more successful if they called it iPlay.

lol. The only Video Stores and rental Places we have here is either Block Buster or Rogers. Theres also little stores but those you gotta find. Also never heard of this lol.

Onyx Oblivion:
Ouch. Well, I've never seen an e-play machine before, and I live in the major American city of Philadelphia.

We have things called RedBox which only rent movies.

Same, I live in Chicago and I have not seen anything like this.

Personally i th-

#This is Wal-Mart Over-root A.I 3.2, Our stock investors have detected a high possiblity of profit in this site, and have created our own cheaper varient. Message will end, remember, we controle everything, Wal-Mart is watching you#

-tonking great baboon.

wait a moment: Am I the only person who had no idea Best Buy and Wal*Mart offered such a service!? Did it last a week or has it really been that long since my last visit to either of these stores!?

Man I wish I could have taken advantage of the game rental service. It would have done wonders for my achievement hunting. However, since reaching the score I wanted, I am retiring.

Shoggoth2588:
wait a moment: Am I the only person who had no idea Best Buy and Wal*Mart offered such a service!? Did it last a week or has it really been that long since my last visit to either of these stores!?

no I had no idea too.

I think the problem is right there. Us hardcore gamers (Im gonna use hardcore just to say that we are on a site for video games) have no idea that These places offered this service. We all apparently go to dedicated games retailers and never step foot into a Wall Mart for our games.

I go to walmart at least once a week and I've never seen one of these kiosks. Perhaps it would have made a profit if they were more widely distributed...

laryri:
I have never heard of ePlay. Also, who uses the e prefix anymore? Seriously, they would've been more successful if they called it iPlay.

Its more now and modern at least...

Ah well, sucks to be those 2 firms I suppose

If you're renting games, you aren't going to have many to trade in. How does this business make any sense?

Seems like Walmart and Best Buy didn't have much enthusiasm for this service. Frankly one would think both would have the infrastructure already to do it themselves. But they try outsourcing it and end up with some monkey company run out of someone's basement. Weird.
Then again Walmart has never had much enthusiasm about computers and videogames. They never hire anybody for that department that knows anything about either.

Mostly because no one in their right mind actually shops at Wal-Mart for games. Have you seen their prices?

Feh, I buy most games from Gamestop.
Looks like I'll have to continue buying my scratched and broken CDs from Gamestop...

Onyx Oblivion:
Ouch. Well, I've never seen an e-play machine before, and I live in the major American city of Philadelphia.

We have things called RedBox which only rent movies.

Same here. Never heard of e-play, but we have RedBox.

Las Vegas.

as others have said never heard of it and bing in a fairly good sized city and also the fact the i go to walmart about twice a week would mean i should have at least heard of this but sadly no so the real question is where did they pet all the e-play machines in Iowa

Onyx Oblivion:
Ouch. Well, I've never seen an e-play machine before, and I live in the major American city of Philadelphia.

We have things called RedBox which only rent movies.

We have similar things to the RedBox here in the UK, though some rent games as well as DVDs. There's even one in my student union. Never used one though...

oppp7:
Feh, I buy most games from Gamestop.
Looks like I'll have to continue buying my scratched and broken CDs from Gamestop...

do the stores around you not have a return policy or something? the ones around here give you 7 days on a used game to decide if you like it then you can return it for any reason

Big surprise. I kept checking the Best Buy website for used deals but they never materialized.
Gamestop is a pawnshop. As Zero Originality pointed out they just stick the incoming games in a sleeve and then try to sell people the used disc at check-out. If e-play isn't going to have that kind of turn around then there is no way they could ever compete. The Amazon trade-in program is still going though and I've found some great deals there.

Must have been in select locations, because none of that happened in any of the Walmarts or Best Buys I visited last year.

I live on long island and I have never saw or heard of this before either. I wonder if anyone has.

Glad they failed, I work for blockbuster in uk and we make quite a bit in the pre-owned market, Wal mart own Asdas (pretty much wal-mart uk for any americans) and they've pretty much done everything in their power to screw the retail games market undercutting us and other stores at every turn (even to the point of selling at a loss) so we need the rental/pre-owned side to keep in business, if this was implemented here I would be unemployed pretty quickly.

Well, what do I care? Both shops suck anyway.

Hardcore gamers aren't the ones trading in their games, so there you go. Never heard of this to begin with.

I think I know why it failed. They failed to actually start offering the service!

Worgen:

oppp7:
Feh, I buy most games from Gamestop.
Looks like I'll have to continue buying my scratched and broken CDs from Gamestop...

do the stores around you not have a return policy or something? the ones around here give you 7 days on a used game to decide if you like it then you can return it for any reason

They do. But it's still irritating to get a CD and then have to return it.

Well damn, I didn't even know they had started. Nice marketing guys!

Well, looks like I'm keeping my old games or off to gamestop

Or slick joe around the corner. He makes a good deal on games

I think the "rates" they have for them were probalby too dastardly low, just like gamestop's. None in their right mind trades in games anymore. it, for hte most part, isn't worth it.

i work for Blockbuster and they keep insisting that they can compete with Gamestop.
our store has every employee pushing pre-sales for bioshock 2, god of war 3, and final fantasy 13. we have to push these on every customer, not just the people who are renting games.
i keep telling my boss that it is a lost cause, that most gamers don't associate blockbuster with trade-ins and pre-orders, and probably never will. but apparently, this is from somewhere higher up the corporate ladder, you know, on the same level where monkeys throw feces at one another.

well Wal-mart and such arent allowed in australia due to fair trading legislation because the cheap sons-o-b*tches undercut EVERYTHING which in my opinion is a good thing....on that not the major retail operation we have here is EB Games and they offer you about $1 for a used game (obviously im exaggerating but I DONT LIKE YOU!)
so i would have a clue about this :) but good on wal-mart for stuffing up again :)

Edit: on that note, all blockbuster is here is a simple video/games rental service seems they are a little bigger over there yes?

Onyx Oblivion:
Ouch. Well, I've never seen an e-play machine before, and I live in the major American city of Philadelphia.

We have things called RedBox which only rent movies.

yeah, i'm in Boise, and neither Wal-Mart's nor the Best Buy's here ever had those. it's okay though, i don't like Wal-Mart, and never go to Best Buy, but i'm glad it went under, the local store here is actually really cool, and they can barely stay above water as it is.

NoriYuki Sato:

Onyx Oblivion:
Ouch. Well, I've never seen an e-play machine before, and I live in the major American city of Philadelphia.

We have things called RedBox which only rent movies.

yeah, i'm in Boise, and neither Wal-Mart's nor the Best Buy's here ever had those. it's okay though, i don't like Wal-Mart, and never go to Best Buy, but i'm glad it went under, the local store here is actually really cool, and they can barely stay above water as it is.

thats why i love laws that prevent them from entering the country ^_^

I used to work for E-Play actually. Their failure is their own fault. The machines are nice, really really nice, but their customer service sucks. I had 5 machines to work, and a lot of people were excited about the video game aspect being able to buy and sell games. But while they had the buy aspect down, I hardly got any games back to sell to customers. I was constantly being asked when they'd be able to buy games finally, and corperate would give me no answer.Furthermore, although it was rare for them to foul up, I had instances of machines that would take games and not print a reciept to be redeemed for cash or store credit, and I didn't have the access to repreint a reciept, nor would their customer service acknowledge that the machines could make a mistake.

These are just problems I had as a lowly merchandiser, but an ear to the wall told me of a lot more problems their corperate side had. Overall, I've seen lemonade stands with better business models. I was terminated from the job months ago when they brought everything in house because they couldn't afford a merchandising team. The fact that they're going under was not unforseen.

 

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