AfterDawn: Tech news

GameStop CEO calls for PS3, Wii price cuts

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 16 Apr 2009 17:08 User comments (29)

GameStop CEO calls for PS3, Wii price cuts GameStop CEO Dan DeMatteo has called for price cuts for the Sony PlayStation 3 (PS3) console and the Nintendo Wii console, and also dismissed Sony's PS2 price cut as basically too little, too late. The video games industry is weathering the recession particularly well compared to others in the tech business, but according to DeMatteo, price cuts will be essential to keep the momentum going.
The first point he made to CNBC was the price of the PS3 console, which is the most expensive console on the market at $399. "That price point is clearly an issue in this economy," he said. Sony has repeatedly denied plans to cut the price of the PS3, but is expected to make a price cut before E3. The debate going on is about how much needs to be cut.

"I don't know that $50 gets you that much," DeMatteo said. He poured cold water on the recent PS2 price cut announced by Sony. "To be honest, it really wasn't worth doing," he said. "If they'd done it earlier, publishers probably would have kept making games for the PS2, but once they've stopped, they've stopped."

He also went on to address the $250 price tag for the Wii console, which continues to have considerable demand in North America, even as sales and interest sink in Japan. "I think [demand for] the Wii could slow down to the extent that Nintendo may want to cut the price," he says. "Nintendo has it within its arsenal to do that. The component costs have come down considerably. They used to break even on the Wii, but now they're making a considerable margin."

Previous Next  

29 user comments

116.4.2009 17:17

If you want to make more on game sales then drop the price your self.....

216.4.2009 17:25

Originally posted by ZippyDSM:
If you want to make more on game sales then drop the price your self.....
Agreed.

316.4.2009 18:11

but in doing that would it not cut into their profits, gamestop is pretty competable with other chains already

416.4.2009 18:41

I wonder how much longer till gamestop goes out of business?

The only thing they seem to offer over the video game section at Walmart and Best Buy is the ability to buy old used games, as well as the ability to trade in your games for money or instore credit. But whatever, the prices are the same as other places, and other places are much more convenient. I mean there's more to look at and buy at BB, and Walmart has groceries. Basically I'd have to go out of my way to go into a Gamestop store.

I've never heard anything good about them online. It seems like everyone has something bad to say about the place, though it seems like most of these people have high expectations too. Anyways, if I was going to buy an older used game, I wouldn't even waste my time going to a store, I'd just buy it online from a place like amazon.

Now for my gamestop story. I remember when the PSP first came out, I decided I wanted one on launch day. Well, launch day at around 6pm I go out driving, and I decided to try going to a gamestop to see what the store was like. I go to the one in the mall, and ask if they have any. The lady working there tells me they're sold out and says I can pre-order one for their next shipment that comes in 2 weeks. Ok, thanks anyway. The PSP wasn't a very hyped release, so I decided to go to Toys-R-Us to get one. They had plenty.

Fast forward 3 weeks later. It turns out that Lumines was the best launch title and currently released game for the PSP. All I had was Dynasty Warriors which sucked balls. Anyways, I figure I'll give them another shot and head to a different GS store. Again, sorry we're sold out of Lumines. Best Buy, GS, and Toys-R-Us were all in the same shopping center. I go to BB, there's plenty of them.

So whatever, in the end what it all comes down to is:

A) Is what you want going to be in stock?
It seems like it usually isn't. I don't understand why though. I'd guess they at least get the same supply as Besy Buy would get, and BB is never out of stock like that.

B) Is the price going to be better than other places?
This isn't really GS fault since the prices are pretty much set by the publisher. But the way I figure all they sell is video games and I'm going out of my way to go there. To tell you the truth, if the games were consistently $5 cheaper than all the other places then I would do my video game shopping there exclusively. Though it seems like with any specialty shop with anything, they're usually more expensive.

516.4.2009 19:38

Quote:
The only thing they seem to offer over the video game section at Walmart and Best Buy is the ability to buy old used games, as well as the ability to trade in your games for money or instore credit.
That may hold true for consoles. However, for the PC gaming industry all the Walmart stores in my area hardly carry any games if any at all. If Gamestop or any of it's affiliates went under it would make finding quality PC games even harder.

616.4.2009 20:39

Originally posted by bomber991:
Now for my gamestop story. I remember when the PSP first came out, I decided I wanted one on launch day. Well, launch day at around 6pm I go out driving, and I decided to try going to a gamestop to see what the store was like. I go to the one in the mall, and ask if they have any. The lady working there tells me they're sold out and says I can pre-order one for their next shipment that comes in 2 weeks. Ok, thanks anyway. The PSP wasn't a very hyped release, so I decided to go to Toys-R-Us to get one. They had plenty.
That is so true. They get just enough to cover their pre-orders... and I think I know why.

I went hunting for a used "fat" PSP a few weeks ago. GameStop A was out, so I asked if their other stores had any. They sent me to GameStop B, less than ONE MILE down the road! Well, GameStop B was out too and turns out GameStop C had one... ONE MILE DOWN THE ROAD!

That's correct folks, 3 chains within a 2 mile radius (one is within a mall, another a plaza and a third in a plaza next to a Wal-Mart.) If that isn't overkill, the inability to have what I wanted and drive around until I found it, if only I didn't "need" a fat PSP, I probably would've walked a few steps over to Wal-Mart after the first trip, or avoided GameStop altogether.

716.4.2009 22:08

You think that's overkill? A mall in Erie PA that I always go to when I'm down there on March break for shopping has 2 separate Gamestops and an EB Games all under one roof :S

The mall closest to me has a Wal-Mart and an EB Games inside, and the EB Games seems to be like the biggest rip-off these days. They're prices are retarded. I remember a few months after the first GoW came out, my friend went to buy it and Wal-Mart charged the same price for a new copy than EB did for a used copy, the new copy was $10 more.

Only thing they're useful for is some used consoles, I bought a Phat PSP there. Well actually I'm not sure they're even really good for that now because of sites like Kijiji or whatever and Craigslist...

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 16 Apr 2009 @ 22:09

816.4.2009 22:39

if they need to cut the price, cut the price to 250 or 200, for ppl that can afford it! after all, they making money off the games and movies anyways.

916.4.2009 22:56

Agreed, satellite companies, dsl companies, cable companies, and the list goes on, ALL offer free or nearly free equipment to use their products/services. Let them make their money on the "exclusive' titles. 60 bucks a game is ridiculous, but 400 bucks for a system is almost suicide. They need do do something quick. I never thought a new game system (Wii) would be a bargain at $250, it nearly bankrupted me when I shelled out $100 for my first NES, and it came with mario, duck hunt, 2 controllers, and a friggin gun!!!

1016.4.2009 23:33

$100 wasn't the launch NES price though. NES launched at $200. And $200 back in those days was a lot of money. Don't forget inflation.

Btw I got a NES very late (early 92) as a kid and while I don't remember the price, I bet it was around the $200 mark and not $100. Though I had the set with Super Mario Bros/Duck Hunt/Track and Field with 2 controllers, light gun and track pad (I love that thing, don't know where it is now). Considering that Genesis was $190 and SNES $200 then, perhaps the older gen NES was closer to $100 at the time but somehow my memory suggests it was priced higher. And yeah, there's the Canadian dollar thing that pushes the price higher but I don't think our dollar was too weak then.

And don't even get me started on game prices in those days. The typical NES game was $50 new. Don't let the numerical value fool you. Taking inflation into account, $50 was worth a lot more then than now. I remember paying $64 + tax of my allowance money for TMNT 3 in 1993 which is absolutely ridiculous. Luckily I learned about flea markets shortly after that. That helped me save a lot on games. And keep in mind that NES games in general were much shorter than today's games. So you paid a big price for shorter games. That's why most NES carts didn't have battery packs for saving or passwords.

Some battery pack games like the Phantasy Star series (yeah I know not NES but it was during that era) were $70 or maybe even more. For the late 80s/early 90s, that was a major swindling.

Things weren't exactly rosy back in the day for gamers. Nostalgia just makes those times look better than they actually were. Though in some ways (ie. DLC, DRM, high failure rates of consoles), gamers have been treated like crap now more than ever. But when it comes to price, it has been worse. Believe me.

So looking back in history, I don't think current console prices are too bad. The PS3 was pushing it with $600 and they still kind of are with $400. If you go by inflation and taking into account that quality pack-in titles and dual controllers were the norm back then, I'd say $300 is an appropriate price point for a console + 1 controller these days. But SONY is going for an entertainment console route not a pure gaming console route so if you look at it from that perspective, $400 is appropriate if you're really into Blu-Ray and watching your downloaded videos.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 16 Apr 2009 @ 23:44

1116.4.2009 23:39

Originally posted by inagasake:
$100 wasn't the launch NES price though. NES launched at $200. And $200 back in those days was a lot of money. Don't forget inflation.

Btw I got a NES very late (early 92) as a kid and while I don't remember the price, I bet it was around the $200 mark and not $100. Though I had the set with Super Mario Bros/Duck Hunt/Track and Field with 2 controllers, light gun and track pad (I love that thing, don't know where it is now).

And don't even get me started on game prices in those days. The typical NES game was $50 new. Don't let the numerical value fool you. Taking inflation into account, $50 was worth a lot more then than now. I remember paying $64 + tax of my allowance money for TMNT 3 in 1993 which is absolutely ridiculous. Luckily I learned about flea markets shortly after that. That helped me save a lot on games. And keep in mind that NES games in general were much shorter than today's games. So you paid a big price for shorter games. That's why most NES carts didn't have battery packs for saving or passwords.

Some battery pack games like the Phantasy Star series (yeah I know not NES but it was during that era) were $70 or maybe even more. For the late 80s/early 90s, that was a major swindling.

Things weren't exactly rosy back in the day for gamers. Nostalgia just makes those times look better than they actually were. Though in some ways (ie. DLC, DRM, high failure rates of consoles), gamers have been treated like crap now more than ever. But when it comes to price, it has been worse. Believe me.

So looking back in history, I don't think current console prices are too bad. The PS3 was pushing it with $600 and they still kind of are with $400. If you go by inflation and taking into account that quality pack-in titles and dual controllers were the norm back then, I'd say $300 is an appropriate price point for a console + 1 controller these days. But SONY is going for an entertainment console route not a pure gaming console route so if you look at it from that perspective, $400 is appropriate if you're really into Blu-Ray and watching your downloaded videos.
Oh hell I paid 108 for both PH4 and FF3 and never regretted it almost all RPGs now are regrettable... not to mention most modern titles...

Back then a game had to have at least fun gamepaly of some kind now adays its all about graphics and graphics rule the industry from price at the store and cost of development not to mention time of development....

1216.4.2009 23:46

Mine was $100 at Roses in 1989, I remember it like it was yesterday :)
You need to realize that the abundance of technology simply wasn't there then. It's not unusual for developers to use the same game engine 2-5 times before developing a new one, this means they are pumping out a lot more games for a lot less than back then. Not to mention the fan-base to build the empires that they have now was in very early development. The prices then had to be high because there were so few consumers in their market. When I got mine I was one of four people I knew that played videogames, including Atari. I totally see your points, but they are just being too greedy and it's hurting everyone.

1316.4.2009 23:49

Originally posted by imnomyth:
Mine was $100 at Roses in 1989, I remember it like it was yesterday :)
You need to realize that the abundance of technology simply wasn't there then. It's not unusual for developers to use the same game engine 2-5 times before developing a new one, this means they are pumping out a lot more games for a lot less than back then. Not to mention the fan-base to build the empires that they have now was in very early development. The prices then had to be high because there were so few consumers in their market. When I got mine I was one of four people I knew that played videogames, including Atari. I totally see your points, but they are just being too greedy and it's hurting everyone.
FYI that's a piece and it was in 91-93 almost a year apart.

Also in the that time frame they could spend time on gameplay and polish since coding took more time than art, now art takes more time than EVERYTHING.

1416.4.2009 23:50


Oh hell I paid 108 for both PH4 and FF3 and never regretted it almost all RPGs now are regrettable... not to mention most modern titles...

Back then a game had to have at least fun gamepaly of some kind now adays its all about graphics and graphics rule the industry from price at the store and cost of development not to mention time of development....

Honestly, I think the last game I truly felt like I got my monies worth with was Final Fantasy VII, well, maybe IX too. i got excited about Halo 3, but holy crap it was over before it started!!!

1516.4.2009 23:54

FYI that's a piece and it was in 91-93 almost a year apart.

Also in the that time frame they could spend time on gameplay and polish since coding took more time than art, now art takes more time than EVERYTHING.[/quote
I'm sorry, but what do you mean "FYI that's a piece and it was in 91-93 almost a year apart."? I honestly don't know what you mean.

1616.4.2009 23:56

Originally posted by imnomyth:

Oh hell I paid 108 for both PH4 and FF3 and never regretted it almost all RPGs now are regrettable... not to mention most modern titles...

Back then a game had to have at least fun gamepaly of some kind now adays its all about graphics and graphics rule the industry from price at the store and cost of development not to mention time of development....

Honestly, I think the last game I truly felt like I got my monies worth with was Final Fantasy VII, well, maybe IX too. i got excited about Halo 3, but holy crap it was over before it started!!!
I can think of a few PSX/N64/PC games that were worth the money but most of the stuff past 01 or 03...good god.... simplified...bland....over priced...shallow

FF9 was great the last real FF game the rest have been knock offs but for 7 and below.

Halo 3 is rushed just like Halo 2...Halo 1 was great the rest are MS's bastard children...

1716.4.2009 23:58

Originally posted by imnomyth:
FYI that's a piece and it was in 91-93 almost a year apart.

Also in the that time frame they could spend time on gameplay and polish since coding took more time than art, now art takes more time than EVERYTHING.[/quote
I'm sorry, but what do you mean "FYI that's a piece and it was in 91-93 almost a year apart."? I honestly don't know what you mean.
For Phansty Saar 4 and FF 3, got them a year or so apart and paid more than 100 a pop for them that's because I got in either the week it was released or preordered... thinking of which... I think FF3 was the last game I preordered...

1817.4.2009 0:07

I'm an idiot, my bad. Yea, I think Mario 3 was the only game I bought new until FF7. Or was it Metal Gear Solid, no definitely FF7, MGS came later. Most came from yard sales, flea markets and bargain bins.

1917.4.2009 0:41

Phantasy Star 4 and Final Fantasy III (IV) cost $100+ a pop? American currency? I know that JRPG prices in those days were out of control but wow. lol. This is probably why I didn't play many JRPGs before I got a Playstation 1. I did go back and play a lot of 8-bit and 16-bit JRPGs but I didn't actually play them during that era. I played Dragon Warrior II and some other obscure JRPG on the NES then but I wasn't into the genre in those days.

I remember hearing that the Working Designs localizations of Sega CD and Saturn games were very expensive as well. Maybe the Playstation ones too but I wouldn't know because I pirated those Playstations to hell.

2017.4.2009 0:49

Originally posted by inagasake:
Phantasy Star 4 and Final Fantasy III (IV) cost $100+ a pop? American currency? I know that JRPG prices in those days were out of control but wow. lol. This is probably why I didn't play many JRPGs before I got a Playstation 1. I did go back and play a lot of 8-bit and 16-bit JRPGs but I didn't actually play them during that era. I played Dragon Warrior II and some other obscure JRPG on the NES then but I wasn't into the genre in those days.

I remember hearing that the Working Designs localizations of Sega CD and Saturn games were very expensive as well. Maybe the Playstation ones too but I wouldn't know because I pirated those Playstations to hell.
Pre order and new with tax and 15$ shipping it could hit 100 easily.

You might could have got it from a local shop for 80-90 within the month of release.

Most new games though were in the 40-60 range.

Saturn was a nightmare and sega was un helpful with documentation or dev kits think of the PS3 only with 1/4th of the support from sony.

Working designs and other devs got fed up with them didn't port games to their system.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 17 Apr 2009 @ 0:51

2117.4.2009 9:14

Much ado about nothing. Gamestop is still healthy because they make the bulk of their profit on USED merchandise. Asking for a drop in pricepoint is only to increase foot traffic and generate sales (not profit) to make their statements look better. After all, even though used merchandise is where they profit - they have to sell 10 $25 games to add up to one $250 console sale. They're simply looking for a way to add slow dimes to their fast nickels.

2217.4.2009 11:31

My NES was $99 with 2 controllers and the Super Mario Bros./Duck Hunt double cartridge. The SNES was $199 at launch with 2 controllers and Super Mario World. For some reason, those prices stick in my head.

I recall most of the NES titles were $50, unless they were either A)crap or B)released for awhile or C)BOTH! (LOL.)

SNES titles were pushing the $70 price point, as were Genesis titles.

2317.4.2009 14:36

The only thing they seem to offer over the video game section at Walmart and Best Buy is the ability to buy old used games, as well as the ability to trade in your games for money or instore credit. But whatever, the prices are the same as other places, and other places are much more convenient. I mean there's more to look at and buy at BB, and Walmart has groceries. Basically I'd have to go out of my way to go into a Gamestop store.

------------------------------------------------------

1) BB and Walmart don't specialize in video games so comparing them to GS is a mistake. that would also probaby be the reason GS is out of stock on the most popular games because thats where people go to buy them. if the demand is high obviously they won't be able to keep it on the shelf.

2) you said you went on launch day at 6pm to get a psp?!?!? did you think they had an infinite amount just waiting to be purchased?

GameStop is solid as far as i'm concerned. i refuse to pay full price for a game and they almost always have what i want used. not to mention used consoles. who wants to pay full price for anything? the only thing i don't care for is how hard they push to get you to sign up for their game card. i don't see used games for sale at BB, Walmart or Toys R Us.

2419.4.2009 14:34
H08
Inactive

what sucks is you cant even by a new game at gamestop anymore, it is gamestops policy to allow its employees to "rent" its games, then bring them back, re-seal them and sell as new

2519.4.2009 14:38

We don't have a GameStop in Canada but we have EB Games, which is a subsidiary of GameStop. I only ever bought 1 game from EB Games (when they were known as simply Electronics Boutique) and that was before GameStop bought them out. I don't really like EB Games Canada all that much because you have to go to the place just to see what they have. There are no online listings. So if I go there, compare prices and see that their prices are not as good as the competition, I'd have wasted a trip for nothing. You can't be conducting business like that in this day and age when Amazon has such a large library and offers free shipping on orders over $39. GameStop in America on the other hand does have an online catalogue and they also have online shopping as well. EB Games Canada apparently will have online shopping soon though so at least they are making the effort to improve their service.

2619.4.2009 14:49

Originally posted by inagasake:
We don't have a GameStop in Canada
Yes we do! Theres an EB and a Gamestop at a mall close to me, the Gamestop opened less then a year ago I think. I guess they're moving in...

2720.4.2009 8:41

you cant fairly compare Game Stop to walmart or BB. BB and Walmart have a major advantage over GameStop when you compare them like that, because when you shop at those 2 store you can get almost anythinr either electronic, or "anything".
I'm sorry that you went out at 6pm on release day to a store that primarly sells video games and video game consoles and couldn't find any, but happened to find one at a store whos primary business is TOYS not video games.
Gamestop I think actually knows what their talking about, its all they do, video games.
Although I've never been to one, Gamestops around me always have those release parties. Stay open till the AM order pizzas, rent TVs play games all night, just for the release of a new game........Don't see to much of that goin on elsewhere.
Lil to "gamer" for me though

2820.4.2009 11:12

Originally posted by H08:
what sucks is you cant even by a new game at gamestop anymore, it is gamestops policy to allow its employees to "rent" its games, then bring them back, re-seal them and sell as new
This is true, but it's blown out of proportion. When new titles come in they have to "gut" a few boxes to display the actual game cover for legal purposes (game ratings, info, players, online etc) and to avoid theft (as they can't put an actual game on the shelf).

These few titles are then allowed to be tested/played IF the store manager allows it (store by store basis) to let those workers who are interested in that genre to have some fun but at the same time become informed about the game properly if/when asked by a customer about it.

The length of time allowed to "lend" the game is 1-3 days MAX (also store by store basis) and if the title is brought back damaged in ANY way the full price is deducted from the workers check BEFORE they get it.

As for the customers coverage in this situation if there are no more UNOPENED copies they are supposed to be asked if they would like one of the display box copies which are new BUT opened and a sticker is placed on the receipt OR game itself to denote it was a NEW opened copy so the customer does not lose out on a return/exchange or whatever.

I personally prefer a new unopened copy (just as anyone would) but if it's a REALLY hot title that sells quickly then I will take an opened new copy as long as I have the proper coverage for my consumer rights which they do abide by. But I tend to stay away from EB/Gamestop anyway as their used prices are absolutely ridiculous...$5 less for a used copy compared to new?!?!? F that. Ebay, Craigslist etc. it is for me...
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 20 Apr 2009 @ 11:17

2920.4.2009 22:29
H08
Inactive

i completely agree, i have been trying to avoid gamestop after hearing "rants" video from a former employee.


Originally posted by fun2000:
Your friend in nam is not lying. She has a modded PS2, and the modder was generous enough to relabel the PS2 to PS3.
Then the pirate selling games relabeled Assassins Creed 1 and called it Assassins Creed 2. This is called marketing.
Your friend is honest and thinks she plays AC2 on a PS3. In reality she is playing AC1 on a PS2.

Comments have been disabled for this article.

News archive