GameStop To Close Up To 225 Stores Worldwide

A sharp decline in sales prompts GameStop to close stores.

415 Comments
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Next time you try to trade in a used console, you might run into clearance sales--or an empty storefront.

Following a year of lower-than-expected sales capped off by a disappointing holiday season, GameStop announced that it anticipates shuttering 2-3% of its stores worldwide in a recent earnings report. Based on this figure, up to 225 of the company’s 7,500 stores worldwide could be facing closure.

The retailer's fourth-quarter profits in 2016 had dipped by 13.6% since those from the prior year, prompting its stock to plunge by 31%. These losses were made in sales of both new games and new consoles, which GameStop attributed to "aggressive console promotions by other retailers on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday," as well as "weak sales of certain AAA titles."

As a potential silver lining, GameStop also reported a 27.8% increase in its collectibles sales over the year, mostly thanks to strong sales of Pokemon merchandise and the success of affiliate brands such as the geek-culture merchandiser ThinkGeek and the AT&T technology retailer Spring Mobile. Accordingly, it plans to open roughly 35 new collectibles stores and 65 new technology stores.

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Avatar image for Riddick123
Riddick123

Hmmm, maybe AAA games having a bad rep for releasing shit on day one affects sales.

Avatar image for PS2fweak
PS2fweak

Everybody had to expect this at some point. The core of their business was buying and selling used games. That's it, and they sucked at that. Craigslist will easily get you at least $15-$20 more for a popular game if you want cash and there are other places online if you live in a small market.

GameStop just never evolved much. You can't even go to a GameStop store to buy a GPU or other PC components. There are 15 GameStops within 10 miles from my house, but I need to go elsewhere to buy components for my gaming PC.

Sad for the employees, but probably good for the industry. Hopefully they'll either get their shit together, or be replaced by a better company.

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Riddick123

@PS2fweak: Then selling said used game for 5 dollars cheaper than the same new game

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TheCobraKaiDojo

It's a shame that in a lot of smaller markets(like mine), Gamestop is one of the only places you can physically pick up and look at games before you buy them. I'm fully aware that they are a huge corporation with a chief goal to make profits, but most of the Gamestops that I've been to are employing young people who are passionate about gaming. I wish I had an indie store for games in my area, but it's simply not an option.

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cashx002

Sorry for the workers and F**K GS. Way to keep employees and not push through tough times. The minute they start to lose money, jobs disappear/stores close. They could restructure and hang on to the workers. Losers. Hope you are beaten by better business models.

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Depresso

Retails stores play an important role in keeping games relevant for the game industry so Publishers should make special allowances for specialist stores, as gamers go in, play demos, buy merchandise and not having those stores would hit the gaming industry really hard, they need them and Publishers know they cannot compete with online stores, let alone digital games. If Publishers are greedy they will pay the consequences as game stores are like free publicity to them, they need to pay less for games then online stores to be able to compete with them.

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Depresso

Gamestop, just like any business, need to be always focus on maintaining its relevance and following trends and changing markets. Gamestop needs to evolve from a simple gamestore to an entertainment one. Selling videogames alone will not be enough in the digital era, merchandise and other forms of media need to be catered for plus demos exct... Gamestop must offer what a digital store cannot, an experience, keep the customer in store enough time to make a purchase, be it accessories, merchandise and even coffee, whilst they soak in the gaming wibe. I also think Gamestop need to have a special relationship with Publishers, they both need each other !

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DudeBroPartyYo

Well its mainly to do with digital sales. Big reason for digital games is, well being lazy to go out and buy the thing, i mean people dont think about potential trade in or sale of the game after you completed it, cant do it with digital. I do buy digital as well, again sometimes just lazy to get up go to the shops, but every now and then i think to my self " You dick, you bought it digital, got bored of it, what now, cant do anything with it, just delete it of your drive"

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wrestlingdude

Hahahaaa!! Burn Corporate scum. Worst employer ever. Gamestop is finally shriveling up. Even if 225 stores doesn't sound like a lot.

Avatar image for dudebropartyyo
DudeBroPartyYo

@wrestlingdude: But are you going to help those people who lose their jobs get new jobs?

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Riddick123

@dudebropartyyo: Working at GS is worse than working at McDonald's. Buddy of mine was a manager. Worked ungodly hours and they only paid him 27k.

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PS2fweak

@dudebropartyyo: They can help themselves like everybody else. Every shitty company has employees. Doesn't mean we can't be happy when a shitty company goes under.

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wrestlingdude

@PS2fweak: Exactly what PS2 said. IF someone needs help finding a different job after Gamestop employment, there's a HUGE problem. "Independence" is a big trait for any adult to function properly. Plus Gamestop doesn't pay their employees well at all. They don't care about the paychecks, they care only about their quotas. Anyone would find better pay working at the "Goodtimes" food chain as a great example of a better financial alternative.

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DudeBroPartyYo

@wrestlingdude: One little problem with that theory. Unemployment is rising around the world. Its not a question ones ability to find a job, its more of are there jobs to be found. My friend got laid of from his workplace due to business slowing down, been looking for work about 5 months now. Thats in Australia tho. Hey maybe America has more jobs going than us here but one of my friends there says its not that easy.

I dont know how much they pay their workers but pay check is better than no pay check or living on government payments until you find another job.

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wrestlingdude

@dudebropartyyo: I'm in America, Denver Colorado and there are more jobs than popcorn shrimp at the supermarket. That sucks to hear about Australia, we were in the same boat 4 years ago. Luckily minimum wage has gone up and businesses are booming out in Colorado. Plus all the youngsters are getting jobs at the weed shops, that's another business that's soaring. Colorado generates 1.2 billion dollars a year (and growing) from ganja.

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beckerjr

225 is pretty low for a company that has over 7000 stores. That's around 3%.

I'm no fan of Gamestop but this is an overblown story.

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PS2fweak

@beckerjr: Not really if you consider just how strong they have always been as a company. A full 3.2% of 7000 stores is actually a lot and it means even more. This is how it starts. You don't close that many stores because you're doing okay and you don't do better because you simply closed stores, if you get what I'm saying. It's a temporary bandage and unless they do something to drastically turn their business around, they will continue to decline. Definitely not an overblown story. You know how the industry is looking right now from a retail perspective. Why would a company like GameStop being doing okay at a time like this? I haven't been there in years, and strangely enough, I bet most gamers haven't either.

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VENOM6979

Digital games should be cheaper from the start and they aren't which is really a kick in the balls or vags but I prefer physical copy plus the best place to buy is bestbuy which is better than gamestop, Amazon and everyone else. When you purchase the 2 year plan which cost $30 with bestbuy you get 20% off new games which comes to $48 before taxes and on top of that which Amazon doesn't do is if you preorder the game you get $10 back in rewards so it's like you really paid $38 for a brand new game. Consider the $10 like a sort of mail in rebate lol

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Depresso

@marticus: when you say overcharge do you compare them to online stores ? If you exclude greed can you think of other reasons why they might be more expensive ? A shop has to pay Rent, has to pay employees and a few extra costs. It has to make a profit on used games to be a viable business and if Gamestop goes gamers will be worst off.

Avatar image for mushywaffle
MushyWaffle

Everyone saw this coming for the last few years. When your service and policy's are detrimental to the very people you are trying to sell too, they will leave you once a less painful method of product delivery is acquired. There are NO needs/advantages going to a brick and mortar store ,when everything you sell is MSRP and what you offer for trade-ins are insulting.

They have lived off the gamer money-teet for far too long. Now that gamers have options, you can't take advantage of them anymore.

RIP Gamespot, you were never that great, just the only method for Gamers to scratch the itch. Now that your delivery method is dead, you will soon be as well.

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parabol69

That's great news! Damn crooks.

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LonelyHippie27

hahahaha..I'm sorry...I couldn't finish reading the article because I was laughing myself to death.

Burn in hell Gamestop

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Henninger

Physical copy all day.

Avatar image for mushywaffle
MushyWaffle

@Henninger: But you can get that Physical Copy with Same day delivery PLUS cheaper from Amazon. While most of us have moved on to the more convenient delivery method of digital, I get why some people prefer physical. But Gamestop took advantage of gamers for too many years.. .now they pay. FYI, Amazon Prime members get 10% off ALL games ALL the time. If you are a student, at ANY level, you get Amazon prime for 50% off. Easily the best deal going.

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Riddick123

@mushywaffle: Even with a physical copy you have to download.

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Depresso

@mushywaffle: you are missing the point, you are buying online to save money, fair enough, but game shops have their function too, used games, merchandise, see demos, play demos, social,meet like minded people, ect and besides they provide the game industry one more way to earn money. No retail stores, less profits, less money for game development, less games ! It's a circle.

Avatar image for Riddick123
Riddick123

@Depresso: Buying used games for 5 dollars less than same game still in the package is not a deal

Avatar image for deezyfbaby
deezyfbaby

all games have amazing sales for digital downloads, every now and then a new game goes for like $40, but hard copies wont go down until like Christmas. so it makes sense that some stores are closing, because people are starting to realize its much easier and more convenient to download digital. i however dont purchase hard copies myself but if i did i would use amazon which still offers great sales. so not gonna miss gamestop

Avatar image for NeonicTrash
NeonicTrash

@deezyfbaby: Gamestop isn't good about discounting physical new release games quickly...but there are plenty of deals for new physical games through Amazon as you mentioned, and also Best Buy, ebay, and Amazon resellers. Within weeks of release I've seen Amazon selling new games for 50, 45, or less. You definitely don't have to wait till the holidays to get a newer physical game for under 60.

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Troll_Elite

Who needs GameStop when Amazon will send a drone to your doorstep to deliver your games?

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Depresso

@troll_elite: and one day you might even have a drone for a friend hey ! What great times lie ahead.

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DebateMe

I switched exclusively to online merchants such as Amazon to buy physical games. Gamestop was too slow to check people out. And as others have pointed out, they go on and on pushing other merchandise when you're checking out. The whole process had the same slowness and vibe as 1980s Radio Shack.

Avatar image for DETfaninATL
DETfaninATL

This is going to be happening more and more as content shifts to being exclusively digital. All the retail chains are going to be able to sell is the physical hardware and whatever meaningless crap (shirts, figurines, hats, etc) they can get alongside it.

Avatar image for Bahamagamer
Bahamagamer

My thoughts on this.

God bless everyone.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBY8_BXBHCg&feature=youtu.be

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ASneakyPoptart

Just from a customer service standpoint, I'm not even remotely surprised. The last time I bought a game from EB Games/Gamestop was when Infamous Second Son came out. All I wanted was to just buy the game, but no. The higher ups make the employees try to shove everything down your throat. "Hey, Call of Duty 87 just got announced, did you want to pre-order that? Can I interest you in an EDGE Super Platinum Ultra Mega card? Get an extra 10% when you trade in your old games! Can I also throw four more dollars on your total for insurance on your game that you'll most likely never use?"

I'm primarily a PC gamer but when I order a console exclusive game I use Amazon and haven't looked back.

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silv3rst0rm

Gamestop/EB Games seem to forget that in any Retail Store of any kind, you have to give a decent service to get to sell your products.

It's not the other way around!

You could have the best product ever, if you're not willing to give any kind of service to back up your products, people will go elsewhere get it!

I'd like to say it's an isolated thing but I've visited 3-4 different EB Games stores around me and I've never been satisfied with their staff.

I prefer to go to my local Microplay Store where I find the staff much MUCH more friendly and devoted!

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Tyson8earzz

I must be one of the old guys who still prefer physical copies of (console) games. This way, if i get tired of a game, complete it, or have no reason to replay it ever again, I can resell it on craigslist / ebay to recoup some of my original purchase cost so I can buy other games for consoles (xbox1/ps4/wiiU)

On PC it doesn't matter to me much, i buy all digital on that platform as PC games usually hit rock bottom prices if you are willing to wait a month or 2 after initial (hype) release.

Ive not set foot in a gamestop store in well over 10 years. I always bought console games at Target/Walmart/Amazon with Amazon being my favorite. Buying games as an Amazon Prime member ($100 a yr w/ free 2-day shipping on pretty much anything you buy) will get you day-1 release of games for $48 and change instead of the usual $60 and the hassle of pre-ordering and then going to the store and standing in line to get it.

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CraigTL

Things are changing with the digital era. I know I have changed with it. I used to go to gamestop weekly on my lunch break just to look around the used game section for good finds. I always took advantage of being a rewards pro member and I would always encourage people to do the same like I was paid to do so. Now, for some reason, I prefer digital copies and I still dont know why. I can count on one hand how many times I have gone to Gamestop in the past 4 years that is a huge change that I didnt see coming for myself but it happened. Looks like many others have done the same.

Avatar image for Tegorian
Tegorian

@craigtl: I know how you feel. I used to go to actual stores for my games but when Xbox One was announced and the digital thing I originally planned on still purchasing physical copies since you would get the digital but after the backlash and unpairing of this to me it was the deathnell for physical copies. I personally enjoy not having to change a disc when I want to change games.

Avatar image for craigtl
CraigTL

@Tegorian: Yup, thats what got me also. It just feels right... in and out of apps, live tv, and games just like that. If I have to get up and put a game in now its just too much trouble lol damn.

Avatar image for ravenkiller
ravenkiller

here's a fine example of why im glad i never went digital i recently purchased mass effect andromeda physical copy for $54 from amazon and as you knowi found out that game sucks so I decided to trade that in for a better game nier automata. and no game stop didn't give me 5 bucks for mass effect either they gave me more like 30 dollars for it which is a extremly good deal for it if i went digital on it i would have been stuck with this half assed game.

Avatar image for mvilleguy88
mvilleguy88

@ravenkiller: I hear that. It definitely helps your dollar go further. Especially in the case of a bad game like you mention or a real short one.

Avatar image for maskthestars
maskthestars

@mvilleguy88: a lot of these people on here must not value their hard earned money. If a game isn't good I don't want it and want to get something back out of the experience. You go digital and there is no cutting your losses. I buy digital if its a game I know I'll never get tired of, but if its just playing a series I've never got around to before, I'll always do physical. Might be a good game, but not a style of gameplay thats fun for me. Or once I complete everything, there isn't anything left to do. Might as well get something for it, or even give it away to a friend who would enjoy it.

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NeonicTrash

@maskthestars: There is value in physical trade-ins, reselling, but a lot of the time when I buy digital, it's because there's a special sale. I don't buy $60 digital games...if a game's been out a year or 2 and I know I want it, and it gets discounted to $35 or less and packed in with previously extra cost DLC, to me that is a deal I'm not going to get with a physical copy, at least not for another year or 2, don't like to buy used, so I'll grab it. So buying digital with sales can save money, you just can't resell.

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maskthestars

@NeonicTrash: I completely agree with this though. But preordering a new game digitally or getting it new right away at full price gtfo.

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wcwboy77

You guys do know that this isn't that much of a downfall right? Because even if they lose a couple of stores you can still order online, and get either a physical copy or a digital copy.

And that digital doesn't really hurt physical copies because if that was the case then game companies would stop making the physical copies and only have the digital.