Today used game trade-in kiosks maker e-Play announced that they have suspended operations, and consequently will be shutting down all of its kiosks at Best Buy and Walmart locations. Some of you may remember, way back in May, when e-Play announced that it will be testing these kiosks at various Walmart and Best Buy locations around the U.S..
Upon investigation of the e-Play website, all I found was the statement, “e-Play, LLC has suspended operations. Thank you to all our customers. For more information call 1-866-602-6014.”
While this news may not be the most shocking or exciting, I still feel that it’s very important. Much to the chagrin of videogame developers and publishers, used game sales make up a huge amount of videogame transactions. The sad thing is, when someone buys a used game, almost all of the money goes to the retailer, leaving those who actually produce the games out to dry.
Recently, in an attempt to increase non-used game sales, many publishers have been including “free” DLC with the purchase of a new copy of a game. Major titles including Mass Effect 2, The Saboteur, and Dragon Age: Origins have all utilized this method.
As you (probably) can already tell I’m against buying used games. I feel that this practice blatantly exploits game developers, allowing retailers to control 100% of the profits. Instead of feeding the GameStop machine (sorry GameStop, nothing personal but you’ve become the poster child for used game sales), I try to use game trading websites like Goozex. At least this way retailers are not able to exploit both the consumer and the producer.
Enough of my self-righteous rant. What do you guys think? Are used games really that big of an issue for the videogames industry, or am I blowing it completely out of proportion?