GameStop President Tony Bartel Talks PS4 Pre-Orders, Price Point And Used Games Impact (Q&A)

Forbes - Sony is still riding a wave of publicity – both positive and negative – since it officially announced its PlayStation 4 console will be available this holiday. The PS4 has renewed the next gen debate not only around what Microsoft might offer with its rumored Xbox 720, codenamed Durango, which is expected to launch this holiday as well; but also around the used games business. The next generation console wars are expected to begin this fall.

GameStop stands to both profit from, and potentially face new obstacles from, the PS4 and its streaming game service, as well as any type of third-party game verification that would impact the retailer’s thriving used games business. Tony Bartel, president of GameStop, expects huge demand for PS4 this Christmas. He talks about the PS4 and discusses a range of topics, including when he expects pre-orders to begin and how he expects streaming and potential third-party game verification to impact used game sales, in this exclusive interview.

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jagiii2053d ago

Looks like E3 will bring a price point and pre-orders for PS4...

2pacalypsenow2053d ago (Edited 2053d ago )

That's what idiots don't get, e3 is where all the info will be shown including price and the console itself. I read a comment someone saying im not getting it cuz they want me to pre order something i don't even know what it looks like or how much its gonna cost...

MasterCornholio2052d ago (Edited 2052d ago )

"me to pre order something i don't even know what it looks like or how much its gonna cost"

Well thats pretty dumb because at least in Spain preordering a console only costs a euro and you can cancel the preorder whenever you want.

As soon as i an i will preorder the PS4 and if the price turns out to be too high or theres some feature that breaks the purchase for me then i will cancel it.

Im amazed on how stupid people can be especially those who claimed that the whole PS4 conference was fabricated with games running on a super computer.


"The whole reason it's not back compatible is to lower the price so Sony doesn't have a horrible launch like with the ps3"

Its like people forgot that one of the reasons that the PS3 was so expensive at launch was because the console had an emotion engine chip in it (PS2 cpu/Gpu).

Maybe people claim that the PS4 should rely on software emulation but that isnt possible due to how complicated the PS3s cell architecture is.

hazelamy2052d ago

except the eu ps3, which was, i beleive, more expensive than anywhere else, late, and without the emotion engine chip.
go figure. o_O

and the ps2 graphics chip was called the graphics synthesiser wasn't it?

Rainstorm812052d ago (Edited 2052d ago )

No it was Emotion Engine

Can't wait til E3.... I will be preordering mine....I stood outside in line the past two generations.(ps2, Xbox, xbox360, ps3)...not this time

YoureINMYWay852052d ago

The whole reason it's not back compatible is to lower the price so Sony doesn't have a horrible launch like with the ps3

caseh2052d ago (Edited 2052d ago )

Along with killing the idea that people could play the games they already own on the PS4 and resell those games via whatever iteration of the PSN store the PS4 has.

Sony could have re-introduced BC on the PS3 a long time ago seeing as manufacturing costs are far lower 7 years into its cycle. Instead they simply introduce revised models with bigger HDDs, HDDs that cost next to nothing these days yet the cost of the console increases if anything.

Its business at the end of the day, I get that. But for those with their eyes open its easy to see other factors behind not including BC that don't come under cost.

Rainstorm812052d ago

Why re-introduce BC after it was axed, just to please a small percent of gamers that still wish to play PS2 games?

Fact is you can get a PS2 for less than a new game at GameStop (49.99)....if you are dying to play your PS2 collection that's the best bet. BC isn't a big deal for me as long as I have the old systems

caseh2052d ago

Because most people want kit that does it all, no one wants a PS1,2,3 and 4 under their TV when the latest iteration is no doubt capable of doing at least 2 of the 3 previous consoles via software emulation or whaterver.

Personally i'm not bothered, once I shift to a new console I never go back to any older games with the exception of old arcade emulators or SNES/Megadrive games.

The fact remains that its more profitable for Sony to resell digital copies and not include BC as they don't see any money from someone buying pre-owned games from the previous gen.

moparful992052d ago (Edited 2052d ago )

Backwards compatibility has no influence on my decision to buy a console.. I think gamers have developed a sense of entitlement and BC is one of those instances.. Sony has to protect it's bottom line and if that means removing BC to combat used game sales then so be it.. I never buy used games nor do I sell my games to companies like Gamestop.. I'll be more than happy to use Gaikai and PS+ to feed my ps3/ps2 needs..

KrisK2052d ago

I wonder how the downloadable model will impact gamespot over time.

Sam Fisher2052d ago (Edited 2052d ago )

Well i used to work for them, and let me say this, its not easy to sell games, they are on your ass about reserves and pre orders, now since digital is the new thing and if sony and ms does it right ( like game share and etc) then good bye gamestop, its a pawnshop before electric store, 70% profit on used items, 20 to 30% new. I recall they were making a new franchise called my tronics or something.

moparful992052d ago

Which is precisely why I don't buy used games nor do I sell my games to them.. Alot of people rationalize it by claiming it helps them buy and enjoy more games but it's just a way for people to be frugal.. I make less than 20k a year but manage to buy and play any game I want without buying and selling used games.. I simply preorder, and pay off overtime so I don't have to incur a large financial hit every time I want a game.. It's evident that Gamestop rakes in gobs of money from used games just look at their promotions.. I'm a PowerUp Pro memeber and have been for years but despite buying thousands of dollars in games and hardware I have roughly 20k points.. But a buddy of mine that buys mostly used games and sells them back after he's done has 70k in less than half the time.. Kind of telling..

gamerlive2052d ago

You can also always rent games for a few bucks, beat them, and then move on...

isa_scout2052d ago (Edited 2052d ago )

I sell my used games to gamestop when I want a new game, and I wouldn't consider it frugal at all. I make right around 20k a year, have a wife, two small children, and bills to pay. If I didn't sell the games I've already played I would only be able to afford maybe 2 or 3 games a year. With the price of games so high I think a lot of the people trading in games are like me(broke all the time) so that's the only way for us to get new games. I really don't see what the problem is with buying and selling used games. If you don't want to do it that's fine I respect that, but for a lot of people Gamestop is the only way we can enjoy new games.

I see the game business like the car industry; I just traded in my car for a new SUV, does the car industry have the right to tell me what I'm "allowed" to do with my used car? No, because I bought it, payed for the license, and the insurance, and did what I wanted with it. The industry is actually better off because there is the used game market. New games sell millions more because people are able to buy new games with used games. For instance EVERY game I trade in goes toward a pre-order. I just traded in Aliens:Colonial Marines for Tomb Raider(quite a good investment by the way) that's one more sell for Tomb Raider that wouldn't have happened without me having the ability to trade in games.

Also, I don't like the idea of no used games because some developers don't deserve the sales they get at all. I'd rather someone buy my $20.00 used copy of the shitty Aliens game than get burned and pay full price like myself. Developers would be able to say, "[email protected]# it, they can't get rid of it once they buy it so the fact it's not amazing wont really hurt us in the end. We'll still see cash flow." It's all about the money with Gamestop yes i would agree, but that's all a lot of developers think about also. Screw making quality products, we'll make more if we just keep on the same beaten path(COD), and here is my response to them. Ok, I'll buy your game,used, and you wont see a penny.

wsoutlaw872052d ago

Why get ripped off buy game stop when you could sell it to people on ebay or amazon

isa_scout2052d ago

I guess just because it's quicker and there's not as much hassle. I live about an hour away from the nearest Gamestop,target, walmart so when I go to trade/buy a game it's nice knowing I can do it all at once without the hassle of shipping and handling. Also, I've used Ebay several times before and I got burned. Sam Fisher in the comments above called Gamestop a pawnshop, I disagree. I see gamestop as a specialty store. For the people that don't like to go to specialty stores or "Gamestop" that's fine, but whether you're seling them on ebay or to Gamestop the fact still remains you're trading them, and they in turn become used games. I see NO problem in trading the games YOU OWN in to Gamestop or wherever because they're your games to do with as you please. There are plenty different avenues to trading in your old games but the principle is still the same.